For the sport of tennis on the video game console, a simple question remains: When will they get it right? Considering the latest releases "Top Spin 4" and "Virtua Tennis 4," the answer is simple: not yet.
I played "Top Spin 4" ($59.99, rated "E'') for Xbox 360 and "Virtua Tennis 4" ($49.99) for PlayStation 3, and neither delivered as much fun or competitiveness that tennis deserves. There were some enjoyable moments, but they were fleeting and mired amid long stretches of yawn-inducing action.
For "Top Spin 4," online play was the highlight, thanks to match search menus that allowed me to find opponents quickly. I chose Ivan Lendl's character for my first foray in online head-to-head play, hoping a bit of his signature crushing forehand would lead me to victory. The result? I lost 0-6, 0-6 to someone online playing as Roger Federer.