It’d be easy to take a look at Hot Shot Tennis’ handful of cutesy-poo characters and flashing doo-dads and think that it’s all some nutty Saturday morning variation on tennis. But you’d be wrong, and we at GamesRadar would like to kindly ask that you not be so hasty in the future. The control interface doesn’t just enable you to decide how hard you volley or lob the ball, but to dictate precisely where on the court you’d like to sink your shot. Imagine the court is a Tic-Tac-Toe grid: You point the analog stick down for a shot just over the net, diagonal left for a corner smash, or simply let the stick rest for a dead center hit.
It’s not necessarily complex, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t deep. Take your backhand for instance. An icon will light up on the court to give you an idea where an incoming ball will land. Aligning yourself on one side or the other dictates a hard forehand stroke or a slightly weaker backhand shot. Backhand shots also tend tire out your athletes a little more than a healthy forearm volley so it’s important to stay on your toes and note your position during play.
You’ll start to notice just how intuitive the controls are as you begin to learn how to set up opponents for a smash-tastic drive well beyond their reach. Making a rival overcompensate with a sloppy return could result in an easy set-up for you. The ground will highlight, and with the proper timing (easily viewable via speech bubbles; a turtle if your too slow, a red musical note for perfection) you can literally launch the other players embarrassment right back into their face for optimal humiliation.