Pete Sampras Tennis
Format reviewed: Sega Genesis/Mega Drive
Developer: Zeppelin Games
It may look rather quaint now, but Pete Sampras Tennis was something of a big deal when it was first released.
It received excellent reviews at the time, mainly due to the excellent multiplayer mode that catered for up to four players at once. This last point was rather important if you knew any SNES owners. The lucky devils had been enjoying the rather excellent Super Tennis and it was arguably one of the best tennis games available (in fact, it remains brilliant fun today). It only catered for two players at a time however, which was something of a disappointment.
Like the SNES, Sega’s Mega Drive didn’t cater for four players via the console, relying on multitaps and similar devices for multiplayer shenanigans that involved more than two players. Pete Sampras and a couple of other Mega Drive games by Codemasters got around this niggle by having additional joystick ports in the actual cartridge. Known as J-Carts, these nifty little devices immediately saved you a bucket load of cash, but more importantly opened up the gameplay significantly.
Playing Pete Sampras Tennis with a full complement of opponents is ridiculous fun, thanks to the fast-paced nature of the gameplay and the solid ball placement. It’s not quite on par with Super Tennis, but it remains great fun, making for some extremely competitive games, particularly when playing against other players.