It’s been over thirteen years since the release of Mario Power Tennis. This wasn’t the last Mario Tennis game to be released, but it was the last truly great Mario Tennis game that we’ve seen on a home console. 2015’s Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash for the Wii U was bare bones to say the least, and even its decent predecessor, Mario Tennis Open, felt lacking compared to what came before it. The quality of the series was definitely on a downward trajectory. However, with the reveal of the new Nintendo Switch game Mario Tennis Aces, there is definitely hope for the series yet. Although it is only a brief tease of the upcoming release, the slither of gameplay that we’ve seen so far leaves a good impression and has us hopeful that Mario Tennis Aces may just knock it out of the park. Wrong sport metaphor? Let’s try again. Mario Tennis Aces may just be Nintendo’s ace in the hole, and here are three that can completely change the game.
3 Ways Mario Tennis Aces Can Change the Game
“This time the game adds the first story mode since the Mario Tennis: Power Tour game on Game Boy Advance”, the trailer touts. And what a story mode it was. For those who may not have dabbled in the earlier portable versions of this series, they had story modes where you climbed the ranks in your tennis school in order to take on some of the greatest tennis players in the world, including Mario and his friends. Surprisingly, you didn’t actually play as established Mario characters, but instead as new human characters like Alex and Max (not the most memorable Mario characters, I have to say). The games also had RPG elements that allowed you to level up your character’s stats.
From the looks of things, Mario Tennis Aces’s story mode looks to be quite a bit different from the ones in the portable games. For starters, the trailer shows Mario running along a world map, implying that the explorable areas of the previous games have been done away with. There are also no RPG elements to be seen. Instead, on your quest you’ll be able to battle boss enemies as well as take on several missions, one of which sees Mario battling a gang of piranha plants. These parts look similar to the mini-games that we’ve seen in Mario Tennis games prior. This is definitely a good thing as some of those were extremely fun (shoutouts to the “artist on the court” minigame from Mario Power Tennis). Of course, there’s sure to be a lot of tennis matches taking place along the way. Mixing these different gameplay modes together into one contextualized mode is definitely something to look forward to and could give Mario Tennis Aces the best single-player mode of a Mario Tennis game to date.