In life I suppose it's refreshing to know that certain things will never change. Movies made about about video games will invariably disappoint, motion control mini-games will never really excite me, and the Virtua Tennis series will probably never evolve. Ever. Milking a formula that's worked for over a decade now, Virtua Tennis 2009 is, you guessed, virtually identical to the rest of the series. Same arcade-style game mechanics? Check. Same bizarre World Tour punctuated by mini-games? Check. Same graphics as the last game? Pretty much.
However, if you've never owned a Virtua Tennis game, then this is the perfect time to do so as you can buy the game for less than a small value chicken over at Amazon. I bought it before I wrote this up and, I'm not going to lie, I did it primarily for the Achievements. The next price we could find for this cheap game was over at Base for £12.85, which is nearly a tenner more expensive.
Although not quite the disaster it is on PC, it's worth pointing out right now that this game does not hold up well even in dim light. It's far too easy, there's no real tension to any of the games and the graphics are woeful to say the least. The updated roster is nice, certainly, but it would have been better to have more game modes, maybe some new mini-games and a control system that didn't feel clunky ten years ago.
That said, I actually have a massive soft spot for the Virtua Tennis (and Virtua Soccer) franchise. Maybe it's arcade nostalgia - I absolutely ruled at this game - but there is fun to be had here, especially if you can find someone else to play with. It's a poor update of a creaking series, but it's still worth £4...just about.
Thanks to tindoz at HUKD