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Jimmy Connors Tennis - The Atari Times

Jimmy Connors Tennis

Jimmy scores an ace with this one
by Gregory D. George

June 7, 1996
Before Atari closed shop in 1996, Don Thomas cleaned house and offered Atarians some great deals on Lynx games. Well, I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to get a gaggle of games I never even had the chance to buy in the stores. And Jimmy Connors' Tennis has become one of my favorites.

I believe I did read a short review on this game before, and it was described as being rather plain. True, the in-game graphics are somewhat plain, but I don't see how it could get any better. After all, it IS a tennis court. The digitized picture of Jimmy is well done and even animated.

Gameplay is pretty much standard. The only real thing you have to be aware of is that the "B" button is the backhand, "A" is the forehand, and OPTION 1 is for overhead smashes. The game uses a system of squares which appear on the court and tell you they best place to stand to hit the ball. Black is for overheads (rare), red are for hitting a ball before it bounces, and yellow for hitting after it bounces. There are also different modes of play including a practice mode where it's you vs. a machine, doubles, and any combination of Link-up modes. You can even change the surface from grass to hard court, but I didn't notice too much of a difference. I wonder why clay wasn't included?

What certainly sets this game apart from other tennis games is the license. Jimmy Connors is my all-time favorite, and his voice is all over this game. From "You gotta be kidding me!" to "I look forward to your challenge" and my personal favorite, "Whoa!" Jimmy lends his vocal talents throughout the game. He's actually encouraging you to play better and climb the ladder to face him. In addition to his speech, there's the obligatory announcer who calls every point, let, and fault made. Other sounds are the "thock!" of hitting the ball, and the intro music.

The only real shortcoming of the game is the controls. It can be tricky to position yourself on the squares in time to hit the ball as the characters tend to slide around a bit.

If you own a Lynx and are a tennis fan like me, you owe yourself this game. Forget the cartoony, unrealistic Mario Tennis games. This is a great portable tennis game. And it's great for road-trips!

"Baby face, you've got the cutest little baby face..."
What does this person have to do with tennis?
Serving can be tricky and you have to time it just right.
The box tells you where to stand and the color tells you how to hit the ball.
Jimmy Connors Tennis
System: Lynx
Publisher: Atari
Genre: Sports
Graphics Score: 70%
Sound & Music Score: 80%
Gameplay Score: 85%
Control Score: 65%

Final Score: 80%

Reader Comments for Jimmy Connors Tennis

A handheld talkie! by HS on 2006-12-23 10:26:52
Hardly any games featured true speech back in the early 90s. For a handheld game to do so was amazing. From Conner's welcome at the start up screen, to the ref's points call, to Conner's taunting in the final match after you've worked your way up the country club ladder, it was amazing. I don't remember the practice mode, but I remember the doubles mode (mixed or single sex). Too bad I never had a friend to play it with. You could play doubles with the computer (i.e you and the computer vs two computer controlled characters) but your computer partner was crap and a frustration to play with. I found this game really hard as a child, but when i dusted the Lynx off as a late teen a few years ago it was simple. I think I even beat Jimmy 6-1 6-1.
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