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Rockstar Games Table Tennis

Product: Rockstar Presents: Table Tennis
Company: UBI Soft
Website: Official Game Site
Estimated Street Price: $39.99/19.99
Review By: Byron Hinson

The Features

When Rockstar first announced their Table Tennis title, I have to admit that I didn't expect much from it. But then again Rockstar have always managed to surprise people, from the brilliance of Grand Theft Auto 3 coming from no where, to this isn't much of a surprise.

Developed by Rockstar San Diego, Table Tennis harnesses the true horsepower of the Xbox 360, with an advanced game engine designed specifically for the next generation console technology. Table Tennis is a visually stunning title that utilizes the full capabilities of the Xbox 360 to deliver authentic physics and intuitive gameplay that mirrors the competition and ferocity found in a live table tennis match.

Table Tennis features the kind of intensity that is synonymous with fighting games, in addition to incredible speed and fluid control, for a truly visceral experience unheard of in previous sports titles. The high definition era of interactive entertainment is upon us and Table Tennis is leading the charge.

  • Ultimate Sport Simulation: Recreates the tension of professional table tennis across 19 environments.
  • Become World Champion: Play through the challenging tournament mode or battle head to head on Xbox Live.
  • Stunning Next Gen Game-Play: Lifelike character models and animation, advanced lighting and hyper-realistic physics.

 

Gameplay

Review Quotes
"The graphics in Table Tennis I feel are excellent. Firstly the motion capture work is exceptional, not only do the players look great, as the game goes on longer and longer, the players start to sweat both on their faces and through their shirts. The framerate is very high, with very few slow downs during gameplay. the sound is also very good too, the music plays well during the game, the crowd react to good shots and sometimes even start to cheer you or your opponent on, this adds a lot to the gameplay."

The game is quick and easy to get into, you can take on a training level which is well worth doing as it explains all the controls and can actually manage to improve how you play too. You get to learn to deal with spins, long balls, aiming, serving and more. The two gameplay modes (yes that's it) are Exhibition and Tournament, Exhibition is just for a quick game, while tournaments are for full matches trying to win a trophy. The only disappointment I had with the whole game comes in the modes, I just wish there was a career mode. Getting into games is quick, 10 seconds at most, excellent for a sports game like this that sometimes you just want to get a quick game of.

I don't have to run the rules of Table Tennis by you all I doubt, but here goes anyway. You have to get the ping pong past your opponent or have him make a mistake, once you reach a certain score, but it first to 10/11/12 or whatever, you win that game, the first person to win 2 games will win the match. It's simple, but that is what Table Tennis is all about. You can play the game in two ways, using the left analog stick to aim the ball and the right stick to do one of four kinds of shots, top spin, bottom spin and left/right spin. Instead of using the right analogue, you can use the face buttons to pull of the moves, this is the way I preferred to play as it seemed that the moves came off the way I wanted with those controls. The great part here is that the game is very, very easy to learn. But just because it is easy to learn doesn't mean you should expect to come out and fly through it with ease, as you need to master them.

One of the main things to mention is how well this keeps the speed and pacing of real Table Tennis down so well, it feels like the game you can actually play for real. While people like to compare the game to Tennis titles like Top Spin and Virtua Tennis, this game is a lot faster and requires much quicker positioning of your player as the table is much smaller. When I first started to play the game, I thought that my character just didn't seem to move very well when I tried to position them, but you realize that the foot movement that Rockstar have gone with is slower than in Tennis titles, this is because you need to learn when to move and how to move.

There are not all too many game modes in Rockstar Presents Table Tennis, but it is good to know that the gameplay is excellent, deep and best of all, addictive. I've played lots both online in tournament and offline, playing online being fantastic, one of the few games I have played this year online that actually got my adrenaline going whilst playing against others. One vital part for players is to decide which character to play as, each one has different attributes such as better spins, more power etc, but they also have downsides like weak serves and low power etc. This means you need to pick a character that suites your style, this can take sometime for you to decide, although it seems that loads of people go for Jesper who has a lot of power, I prefer playing as Luc as I like to spin the ping pong more. Each match tends to last quite some time, I have got myself into some massive rallies both online and off and winning one makes you feel great too. As I have mentioned, Online play is where the game really thrives. There are two different modes online too - Exhibition and Timed Tournaments.

Graphics & Sound

The graphics in Table Tennis I feel are excellent. Firstly the motion capture work is exceptional, not only do the players look great, as the game goes on longer and longer, the players start to sweat both on their faces and through their shirts. The framerate is very high, with very few slow downs during gameplay. the sound is also very good too, the music plays well during the game, the crowd react to good shots and sometimes even start to cheer you or your opponent on, this adds a lot to the gameplay.

Final Comments


Byron's Gamertag

Without a doubt, Rockstar Presents Table Tennis is the best value game on the Xbox 360, it was clearly a work of love for Rockstar and it shows both through the gameplay and through the graphics. The only disappointment is the lack of a career mode in single player which means you will only get full value from the game if you play it online. Still, I loved it and its well worth the lower than usual price.

 

How It Grades
Controls: 91%
Gameplay: 88%
Presentation: 75%
Graphics: 90%
Multiplayer: 90%
Sound: 82%
Interface: 85%
Lastability: 85%
Price/Value: 91%
Overall: 89%
Specs & Package
Overall Score 89%
Version Reviewed Rockstar Presents Table Tennis(PAL)
Release Date Out Now
In The Box? 1 Rockstar Presents Table Tennis DVD-ROM
1 Set Of Instructions
The Good Points Excellent Graphics
Great Online
The Bad Points Lack of Single Player modes
Xbox Live! Online Play Enabled? Yes
Widescreen Support Yes
PAL 60 Support (Europe) Yes
HD Resolutions 480p
720p
1080i


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