Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash
Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash is a tennis game developed by Camelot Software Publishing and published by Nintendo for the Wii U in November 2015.
Why It Sucks
- The game was rushed for the 2015 holiday season due to the fact that Star Fox Zero got delayed until 2016, and that Nintendo wanted a game for the 2015 Holiday Season on the Wii U (so much for "a rushed game is forever bad", by Shigeru Miyamoto).
- No opening or a cinematic.
- Lack of features like game modes and alternate ways to play which the previous Mario Tennis games had, such as a Tournament Mode.
- Speaking of which, Tournament Mode has been replaced with Knockout Challenge, which is a lazy single-player excuse for the game and has absolutely no plot or anything outstanding to it. The fact that the only rule changes are different courts and the Bowser bosses having a permanent Mega Mushroom effect makes the mode very bland.
- The Jump Shot and Mega Mushroom mechanics. They seem to be a good idea on paper but are unfortunately used poorly and both of them can get easily boring after a while.
- The Mega Mushroom is contradictory most of the time, as if both players happen to end up giant (which will happen a lot), it will just be the same as both players are small.
- Boring multiplayer and even online multiplayer.
- Unlocking characters is extremely easy (if you want to unlock Toadette, for example, you just need to play 10 Mega Battles or spend 5,000 coins).
- Only one court to play in the entire game, but you can change the type to make it like the other Mario Tennis games, though.
- You can't pause in a middle of a match (you can only pause during the replay).
- Lack of other features and extras which makes it feel like an unfinished game or tech demo.
- Occasional gameplay frustrations.
- Dumb AI.
- Useless hook.
- Artwork has been recycled from previous Mario games; there's no new artwork whatsoever in the game. This is especially notable in the character select screen.
- It is overpriced. It costs $60 when there was very little content.
- Amazing graphics, which is a large step up to the previous Mario Tennis games.
- Classic and Simple Tennis modes don't overstay their welcome.
- Decent choice of characters. Toadette and Rosalina makes their debut in the series in this game, and the one-shot Green Sprixie Princess character from Super Mario 3D World returns in this game.
- Features Amiibo support.
- Fast-paced, arcade-y action.
- Deceptively nuanced shot mechanics.
Ultra Smash received "mixed" reviews from critics and "mixed" to "negative" reception from gamers, according to video game review aggregator Metacritic. It is one of the lower scoring Mario games, with a critic score of 58/100 and a user score of 5.3/10.
IGN's Marty Sliva gave the game 4.8 out of 10, calling it "a bare-bones, lackluster addition to Mario's sporting adventures". He also compared it unfavorably to its predecessors by stating "that Mario Power Tennis on the GameCube managed to include more characters, interesting modes, and varied courses a decade ago is a bit insulting." GameSpot's Scott Butterworth similarly criticized the lack of game modes and alternate ways to play and awarded the game 6 out of 10. Nintendo World Report's Daan Koopman lambasted the game for having "just one stadium, limited online options and less features than the previous 2 entries."
In its first week of release in Japan, it sold 55,331 units, which made up 80% of its initial shipment.