Top Spin 4

Dominic Sacco

Top Spin 4

The first offering from the franchise for three years, Top Spin 4 promises to deliver the competitive experience that the sport deserves.

Gamers can participate in a range of tournaments and competitions, either in the sweaty trainers of their favourite tennis player or playing against them.

The game’s 25-strong roster features a blend of the best male and female pros from the ATP circuit, together with eight tennis legends. If you get bored of Federer and Nadal, you can mix things up with classic players like Boris Becker and Björn Borg.

Thanks to an extensive library of over 4,000 Signature Style animations, all of the virtual players behave and make shots like their real-life counterparts.

While the previous Top Spin was criticised for trading in accessibility for realism, this new iteration attempts to level out the steep learning curve by introducing an in-game helper to give you live feedback on your shots.

The helper was devised to avoid ‘dumbing down’ the gameplay, with 2K wanting to keep the experience as deep and rewarding for experienced players and tennis aficionados as its previous titles.

The control scheme is a key unique selling point for the series. Skill shots are executed with beat ‘em up style combos, while power and finesse shots require precise timing. The result? Those cross-court backhand winners are fist-pumpingly satisfying.

The game’s graphical style was influenced by live tennis coverage. There is a TV-style scoreboard and common camera angles are replicated during replays.

To complete the experience, 2K have focused on the crowd sounds. Spectators will react to tense rallies and can even be deceived by close line-calls, thinking a shot is a winner when it’s not.

Tennis is still a popular sport among UK consumers, so expect Top Spin 4 to perform well when it hits shelves later this month.

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