Sega Superstars Tennis

Common Sense Media says

A mediocre sports game for die hard Sega fans.

Age(i)

2
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Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

A good social gaming experience. It's designed for up to four players to play together individually or in teams of two. The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions support online play.

Violence

Players can attack opponents mid-game. For example, Gilius Thunderhead can call down lightning bolts and Dr. Eggman can throw mines. Also, one of the mini-games involves zombies slowly lumbering across the court trying to bite you.

Sex

A couple of female characters wear suggestive clothes.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

This game features more than a dozen recognizable characters from other Sega games, making it an overt promotion of the developer's existing brands.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this tennis-themed game is targeted squarely at people who are familiar with and enjoy games made by Sega. It acts as a promotion for Sega's many franchises and popular characters, some of which appear as tennis players in the game. There is a small amount of violence in the form of power-up attacks activated by various characters. Dr. Eggman, for example, makes mines float over the court that explode if the player's character draws near. There is also one mini-game in which zombies lumber across the court with an aim to bite you. Be aware that the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 editions support online play. Common Sense Media does not recommend online play for kids under age 12.

Parents say

Kids say

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What's it about?

Prolific game maker Sega, having watched Nintendo pay homage to itself with the Super Smash Bros. games, has hopped on the bandwagon with SEGA SUPERSTARS TENNIS, a sports game featuring more than a dozen playable characters from several Sega franchises. Sonic the Hedgehog, Jet Set Radio, NiGHTS, and Super Monkey Ball, are some of the more popular series that have been given a nod. The tennis action is made up of scores of fast-paced tournaments and plenty of mini-games based on classic Sega titles. It's easy to pick up and play, and there's enough unlockable content to keep Sega fans finding new stuff for weeks.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

While both Nintendo and Sega have broad and respected game libraries, Nintendo's advantage is a higher level of familiarity. Even people who don't normally play games recognize icons like Mario, Luigi, Donkey Kong, and perhaps even The Legend of Zelda's Link, which is part of the reason why Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. games are so popular. Sega's characters, on the other hand, aren't quite as well known. Certainly, everyone remembers the loveable blue speedball Sonic, but almost all of the other characters that appear in Sega Superstars Tennis are more aptly identified as cult video game figures rather than legitimate gaming icons. Outside of dedicated gamers of a certain age, how many people really remember the crazy Mexican monkey from Samba de Amigo? Or Ulala, the orange-clad space reporter from Space Channel 5? They're undoubtedly loved by a handful of older gamers, but unknown to almost everyone else.

Of course, if a game is lots of fun, then it matters little how recognizable its characters are. Unfortunately, Sega Superstars Tennis is a bit too simple and shallow to stand on its own. Matches and tournaments, though usually quite short, start to seem long and repetitive once you've mastered the few available shots. The special abilities given each of the game's characters (they can hit shots with wild trajectories and send troublesome obstacles like mines to the other side of the court) add a bit of excitement, but they take so long to charge that you'll rarely be able to use them more than once per match. Perhaps the greatest shame, though, is that while Sega Superstars Tennis feels like it could be just the right skill level for younger gamers, the inclusion of a few horror-themed elements based on the series House of the Dead -- including a mini-game in which zombies attack the tennis players -- keeps the game from being suitable for kids under age 10. Bottom line: It's good for stirring up memories of classic Sega games in the heads of the developer's longtime devotees, but younger players and those just looking for a good game of tennis can take a pass.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether Sega's arcade-ish take on tennis resembles the real thing. Outside of the zany power-ups, does it feel authentic? Which character is your favorite? Do you choose your characters because you have fond memories of other games they appeared in, or because of the special abilities they possess in this game?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2
Price:$30-$50
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Sega of America
Release date:March 19, 2008
Genre:Sports
ESRB rating:E10+ for Mild Blood, Mild Fantasy Violence, Mild Suggestive Themes (Nintendo DS, Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360)

This review of Sega Superstars Tennis was written by

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About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

it is good

I really like the real game of tennis better. sorry
Teen, 14 years old Written byvgcrazy August 16, 2010
AGE
6
QUALITY
 

perfect for familly

Teen, 13 years old Written bypascal April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

super

This is great the house of the dead game is difficult as well as chu chu rocket

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