Mario Tennis Aces Online Tournament Hands-On Impressions

Posted on June 4, 2018

The past weekend has come and gone quite quickly as I was busy with the Mario Tennis Aces Online Tournament demo on the Nintendo Switch. The experience was addicting as I spent 7 consecutive hours on the first day playing it with no bathroom or lunch breaks in between! At the end, the thumbs were quite sore, but the satisfaction was high, I can’t wait to get my hands on the full version of the game! This is my first Mario Tennis game, I’m not even a tennis player, but thinking about Wii Tennis and the joy I had playing that had me excited for Mario Tennis Aces even before I played the demo. It is worth noting the demo didn’t have motion controls, it was still satisfying! Here are my hands-on impressions in a bulleted list of my likes and dislikes for the Mario Tennis Aces Online Tournament demo:

What I Liked

  • Polished games with attractive graphics and presentation
  • Simple, easy to understand interface on both the TV and in handheld mode
  • Unlockable characters, for a demo 9 total playable characters was generous!
  • If disconnected from a tournament or if you have to leave after one of the matches, you could pick-up and resume where you left off
  • Finding opponents was very quick, it never felt like it took more than 10-15 seconds!
  • Easy to understand tutorial to learn how to play the game
  • Controls are easy, simple to pick-up and learn, but it requires practice to master. I’m still far, far away from being a master
  • Breaking the opponents racket feels so satisfying! Using Zone Shots, which is the ‘ultimate attack’ in the game, allows you to break the opponents racket. Once two of the opponents rackets are broken, it’s an automatic win for you!

What I Disliked

  • Points unlocks characters, but the point system was not explained. I didn’t understand why some games I earned less points than others despite winning.
  • No motion controls in the demo, I really wanted to try this
  • No voice or text chat feature. Some games were so fun, you want to communicate the awesomeness of the match to the opponent, but there was no way to do it. Even some pre-determined text like we see in Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2 or Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker would have been better than nothing!
  • Lag! The game is virtually unplayable when there is lag. About 15% of matches I played were unplayable because of the delay in input and character reactions.

Final Thoughts

For just the demo, Mario Tennis Aces Online Tournament demo was brilliant! There was only one court in the demo, but it was enough. In the final version there are at least 8 that I know of and at least sixteen confirmed playable characters and story mode. Plus it’ll have motion controls to casually play with non-gaming friends, in addition to the traditional controls for the hardcore gamers! Mario Tennis Aces looks like it’ll be a winner and worth every penny once it drops on June 22, 2018!

I ended up winning one of the tournaments, take a look at my final match in the tournament to win it all!