Virtua Tennis 3 — powered by Sega’s Lindbergh board — will be on show this week at the ATEI show held in the heart of London’s fashionable ‘London’. We’ll probably go just because of this, and also because there might be an OutRun2 on freeplay and girls playing DDR.

As you can see, the game is about ‘tennis’. The rules of tennis are that you hit the ball over the net, trying to keep it between the lines. You score 15 points each time your opponent fails to keep it in, although sometimes you only score ten points — that’s because the scoring system was created by the French who were just being difficult.

The most important rule of tennis is to be a pretty blond girl. Then it doesn’t matter if you win, as you will win in life anyway.

Sega didn’t send out any screenshots of the blond girls, so all you get is loads of men’s arses :(

It’s the grass one set in London! Obviously it’ll be called the “London Open” or the “England Cup” or the “Jolly Tournament” rather than “Wimbledon”.

Looks really quite amazingly nice, really, doesn’t it? Even though it’ll just be “more Virtua Tennis”.

We even bother uploading the logo. That’s how much we love Sega. Come back next week and we might do a little review based on playing it at ATEI, if we go.

Sunday, 22 January 2006

Sega Brings Centre Court to Earls Court!!

Some of the most realistic graphics to come out of Sega’s world leading R&D teams will be on display at Earls Court this week. Taking a look at the latest version of Virtua Tennis 3 on the new Lindbergh universal cabinet and you will think you are at home in July watching Centre Court on your brand new widescreen plasma. All that is missing is the strawberries and cream!

The game boasts the top players in the world including Henman, Roddick, Hewitt and World No.1 Roger Federer. The format of the game takes players on a world tour of some of the most famous courts in the world across France, the US, Australia, Germany and of course the famous halloed turf from SW16.

To increase the player’s involvement this version features IC Smart card technology. With the card the player can participate in a virtual ‘World Ranking’, starting at 999th in the world with the aim of becoming World Champ. The progression up the ranks depends on how well matches are won and who against. Equally any matches lost will affect the ranking. Also as a feature to stimulate regular repeat play if a player does not use his card for a period of time his ranking will decrease.

It is also possible to manipulate the play style of the tennis player; whether you want to ‘play base’ line, ‘serve and volley’ or ‘offensive’ amongst a choice of 8 styles you can. With the IC Card the player can change outfits and build up a collection of tournament medals.

For the novice player the game features a series of training sessions. This will strengthen various techniques by setting the player a mission – such as performing 6 forehands followed by 6 backhands followed by a smash volley.
Sega’s Justin Burke commented, “Aside from all the great names, famous courts and games features perhaps the ‘wow’ factor is the amazing graphics that are recreated on the screen. This in a location is going to stand out by a long way. The first two games in this series have both been massive hits and there is every reason that this will be another smash!”