Mario Tennis - Game Boy Color

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Also for: GameCube, N64
Viewed: 2D Third-person, over the shoulder Genre:
Sport: Tennis
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Nintendo Soft. Co.: Nintendo
Publishers: Nintendo (GB/US)
Released: 2001 (US)
2 Feb 2001 (GB)
Ratings: No rating
Connectivity: Link Cable


Although Nintendo hasn’t been overly successful with their 64-bit outing into the industry, the opposite could be said about the ten-year-old Game Boy. Any video game company that can keep a handheld machine in the market for such a long period of time usually has a very good talent. With Nintendo, it is software. In particular, the Mario franchise has brought one classic after another, and with the Game Boy release of Mario Tennis it seems that this is going to be the case for a long time to come.

The first noticeable feature in this 2D Mario game is the striking number of unknown characters that make an appearance, and while you may never see them again in another game, each of them are well characterised and have their own strengths and weaknesses. Of course many familiar players will show their faces for the occasion, including Luigi and Donkey Kong. Mario Tennis is well structured, in that after selecting an existing character or creating a new one, you can tackle some of the mini games available to improve on your general playing skills before taking on some of the match challenges. Your ultimate goal is to defeat the best player in the game - Mario. When playing a match against any opponent, winning a single point can prove a little frustrating to begin with, since they seem able to reach the ball no matter where you place it on the court. But given practice, human persistence will win you the game.

Mario Tennis is a polished title that offers a great challenge, regardless of the player’s skill level. And what’s more, gamers who own the Nintendo 64 version of the classic can make use of a transfer pack to challenge players from both games. It may not be perceived as an A-list title, but it deserves to reach the number one spot in the charts. Whether it does or not; that’s up to you.