Nintendo Switch Review: Mario Tennis Aces

Anyone for Tennis?

After a somewhat disappointing Wii U entry, I didn’t expect to see another Mario Tennis game for quite some time, but I was wrong, and we have Mario Tennis Aces, a game that has a story mode for the first time since the GBA version and online play for the first time in the series. But does it serve up a valuable experience?

The story mode is actually pretty great and will see you beat a number of opponents under extreme conditions like time limits and even boss battles, there’s also a levelling up system for playing matches and even different rackets you can gain for completing challenges. The campaign is a bit tricky and some boss battles are tough, but it’s all about learning their patterns and capitalising on them.

Besides being able to take typical shots like lob and volley, you can also land on stars that appear on the court and enter a first-person mode that will let you aim where you want the ball to strike, but your opponent can also use their power meter to slow down time and prevent it from scoring. Having said that, pulling that manoeuvre off is far from easy and you can even break your racket if you don’t time it right and once you run out of rackets, it’s game over.

Besides the story mode, there are traditional online and offline matches. Sadly, there’s no option for standard rules that take out the stars for those wanting a more realistic game of tennis, but you’ll soon get used to the mechanics. Finding online matches seems fairly fast so far and stable throughout.

Visually, the game looks crisp and highly detailed. Camelot have put a lot of effort into making the game look great and run at a solid framerate, it looks just as detailed in handheld or docked mode. The sound effects are typical of the Mario series and the soundtrack is average but does the job.

The Verdict

Mario Tennis Aces is the best game in the series since it’s N64 entry. It even surpasses it with it’s decent story mode and great competitive gameplay and definitely worthy of the Mario license. Well done Camelot, you’ve redeemed yourselves.

Score: 9.0