Tie Break
Copyright/Publisher: Starbyte Software, Music By: Ronald Saake,
Release Year: 1990, Genre: Tennis, Number Of Players: 1 to 16

The strawberries and cream of Wimbledon may be only a distant memory, but the tennis sims are still being served up. C64 Tie Break has all the features of the earlier Amiga game (67%, Issue 63), including the Passing Shot-style, scrolling overhead view.

Pushing the joystick in one of four directions (for topspin, stop volley, lob, or normal shot) causes the player to hold the racket back, ready to swing forward when the joystick is recentred. Holding down fire lengthens the shot.

Three- or five-set matches can be played against a human or computer (sixteen different ones) opponent. In doubles matches, up to four players can be player- controlled. Eh? The C64's only got two joystick ports?

No worries, Ocean are planning to sell a 5 adapter for two extra joysticks. As well as friendly matches you can compete in several international tournaments. You can even play a sort of league with the World Tournament option.

As with International 3-D Tennis the emphasis is firmly on playing the shots, timing your strokes to place the ball for that winning shot. This is hard enough to make so you're glad you don't have to actually move your player, and after a few games you soon get the hang of things.

The overhead scroll works well generally, and doubles is good fun although the two computer players can maintain very long rallies ignoring human players altogether!

I enjoyed this much more than the earlier Amiga game. Due to a slower speed of play it's easier to time your shots and hence not as frustrating. That's not to say it's easy though - even the lowliest computer opponent is extremely hard to beat.

Therefore it's more enjoyable playing against a more fallible human (ie Wozza). And though we haven't had a chance to try it out yet, the four-player doubles option sounds fun. With plenty of tournament options, Tie Break is yet another worthwhile tennis sim.


'League' and tournament options plus four-player mode.
The overhead view is more functional than impressive.
Okay title tune, minimal hitting FX.
Good fun, especially in the multi-player modes.
16 tough computer opponents.
Another fun tennis game.