Real Tennis HD is one of those games that I could never use on my iPhone 3GS, along with all sorts of other sports games that require on screen controls. You would end up with your thumbs on the controls covering half of your 3.5 inch display, and you couldn’t see what the hell was going on!
Now we’ve got the chance to play games on the iPad’s gorgeous 9.7″ display, I could not wait to try out Real Tennis HD for myself, in fact it’s the first game that I came across and really wanted from the App Store.
As the name may suggest, Real Tennis HD is a tennis game, from Gameloft, a UK based development company that makes a lot of great games for the Apple iPad. When designing the game for iPad, the developers clearly thought out of the box to provide the best experience possible with on screen controls. Did they succeed? Let’s find out!
When you enter the app, you’re presented with a splash screen for a few seconds while the game loads, quickly followed by the main menu. I found the main menu to be really well designed, with clear links to the different games available to the user. You can choose between an exhibition, championship, tournament, multiplayer or instant play for your game modes.
When you select a game mode, you can choose between singles or doubles mode, depending on how you want to play. Even in the menus leading up to the game, the graphics here are really crisp and impressive with no lag, thanks to the 1GHz A4 chip inside the iPad. You can cycle between ten players to play with, 5 guys and 5 girls, each with different attributes. Unfortunately, there are no real names from the tennis world here, presumably because the licensing costs were too high for Gameloft to include in the game. Hopefully, this will become possible in the future as the company grows.
Playing the game for the first time, you’re given a quick tutorial on how to use the on screen controls to control your players and hit the ball. This is surprisingly easy to pick up, as the two controls on the bottom of the screen are perfectly positioned for your thumbs to rest on, so you know where the controls are.
The intuitiveness of the controls is certainly a credit to the developers here, they’ve made it outstandingly easy to control the players and the shots that you make in the game to great effect. Likewise, the graphics in the game are the best I’ve seen in a sports game on the iPad. They’re crisp, with a good FPS level for the most part. The only criticism I have during game play is the slow motion effect on some shots in the game, which looks stuttered and displays poorly on the iPad.
If you’re looking for a great sports game for your iPad, I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending Real Tennis HD to anyone. It’s great fun, and the various modes available are sure to keep you entertained for hours. It’s a steal, available to download for £2.99 on the App Store.