Agassi Tennis Generation Review

Developer: Aqua Pacific Publisher: DreamCatcher
Release Date: August 19, 2003 Also On: None

Virtua Tennis, the undisputed king of the tennis genre, is Sega’s lone ranger on the Dreamcast for video game pioneering. No other tennis game ever reached the depth of play that Virtua Tennis achieved. DreamCatcher’s Agassi Tennis Generation (ATG) attempted to mimic this formula of successful tennis engineering. As you might assume, ATG allows you the chance to take the role of Andre Agassi, the tennis master himself. In total though, 32 pro male tennis players are available, including Agassi. Only three game modes, including quick match, arcade, and tournament, make the game selection miniscule.

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Quick match is a game variant that allows you to choose your player, opponent, court surface, and the choice of playing a doubles match, which can be played with another human, up to four in fact, or all computers. Arcade mode is essentially the same as quick match gameplay-wise, but selects opponents randomly. The tournament mode is the final gameplay feature, which runs you through a series of tournaments, placing you in brackets, and then facing you off with your selected opponent in three sets.

On to court types. Courts include grass, clay, carpet, etc. Countries where the courts are located include Australia, Belgium, Sweden, United States, Great Britain, Germany, Russia, and more. In total, there are fourteen courts available out-of-the-box, with no unlockable ones that I have encountered. The gameplay mechanics are what you expect from a tennis title. A rising meter measures the strength of your serve. Executable shots include top spins, slices, lobs, and standard. By using the analog stick you can affect the direction of your shot. The problems in gameplay are generally due to an attempted shot in motion, which almost is never executed by the game. In fact, the game ignores that you even pressed the button when moving. Interesting enough is the fact that your player moves towards the ball, even if you don’t move the joystick, which takes away from any feel of control over your tennis player.

The game’s sound department is the most desperate for improvement. While shoes squeak, players groan, and the ball hitting the surface are all there, they of course should be and little points can be added for rudimentary audio features. A score keeper is in the background, giving out basic information, while a commentator gives gameplay action remarks, but due to the limited amount of phrases, such as “no chance of returning that!�, you have to thank God that commentary can be turned off in the options menu.

While speaking of God, why not sacrifice a copy of Agassi Tennis in appreciation for bringing us good tennis games, such as Virtua Tennis? Not all games can find themselves in the same tier of gaming goodness as others; Agassi Tennis Generation is proof that surpassing the quality of a classic is nearly impossible. You’re better off buying a Dreamcast with a copy of Virtua Tennis than play this game.

Graphics: 6
Sound: 4
Gameplay: 7
Creativity: 3
Replay Value/Game Length: 5
Final: 5
Written by Kyle Review Guide

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