Mario Power Tennis (JP) is the fourth installment in the overly popular Mario Tennis series, and the follow-up to Mario Tennis for the Nintendo 64. Currently, the game features more characters than any other in the series, featuring old favorites as well as new ones. However, some popular characters such as Toad and Birdo weren't in the game, In this game, Mario and his various friends and enemies meet up to play tennis. Like the previous Mario sports titles, all the playable characters have incredibly powerful Power Shots. Additionally, there are courts in the game that have special effects and events during the game. For each court, there are also special games to play.
While the previous entries in the series leaned on a more serious note, this game tends to be quite crazy by including insane obstacles and power shots, as well as more Mario themed things such as a Gooper Blooper boss and so forth. Five years later This game was later made into a New Play Control! game for the Nintendo Wii.
The game's opening begins with Mario and Luigi playing a match against Wario and Waluigi. The Mario Bros. win the match and celebrate as Wario and Waluigi complain about their loss. Bowser is seen surveying the match through hidden cameras. The next day, Wario and Waluigi see a picture of Mario and Luigi on the "Peach Dome Tournament" board and are furious to see that their opponents have knocked them out of the running. Wario and Waluigi vandalize the picture of Mario and Luigi, but the police pursue to arrest them. Wario and Waluigi escape into a janitor's closet, but they fall into what appears to be a training room. Bowser approaches them and offers an alliance to get revenge against the Mario Bros.. After hours of training and seeing others playing their tennis matches, they carry out a plan to attack the final tournament later that evening at the Peach Dome.
As Mario and Luigi are about to play the final match of the tournament against Yoshi and Donkey Kong, Bowser shows up on an airship-shaped blimp and rigs the tournament so that Wario and Waluigi can have their rematch with the Mario Bros., shocking the tournament hosts, Princess Peach and Toadsworth. Everyone gets furious at Wario, Waluigi, and Bowser wanting them to leave, but Wario and Waluigi silence them by setting up a machine that fires Bob-ombs at the Mario Bros. Bowser in the meantime, throws Bob-ombs at them. However, Mario and Luigi deflect the incoming Bob-ombs back at them with their tennis rackets. Other characters, such as Diddy Kong and Koopa Troopa, are briefly seen helping the Mario Bros. fending off the Bob-ombs as the spectators evacuate from the stadium; running and screaming for their lives. As a last resort, Bowser launches a Bullet Bill from his blimp at them, and Mario knocks it back with his racket, which fires back and hits Wario's Bob-omb launcher. Waluigi is about to retrieve the launcher, but Wario falls and crushes him. The launcher, flipped from the explosion, accidentally fires a Bob-omb at Bowser's blimp, destroying it and revealing Bowser's stock of Bob-ombs below his blimp, shocking Peach, Toadsworth, Mario, and Luigi.
Bowser's blimp starts to descend out of control and falls toward Wario and Waluigi. Wario and Waluigi attempt to escape, but Bowser crashes to them with the Bob-ombs onboard, causing them to blow up on impact creating a large explosion.
Afterwards, the trio falls unconscious after the blast, and their plan to attack Mario and his friends has completely failed, despite the damage they have done to the stadium. Mario and Luigi are relieved and unharmed, and Mario breaks the fourth wall by saying "Mama mia" at the camera before the scene ends.
Players participate in a tennis game, just as its precedents in the Mario Tennis series. To win, the player must score points by hitting the ball into the other side of the court and not making the opponent rebound the ball, just as the traditional way of playing tennis. Players earn 15 points for every shot that is successful and can win the game by earning set, game, and match points by earning 60 points on each game. The amount of set and game points can be set by the player in exhibition mode, but not in tournament mode.
When a character wins a tournament, his or her celebration will be shown. In each one, an event occurs.
- Mario: Mario holds his trophy, celebrating his victory. Peach, also pleased, holds Mario in place and crouches to kiss Mario's cheek. Mario, in love, puts down the trophy and then jumps to do a cheer.
- Luigi: Luigi is doing a victory dance when Mario arrives on stage applauding. He pats him on the back but appears to intentionally step on Luigi's foot out of jealousy.
- Peach: Peach celebrates with Mario and Luigi while Wario and Waluigi look on. She blows a kiss to the Mario brothers, making them float. Then, Wario and Waluigi try to steal the trophy, but Wario slips on a tennis ball, knocking over the rack the trophy sat on and flinging the trophy into the air. Peach catches the trophy.
- Yoshi: Yoshi is waiting for his prize when his stomach grumbles. He is saddened by having nothing to eat at the moment, until Luigi arrives on stage with the trophy. He sees the object as a big and juicy pineapple. Yoshi tries to eat, but ends up swallowing Luigi. He is surprised by his disappearance.
- Bowser: Bowser is cheering and laughing, with Peach at his side. He asks for a kiss on the cheek and closes his eyes. Peach then gets a red Birdo to kiss him. When Bowser sees it, he runs away.
- Bowser Jr.: Mario, Luigi, Yoshi, and Yellow Toad are waiting to reward Bowser Jr. Suddenly they hear a chuckle, which happens to be him snatching the trophy and making poses afterward.
- Daisy: Luigi is about to give Daisy her prize. She comes in, skating at high speed, making Luigi spin. She skates into him, making him throw the trophy up. In slow motion, Daisy catches the trophy.
- Donkey Kong: DK is on stage excited over his victory. Toad arrives with the trophy and DK grabs it, unaware that Toad is still hanging on to it. DK shakes the object several times until Toad falls off and faints from dizziness.
- Diddy: Luigi and Peach are in the area with Donkey Kong, who is playing a bongo. Diddy arrives, jumping and running around Luigi and then picks up the trophy with his tail. Diddy throws his prize up, jumps on the bongo, and catches the trophy. Diddy then jumps on DK's shoulder and they both strike a pose.
- Wario: Wario walks and jumps around until he falls off the stage while still holding the trophy. He lands on it, and when he gets up, he is shocked to see it flattened, so he picks it up and sadly shows it off.
- Waluigi: Waluigi holds the trophy and does a dance with Wario. Wario pushes Waluigi, making him fall, losing his grip on the trophy. As he tries to get up, the trophy hits him on the head.
- Boo: The Mario Brothers wait for Boo when the trophy begins to levitate. Mario and Luigi are frightened, until they saw that Boo was invisible when he got it which then amuses them. Several other Boos appear, two of which carry Mario and Luigi.
- Koopa Troopa: Koopa Troopa comes on stage while Luigi, Mario and Peach applaud for his victory. Diddy Kong is eating bananas and throws a banana peel onto Koopa Troopa's path. Luigi, Mario and Peach try to warn him, but he slips on the peel, slides across the stage, ricochets off a pole and then hits Luigi in the face, who accidentally tosses the trophy from the impact. Koopa Troopa catches it.
- Paratroopa: Paratroopa notices how his shell is attached to a fishing hook to the string of a fishing pole while Waluigi holds back the trophy, to prevent Paratroopa from getting it. Toad cuts the string with a large pair of scissors. That causes Wario and Waluigi to fall, making Paratroopa get the prize.
- Shy Guy: Luigi waits in place. Shy Guy arrives, walking happily. After climbing the steps, he falls and drops his mask. Luigi gets very scared seeing his true face, but Shy Guy quickly puts his mask back and takes the trophy.
- Fly Guy: Wario and Waluigi pretend to offer Fly Guy the trophy, but Waluigi grabs Fly Guy with a giant pair of pliers. This causes Fly Guy to spin wildly out of control, knocking down Wario and Waluigi, and launching the trophy into the air. Fly Guy catches the trophy and celebrates with Peach.
- Wiggler: Luigi and Diddy Kong give Wiggler the trophy, but Diddy Kong accidentally rolls a tennis ball, causing Wiggler to slip on it and drop the trophy. Luigi and Diddy Kong become anxious, knowing Wiggler will become angry, but it calms down when it sees its trophy. Luigi checks up on it, but Diddy Kong loses his footing from the tennis ball, bumps into Luigi, and they both land on Wiggler and knock the trophy away. Wiggler becomes angry and then chases Diddy Kong and Luigi who flee in fear.
- Petey Piranha: Mario presents the trophy to Petey Piranha while Peach, Koopa Troopa, Shy Guy and a pink Toad look on. Petey then begins to jump in place excitedly, shaking the platform. After he takes the trophy, Petey jumps into the air. Mario, Peach, Koopa Troopa, Shy Guy and the Toad brace for impact, but when nothing happens, they look up and see Petey flying, whilst clutching the trophy in his mouth.
Types of shots
Players can use different types of shots depending on the situation or their opponents' location.
- Topspin: The topspin shot can be activated by flicking the Wii Remote from the lower right to upper left. Topspin adds a forwards spin, making the ball travel through the opponent's court quickly and allow the ball to bounce high. Topspin shots have an orange trail behind them.
- Slice: The slice shot can be activated by flicking the Wii Remote from the upper right to lower left, which will add backspin and backwards spin to the shot. It is complete opposite of topspin, traveling slowly and bounce low. Slice shots have a blue trail behind them.
- Flat: The flat shot can be activated by flicking the Wii Remote from right to left horizontally. The ball will travel quickly, but will bounce low. Flat shots have lime-green trail behind them.
- Smash: If the oppenent activates a lob (see below), a star will appear on the court. Move to the star and flick the Wii Remote downwards (from top to bottom in a straight line) to make a smash shot. Smash shots are very fast, making the opponent have hard time serving it, and serving the smash shots requires lunging at the right time. Smash shots have a purple trail behind them.
- Lob: If the opponent is very close to the net, activate a lob shot by flicking the Wii Remote upwards (from bottom to top in a straight line). Lob shots fly extremely high and travel the furthest, and technical characters are especially skilled at activating lob shots.
- Drop: If the opponent is far away from the net, activate a drop shot by flicking the Wii Remote downwards (from top to bottom in a straight line) to catch them off-guard. Drop shots are complete opposite of lob shots, and travel very slowly and has a very low path. They are the most weakest shots in the game.
Power shots can only be activated if the power gauge is full (if the power gauge is full, it will turn red and the flame will appear above the power gauge). Power controls may differ depending on the control style, which can be accessed by clicking 'Options' on main menu.
- Offensive: (Easy): The power shot will automatically be used at players' next hit if the power gauge is full and if the character is very close to the ball. (Normal): If the power gauge is full, hold A Button and flick Wii Remote. The type of Power Shot, however, will automatically be determined. (Technical/Manual): If the power gauge is full, hold A Button and flick the Wii Remote. The type of Power Shot will be determined manually.
- Defensive: (Easy): The power shot will automatically be used at player's next hit if the power gauge is full and if the character is far away from the ball. (Normal): If the power gauge is full, hold B Button and flick the Wii Remote. The type of Power Shot, however, will automatically be determined. (Technical/Manual): If the power gauge is full, hold B Button and flick the Wii Remote. The type of Power Shot will be determined manually.
Note: The controls shown are only for Wii version.
|*Name: Peach*Offensive: Super Peach Spin*Defensive: Sweet Kiss Return|
|*Name: Fly Guy*Skill Type: Tricky|
Gameplay & game modes
The game is based off a normal match of tennis game, except the game is filled with madness and craziness with insane obstacles and Power Shots. There are 6 modes for the game.
Players can play a normal fresh game of tennis. They can set up rules and conditions for the game, for e.g. singles or doubles, choose a court, choose game difficulty, and/or even turn Power Shots on/off, and change amount of games or sets.
These are courts that have no gimmicks, and are most recommended for beginners.
Most courts are gimmick courts. They have crazy obstacles which can affect players either mildly or severely, depending on appearance of court and it's difficulty. Most gimmick courts are available at start, there are 2 that need to be unlocked.
Players score points by hitting the ball through the rings that appear randomly in this mode. A CHARGE total will appear next to characters' icons. Large rings worth small points while small rings worth more points. At the end of the match, the player or the pair with more points than their opponent is the winner.
This mode is just simply like a regular tennis game - except it has item boxes for more craziness and fun! Item boxes will appear above the net, if hit will unleash a random item which will either help players or interfere opponents, much like Mario Kart series, except the item given is completely random and does not depend on players' progress. The list below shows a list of items:
- Green Shell: 3 shells will zoom out in straight lines separately. If they hit someone, they will lose balance and struggle to concentrate.
- Red Shell: A red shell will chase opponents, making it more difficult for opponents to avoid it. If someone gets hit, it will have same effect that a green shell makes if it comes in contact with someone.
- Mushroom: A mushroom will make players increase their speed, but not for long.
- Banana: A banana will act like a hazard. It will slip anyone and will make them unable to concentrate if they step on it.
- Star: A sparkling star makes players invincible and invulnerable for a short period of time.
- Lightning: A lightning will strike and interfere opponents severely and shrinks them. Victims will also get weaker and slower, and their stature will decreased, but not for a long time.
Players can enter a Mario Power Tennis competition and beat opponents to win a trophy cup. As players progress, the opponents' skill will increase, which will also increase the match's difficulty. There are 3 competitions:
- Mushroom Cup
- Flower Cup
- Star Cup
- Fire Cup
- Thunder Cup
The Star tournament mode is simply a harder and more trickier version of World Open.
- Rainbow Cup
- Moonlight Cup
- Planet Cup
These are special games based of tennis. Each court has different rules. There are 2 unlockable special games, which can be unlocked by unlocking unlockable courts.
- Artist on the Court: Hit paint balls against the giant wall murals. How fast can you finish each masterpiece?
- Terror Tennis: Slam the goofy ghosts to seal them within the confines of their portraits. Didn't Luigi already take care of these ghosts?
- Tic-Tac-Glow: Hit balls of water into the opposite court to clear away piles of sludge and free Shine Sprites. Hit 3 in a row either vertically, horizontally, or diagonally to free extra Shine Sprites and earn bonus points.
- Chain-Chomp Challenge: Feed the Chain Chomp tennis balls to score points, but watch out! The Chain Chomps may not like it if you hit them with something other than a standard ball!
- Gooper Blooper Volley: Return every shot that Gooper Blooper sends your way, but be careful! You can't hit balls into areas marked with an X!
- Balloon Panic: Players must prevent Klaptraps from popping the balloons.
- Mecha-Bowser Mayhem: Players must face against Mecha Bowser and beat him.
- Coin Collectors: Players must collect as much as coins as possible while avoiding dangerous fireballs.
Players can continue a previously saved game. The game contain a maximum of 3 save files.
Players can view all of the records and game types played.
Players can adjust the game, for e.g. sound, rumble and control style. Players can also delete the game, however extra care must be taken since the deleted data cannot be recovered.
There are 8 courts (6 available from start).
- Peach Dome - Presented for your pleasure by Her Royal Highness, Princess Peach.
- Luigi's Mansion - A ghost-filled court to accompany Luigi's haunted home.
- Delfino Plaza - A seaside court protected by a giant Pianta statue.
- Wario Factory - Wario built this court in his factory to honour... himself!
- Gooper Blooper - Gooper Blooper's court is located in Ricco Harbor.
- DK Jungle - A court hidden away deep in the heart of the junge and filled with mysterious energy.
- Bowser's Castle - A court that can tilt, making it extra difficult for players to move or stay in place.
- Mario Classic - A court that uses video game graphics from 1980s. Enemies walking act like a hazard.
Pre-release and unused content
In the intro of the game where Wario and Waluigi are checking out the tournament board, the player can see Toad and Toadette on the left. It is unknown if they were intended to be playable or if it is a simple cameo. Unused models found within the game's files include a Hammer Bro (with its filename implying that it was meant to be the linesman) and 3D sprites for a Spiny, a Shellcreeper, and a Fighter Fly. Presumably, the latter two models were to be used for the Mario Classic Court as either spectators or obstacles. In the final game, they use their sprites from the NES version of Mario Bros. During production, the game was called Mario Tennis.
References to other games
- Donkey Kong - The title screen music is played during the clip when Donkey Kong receives his trophy.
- Mario Bros. - The Mario Classic Court stage is unlockable. It features Shellcreepers and Sidesteppers on the sidelines and the gimmick court feaures a POW Block and a Freezie. The Game Over theme can be heard in Coin Collectors.
- Super Mario Bros. - The overworld theme is heard during part of the credits. Princess Peach hums the underground theme while idling.
- Donkey Kong Country - In DK Jungle Court, the music for this game is played. Also, Klaptraps serve as hazards and Kritters stand along the outer edge of the field.
- Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars - Bowser's Castle from this game can be seen during the opening cutscene of the Bowser's Castle Court.
- Yoshi's Story - The music from the first level of this game is played during the clip when Yoshi wins his trophy.
- Wario Land 3 - The overworld theme from this game, particularly from the level Out of the Woods, is played during the clip when Wario wins his trophy.
- Mario Tennis (Nintendo 64) - Bowser owns another court, and aspects, such as items, and the stage tilting from the characters' weights, return in the court. Also, some of Mario and Luigi's voice samples, most notably their serves, are reused.
- Mario Kart: Super Circuit - The Lightning Cup is originated from this game. However, it goes by its Japanese version name, Thunder Cup, as part of the Gimmick Masters tournament.
- Luigi's Mansion - -The stage Luigi's Mansion Court is from this game. It features ghosts who slow players down in the Gimmick Court. Luigi's Defensive Power Shot makes him use his Poltergust 3000, which originated from this game.
- Super Smash Bros. series - Bowser's Defensive Power Shot resembles his Whirling Fortress move.
- Super Mario Sunshine - Two stages, the Delfino Plaza Court and the Gooper Blooper Court, are taken from levels in this game. Also, the icons from the Main Menu are Shine Sprites. Gooper Blooper also appears in one of the Special Games. Petey Piranha is an unlockable character.
- Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour - The opening logos are reused. Several voice clips are reused as well.
- Mario Kart: Double Dash!! - The item boxes are identical to the ones in this game, and so are the items themselves and the item boxes' sound effects. Toadette makes a cameo appearance during the game's opening cutscene. The 3-second countdown sound effect is used when a round of Artist On the Court is about to begin.
- WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$! - The Wario Factory Court and the visuals therein are based entirely on this game.
References in later games
- Mario Super Sluggers - Several voice clips are reused in the game.
- Mario Tennis Open - Aside from being the game's follow-up, several voice clips and sound effects are reused, including the announcers in multiple languages.
- Mario Golf: World Tour - Several voice clips are reused in this game.
- Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash - The announcer's voice clips are reused.
- Mario Sports Superstars - Several voice clips are reused in this game. Various character artwork is reused for tennis amiibo cards.
- Mario Tennis Aces - Several voice clips are reused in this game, including the announcer's voice clips. The mechanic of building up an energy gauge to use offensive Zone Shots, defensive Zone Speed, or Special Shots is akin to the glowing racket gauge used for Offensive Power Shots or Defensive Power Shots.
This is the only Mario game so far that has blooper-reels in the credits. If the player wins the Star Cup or Thunder Cup, the player will see a blooper reel of the first half of the Opening Movie. These bloopers are as follows:
- When returning the ball, Mario accidentally hits it against Luigi's face, to which Mario apologizes. Although Luigi complains about the injury on his nose, he is shown with a black eye.
- Wario and Waluigi trip and fall when entering the outer skirts of Peach Dome.
- While vandalizing the Mario Bros. poster, Waluigi hits the camera with his marker, taking it down. He then apologizes to the cameraman.
- One of the police officers loses his footing and falls while giving chase to Wario and Waluigi.
- Wario and Waluigi find the door in which they will hide from the police, but it slams shut before they can enter, making them smash face-first against it.
- In the same scene, they manage to enter through the door; however, Waluigi's leg gets stuck as the door closes. One of the police points at it and Wario is heard muttering, "Stupid...".
- When Bowser activates his ball-serving machine, a malfunction sends the balls hurtling against him from somewhere else off-camera. He runs off, frightened, slamming against the cameraman, as Wario and Waluigi, offscreen, laugh.
If the player wins the Planet Cup, a second set of bloopers will continue where the last set left off. These bloopers are as follows:
- When Bowser turns on a switch, it breaks off in his hand. He laughs.
- In the same scene, the switch electrocutes Bowser, and he faints. Waluigi rushes to aid him, but not before warning Bowser, "Don't expect mouth-to-mouth!"
- Wario is weightlifting, and seems to make a huge effort with the massive weights. Suddenly, his cell phone rings and he picks it up with his left hand, without dropping the barbell in his right hand. It is seen that he was just pretending his effort, as he talks nonchalantly at the phone. Waluigi, displeased, calls the cut by placing his hand on the camera lens. Wario seems to be talking to his mother in this segment, for he says "Hello? Ma! I told you not to call me! I'm making a movie..."
- Wario's and Waluigi's Bob-omb launcher device gets jammed by a stuck Bob-omb. Waluigi then calls for the Prop Guy.
- Bowser's Bullet Bill Cannon explodes in his face when he fires, causing him to hold his jaws open in shock.
- The Bullet Bill falls just ahead of Mario before he can return it at Bowser's Airship. Mario shrugs at the camera, laughing.
- When Wario and Waluigi jump down to the court to escape the damaged launcher device, Wario falls head-first into the ground due to Waluigi ducking to the side, getting stuck in a hole, prompting Waluigi to laugh (even though Wario's falling body nearly hit him).
- When Bowser, Wario, and Waluigi appear on the big screen behind Mario and Luigi after the three's defeat, a Paratroopa accidentally flies through the shot, and they all start laughing.
- The credits show a movie similar to that of an opening movie.
- This is only Mario game to feature bloopers.
- This is also the final Mario game where Wario wears his original outfit (a yellow long-sleeved shirt and fuchsia overalls), which was first seen in Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins. After this game, Wario's current outfit (a yellow short-sleeved shirt and purple overalls), which was first seen in Wario Land II becomes his permanent outfit.
- This is the first game where Boo, Donkey Kong, and Diddy Kong recieve new voice actors.
- This is also the first game where Dolores Rogers voices as Wiggler for the first time
- GameCube version's website (Japanese)
- Enjoy with Wii: Mario Tennis GC website (Japanese)
- New Play Control! Mario Power Tennis North America
- New Play Control! Mario Power Tennis gamepage
- GameCube version's website (Nintendo UK)
- New Play Control! Mario Power Tennis website (Nintendo UK)
- Full reel of Mario Power Tennis Bloopers