First reaction will be disapointment BUT stick to it and it will pleasently end up the best Tennis game you play
Let's start by making it clear that, this game is for skilled players and those not willing to play a game they can't master under the first hour will be disapointed. You still here? Good! Below an endepth explanation of the pro's, cons and what to honestly expect.
Taking my copy of Grand Slam Tennis home with a packed in Motion Plus was very exciting for me. We have been looking forward to what it can do to further enhance our motion controls and the hope that it will slowly stop the waggle games coming out.
With that expectation I was very disapointed when I first started playing the game. The ball was generally going where I wanted but felt like a slightly better version of Wii Sports Tennis with the only difference being I could control my character with the joystick. Even on easy I was loosing most of the time and 1:1 control was definately not there.
There is light at the end of this tunnel though! Being a gamer all my life the inner nerd would not allow me to except the computer beating me so I planned to at least become good enough to win most of the time before I pass judgment and write a review on this game. How greatful I am, I gave this title more time.
Firstly; if you move your Wii mote left to right you will see your character (who you create yourself) do the same. Twist the remote in your hand from facing upwards to the side and your character will do the same, however I'm not saying your character simply holds the racket either up or sideways, this is motion plus! All the inbetweens and even if you wish to hold the racket at an awkward angle you can do so! Having the buttons facing up (like when your playing an on rails shooting game) will have your character lob (hit up) his shots and if you visualise this for a moment it makes sense just like real life. So what if you hold the racket on the side like you should? Hard and more straight shots of course.
As you may have guessed; I'm pointing out very little details here and the reason being, the learning experience and curve depends on the individual player and how long it takes him or her to notice what does and doesn't work in the game. Another example is; the position of your character effects how you should swing your racket, which contributes to this game being hard to learn at the start. instead of just focusing on the swing, you must keep in mind where your player is to the ball and how you would swing if you were on the court yourself and follow through with the swing (you may end up doing half flicks out of habit from Wii ports).
It's a lot to take in but when you finally do (took me 2-3 hours just to reach this stage mind you) you have a lot of control here. hit the ball where you like and how you like. Twist your wrist while swining and do a little shifty tab shot just over the net or unleash a backhand spinner. Best Tennis experience available and once you get up that hellish hill of a learning curve it's great and you get a good work out. Game best played standing.
There is two areas that must be addressed in the next Grandslam Tennis game though. Firstly serving, as you would have read in other reviews just sucks and feels like waggle control is back in. The other area and this is odd, is the remote seems to get confused sometimes. Not only do you need to hold the remote steady so it can re-sink and not execute your last move again but sometimes you can swing and nothing happens! It doesn't happen all the time but just often enough to make you loose some important points occasionally.
Well that sums it up fellow gamers. If you can get past the few hickups this game has and the difficuly curve, underneath you will find a fantastic Tennis game, with most of the times great control and a warrent for buying motion plus. Also the cartoony graphics grow on you and are actually nice.