Wednesday, October 28, 2009

World Court Tennis

Namco / NEC

Final Lap Twin endeared itself to Turbo players with its innovative RPG mode, but a big reason it was such a success is that its driving engine was solid to begin with. It plays great as a racer and would've been received well even if its designers hadn't put together a cool adventure to make the whole package even stronger. World Court Tennis, on the other hand, does not fare well at all with its basic sports action. The large-headed, stupid-looking players run so slowly and swing so meekly that you'll wonder if they've ever set foot on a court or picked up a racket before. But WCT's designers weren't content with building a throwaway standard mode; they had to go ahead and bomb with all the questing elements they incorporated as well.

Unlike Final Lap's, WCT's core gameplay is shit, failing even to come close to Davis Cup's or Final Match's. It goes completely to hell when you're forced to switch sides and play at the top. Good luck returning the ball.

The presentation elements are revolting 8-bit-caliber trash, and it seems like the designers didn't even give a damn about the "adventuring," as there's little to do but plod from town to tennis court to town to tennis court. You do eventually get an inner tube to flounder about the "vast" seas... in case that sounds like fun.

The townsfolk spew the simplest, stupidest BS I've ever encountered in anything remotely resembling an RPG. Not that there's much for them to clue you in on in this simple tale.

Oh, there are some secrets to stumble upon... not that they're of the helpful sort.

Make it to the end and you'll get to face the evil tennis king, who is apparently the devil, who is apparently a goofy green guy.

Even the NPCs know that you should be playing Final Lap instead of this garbage. In fact, this is the one useful bit of information you'll receive during your quest.

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