There are 15+ Playable Characters making it the largest roster in any Mario Tennis game.
—Gameplay. A lot of strategy compared to previous games as you have to pay attention to your meter, positioning, and decided whether to use your specials. A lot of risk/reward when deciding what moves to do in real time. This game will test your twitch reflexes with very exhilarating with split second decisions when matched up with someone of the same skill level
There are of course basic Shots: Flat, Top Spin, Slice, Lob
But this game uses a meter system or energy gauge which you have to keep track of as you can use Zone Shots, Zone Speed, or Special Shot for offensive and defensive maneuvers. Your meter builds up as you continuously rally with your opponent
-Zone Shot. Aim a target reticle at specific area of map or at opponent themselves
Racket take damage if enemy do direct damage via zone shot. If hit 3x in a match, you get KOed giving your opponent the point
But if you block/parry with perfect timing; your racket takes no damage
-Zone Speed. when activated puts you in slow motion or bullet time.
-Special Shot. You can save up your meter till it’s full to initiate special shot. This can destroy enemy racket in one hit (instead of 3 like in zone shot), but again, if timed correctly your opponent can block it.
-Trick shot. Makes you leap/dash to one side of the court while also helping you build meter faster than normal shots. Charge shots also build up meter, but not as fast.
-Court Hazards. There are also court hazards such as teleport portal mirrors, random bombs on court, and piranha plants on net to name a few. You can also toggle this off if you want.
-Simple Rules. You can turn off all abilities and play a simple game of tennis with just basic shots, and no racket durability… but it’s not as fun in my opinion.
-Swing Mode. You can use full motion controls like Wii Sports Tennis if you like, but it’s not as efficient/effective as traditional controls. Great for casual play among friends and family, or if you want to work up a sweat/get off the couch.
Unlike Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash you can play with your friends online.
There are events and online tournaments you can participate in. Match making in a tournament is dependent on on your online rank, and internet latency for regular matches. Online tournament are timed events like Splatoons Splatfest or Salmon Run
You also get costumes and characters via participation bonus
–Story Mode/ Single Player
Basically a glorified tutorial.
Gives you fun mini-games, and scenarios/objectives to play through especially with the boss battles.
Plot is very simple like most Mario games: Wario and Waluigi finds an ancient tennis racket which turns the holder of that racket evil. Luigi, being the curious guy he is, touches it and it’s a mad dash to get 5 stones to reverse the curse.
The replay value is low after you’ve completed the single player campaign as this is is very multiplayer (local and online) focused
There’s also tournament mode which is what you expect going through a gauntlet of CPU opponents for unlockables and in-game trophies
Overall, fun arcade tennis game that’ll test your twitch reflexes, and snap decision making. This game is very multiplayer-centric. If you’re in it for the single player, it worth a rental for the creative levels