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johnboy99

Top Spin 3

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I picked this up for the 360 last week. So far I am very impressed, despite initial reservations after the poor effort that was Top Spin 2.

The new control system is challenging, but gradually develops with continued gameplay and it really feels like you are actually learning a set of skills related to the complexity of swinging a real racquet and the commensurate application of spin, power and placement.

The game has many great graphical touches, including the varied court locations, surfaces and player animations, which are very lifelike. The create-your-own-player thing is way over the top - you could spend days tweaking the look and feel of your player.

There are a few niggles, but nothing that can't be overcome with a bit of thought (such as playing on easy for a few tournaments to build the skill level up to the CPU level in the early tournaments).

I haven't been immersed in a video game this much for a long time, although the fact that I thought Smash Court 2 on the PS2 was fantastic (hours of fun) might mean I have a leaning towards the appreciation of tennis games.

Some may be frustrated by the controls (I think they are great) but perseverance really pays off in this one.

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I picked this up for the 360 last week. So far I am very impressed, despite initial reservations after the poor effort that was Top Spin 2.

The new control system is challenging, but gradually develops with continued gameplay and it really feels like you are actually learning a set of skills related to the complexity of swinging a real racquet and the commensurate application of spin, power and placement.

The game has many great graphical touches, including the varied court locations, surfaces and player animations, which are very lifelike. The create-your-own-player thing is way over the top - you could spend days tweaking the look and feel of your player.

There are a few niggles, but nothing that can't be overcome with a bit of thought (such as playing on easy for a few tournaments to build the skill level up to the CPU level in the early tournaments).

I haven't been immersed in a video game this much for a long time, although the fact that I thought Smash Court 2 on the PS2 was fantastic (hours of fun) might mean I have a leaning towards the appreciation of tennis games.

Some may be frustrated by the controls (I think they are great) but perseverance really pays off in this one.

G'day johnboy99,

Glad you are enjoying it - and thanks for the quick review! I've been trying to find a store (though not looking that hard yet!) so that I can get this on PS3. I too, was a massive fan of Smash Court 2 on the PS2 and used to stay up 'til the wee hours with my flatmate [at the time] chasing each other about the court! "Keep fighting!"... ahh the calls were great.

Looking forward to this one even more now, hope the PS3 version is much the same as what you are enjoying on it's rival.

Cheers,

Doc.

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Hey Doc, I am pretty confident if you were a SCT2 fan than Top Spin 3 will be something you'll enjoy.

Can't imagine it being too different on the PS3 as opposed to my 360.

I'd be interested in your thoughts when you finally pick it up.

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I played SCT2 and Virtua Tennis. I've also taken a racquet and ball outside and hit against the wall. Guess which one is the most lifelike?

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VT3 lasted a couple of weeks with me before being one of the few games I have ever traded in. Waaaaay too arcadey. It got tiresome quickly, although it is very "pick up and playable" if you have friends over and want something simple to play. Takes about 5 mins to get the hang of, whereas TS3 takes about 5 hours.

Raquet against the wall is not very lifelike Swordfish... put the right top spin on the ball and it pops off the wall at a very unconvincing angle for rallying :-)

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Hey Doc, I am pretty confident if you were a SCT2 fan than Top Spin 3 will be something you'll enjoy.

Can't imagine it being too different on the PS3 as opposed to my 360.

I'd be interested in your thoughts when you finally pick it up.

Picked it up today for PS3... first impressions are good. It's certainly a more complex control method than what I'm used to with tennis games, but I can still see this one becoming a favourite. Only time will tell if I get as addicted as I did to SCT2! Looks like they did well with the player motion capture too.

Cheers,

Doc.

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VT3 lasted a couple of weeks with me before being one of the few games I have ever traded in. Waaaaay too arcadey.

Not to rain on your parade (yeah right) but Top Spin 3 is categorically the WORST tennis sim on console.

Time was when I'd excuse the developer for raining on (Virtua Tennis's) parade, but taking a perfectly playable 'template' (ie, Top Spin 2) and throwing the rulebook out the window - only to replace it with an unintuitive control interface (pressing and HOLDING for shots as opposed to hitting the ball on cue) - can only lead to disarray.

Furthermore, I eagerly snapped up a copy for 360 and spent some FOUR hours sculpting a player avatar (fully complicit in the knowledge that 'she' would be hauled through an intensive career mode) only to find that, in attempting the drudgery of training, 'she' was taken away from me... to be replaced by some genero-freak (a male, no less) and a tutorial that sucked all hope out of investing any quality time with Top Spin 3.

Horses for courses, I suppose, but thank heavens for EB's no-fuss return policy. They never even asked WHY I disliked it. Buyers beware!

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Not to rain on your parade (yeah right) but Top Spin 3 is categorically the WORST tennis sim on console.

Time was when I'd excuse the developer for raining on (Virtua Tennis's) parade, but taking a perfectly playable 'template' (ie, Top Spin 2) and throwing the rulebook out the window - only to replace it with an unintuitive control interface (pressing and HOLDING for shots as opposed to hitting the ball on cue) - can only lead to disarray.

Furthermore, I eagerly snapped up a copy for 360 and spent some FOUR hours sculpting a player avatar (fully complicit in the knowledge that 'she' would be hauled through an intensive career mode) only to find that, in attempting the drudgery of training, 'she' was taken away from me... to be replaced by some genero-freak (a male, no less) and a tutorial that sucked all hope out of investing any quality time with Top Spin 3.

Horses for courses, I suppose, but thank heavens for EB's no-fuss return policy. They never even asked WHY I disliked it. Buyers beware!

Just so people understand, you don't press and hold for shots, it is the release of the button that actually starts the swing of the raquet. To me that is perfectly intuitive. The longer you hold the more power you generate. As the ball bounces (or gets close with volleys) the release is similar to the swing through in "real" tennis. Again to me, perfectly intuitive.

I suspect the reason your player is not used in the training mode is because you need someone with relatively high stats (something your creation won't have) to perform the range of drills necessary so you can learn them. There is no compulsion to do all the training in one hit. I did a few, played some games, came back for more training, rinse and repeat.

I am thoroughly enjoying the game. From my perspective it's the best tennis game ever. Their is a demon on LIVE for those that want to try the control system.

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VT3 lasted a couple of weeks with me before being one of the few games I have ever traded in. Waaaaay too arcadey. It got tiresome quickly, although it is very "pick up and playable" if you have friends over and want something simple to play. Takes about 5 mins to get the hang of, whereas TS3 takes about 5 hours.

Raquet against the wall is not very lifelike Swordfish... put the right top spin on the ball and it pops off the wall at a very unconvincing angle for rallying :-)

I felt the same way with VT3. This game sounds interesting...

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FWIW, I'd be "interested" to see how the OP is progressing with his game...

After finding Top Spin 3 to be frankly woeful, and with this year's Wimbledon Championships fresh on the brain, I took it upon myself to fire up Top Spin 2. A two-year-old effort - and a first-generation 360 game - that was patently NOT everything that TS3 has degenerated into. One helluva playable tennis sim (with controls that actually made sense), a far better interface (notwithstanding the dreadful loading screens), and a player-avatar you could actually take into the training rounds.

It's not perfect of course (although neither was Virtua Tennis 3), but given the two years between them and the difference in price (I'm pretty sure TS2 can be had for less than $40 now), you'd be mad not to give it a shot. It's also worth noting that TS2 was a 360 exclusive, and this is where Microsoft consistently gets it 'right'...

Whenever a successful franchise is shared, compromises are made to accommodate one platform or the other. I have no idea WHY they had to modify Top Spin 3, but I'm blaming the PS3 factor... y'know, like [the developer] had to add some bells 'n' whistles to distinguish it. Too bad those changes HAVEN'T rung true. <_<

Edited by X-phile

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