On-Court Tennis (Activision) Review | Computer Gamer - Everygamegoing

Computer Gamer

On-Court Tennis
By Activision
Commodore 64

Published in Computer Gamer #3

On-Court Tennis

With Wimbledon in mind, Activision have released their 3D simulation which enables you to join in the on-court excitement.

Streets ahead of Psion's abysmal Match Point, this package shows how it should have been. You choose your style by selecting one of the four players which each have their own strengths and weaknesses. You must also choose the playing surface: grass, hard court or clay.

Once the type of game has been selected, the screen reveals a view of the court looking along the line of play, with player two in the near court sporting a yellow shirt and player 1 in the far court in blue. In the one player version the computer takes the role of player one.

The first problem is serving the ball. The computer sees to the process of throwing the ball in the air but it's up to the player to time his swing and calculate the strength and direction of the serve using the joystick and the fire button.

Assuming the serve is legal, the computer again takes over to position the player for the return shot. again, the joystick selects the type of shot, giving the choice of slice, lob, drop, topspin or flat shot, the timing of the swing determining the direction of the ball. If your opponent lobs the ball back, you then have the opportunity to place a smash into his court.

Scoring follows the sequence of the professional game, including the use of tie-breakers to decide drawn sets. The match can consist of three or five sets, or it can just be a one set practice match.

From the players' point of view, the play is by no means easy and practice is essential, just as in the real game. As your game improves so does that of the computer making an almost unbeatable opponent.

If you've ever wondered what it's like to face John McEnroe, Jimmy Connors or Bjorn Borg then this game is definitely for you.