Review misses some pictures, but text is there. Please bare with us as we are currently in a migration process of all the reviews.

Virtua Tennis 4 – The good

  • Graphics are good
  • New take on playing tennis with Kinect
  • If you don’t want it for kinect only, there’s plenty of other things to do with a controller

Virtua Tennis 4 – The not so good

  • Motion play is only for exhibition mode or party mode
  • Music and sound effects are awful
  • When not using kinect, the “feeling sore or tired” message continuously pops up, more of a nuisance than anything

Virtua Tennis 4 – Story
There is a world tour mode, which allows you to create a nobody and become a somebody. I would of loved to have this mode using Kinect however, it’s controller only. I understand why they didn’t bother with Kinect as you really need accuracy during the world tour as your training improves your skillsets, you need to be able to aim the ball…With the kinect experience, you can aim, but not accurately.

Virtua Tennis 4 – Kinect experience
If this was a full blown Kinect title, I would of bought it in an instant instead of just renting it. I find the way they setup the game modes/world tour to be fun and keeps me wanting to come back for more, but the Kinect experience is short unfortunately. You can only play exhibition mode, and a maximum of 5 sets if I recall. I only played 1 set of 2 games, didn’t try the longer ones.

Where they did a really good job is the camera work, it feels so natural I was impressed. When not hitting the ball, the camera goes into a tight 3rd person over the shoulder camera and angled at the person just as if you were really looking at the opponent. When the ball comes at you, it switches you into first person view and you can swing.

Kinect detects both type of swing (forehand/backhand/lob/overhand) as well as strength of swing. I found this incredible and I can only imagine what a real tennis game is going to be like with a career mode. You can also move side to side to get on either side of the ball, I tend to play forehand when the ball is coming to my right side and backhand when it comes to my left. My real tennis playing worked flawlessly in the game. It was nothing like Deca Sports tennis which was a flop when it came out.

You can also step forward and rush the net and serve it hard back if the opponent lobs it or just to make it challenging, it all happens so fast, but the main factor I am impressed with is that it works. I believe Kinect Sports 2 will build upon this but as we know, KS is a taste of the real things, so more than likely no career mode…looks like we will have to wait for EA’s Grand Slam Tennis to see if it becomes the first full fledged tennis game.

Virtua Tennis 4 – Graphics
Graphics are good, players are detailed but they tried to mimic sweat, and I don’t think its possible. What I like is I didn’t feel like I was playing a kiddie game. It’s completely geared for adults, but kids may or may not find it fun.

Virtua Tennis 4 – Gameplay
I find this game to be fun, whether Kinect based or controller based, not sure if its how the setup the world tour, but it somewhat resembles Top Spin and I always like their titles as well.

Virtua Tennis 4 – Multiplayer options
There is multiplayer but I didn’t get a chance to test it out. I know you can play online, but I’m not sure about Kinect. There is a party mode in the Kinect section, but it may be turn based as I don’t see enough room for 2 people to be playing tennis. I was all over the place.

Virtua Tennis 4 – Achievements
One gripe I have to say and I usually don’t care much, but they offered no achievements for the Kinect play…felt kind of cheated.

Conclusion
I gave it a 6 because I am disappointed however understanding about why it’s not a full Kinect game. It is fun, but if you just want it for Kinect, look elsewhere or be patient. The kinect portion is not something you would want to do everyday as its just a simple exhibition, no unlocks, no special things to win, etc… Very repetitive, however, if you like playing tennis games, then this is on par with with the rest of them.


This review is based on a retail copy of the Xbox 360 version of Virtua Tennis 4
Scoring policy: What do these game review scores actually mean?