If you’re a fan of Nintendo’s moustached plumber and the sport of tennis, you’ve no doubt heard of or played Mario Power Tennis when it was released eight years ago in 2004. A few years back, Nintendo brought back the game as part of the short-lived New Play Control! series for the Wii. and added enhanced controls. Does this mean the version is better or worse than the original? Keep reading to find out! -Adam Keene
The gameplay is where the game really takes advantage of it’s Wii port. The Wiimote functions as as the main controller for the tennis racket. As such, players must swing the Wiimote to serve and to hit the ball back to the other side of the net. As the player does this, a bar will slowly fill up on the left corner of the screen. When it is full, the player has the option of either hitting the ball back in an epic fashion on offense, or to make a defensive save when the ball is just out of reach normally. The joystick is optional for the game, but if used, it will allow the player to run around the field, this can make things more difficult however, as without the joystick, the player automatically closes in on the ball. There are also mini-games and new tournaments the player can unlock as they progress through the game, along with other little extras. During this reviewer’s time playing through some of the mini-games, I personally had a lot of fun, although some gamers may not find most of the games “challenging” enough to bother with. Although, as said above, I found these games enjoyable enough to playthrough more than a few times.
As with other Wii ports of Gamecube titles, this one has been given slightly updated graphics, although even if it hadn’t, it still would’ve looked good, even by today’s standards, sure it may not reach the levels of PS3 or the 360, but you can’t deny the game still looks great, although if you never played the original game, it probably won’t make a difference.
In short, the game may not be a total work of art, but it is an incredibly fun game to play. This reviewer had never played real tennis at all before playing this game, and it wasn’t difficult to figure out the rules (for those of you who have also never played the real sport). Add the fun and addictive gameplay to the fact it has a huge ensemble of Mario characters and you have yourself a winning combination. This is definitely one worth playing in my opinion, and is definitely worth the $19.99 it sells for as a Nintendo Selects title!