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Virtua Tennis 2 Review - PS2

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Ever pictured yourself playing an Wimbledon? Ready to face serve as millions watch a small yellow ball being smashed towards you at 190km/hr and you’re expected to somehow blast it back. Of course, many Dreamcast devotees will remember Virtua Tennis 2 that originally appeared on the DC, it has been a bit of a wait, but finally a port for the PS2 has arrived.

Virtua Tennis 2 allows you to live out your wanna-be tennis dreams against the computer or human opponents. If you are not a massive tennis fan, you might not think the game is for you – however I did find that there was something just appealing about hitting that ball back and forward that seems to suck you in, tennis fan or not. Maybe I'm reverting back to the early Pong days where it all started!


The game has 3 main modes of play. There is the Exhibition match for a one off match against the computer or friend. There is World Tournament mode in which you can progress through each round with increasingly difficult opponents in the aim of becoming the Grand Slam Champion. The final mode is World Tour mode, which allows you to create your own custom character, train them up, and try and become the World #1.

World Tournament is the most interesting game mode and aims to capture the “virtual” part of the game. In this mode you can create your own player, specifying things such as height, facial features, race, etc. Once you’ve created your player, it's off for some practice, which can range from fairly simple tennis machine shots, to practicing by hitting bowling balls with the ball?! Each of these builds up your stats, and helps you become more competitive during each round. Progress through each round and you collect cash winnings, which allows you to further your skills and obtain better equipment.

Each match is, well, just like a tennis match. You serve or receive serve, and fight out each point to see the victor is. When serving you have a power meter which dictates how powerful your serve is. After serving, the usual array of tennis shots plays out before you, such as the backhand, forehand, lob, etc. What disappoints to me a bit about the game is there is very little control available to the type of shot that you are going to play. Really whether you end up playing a forehand, backhand, smash, or two-hander really depends on your position on the court. It really is a bit random when you press the X button, and you never really know exactly which shot your player is going to hit, although you do have a fair bit of control over the direction. While the square button can be used to hit a lob which allows some variety, much more control would have add a much more realistic edge. Sega really should have allowed a ... (continued next page)