Table Tennis (Xbox 360) by Rockstar Games

Table Tennis (Xbox 360) by Rockstar Games Box Art

Xbox One backwards Compatible

North Amercian Release Date: May 22, 2006.

Average Overall Score:
7.93 / 10

Two thoughts went through my mind when I heard about Rockstar?s Table Tennis. First off, I was shocked they were making a Ping Pong game on the Xbox 360."

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The most authentic and addictive sports simulation ever created, Rockstar Games presents Table Tennis delivers the unfiltered kinetic energy of intense competition for a new generation.


Thursday, March 16, 2006


Unlocked Solayman
Beat the Pro Circuit or...
The Competitor
Beat the Pro Circuit on default settings.
The Widowmaker
Shutout opponents in 5+ non-consecutive games (any settings) in Ranked online play.
The Spectator
Awarded for spectating in an online match.
The Victor
Awarded for your first win in any online game mode
The Noob
Complete your first online match in any game mode.
The Graduate
Earn the highest score on every drill in Training Mode.
The Creampuff
Beat the Amateur Circuit on default settings.
The Average Joe
Beat the Rookie Circuit on default settings.
The All-Star
Beat the All-Star Circuit on default settings.
The Natural
Use every character to beat any of the Tournament Circuits.
The Savant
Beat the All-Star Circuit with every character.
Unlocked Juergen
Beat the Amateur Circuit or...
Unlocked Kumi
Beat the Rookie Circuit or...
Unlocked Carmen
Beat the All-Star Circuit or...
Unlocked Cassidy
Beat the Rookie Circuit with default settings in less than 14.5 minutes or...
Unlocked Jung Soo
Beat the Rookie Circuit with default settings in less than 14 minutes or...
Unlocked Mark
Beat the Rookie Circuit with default settings in less than 13.5 minutes or...
The Tourist
Every level in the game has been unlocked.
The Tailor
Every outfit in the game has been unlocked.
The Owner
Every character in the game has been unlocked.
The Collector
Every unlockable item in the game has been unlocked.
3 Match Winning Streak
Win 3 Ranked Exhibition Matches in a row.
4 Match Winning Streak
Win 4 Ranked Exhibition Matches in a row.
5 Match Winning Streak
Win 5 Ranked Exhibition Matches in a row.
The Veteran
Rack up 10+ hours of offline gameplay time.
The Net Veteran
Rack up 10+ hours of online gameplay time.
The Hall of Famer
Has won 50+ (non-consecutive) Ranked Tournaments.
The G.O.A.T.
Achieve the highest TrueSkill rating possible in any Ranked online game mode.

User Reviews

Score: 79
Overall User Average: 7.40 / 10 (79.3%)
Gameplay User Average: 6.15 / 10
Graphics User Average: 6.40 / 10
Sound User Average: 6.15 / 10
Date reviewed: November 9, 2007.

Overall: Intro:
When Rockstar first announced their next game, it was definitely a shock to everyone, no one really expected something this drastically different from their previous titles. Table Tennis lacks guns, violence, hijacking, profanity and blood, which Rockstar has used to make their name, but in no way does it make this title un-cool.

Table Tennis has a simple objective; to deliver a very fast paced gameplay that is simple enough to pick up and play, yet be deep enough to keep you coming back for more. This is all it does, and surprisingly, better than most would expect.

As you start up the game, you will be greeted with the cl@!%#*!ic “Rockstar Presents”, and even by the GTA font alone, you know this already feels like one of their games. Simplicity is one aspect that the game has strength in, but unfortunately at times, is also its weakness.

Soon as you start the game, you see a background with two players with the very slim menu choices in the upper corner. You are greeted with choices of Tournaments, Exhibition, Training, and Xbox Live.

Training is actually quite helpful and will teach you the basics of how to play, and then get into advanced techniques for later on. It’s broken down into sections from serving, returning, spins, counter spins, drop shots, slams, aiming and more which actually help later on with difficult matches. After a few goes, you’ll have the system down and want to jump right into a game, which is where the action begins.

The controls are incredibly simple, yet very precise to the touch. The left analog stick is your movement of your character, and once your about to hit the ball, your aim for where you want to hit the ball on the table. Your right stick controls the spin on the ball, and after your opponent hits the ball towards you, the longer you hold the stick in a direction, the more spin you can attain. The danger in this is that while your ‘charging’ you’re hit with a lot of spin, you are unable to move your character, so you have to think ahead where you should be to return the hit.

With four different types of spin, you can always keep your opponent guessing of not only where you are going to drop the ball, but if it’s going to have front, back, left, or right spin to help it curve as well. This is where counter hitting can also come into play. So if a shot was coming to me with immense right spin and going to go off the table, I would hit it right back with the same type of spin to essentially neutralize the spin on the ball and get things back into my favor.

A very clever yet subtle feature works very well once you even realize it’s there and in place is the use of the rumble feature of the controller. As your about to slam the ball towards your competitor and holding the direction you want for spin, once your controller starts to shake it means that you are getting dangerously close to the edge of the table. If you do not heed these warnings your shot will go out of bounds and off the table, and honestly, having not read the book before playing, it made things extremely easier once I learned this tactic. You will get a feel for how much is too much over time with more and more gameplay. Eventually become very skilled in this can net you easy points where it can nick off the edge of the table and basically become un-returnable.

So after keeping all these things in mind, there is also another aspect that will come into play and usually help you win easily against the computer (as opposed to a person). The more you charge your spins, the more your focus meter will fill up, and once full, you can use it to unleash an extremely fast return or even more powerful slam. While this works great against the computer players, against real players, it can help, but not as effectively. In single player, the camera will go into a slow motion mode, make it look all awesome even if you are just trying to reach for a save return. In multiplayer is just speeds things up to insane rates of returns and you will watch your rally numbers increase very quickly.

Camera work is flawless, and while you do only get two choices of close or far (close being the much easier to see the ball with), it never once felt like I didn’t know where I should be looking. If you are at one corner of the table, and they are at the opposite other, the camera will slightly pan enough so it just seems like the perfect angle. If you are playing multiplayer on the same system, one person is on the bottom for their serves, and then it switches so each person gets to play on both sides of the table. I did find being on the top side of the table a bit odd, and missing more shots I shouldn’t have been, you do get used to it eventually and it will feel natural.

Loading times are decent, though with how little is actually on the screen, it seemed at first it should have been quicker. At least while you are waiting for it to load, you can look at what you’ve unlocked so far with each character, and even get hints on how to unlock more arena’s, clothes, and characters.

Picking and choosing the character that fits your play style is crucial as well. You are given a choice of a few choices at the starts, and as you progress through single player tournaments (note I didn’t say career mode); you unlock new players along the way along with clothes and arenas. If you are a power player and want to slam your opponent every chance you get, then Jesper is your choice, but watch his zero rating in serving. Liu Ping from China is your all around choice which most people online tend to use I found. If you want to trick your challenger with awesome spins and fakes, the Luc or Kumi are the way to go. Learning more than one character is crucial for online play, as using a defensive character against another defensive character makes easy scoring a challenge.

Each character is rated on spin, serve, power, and accuracy, and actually feels different than each other as well. While there is no rating for movement, I did find that certain players I preferred just seemed to move quicker than others. As you learn to be in the right place at the right time, you won’t rely on the footwork as much, but it can be frustrating to miss that shot because it doesn’t feel like they move quickly enough at times. While you are charging your spin, you can not move either, so it’s a lesson you tend to learn early on very quickly.

One downfall to the games simplicity is its lack of modes as well. All you get are exhibition modes for a quicker play, or tournament to unlock items and features. That’s it; there is no career mode in any shape or form. Regrettably there is also no create a player either. And for player options, you get to pick their color and style of up to a few shirts, not even wrist or headbands. While the choices are very slim mode and player wise, the gameplay does redeem it and is quite deep and involving.

There is quite the intensity that becomes apparent once you hit milestones in long rallies. Once you realize you have been going back and forth for over 50 hits, you seem to become more focused. As the rallies become much higher, and even breaking the 100 mark, you become tense and it’s exciting with the result either being you standing up cheering, or shouting new profanities because you accidentally hit the net with the wrong spin. When even playing the lower 7 point games, they can take time when you have two very good players and are scoring back and forth on each other.

When you play online for the first time, you will feel just at home since it’s identical to the single player in almost every aspect. Just as single player, you can choose Exhibition for the quicker matches, or a Timed Tournament which is 4 to 8 players all playing at the same time in a Round-Robin style of play with a set amount of time. Unfortunately the settings are very weak, and once you are done an exhibition match, it boots both players, even the host, to the main Xbox Live screen where you can hen either host again and invite your friend, or join a random game. Being able to play with my friends reputedly without having to send an invite every time would have been much enjoyed, but rather it’s a h@!%#*!le. While setting up a Timed Tournament, you can pick either 4 or 8 players, and should you choose 8 and you don’t have a full room, you can not start the game, even if 4 of you are there and waiting. It’s another simple thing that could have been avoided but just brings frustration instead.

While online, the same pace feels the same. While there isn’t many lag problems, the few times I have had them brings very weird occurrences. Sometimes I won’t be seeing my opponent move, but an invisible paddle will still hit the ball, or sometimes the ball will float there for a second as if it’s waiting to be hit by them instead of me scoring a point. Another odd bug that I’ve run into that’s only happened once so far is while I picked Juergen to play with, the person I was playing with said it was Jesper and was even his name and model instead of what I see on my own screen.

While there are certain things that I’ve noticed that shouldn’t be there, it by no means takes away from the quick action and frantic gameplay. With there being absolutely no extras, career mode, or mini-games, the single player is very bland and quick to finish. Multiplayer with a friend or on Xbox Live does feel like it compensates for what it does lack.

As noted before, from the moment you turn on Table Tennis, you know that it’s a Rockstar game, not only from its patented font, but just the feel and style of the product as a whole.

The players in this title look simply amazing and realistic for the most part. While in replays, you can see everything from beads of sweat on the forehead, to the fine hairs of an eyebrow. Each character looks unique and the motion capture of each is marvelous. When you need to quickly move to the side you can see them plant their foot and push fluidly rather than just strafing.

I don’t think I’ve seen better clothing in a game before this title. Shirts will droop and bend and move like they do in real life. Reach for a high slam and the shirt near your armpit actually stretches, lean and bend over to hit a drop shot and your shirt will actually sag with gravity. It doesn’t sound like much, but it’s something so fluid that you have to notice it.

To add another level of realism, players will also sweat over time and the longer the rallies, the more sweaty your character gets. It makes the color of your shirt darken as well depending on where they are sweating. It’s not a necessity, but having it definitely makes it feel like a genuine 360 title.

Each player will also have their own stances and hold the paddles their own specific way. This just breathes more life into the characters and with no drops of framerate and the lighting being perfect, Table Tennis is one of the more realistic looking titles on the system thus far.

To be cliché, you will hear every ‘ping’ and every ‘pong’ the ball makes as it bounces off the table. Even the crowd can be heard at times, and when they want someone to win, you will hear them chant their name or country without too much repetitiveness.

With Table Tennis being such a rhythmic gameplay, Rockstar has picked the perfect choice of a soft ambient techno to play in the background that just seems to fit the whole style of the game. Obviously your own soundtracks are recommended, but they have certainly combined the style of gameplay with the style of music to fuse a wonderful mix.

Closing Comments:
Rockstar has not made a mini-version of Virtua Tennis or Top Spin. While many aspects may seem the same, they have combined fluid gameplay with simple controls to make a completely new experience. While it may seem like the next-gen version of ‘Pong’, the pacing, gameplay, and addictiveness of Table Tennis is represented so well that with it’s low price tag, should not be p@!%#*!ed up.

Table Tennis is simple to pick up and play, yet very deep if you want to invest the time into it. While it does have it’s shortcomings with lack of modes and create a player, this title is completely about the gameplay. It is exciting, it is additive, and this truly is Table Tennis bought to us by Rockstar.

Gameplay: 8.8 Graphics: 8.3 Sound: 7.8 Overall: 8.3

Overall: 88 %
Gameplay: 83 %
Graphics: 78 %
Sound: 83 %

Date reviewed: June 3, 2006.

Overall: these guys here don't know how to review games. at first it was cool. now its just boring. there is no character building. ooohhh i beat a guy with a backspin.. i just unlocked a yellow shirt for my guy. he looks so good now...
Gameplay: the ball physics are good, however, many times you will be in the middle of a heated rally and you will wind up on the far side of the table, and when the ball is returned to you many times the character will not move over. its almost like a delay and when this happens (quit frequently) you just lost a point. online play is ok, sometimes you will hit the ball to a far corner and your opponent won't move so you sit there waiting for the ball to come back, and all of a sudden it just returns itself withouth the other guy moving to hit it and it messes you all up losing the point.
Graphics: graphics??? theres nothing here, sure the player faces look good, but there is no background, nothing, its just 2 people with the view of the table. thats its... 40$ for that???
Sound: can you say ping.... pong... thats it...the only plus i have to say is that once you get over like 15 vollies in a row some techno music starts pumping which isn't bad..
Suggestions: this would be an awesome xbox 360 arcade game for like 5 - 10 bucks. there is no depth to it, it gets rediculasly hard to play if your doing offline circuit play. don't bother making a second one!!

Overall: 60 %
Gameplay: 40 %
Graphics: 50 %
Sound: 40 %

Table Tennis News

Demo: Rockstar Table Tennis
You can now download a demo of Rockstar’s ‘Table Tennis’ from the Xbox Live Marketplace.

Rockstar Ships Table Tennis
Rockstar Games today announced that Rockstar Games presents Table Tennis for the Xbox 360 console is now available at retail stores in North America.

Rockstar Table Tennis - Achievements
The new game from Rockstar has 29 achievements. Read more to see the achievement list and discuss how to get the 1000 points.

Table Tennis Screens
Strange stuff, first this company makes game with unlockable porn...and now table tennis!?!? What are they smoking over there?

Rockstar’s Next Killer App!
Table Tennis? So I'm going to sit in front of a TV to play something I could easily do in my garage? Well, I guess it's useful if you have no friends.

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