Mario Tennis Aces captures the fun and chaotic gameplay the Mario sports franchise is known for. With over the top strokes that combined the iconic personality of each of the characters along with an intense arcade action that amplifies everything that is happening. Its lack of unlockables and progression does diminish early on but Mario Tennis Aces captures that ideal arcade tennis experience.

Mario Tennis Aces’ 17 playable characters each come with a distinct play style and trait that makes them unique. For example, Wario is powerful and uses fast shots while Boo is Tricky and can Slice bends a lot. In addition, each character has an energy gauge that fills for performing trick-shots. Charged up strikes requiring both optimal positioning and risky behavior with the energy players can trigger a slow-motion zone for speed strikes or fully power up for a unique special strike that requires pinpoint precision to defend from. The system is easy to use but difficult to master as these dynamic changes create a sense of mania that can only be found in an ideal arcade tennis title like this.

Controls are tight and responsive. Either using traditional controls or the Joy Cons motion controls I rarely an issue. You’re encouraged to use motion controls but players can play either way and have a fair chance at winning.

Mario Tennis Aces brings back the single-player campaign with a bang. Mario travels to diverse locations with distinct challenges and unique boss battles. Players can expect such challenges as playing against a Shy Guy on a snowy train platform or fighting a giant squid during a violent thunderstorm, each one required precise use of each of the basic mechanics. Things are rarely boring and new dynamic changes keep things from getting stale.

Mario can earn experience by completing challenges to strengthen his attributes. Optional rackets are provided as well but mostly they serve as backups for when 1 breaks. It’s strange that the rackets are only available in Adventure Mode, despite having very little effect in gameplay. There’s also no New Game Plus so players wishing to play again will have to reset everything.

Unlocks are provided generously. By simply playing you can unlock almost everything but it can lead to vexation since there’s very little to push the player forward. The Tournament mode does provide challenging options for more seasoned players, with ranks such as Mushroom, Flower, and Star. Each consisting of 3 rounds of increasingly tougher opponents but there’s no reward at the end other than a trophy and a personal sense of victory. Surprisingly there’s no option for an AI ally when playing doubles.

Multiplayer has vastly more longevity. You can play standard matches, doubles, and include hazards such as portal mirrors that reroute the trajectory of the ball. It’s vexing that setting up a match is unnecessarily complicated, requiring all courts you don’t want to be toggled off or they’ll be selected at random. But the chaotic matches and fun arcade gameplay kept will keep you hooked for hours, despite the lack of progression.

Mario Tennis Aces initial starting point is strong. The strong single-player and addicting multiplayer does have a lot worth playing. However, the lack of unlocks and customization provides little reason to keep playing. Mario Tennis Aces is a great arcade tennis game with a lot of colorful animations and balanced gameplay, it just needed more unlocks.

Mario Tennis Aces Review
  • Great Controls
  • Excellent Multiplayer
  • Lots of Diverse Characters
  • Lack of Unlocks
  • Customization Limited
  • Cumbersome Matchmaking Setup
8.5Overall Score
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About The Author

Adam S
Sr.Staff Writer

Adam is a Senior Staff Writer for GamerAssaultWeekly with over 5 years of experience in writing and is completely obsessed with video games. He holds a BA from Brooklyn College and lives in NY.