Top Spin (video game)
|Publisher(s)||Microsoft Game Studios (Xbox)
2K Sports (PS2)
Top Spin is a 2003 tennis video game developed by PAM Development and originally published by Microsoft Game Studios for the Xbox as part of their XSN Sports brand. Atari later published the game for the PC, while 2K Sports published it for the PlayStation 2. The game was followed by Top Spin 2, Top Spin 3 and Top Spin 4.
In Top Spin, players select from various game modes including singles matches, doubles, exhibition tournaments, a career mode or quick play matches.
The player can work their way up through the amateur ranks to the pros in tournaments all over the world. They can do this by using the various licensed players, or by creating a unique character. The game can be played via the internet with XSN Sports and Xbox Live for online matches.
This mode contains the basic features that let the player get into a match as quickly as possible. The characters can be selected from the professional players available, or by using custom characters from the career mode option. A match can be held on the various available courts, ranging from Grand Slam venues to practice facilities.
The career mode in Top Spin begins with a create-a-player interface which begins with, DNA type. There are many strands to choose from with each containing a different skin color and unique player traits. Create a character continues with many face and body modeling options and apparel choices. The career mode begins with an option to choose a continent that has various opportunities for a player to better their rank by training and tournaments. A player must also make "coin" in order to pay for training which increases their attributes. Coin is earned by being sponsored by one of the corporate tennis apparel icons by performing commercials and other public relations duties for them which are completed by scoring well in various exercises. Tournaments come in various types across the globe. Winning tournaments increases your world ranking, with more difficult tournaments taking much more precedence.
Top Spin also allows users to load their career player into the tournament mode (and other game modes as well).
The Optimatch feature allows the user to be very specific about the match that will be played including surface type, venue and how difficult the competition will be. This multiplayer feature is also the only tennis game to allow 2 vs. 2 online ranked play via Xbox live.
The various swings include: flat, top spin, slice, and lob, with swing strength increasing with each moment the button is depressed. Jumping, stretching and diving is automatically selected. Serves are executed in similar fashion, but with the addition of an on-screen power meter started and stopped with either the top spin, flat, or slice buttons. On the box, the controller's trigger buttons place you into a "risk mode" with a similar power meter, but the outcome of the shot is determined by how close to the center of the meter the user can stop a rapidly moving bar. Another component to the "risk mode" is the In-the-Zone meter which fills as momentum is gained with won points, making future risk shots easier to hit. The player can also express their character's emotion after a point by pressing buttons to choose a positive or negative reaction.
Top Spin featured a number of professional tennis players who have licensed their likenesses to the game, a trend which continued in its sequels. It also contained fictional players as well.
Athletes included in the game:
Below is the list of all the 45 courts that are featured in the game, of which 3 are licensed.
- The Oceania Tennis Championship (Australian Open) - Melbourne - Hard
- Paris International Championship (Roland Garros) - Paris - Clay
- The Americans Championship (US Open) - New York City - Hard
- The Great Britain Championship (Wimbledon Championships) - London - Grass
- Pacific Life Open - Indian Wells - Hard
- The Reebok Moscow Pro Open (Kremlin Cup) - Moscow - Hard
- Romania Indoor Pro Open (BRD Năstase Țiriac Trophy) - Bucharest - Hard
- The Acapulco Adidas Pro Open (Abierto Mexicano Telcel) - Acapulco - Clay
- The Select Comfort Hardcourt Open (Cincinnati Masters) - Cincinnati - Hard
- Bogotá South American Pro Open - (Claro Open Colombia) Bogotá - Grass
- Nasdaq-100 Open - Miami - Hard
- Vienna Adidas Pro Indoor Tournament (CA-TennisTrophy) - Vienna - Hard
- The Sergio Tacchini Roma Coliseum Open (Internazionali BNL d'Italia) - Rome - Hard
- Seoul Clay Court Classic (Korea Open) - Seoul - Clay
- Chennai International Championship (Tata Open) - Chennai - Grass
- The Babolat Monaco Open (Monte-Carlo Masters) - Monte Carlo - Clay
- Adelaide Australian Hardcourt Classic - Adelaide - Hard
- Kroger St. Jude & the Cellular South Cup - Memphis - Hard
- Dubia Pro-Am Tournament (Dubai Tennis Championships) - Dubai - Hard
- The Auckland Pro-Am Cup (Heineken Open) - Auckland - Hard
- The MasterCard Valparaíso Pro-Am Cup (BellSouth Open) - Valparaíso - Clay
- Shanghai Pro-Am Cup Classic (Shanghai Masters) - Shanghai - Hard
- Lisboa Pro-Am Championship Cup (Estoril Open) - Lisbon - Hard
- Casablanca Pro-Am Cup (Grand Prix Hassan II) - Casablanca - Clay
- Tashkent Silk Road Tennis Center - Tashkent - Clay
- Singapore Tennis Society - Sentosa - Hard
- The Harbour Bridge Tennis Club - Sydney - Hard
- The People's Tennis Park - Beijing - Hard
- Ankara Tennis Academy - Ankara - Hard
- Port Elizabeth Tennis School - Port Elizabeth - Hard
- Melbourne Indoor Tennis Club - Melbourne - Hard
- São Paulo Tennis Union - São Paulo - Hard
- Perth Racquet Club - Perth - Hard
- Alexandria Tennis Center - Alexandria - Clay
- Doha Desert Tennis Academy - Doha - Clay
- Motor City Tennis Academy - Detroit - Hard
- Hamburg Tennis Foundation - Hamburg - Grass
- Buenos Aires Court Club - Buenos Aires - Hard
- Antananarivo Tennis Association - Antananarivo - Clay
- Honshu School of Tennis - Osaka - Hard
- Valparaíso Practice Ground - Valparaíso - Clay
- The Hangar Practice Ground - San Francisco - Clay
- Great Lakes Racquet Club - Chicago - Hard
- Warsaw Tennis Society - Warsaw - Hard
- Gstaad Tennis Academy - Gstaad - Hard
Top Spin was very well received. It currently holds an 88% positive review percentage at GameRankings, with IGN and GameSpot scoring the Xbox version 9.3 and 9.1 out of 10 respectively. Game Informer gave the game a 9/10.