We're most impressed by the game's stellar production values. The menus simply look gorgeous. The camera moves in a nice, cinematic way, and the text overlays border on sexy. Load times are incredibly brief, rarely interrupting gameplay. The graphics look solid on PSP's diminuitive screen, and the animations, for the most part, are detailed and fluid.
There's a lot of potential in Smash Court Tennis, and we're sure that its various game modes will offer a lot of value. The tutorial mode has been excellent, and we've enjoyed playing simple matches of tennis. Arcade, Pro Tour and Challenge modes look to offer a significant amount of gameplay. The build that we've played does have some very noticeable glitches, though. There are some missing animations and graphics, especially when playing near the edge of the court. At times, it appears that there's no way to exit back into the menu. We're hoping that these issues get cleaned up by the game's final release -- if so, we could be looking at a winner. We'll be giving you more info on the game as we get closer to its release.
[Image source. Thanks, Robert!]
Smash Court Tennis 3 downloadable demo
Namco's upcoming fanservice-filled RPG Tales of the World is hitting PSPs soon, and Gametrailers has posted a new montage video, featuring the anime intro and various battles to be found in the game. It looks sharp, as expected, but we're wondering: where's our j-poppin' intro? We're hoping it's not axed for the US version.
[Via PS3 Fanboy]
Namco is promoting their new PSP exclusive tennis game, Smash Court Tennis, with a strange emphasis on gender. The game allows you to create your own tennis star, male or female. As these videos show, the character customization looks to be rather deep, something that can be easily appreciated in games. The graphics certainly represent the sport quite well; let's hope the gameplay can do the same.
You can check out the offending press release, after the break.
Ultimate Ninja Heroes will hit PSP systems this summer. Check out 1UP for more details, and some breathtaking pictures of the game.
Check past the cut to see ten more screenshots from the English build of the game.
Anime Intro, Video
We've complained about our lack of Tales of the World a lot on the Fanboy. Well, it looks like Namco Bandai is finally listening and giving English-speaking gamers what we want: a localized version of Tales of the World. This PSP-exclusive RPG is a fan-service feast for Tales fans, featuring characters from previous Tales games, such as Tales of Symphonia and Tales of the Abyss.
In an interview with IGN, Namco Bandai revealed that "players will be able to use Grade Points they have earned in battle to purchase special items or equipment ... the US version of Tales of the World will be slightly more tuned than the overseas version."
While that's certainly good news, we can only hope for more in the future: "Although I do not have details as to whether other PSP Tales titles will be reaching the shores of the US at this point, I can say that such possibilities do indeed exist." Tales of the World will hit American shores later this year.
Pictures, Anime Intro, Video
Namco Bandai just announced Smash Court Tennis 3 for the PSP. It'll feature 16 tennis stars, including Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Justine Henin. "We are thrilled to announce that the next iteration of our popular Smash Court Tennis series is set to appear on the PSP system," said Makoto Iwai, Executive Vice President and COO of Namco Bandai Games. "With the franchise's signature gameplay and new enhancements, Smash Court Tennis 3 is the perfect on-the-go package that's made for a jet-setting tennis pro."
Virtua Tennis will be the game to beat for Namco's next. However, there's one feature that I'm particularly psyched about: the ability to compete against other PSP owners with a single UMD through Game Sharing. It's a horribly under-utilized system: being able to play tennis against any other PSP owner should offer a great deal of potential.
[Update : New screenshots can be found at WorthPlaying.]
The Magic Box has reported that Namco Bandai's Mobile Suit Gundam Seed: Rengou vs Z.A.F.T. Portable (that's a mouthful of a game title) will be hitting Japan on April 5th of this year for 5040 yen. The series was originally on the PS2, but its PSP version will have 2 on 2 team battle that can be played by a single player or 2-4 players via Ad-Hoc. The mech action game is based around the world from Mobile Suit Gundam Seed, one of the most loved versions in all of the Gundam series. Feel free to import the game when it's released if you're a Gundam fan since the PSP has no region lock.