We tried Top Spin 2K25: we came, we saw and it almost convinced us

Getting started with top spin 2k25

Previewed by Alix Dulac

What are the great tennis simulations on PC and console? The less young legend among us will talk about Final Match Tennis. Others may mention the excellent Mario Power Tennis, even if the latter is more of a multiplayer arcade game than a simulation. Experts will only have two licenses in mind: Virtua Tennis And Best Spin.

Talking about Top Spin brings back deep memories for many players. Careers written and earned by the sweat of our eyebrows and thumbs, our hands on the command. Grand Slams were played until incredible hours. Challenges and challenges sent to friends around a nice evening when pizza is never far from the sofa. First of all, it is necessary to recall the reference tennis simulation and its last iteration, which have been missing since 2011. Best Spins 4 (On Xbox 360, PS3 and PC).

See you with the racket and controller in April

After thirteen years and two console generations, Top Spin is finally returning. Name of the new work Best Spins 2K25. Developed by Hangar 13For example, we owe Mafia III and like its predecessors, it is published by 2K Games. The game will come to console (PS4, PS5 and Xbox One and Xbox Series S/X) and PC April 26, 2024. In fact, those in a hurry will be able to serve their first ball three days in advance, thanks to early access on Steam.

Getting started with top spin 2k25Getting started with top spin 2k25

The game is available in three versions: Standard, Luxury And Grand Slam Edition2K Games has yet to reveal the exact contents of each. Hangar 13 chose two legendary muses for this edition: Roger Federer and Serena Williams, whom you will see on the covers of both editions. We had the opportunity to have the new version of this license, which is loved by the tennis community, for a few hours. Suffice it to say that this feeling is especially strong for anyone who has played Top Spin 4.

A blow to be taken (again) and inertia to be anticipated

So what are our impressions after a few hours with the game? They are EX-CEL-LENTES. Whether it’s the actors’ movements, the clothes moving in the wind, or the presentation and spacing of shots, it’s simply stunningly realistic. Hanga 13 wanted to play the continuity card in previous works of the saga, using the same “motion capture” process (Roger Federer and Serena Williams participated in the animation of their avatars in the game) and Same engine as Top Spin 4. Everything is fluid, realistic and vibrant on the screen. Please note that Top Spin 2K25 preserves the essence and requirements of these little brothers, namely a good game mastery to get as much enjoyment out of the game as possible.

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Getting started with top spin 2k25Getting started with top spin 2k25

And mastery is not the easiest, there is a marker of success that is difficult to tame. This indicator determines whether your shot is optimal based on your ability to place the cursor in the middle of the green zone. In short, if you’re interested, it’s an excellent choice. Otherwise it becomes good, fair or bad. If you retained your reflexes in Top Spin 4, a relearning phase will still be required, the service has changed significantly, additional moves have been implemented. But it will be significantly shorter than for an amateur or a complete beginner. Top Spin is not an arcade: definitely a simulation. With the grip that comes with it.

Crazy immersion but unstable graphics

It requires cross-gen (the game being released on two different generations of consoles), but we can’t hide that a certain inequality at the technical level. Not every player is as successful as each other. Whether in terms of modeling or range of motion. Apart from Roger Federer and Serena Williams, the one who is by far the best for us is the legend André Agassi. John McEnroe was also treated.

Getting started with top spin 2k25Getting started with top spin 2k25

New players who haven’t joined Motion Capture are less detailed. Facial expressions were not at all convincing, and we could even detect a certain stiffness in the players’ movements during cutscenes, which played the immersion card to the fullest, having as much atmosphere on the field as in reality.

An ultra-complete Tennis simulation

In terms of content, this preview only covered a single game mode: exhibition (singles or doubles). The content on offer was seductive: ten players, five surfaces (Roland-Garros, Rod Laver Arena, Arthur Ashe, Wimbledon, Indian), combining both today’s champions (Alcaraz, Tiafoe, Swiatek, Raducanu, Gauff) and legends (McEnroe, Agassi, Graff). Wells) available, five difficulty levels (among the seven difficulty levels that will be available)… there was already a lot to do. And above all it was enough to measure the differences between players and surfaces.

Getting started with top spin 2k25Getting started with top spin 2k25

But this clearly only reflects a fraction of what the final version of the game will offer. In addition to more players and fields, this will also include a training mode called Best Spin Academy Teaching players different techniques. This mode was developed in collaboration with John McEnroe, who doubled down on all the lessons it provides. These lessons will be useful for all player profiles, new or experienced. There is also one Career mode This allows you to create your character from A to Z, from his morphology to his playing style. The avatar editor (MyPlayer) is extremely complete, so no two players are exactly like another. Frankly, it offers predetermined models for those in a hurry. A. Season pass It is expected and mandatory. However, its content has not been disclosed yet.

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While we wait to see what the other game modes will offer us in April, this demo of the Exhibition mode allowed us to happily reconnect with Top Spin and its demands, whether against the computer or a real player. A very convincing first experience.