Thursday, December 7, 2017

Review: Tennis in the Face


When the folks at 10 Tons aren’t making new titles where you can mow people down in a hail of gunfire they’re steadily releasing more casual fare for a different kind of audience as well. Using what appears to be the same general engine as their somewhat similar title King Odball, we now have Tennis in the Face. While it similarly isn’t going to change the gaming world if you enjoy a somewhat silly physics-based puzzle game along the lines of Angry Birds you may find it is a good fit!


The hook here is that you’re a former tennis pro who has been through the wringer and you’re looking to stop an evil soda company from using their product to somehow take over the world… or something. Here’s the deal: You’ll be using tennis balls, or sometimes soda cans, to aim and try to either knock out your enemies or hit them with other objects (or people) using some crazy Rube Goldberg-type chain reactions. As you go on to different city blocks of stages the nature of your enemies and the levels’ associated challenges will change a bit with extra objects, people that require more than one hit, etc. Within some areas you’ll then also unlock additional bonus challenges that change things up in some way, whether with new enemies, trying to collect coins, etc. It’s all just variations on a general theme, and can be tricky and clever, but it all revolves around whether you enjoy the base mechanic. Personally, I prefer the relative accuracy of this over the added layer of timing complexity King Oddball introduced to the mix since I like the way you’re forced to work with angles here, but that’s down to taste.


What it boils down to is whether you’re looking for something light, silly, and generally pressure-free to enjoy for a reasonably low price. If this all looks and sounds like something of interest I’d say it is wonderfully varied and probably has more content than you’ll complete anytime soon. If you like applied geometry and physics, some tricky puzzle scenarios, and a dose of silliness Tennis in the Face isn’t a grand slam but it plays a respectable game nonetheless.

Score: 7.5

Pros:
  • New enemy types with varied associated challenges keep changing up the formula
  • Bonus crowns on each level require a combination of skill, planning, and luck for added challenge
  • Unlocked bonus modes add even more content and variety

Cons:
  • If the mechanics sound boring or repetitive that’s all the game has to offer so it would be a pass
  • While new elements help shake things up it can get repetitive overall nonetheless
  • Some bonus crowns for levels can seem to require as much luck as skill


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