The Most Challenging Game of Pong Ever
After the initial frustration of having slightly clumsy controls wanes, Sports Heads: Tennis starts turning out to be quite an interesting time waster. You face off opponents in a simple two dimensional court and use your racquets to get a ball across the other side. The physics mechanics are not intuitive, so figuring out where the ball will go is not easy -but given time, players will learn to ignore it. The reason for this is that the game is designed to make you focus on the competition and winning, which is good-if uphill challenges are your kind of thing.
De-stressing is the one of the biggest benefits that gaming (casual or hardcore) provides to players; which is probably why players should be wary when deciding to try out Sports Heads: Tennis. This is not your typical pick up and play kind of game. You will have to keep on your toes, track down the ball’s slightly unpredictable patterns, and make do with the not-so-precise controls. We appreciate being able to use the keyboard, but the response of the animations is so off-sync that learning to plan your moves ahead in a game where physics takes a dive out of the window becomes something of a requirement to win.
The computer AI does not let up, from the very first stage till the very last, the game has been designed to have players facing off against AI that will do its best to score every single round. It is not all that bad, even the computer gets fooled by the wacky physics and makes mistakes too. But that sheer volume of points earned from mistakes as opposed to fiercely fought rallies makes the game feel random at times. Despite this factor, it is still a highly competitive game that makes you want to win over your opponent every single time.
Sports Head’s approach of minimalistic player and enemy representation works well with the flash based browser type for tennis games; having less elements means faster loading and of course, a smoother gameplay for the users on slower devices. Also, it allows you to focus on the important points: where the ball is and where your position is.
The stages change a little as you progress in the game. These changes will directly affect your game as the boundary change in shape and additional obstacles are used. Even more interesting is the fact that power up items will appear randomly. To acquire these, you must touch them with the tennis ball before the opponent is able to hit the ball from their end. This increases the randomness factor of the game -which, while exciting, can also turn the tables in the most unexpected of ways similar to other physics games such as drunken wrestlers. It is possible to get horribly frustrated when a perfect serve turns into a mad scramble to get your ball across the net after you accidentally snag a bomb powerup (which drops bombs on a participant’s side of the court).
Those of you looking for a light game will want to pass this up. Sports Heads Tennis game has a challenge level that treads the thin line between truly challenging and maddeningly frustrating. Like it’s brother – Sports Head Tennis Open, there are enough times in the game where you handily fight, rise, and meet the challenge to get a satisfying win to make it worth playing, but it also gives you plenty of occasions where everything, including your own controls, seems to be working against you. If you only have a short time to spare, we really suggest playing something else such as Tennis Stars Cup. But if you have a severe hankering for something that will push you to your limits, then this is the game you should try.