The humble stickman continues to dominate the sporting arena in iTunes with another winning outing, this time in Tennis Tour, the Follow That App of the Week for Saturday 16th July 2011.
Sports games should be about repeat play and this game is accessible enough to pick up in a few minutes, but challenging enough to have you cursing on your commute hours later.
While Quick Mode allows you to take you pick of the top 100, it’s tour mode where the game really comes alive. You start with low profile tournaments against lesser ranked players and gradually working your way up to the Grand Slams and some highly challenging matches.
The triumph of Tennis Tour is in the gameplay. As someone who has played a lot of tennis, the gameplay felt natural, even if the odd quirk caused frustration as your played swished at thin air. You have to move your opponent around the court until an opening or sheer power wins you the point.
The addiction lies in guiding your player through the tournament in search of a no.1 ranking, despatching the cannon fodder and requiring full concentration for the top players. If you’re really after a challenge then switch off automatic movement.
Stickmen are all the rage on the iPhone, but with decent characterisation and graphics this would be a stunning game. No doubt cost prevented the developer from licensing the player names, but it’s pretty obvious who the players are with only the surnames changed to protect from the lawyers. Hence you duke it out with Andy Marry or the amusingly-named Novak Doctovic.
There are still frustrations with unexpected player movements, particularly on automatic mode, but generally the player moves and hits as expected. The real omission is multi-player, but hopefully the high sales from this game riding high in the charts will free up some budget.
It may have its quirks, but the gameplay and tour progression more than make up for it in this excellent game.
And there’s even a lite version if you like to try before you buy.
Fanboy store review: “Best tennis game on iPhone. Tennis fans: gonna love it! Very very realistic gameplay even tho it’s stickmen. Have to master the play to be the best, so you won’t simply jump in and win everything”
Meh store review: “Okay game, massive problem for me not being able to listen to my own music while playing. But good overall gameplay, strangely addictive”
Get it on iTunes: here, currently at 69p (99c).