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    FAQ by VBroccoli

    Version: 1.0 | Updated: 09/04/00 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Mario Tennis - The FAQ
    Copyright 2000 by Victor Broccoli
    Please Contact For Distribution Information
    Version 1.0
    E-mail VicHowl@aol.com for suggestion, comments, or complaints.
    Version History
    Version 1.1: The Character Descriptions and Court Selections are now
    finished. Also, I found out about a new court, thanks to one of my informants
    Version 1.0: Just a basic outline of what that FAQ will become. As of now,
    there are missing sections. However, I will eventually complete them. As of
    now, Sections 1-4 are completed, with the exception of the Courts section.
    All of the special courts have their descriptions missing.
    Quick Note Before I Begin:
    As you notice, there are TOC parts that lead to non-existent sections.
    However, when this is done, they will be filled to the brim with info.
    Since the objectives of this FAQ are stated, I hope that someone may be
    able to help me out. For example, strategies as one player to beat other
    players will be time consuming, as I will have to play every possible
    combination of matches. So, hopefully, some nice soul out there will give
    me a hand. My thanks will be in order! - Victor
    PS: Suggestions for additional sections will also be appreciated :)
    Table of Contents
    1.  Introductory Words
    2.  Controls
    3.  Game Modes
    4.  Court Selections
    5.  Character Descriptions
    6.  Tennis Strategies
    7.  Character Strategies
    8.  How to Beat That Other Guy
    9.  Frequently Asked Questions
    10. Qualifiers and Codes
    11. Rankings of Players
    12. Tennis Rules
    13. Nintendo Tournaments
    14. Contact Information
    15. What Needs To Be Added
    Section One: Introductory Words
    Mario Tennis is the latest N64 Mario themed game. This game, quite
    simply, is one of the best multiplayer games available out there, period.
    It has the addictive gameplay of its predecessor, Mario Golf, as well as
    an intuitive gameplay engine tailor-made for the sport of tennis. This is
    definitely a game that I recommend for a rental or a buy.
    Now, since you're reading this FAQ, I assume you want to know how to play
    this game. I'm glad you've chosen my FAQ as your guide through this game.
    Now, onto the good parts: the information!
    Section Two: Controls
    (Note: This game does not use the C-Buttons)
    Menu Controls:
    Control Stick - Select an option
    A - Confirm a selection
    B - Cancel a selection or return to previous menu
    L - Make player left handed (Player Selection Screen)
    Z - Make player left handed (Player Selection Screen)
    In-Game Controls:
    Control Stick - Move around on baseline and aim serve (when ball is in air)
    A or B - Toss Ball In Air
    While Ball Is Tossed:
    A - Topspin serve (Kick Serve, this one spins to the right)
    B - Slice Serve (Slice Serve, this one spins to the left)
    A+B - Smash Serve (Hard Flat serve, this one doesn't spin much)
    Ground Strokes:
    Control Stick - Move player around and aim shots (while hitting the shot)
    A once - Top Spin shot
    A twice - powerful Top Spin shot
    B once - Slice shot
    B twice - powerful Top Spin shot
    A then B - Lob shot (high ball)
    B then A - Drop Shot (stops when it bounces)
    A + B - Smash Shot
    Holding A or B - Charging shots
    Z - Cancel Charging
    R - Shoot Item (Bowser Stage Only)
    A quick note about hitting shots. When hitting a Powerful slice or top
    spin shot, all you have to do is quickly tap the A or B button twice.
    When hitting a smash shot, you must first charge your shot by holding A or
    B. When the shot starts to charge (denoted by the fireworks building
    around your character), you then hit A and B at the same time. When you hit
    A charged shot, you will not be able to move much. So, make sure you have
    the ball lined up BEFORE you hit the shot.
    Whenever you are within the service line (see Tennis Rules), you will not
    hit a ground stroke. Instead, you will hit a volley. You will still be able
    to hit drop shots and lobs, but pulling them off are more difficult than
    from the baseline.
    Whenever you hit a powerful shot, a trail will follow the ball.
    Orange Trails - Top Spin shot
    Blue Trails - Slice shot
    Pink Trails - Smash shots
    Section Three: Game Modes
    One of the best parts of Mario Tennis are the multiple game modes that the
    game contains. In this section, I will explain, in-depth, each of the
    modes contained within the game.
                       Exhibition Mode
    This mode is the basic play mode in the game. All this
    mode entails is the basic game of tennis that we have come to know and love
    over the last couple hundred years or so.
    Options Available - Number of Players: 1-4
                        Type Of Game: Singles or Doubles
                        Games Per Set: 1, 3, or 5 sets with 2 or 6 games each
                        Types Of Doubles Pairings: 2 types or 3 types
                        Computer Characters: Any character not selected
                        Computer Difficulty: Easy, Normal, Hard, or Intense
                        Courts: Hard, Clay, Grass, Composition, or Hidden
    Pause Options - Rules: View The Rule Selections for the current match
                    Controls: Explanations Of The Controller Functions
                    Camera Options: Choose from 3 Different Cameras
                    Save: Choose to save game or to end the game
                       Tournament Mode
    In this mode, you compete against other players (or teams)
    to decide a champion. In this mode, you play a series of three tournaments.
    However, the game does not let you lose a tournament. If you lose a match,
    you simply repeat the match until you finally win.
    Options Available - Number of Players: 1
                        Type Of Game: Singles or Doubles
    Pause Options - Rules: View The Rule Selections for the current match
                    Controls: Explanations Of The Controller Functions
                    Camera Options: Choose from 3 Different Cameras
                    Save: Choose to save game or to end the game
                    Tournament Board: Look at the tourney draw
                    Start Over: If you lose a match, this lets you retry
    The first (and easiest) tournament is the Mushroom Cup. This tourney is
    played on Hard Courts (see the Court Surfaces section for more) and is
    very easy to win. An absolute beginner may struggle with the final, but
    the Mushroom Cup is basically a speed bump on the Autobahn :)
    The second tournament is the Flower Cup. This tournament is played on
    clay, which is much harder to deal with than the Hard Courts. The matches
    here are a bit harder, and you can get knocked off if you are not careful.
     Still, the Flower Cup should not prove to be too much of a challenge.
    The final tournament is the Star Cup. The first time you play this
    tournament, you will face Donkey Kong Jr. in the finals. This tournament
    is played on grass (see Court Surfaces) and is quite difficult. Each match
    is a challenge, and games normally go to a deuce point or two. Still, if
    you are on your game, you can win at this tournament. Your reward: secret
    characters and an extremely long credit sequence featuring your character
    giving your final opponent an arse-kicking.
    Note: If you are selecting a doubles tournament, you do not get to choose
    your partner. Instead, you are assigned one by the game. Here's the
    breakdown of assigned partners:
    If You Are...        Your Partner Is...
    Mario                Luigi
    Luigi                Daisy
    Peach                Mario
    Baby Mario           Donkey Kong
    Yoshi                Baby Mario
    Donkey Kong          Toad
    Paratroopa           Bowser
    Wario                Waluigi
    Waluigi              Paratroopa
    Daisy                Birdo
    Toad                 Peach
    Birdo                Yoshi
    Bowser               Boo
    Boo                  Wario
    Note: Winning the tournament mode with specific people opens up various
    courts for use in Exhibition modes. See the Codes section for more on
    these qualifiers.
                       Ring Shot
    This mode is quite simple. You hit balls through rings. What
    could be so hard about that? Well, it isn't as easy as it looks. In
    addition to hitting the balls through the massive amount of rings that
    pop up on the screen, you must also attempt to keep the ball in play as
    well as win the point (depending on the mode of play.) Also, the massive
    amount of options that are available will make your head spin. I will
    get to them later.
    Options Available - Number Of Players: 1-4
                        Type Of Game: Singles Or Doubles
                        Relationship: Team or Battle Royale (Doubles only)
                        Game Goal (Singles): Game, Time, Ball, or Points
                        Game Goal (Doubles): 50, 100, or 200 rings
                        Flags (Singles): Choice Of Flags
                        Doubles Pairings: Choice of Doubles Pairings
                        CPU Controlled Players: Choose CPU players
                        Computer Difficulty: Easy, Normal, Hard, or Intense
                        Court Selection: Hard, Clay, Grass, Compos, or Special
    Pause Options - Start Over: Restart the current Ring Shot Match
                    Flag Selection: Return To Flag Selection screen (singles)
                    Back To Main Menu: Return to the Main Menu
                    End Game: Return to the Main Menu (doubles)
                    Rules: View the rules for the match
                    Controls: View description of the controller functions
    These following modes are for 1 Player Only:
    Game Mode: You must clear the specified amount of rings before the
    game ends. However, this is during an actual match, and you must also
    win the match. This can prove quite tricky when you play on the higher
    Time Mode: In this mode, you must clear out the specified amount of
    rings before time runs out. The later parts of this game are quite
    tricky, as you must clear out 300 rings in about 2 and a half minutes.
    This is not an easy task, to say the least!
    Balls Mode: In this mode, you must clear out the specified amount of
    rings in 5 balls. The later levels (which have you clearing 200 rings)
    can be quite tricky.
    Points Mode: In this mode, you must score a specified amount of points
    before time runs out. There are five different size rings with different
    point values. Smaller rings bring in a larger amount of points.
    Note: In Ball, Time, and Point Modes, the rings cleared by your opponent
    will count towards the point score as well.
    Note: In singles, the is the flag modes where you select the difficulty.
    After you clear through all the ones available, a new one will appear on
    the right. In this flag, you set records (i.e. How many rings or points
    in 3 minutes). This mode turns the singles modes into a competition to
    see who is the best at Ring Mode.
    These are the multiplayer modes:
    Team Mode: In this mode, there are two different doubles teams. When
    a team wins a point, they get credit for the amount of rings they shot
    through during that point.
    Battle Royale Mode: In this mode, there are also two doubles teams.
    However, it is every man/woman for themselves. When a player wins a
    point (whoever hit the winner or touched the ball last on an error),
    they get credit for the rings they shot through during that point.
    Last Word On Ring Shot: This mode is, by far, the best alternative
    to an Exhibition when dealing with multiplayer. However, when you go
    solo, it can get kind of boring. However, with the addition of the
    last flag, I now find myself trying to top my previous scores.
                       Bowser Stage
    This mode puts all participants on the Bowser court. Bowser's court,
    however, is different from all. For starters, this court tilts and
    rotates, making getting to even the most routine shots a difficult
    chore. Also, in a nod to the Mario Kart series, you can hit your ball
    through green boxes by the net and collect various weapons.
    Options Available - Number Of Players: 1-4
                        Type Of Game: Singles or Doubles
                        Match Length: 1, 3, or 5 sets of 2 or 6 games each
                        Doubles Pairings: Choice Of Doubles Pairings
                        CPU Characters: Select CPU Characters
                        Computer Difficulty: Easy, Normal, Hard, or Intense
    Pause Options - Rules: View the rules selected for the match
                    Controls: View a description of the controls
                    Camera Options: Select the camera angle
                    Save: Save game as well as end game
    Note: In the Bowser Stage, you have the ability to collect an item that
    can be used to benefit you and hurt the other players. You collect an
    item by hitting the ball through the translucent boxes situated over
    the net. Then, hit the R button. You will then cycle between the
    following six items. Hit R again to deploy them.
    Weapons Available In Bowser Mode:
    Banana : Causes the opponent to slip if they step on it
    Green Shell: Shoots 3 shells out in different directions. If one of
    the shells hit your opponent, they will be temporarily unable to
    Lightning: Temporary lowers the abilities of all other players.
    Mushroom: This will speed up your player for a short duration
    Red Shell: This shell will home in on an opposing player. When it
    hits the opposing player, it will render he/she unable to move for
    a short amount of time.
    Star: This item will make your character more powerful for the duration
    of the power-up.
                       Piranha Challenge
    This mode is the Mario world equivalent of a ball machine mode. In this
    mode, your goal is to return all 50 of the balls hocked at you by three
    piranha plants situated on the opposing baseline. However, there will
    also be an opponent who will hit your shots back at you, making a score
    of 100% extremely hard to achieve.
    Options Available - Number Of Players: 1 Only
                        Court Selection: Hard, Clay, Grass, Comp, or Special
    Pause Options - Balls Hit: Shows balls hit over balls delivered
                    Back To Main Menu: Return To Main Menu
                    Start Over: Start over the session
                    Rules; Gives an explanation of the rules
                    Controls: Gives an explanation of the controls
    Note: The reward for getting a perfect score (50/50) is the Piranha
    Court. For more of these rewards, check out the Codes Section. The
    Piranha Court is available ONLY for the Piranha Challenge.
    Section Four: Court Selection
    In Mario Tennis, there are four different types of courts. However, as
    you begin winning tournaments, you will notice different courts open
    up as selectable. Here is a list of all available courts in the game as
    well as a description of the courts:
    Hard Court: This type of court is your common asphalt court that you
    see in public parks. Of all the normal courts available in the game,
    it is by far the most neutral. You don't need to alter your game plan
    much, compared to the changes it faces on other surfaces.
    Ball Speed: Normal
    Bounce: Strong
    Clay Court: This type of court is a red clay court, similar to those
    popular throughout Europe. This type of court plays extremely slow,
    and extremely favors those playing a baseline game. Those that rush
    the net are prone to be passed consistently, because the slow surface
    allows for baseliners to stay back and charge up a winner.
    Ball Speed: Slow
    Bounce: Weak
    Grass Court: The grass court, typical of those you would find at
    Wimbledon, play extremely fast and don't bounce much. These courts
    heavily favor the net rusher. Those that are faster characters can line
    up a deep shot and come in behind it, rendering those sticking by the
    baseline sitting ducks.
    Ball Speed: Fast
    Bounce: Weak
    Composition Court: This is a court closely resembling an indoor court.
    It plays fast and also slightly favors the net rusher. However, a good
    baseline player can thrive on this type of court.
    Ball Speed: Fastest
    Bounce: Normal
    Note: Throughout the game, you can earn other character-themed courts.
    You earn them by winning specific tournaments with specific characters.
    For more on this, check out the Codes Section. These courts are:
                       Piranha Court
    A special court for the Piranha Challenge only. I do
    not know of a way to unlock this court legally so it can be used in
    exhibition modes. It has 50 tennis balls laid out (just like the
    finishing menu where the game displays the amount of balls you
    successfully hit in the round) in the background with a Piranha Plant
    and the word "Perfect" in the foreground. This court does not have any
    line judges (the Koopas with the flags or the exploding Bom-ombs).
    Strategy: This court is as neutral as it gets. Literally. Any strategy
    can thrive on this type of court.
    Ball Speed: Normal
    Bounce: Normal
                       Mario Brothers Court
    Nintendo describes this court as "Mario and Luigi's Mario Brothers
    Court." This wonderful court is set up in Rainbow Land. The bonus area
    in Super Mario 64 in which you picked up the Flying Cap In the
    background. The famous theme to the original Super Mario Brothers for
    the NES is playing, sped up by a modern dance beat. The court itself
    features a portrait of Mario and Luigi holding a tennis racket bordered
    by stars. The line judges are red and black Bom-ombs.
    Strategy: This court favors those who have a good net game. This court
    hits EXACTLY like a grass court. Hitting low slice approach shots and
    following them up with a volley is the key to win on this type of court.
    Ball Speed: Fast
    Bounce: Weak
                       Baby Mario & Yoshi Court
    The private court of longtime pals Baby Mario & Yoshi. This court is set
    up in the plush 2-D surrounding of Yoshi's Island, made famous from
    Yoshi's Story for N64 and Yoshi's Island 1 & 2 for the SNES. The theme
    from Yoshi's Story plays throughout the matches, although it is sped up
    by a dance rhythm. The court surface features a picture of Baby Mario
    and Yoshi hitting tennis balls while standing on top of one of Yoshi's
    eggs. The line judges are Koopas.
    Strategy: This court is like a grass court, but even more extreme. The
    balls bounce weaker, and the speed of the ball is faster. On these
    courts, a great net game is what will propel you to a victory. For a
    baseline player, staying back and hitting groundstroke winners will be
    extremely difficult.
    Ball Speed: Fastest
    Bounce: Weakest
                       Wario & Waluigi Court
    This court is situated in a scene familiar to a Warioland game. The
    theme from Warioland plays during matches, albeit sped up with the dance
    beat (all classic themes have a dance beat). This theme is also
    accentuated by an organ that plays in the background. The court surface
    has Wario and Waluigi hitting tennis balls while standing on a wall of
    bricks. The line judges are black and red Bom-ombs.
    Strategy: This court is a baseline players' dream come true. There is
    next to no speed on the court, which gives an accomplished baseline
    player time to set up his/her shots. The ball also bounces very high,
    which makes a strong topspin shot extremely effective, especially on
    shorter players (Toad, Baby Mario). A netrusher, unless extremely good,
    will have a day of problems at this court.
    Ball Speed: Slow
    Bounce: Strongest
                       Donkey Kong Court
    This place is Donkey Kong's own personal court set deep in the jungle.
    The surroundings are similar to those in the Donkey Kong Country series,
    albeit in a flatter 2-D mode (as opposed to that games' rich ACM
    environments). The theme plays from DKC, although it is sped up to the
    all-familiar dance theme. The actual court surface features bananas
    lining the doubles alleys, with a yellow portrait of Donkey Kong
    smashing a tennis ball over some branches. The line judges at this
    court are the flag-brandishing Koopas.
    Strategy: The settings on this court represent Donkey Kong's game: fast
    and strong. Due to this, a player playing DK's game would be of the most
    benefit. A baseline will feel right at home here, although the ball
    comes in a little bit fast. However, with the excessive spin, the ball
    will most likely sit up, making itself an easy target for any decent
    baseline player. A net player will feel the heat here, as the high
    bouncing balls create hard-to-get topspin lobs.
    Ball Speed: Fast
    Bounce: Strongest
                       Mario & Luigi Castle Court
    This is Mario & Luigi's private court at Peach's castle. This expansive
    court is situated on the roof of Peach's castle from Super Mario 64,
    complete with lush background. As it was in the other Mario-themed
    court, the hyped-up theme to Super Mario Bros. for the NES plays in the
    background. The court itself features Mario and Luigi holding hands and
    jumping (it looks extremely close to the opening theme for the Mary
    Tyler Moore show) while framed in black and brown. The Bom-ombs have
    line judging duty for matches on this court.
    Strategy: This court will slightly favor a net rusher. The ball comes in
    hard but doesn't bounce much, which favors those rushing the net. A
    baseliner may have a long day here if they are not careful.
    Ball Speed: Fast
    Bounce: Normal
                       Yoshi & Birdo Court (thanks to NTAI53086@aol.com)
    This is the private court of good friends Yoshi and Birdo. It is placed
    on the beaches of Yoshi's Hideaway, from Super Mario RPG for the SNES.
    It plays the Yoshi theme in the background. The court itself features
    a picture of Yoshi and Birdo hitting tennis balls while framed in pink
    bows. The line judges are Bob-ombs, and the court is surrounded by sand
    and palm trees.
    Strategy: This court favors a baseline player. The ball travels very
    slow, and it also bounces high. Plenty of time for a baseliner to wind
    up on a ball. In order to succeed, a net rusher is going to have to keep
    the ball very low.
    Ball Speed: Slow
    Bounce: Strong
    Section Five: Character Descriptions
    In Mario Tennis, there are 16 characters total (14 to start off with,
    and two characters to earn). In this section, I will give a complete
    description of each character, a summary of their respective strengths
    and weaknesses, and then my overall feeling on the abilities of the
    character. Mind you, my opinions of the characters are just that: my
    opinion. What may be a great character for you may be impossible for me
    to get decent results out of, and vice versa. So keep that in mind
    before you flame me with messages like: "No, dude, Baby Mario sucks!
    Waluigi is where it's at, man!" Although these types of messages seem
    ridiculous, I've learned from experience (writing the NHL '99 FAQ) that
    some people really take this a bit seriously. Now, onto the character
    Note: When I refer to the Sweet Spot, I am referring to the serve. You
    accomplish a "Nice" serve by holding back on the controller stick, and
    pushing forwards as you hit the ball at this point.
    Description: Mario is Nintendo's biggest mascot. He has appeared in
    a multitude of games. Some have been revered as innovative (Super Mario
    Brothers, Super Mario World, Super Mario 64) while others have been
    ignored, thankfully (Mario Is Missing). Still, his long lineage as
    Shigeru Miyamoto's pet project has given Mario a name synonymous with
    the game industry. And, wouldn't you know it, he can play a mean game
    of tennis too!
    Nintendo's Line: His fancy footwork lets him cover the court easily.
    Strengths: Mario is a very good all-around player. He also carries with
    him a decent net game which can be utilized if needed.
    Weaknesses: Despite what Nintendo may say, Mario has an extreme lack
    of footwork. He is often caught off-balance if you need to change
    directions, which is not fun to deal with. Also, his baseline game
    is quite lacking.
    Basic Strategy: Try to rush the net whenever you safely can. Other than
    that, just keep the ball in play and attempt to play a counter-puncher
    style of game.
    Serving Point: Just before the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: As a player, Mario leaves a lot to be desired. The fact that
    Mario is easily caught wrong-footed can be a nightmare, considering the
    loose controls that Mario Tennis enjoys. Also, his lack of a true weapon
    makes playing with him less about strategy and more about playing the
    actual point. Take that as you may.
    My Grade: C+
    Description: Luigi is the much ignored brother of Mario. Although he has
    starred in a few games, Mario's shadow hangs ominously over Luigi. One
    thing though: Luigi does play a better game of tennis than Mario!
    Nintendo's Line: His height lets him hit even the balls that look like
    they're out of reach.
    Strengths: The fact that Luigi has such a tremendous reach allows for
    him to excel at netplay.
    Weaknesses: However, Luigi's footwork is quite poor. Also, Luigi seems
    to have a problem aiming his shots. The result: Luigi can be responsible
    for many unforced errors if the human player isn't careful.
    Basic Strategy: Just like Mario, Luigi is an all-around player. However,
    as stated before, his groundstrokes are erratic. The best thing to do is
    to use the heavy slice to force the other guy wide, and then to close up
    on the net.
    Service Point: Just before the peak of the serve.
    My Verdict: Luigi is a better player than Mario, but not by much. In the
    end, it was Luigi's superior reach that makes him the better player.
    Also, by utilizing his superior stretching skills, Luigi can make a good
    net player.
    My Grade: B
    Description: Peach is the damsel in distress in almost every Mario game.
    Although she has undergone numerous name changes, she is still pretty
    much the same as she ever was. In Mario Tennis, she fields a tennis
    racket and hopes to do well in the ladies' draw. However, when it even
    comes to female players, Peach isn't the best.
    Nintendo's Line: Peach can blast the ball right down the line.
    Strengths: Peach is extremely accurate when placing her shots. She can
    do almost anything she wants with her shots. Also, her footwork is quite
    speedy for a player who is not classified as a "Speedy" player.
    Weaknesses: Peach is a player who cannot hit the ball very hard. Due to
    this, it is very hard for her to play the baseline, as you would expect
    a person with placement like her to play. But, it still can be done.
    Basic Strategy: Although she has a lack of velocity, Peach still is a
    true baseliner. To compensate, she must use shots that prevent an
    opponent from hitting hard at Peach and controlling the point. So, Peach
    must use her strong top spin shot in order to avoid playing defensively.
    Also, you can use Peach's effective hard slice shot to force your
    opponent out wide and to force the short ball.
    Service Point: Slightly before the peak of the service.
    My Verdict: Peach is a good player. However, her lack of velocity allows
    her to be easily overpowered. Peach may be able to put the ball
    anywhere, but she can't put much on it.
    My Grade: C+
    Description: Waluigi is the latest addition to the happy Mario family.
    Quite simply, Luigi needed an evil brother, such as Mario has in Wario.
    So, Waluigi was created. Good thing for Waluigi: They've made him a
    superior tennis player to his green-clad brethren.
    Nintendo's Line: His long arms and legs let him return any type of shot.
    Strengths: Waluigi has the best reach in the game. He is tall, and his
    arms and legs are extremely long. Due to this reach, Waluigi is the best
    at playing the net in the game. You won't find any better.
    Weaknesses: Because of his large size, Waluigi is a slow player. He
    cannot hit the ball hard, or run very fast.
    Basic Strategy: Waluigi should rush the net at all times. During each
    point, the player must look for a way to get him into the net. This can
    be accomplished by using the strong topspin shot as an approach shot.
    If done correctly, the opponent will most likely hit the same shot as
    his/her return. By then, Waluigi should be at the net, and this shot
    should be easy fodder for a good smash shot.
    Service Point: Hit the ball as it hits the peak.
    My Verdict: Waluigi is the best net player in the game. However, the
    rest of his game is quite weak. Still, by utilizing him as a net player,
    Waluigi is among the best in the game.
    My Grade: B+
    Description: Wario is the evil twin brother of Mario. Wario, however, is
    not a slouch when it comes to games. In addition to being a punching
    bag for Mario, Wario has also appeared in his own games for the SNES and
    the Game Boy. Wario is also more powerful than his brother Mario, and
    his explosive serve shows just that.
    Nintendo's Line: Watch out for his forceful baseline stroke.
    Strengths: Wario is one of the most powerful players in the game. He
    also is somewhat good at putting the ball where he wants. With this in
    mind, Wario has one of the best baseline games in Mario Tennis
    Weaknesses: Wario is also one of the slowest players in the game. Also,
    his netplay isn't up to snuff.
    Basic Strategy: Wario is the quintessential baseline player. He can aim
    the ball. He can hit for power. With this combo, Wario is easily able to
    force the short balls, which are then put away for winners. Remember to
    use strong slice shots to keep your opponents running, as well as heavy
    top spin to keep them pinned back behind their baseline. You may even
    be able to throw in the occasional drop shot winner (on clay).
    Service Point: Wario's service point is about halfway between the start
    of the toss and the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Wario is one of the best baseliners in the game. However,
    a smart opponent can easily take advantage of Wario's lack of footwork.
    My Grade: B+
    Description: Mario has Princess Toadstool, or Peach (or whatever you'd
    like to call her this month). So, quite simply, Luigi needed a female
    companion. And so, on the 8th day, Daisy was created. Although not
    as good as her man Luigi, Daisy is a player that does pack a formidable
    punch. Her netplay is some of the best in the game.
    Nintendo's Line: She rarely misses when playing close to the net.
    Strengths: Daisy is the best net player in the game. She can get to the
    net quickly, and her combination of that speed and her accuracy makes
    her the best net rusher in the game.
    Weaknesses: Her lack of power allows for Daisy to be easily overpowered.
    Basic Strategy: The important thing for Daisy to do during her points is
    to keep them short. She must get to the net quickly and hit a winner on
    her second or third shot at the net. The longer a point goes, the more
    likely she is to get dominated.
    Service Point: Just after the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Daisy is the most effective net rusher in the game. Although
    she doesn't have the reach of Waluigi, but she is overall better at
    hitting volleys than him. However, she also has a lack of reach and
    power. So, when you play as Daisy, you must attempt to end the points as
    soon as you can.
    My Grade: B
    Description: Toad is the keeper of Peach's castle. In addition to this
    duty, he occasionally makes an appearance in games. He has appeared in
    Mario Kart (as one of the best drivers, I might add) as well as Mario
    Golf. For Mario Tennis, Toad is equipped with his speed (after all,
    mushrooms DO make you go faster in this game) and little else.
    Nintendo's Line: His speed gives him more time to plan his shots.
    Strengths: Toad is one of the fastest players in the game. Toad is also
    able to place the ball very well.
    Weaknesses: Like many players gifted with speed, Toad has very little
    power. Also, Toad is an extremely small athlete. Therefore, Toad also
    has very little reach.
    Basic Strategy: Toad, in order to be effective, is going to have to play
    a counter-punching style. Basically, you put the ball back in the court
    and try to stay alive in the point. Eventually, using high top spin
    shots, you are going to get a short ball (a shot without any trails on
    it). Then, and only then, can you rush the net and try to bring an end
    to the point. Yes, this style of tennis is boring, but it is also
    effective, especially for a player like Toad that has no real weapons.
    Service Point: A little past halfway between the start of the toss and
    the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: With so many players in this game with so many weapons,
    there is no need to use a counter-puncher like Toad. Granted, Toad is a
    great counter-puncher. But, there are much better players that you can
    My Grade: C
                       Baby Mario
    Description: Before Mario grew up to fight oversized turtles and
    donkeys, Mario was a little baby. The extra weight and height must
    seriously have slowed down Mario: Baby Mario is MUCH quicker than his
    adult counterpart. However, his lack of muscle accounts for his lack of
    Nintendo's Line: His small size lets him zip all over the court.
    Strengths: Baby Mario is another short fast guy. He can also generate
    some power behind his shots.
    Weakness: His lack of size cuts down on Baby Mario's reach. Also, Baby
    Mario is known to hit the ball erratically.
    Basic Strategy: Although nearly identical to Toad, Baby Mario is a much
    better player. The reason: his power. By having a moderate amount of
    power, Baby Mario can play the net IF he ends points early. The longer
    a point goes, the less of a chance that Baby Mario has of winning the
    Service Point: Halfway between the toss and the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Baby Mario is a good player. Despite the fact that he has
    limited reach, Baby Mario can still put a volley away. Also, his speed
    allows him to play counter-punch, which can be a giant pain in the rear
    end when playing against human players.
    My Grade: B+
    Description: Yoshi is the dinosaur keeper of Mario and Baby Mario. Aided
    by the speed learned in games such as Yoshi's Story and Yoshi's Island 1
    for the SNES, Yoshi is one of the quickest characters in the game. His
    lack of power can easily be overcome by his massive speed and his
    accurate placement of shots.
    Nintendo's Line: Not only is he fast, but he's pretty accurate too.
    Strengths: Yoshi is one of the speedier players in the game. Of all the
    speedy players, he is also the most powerful. He can slug it out with
    any all-around or technique player.
    Weaknesses: Yoshi seems to have a problem aiming. Once in awhile, Yoshi
    will miss wide.
    Basic Strategy: Yoshi is a good all-around player blessed with amazing
    speed and a little bit of power. The best thing to do is to see what
    your opponent is doing, and then adapt to it while taking the advantage.
    Yoshi is truly one of the most versatile players in the game.
    Service Point: Hit the ball just before the peak.
    My Verdict: Yoshi is an extraordinary player. A speedy guy with some
    power. However, due to his lack of accuracy, he is more suited for an
    all-around strategy. He can rush the net, play baseline, and even
    counter-punch. However, he doesn't really excel at any of those three
    My Grade: B+
    Description: Birdo is the female companion of Yoshi. This proves, one
    and for all, that Yoshi IS actually a male. Still, Birdo does pack a
    wallop. With her superior speed, Birdo can run down any ball on the
    court. Yoshi finally has himself a suitable partner
    Nintendo's Line: Her speed lets her move around the court with ease.
    Strengths: Birdo is extremely fast, and she can place the ball well.
    Weaknesses: Birdo does not hit for power. Because of this, she can easily
    be dominated in the course of a point.
    Basic Strategy: Having Birdo rush the net is a must. Do NOT rush the net
    at first. Instead, use slice shots until you can get a short ball. Use
    this as an approach shot, and then go to the net. By doing this, you can
    take control of a point, which is hard for Birdo to do.
    Service Point: Just after halfway between the toss point and the peak.
    My Verdict: Birdo is a good player, but not as good as Yoshi. Because
    of her lack of power, it is hard for her to take control. In Mario
    Tennis, it pretty becomes a game of power over placement. Birdo can be
    great in the hands of a player who can master her skills.
    My Grade: B+
                       Donkey Kong
    Description: Donkey Kong is the oldest franchise in the Nintendo arse-
    nal. Having been around since 1981, Donkey Kong underwent a drastic
    facelift when Rare got a hold of him. The way you see him now is how
    the Stamper brothers envisioned him. Being a gorilla, DK is extremely
    strong, but slow.
    Nintendo's Line: He can return even high balls with incredible force.
    Strengths: Donkey Kong is one of the most powerful players in the game.
    I have personally been able to hit a serve as DK at 108 mph. Also, DK
    is somewhat accurate with his shots.
    Weaknesses: DK is also an extremely slow player. He cannot move around
    extremely well. Also, his excess power can be tough to control at first,
    making DK a hard player for beginners to master.
    Basic Strategy: Donkey Kong is the quintessential baseline player. Hits
    for power, but can place the ball. And he isn't too bad at using spin.
    Force the short balls with slams from the baseline as well as slices,
    and then put the ball away.
    Service Point: Hit the serve a little bit before the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Donkey Kong is an extremely talented baseline player. Though
    strapped on speed, DK can hit the ball where he wants as hard as he
    wants to. He is an extremely formidable opponent that should not be
    taken lightly.
    My Grade: A
    Description: Bowser has been the perennial punching bag for Mario and
    Co. for about 15 years now. Although his attempts to kidnap the Princess
    have always miserably failed, he still is quite talented at the sports
    portion of the Mario Bros. competitions. So, it comes as no surprise
    that Bowser is one of the top players in the game.
    Nintendo's Line: His impressive serve may be too strong to handle.
    Strengths: Bowser is the second most powerful player in the game (next
    to DK Jr.) and his serve is extremely difficult to return. In fact, he
    is one of the few players that, from standing next to the doubles alley,
    hit a wide smash serve.
    Weaknesses: Bowser is also extremely slow. His footwork is extremely
    poor, to the point where you actually will slide when you stop to hit a
    shot. Also, due to his massive power, Bowser also cannot aim the ball
    extremely well.
    Basic Strategy: Bowser's best bet is to stick back at the baseline and
    use his power to force short balls. Although this technique is extremely
    limited, it is also extremely effective. Bowser is not one of the best
    baseliners on talent, but he surely gets the job done. A great choice
    for a beginning player.
    Service Point: At the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Winning with Bowser is like taking candy from a baby,
    especially when playing against a guy like Baby Mario or Toad. His power
    is extremely hard to deal with, but a lot of fun when you are in control
    of it.
    My Grade: B+
    Description: Paratroopa has long been known as "the flying turtle-thing"
    in the Mario games for years. Luckily, this is his big break: a new role
    as a tennis player. His technique style makes him one of the most
    accurate players in the game. Also, his feathers disguise shots before
    they are hit.
    Nintendo's Line: With his ability to react quickly to any type of shot,
    he can return the ball anywhere with ease.
    Strengths: Paratroopa can put the ball anywhere he wants, and put a lot
    of spin on the ball. Also, his flapping feathers disguise shots until
    they are hit, cutting down on the reaction time of a human opponent.
    Weaknesses: Paratroopa, like all his flying brethren, cannot hit for
    power. Also, when he hits the ball, he will actually recoil, or fly off
    in the opposite direction when he hits it. This makes controlling
    Paratroopa, as well as directing his shots, extremely difficult.
    Basic Strategy: Once again, we have another player who is ideally
    situated at the baseline, but he can also rush the net somewhat.
    Although he can't hit for power, he can certainly hit for placement. Use
    Troopa's amazing spin and placement to put the ball where you want, and then
    rush the net to put away a short ball/lob.
    Service Point: At the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Paratroopa is another player who is like an all-around, but
    with an actual weapon or two. He can place the ball where he wants, and
    even give it enough spin to make the shot even harder to run down. Also,
    Paratroopa can run somewhat, making him quite a force to be dealt with.
    My Grade: B+
    Description: For years, Boo and his compatriots have haunted houses in
    the Mario games with success. However, Boo soon grew tired of houses and
    wished to be given a more prominent role in a game. In Mario Tennis, Boo
    is the uncontested master of spin. Nobody else can steer their shots in
    midair in the fashion that Boo can. However, his power leaves something
    to be desired.
    Nintendo's Line: He uses his spin shots to manipulate the ball however
    he likes.
    Strengths: Boo is the master of putting spin on the ball. He can hit a slice
    serve that starts out straight at the other guy, and end up a few feet away
    from him. Utilizing his spins, you can make any character look quite foolish.
    Weaknesses: Boo is extremely lacking when it comes to speed or velocity.
    Surprisingly, Boo cannot move too well. Also, he can't put much pace on the
    ball, making him solely dependent on his spins to hit winners.
    Basic Strategy: The best thing to do with Boo is to stay at the baseline. Boo
    can't charge the net (unless it's done off of a lob coming from one of his
    massive slice serves) or really put pace on his shots. Therefore, it is
    necessary to use spin to draw short balls, and then put them away accordingly.
    Service Point: A little bit before the peak of the toss.
    My Verdict: Despite his extreme placement and ability to put spin on the ball,
    Boo is not a very good tennis player. His lack of movement allows for him to be
    dominated. His lack of velocity allows for his shots to be run down by most
    My Grade: C+
    Note: In this game, there are two hidden characters which are not
    available at first. They must be earned. Check the codes section for
    more information on unlocking these secret characters.
                       Donkey Kong Jr.
    Description: Donkey Kong Junior is the son of Donkey Kong, one of the
    best players in the game. I guess these genes must have passed on or
    something: DK Jr. is better than his dad. He hits with the same amount
    of power as a DK or Bowser, but he also hits with tremendous accuracy.
    Nintendo's Line: You can use this character, but how?
    Strengths: DK Jr. is the most powerful player in the game. I have been
    able to hit his serve at an astounding 114 mph. He can also put the ball
    wherever he wants.
    Weaknesses: DK Jr. doesn't really have any weaknesses. His footwork is
    somewhat average, but it is great compared to other power players.
    Basic Strategy: DK Jr. IS the best baseline player in the game. He can
    take control of points even against other power baseline players, like
    Wario or Bowser. Using flat shots to make opponents run and top spin to
    pin them back, other players should not be a challenge for DK Jr.
    Service Point: Hit the ball just as it hits its peak.
    My Verdict: This is my favorite player in the game. And he's earned it.
    DK Jr. is capable of doing almost anything you want him to do. You could
    even rush the net with him, although I wouldn't recommend it.
    My Grade: A
                       Shy Guy
    Description: Shy Guy is one of the familiar bad guys from Mario games
    past. However, just like his brethren Boo and Paratroopa, Shy Guy has
    a chance at videogame success with his appearance as a secret character
    in Mario Tennis. Although not powerful, Shy Guy is the most accurate
    player in the game when it comes to groundstrokes.
    Nintendo's Line: You can use this character, but how?
    Strengths: Shy Guy can put the ball wherever he wants. Also, he hits for
    a lot of spin. He can put amazing angles on the serves (although not as
    drastic as Boo's serves).
    Weaknesses: Shy Guy can't really put much velocity on his shots. Also,
    his spin may be hard to aim for a beginning player.
    Basic Strategy: Shy Guy, with his amazing spins and aims, is a good
    baseliner. Although not blessed with an extraordinary amount of power,
    he can still force many short balls using his strong slice and top spin
    shots. He still does have ample power to put away a short ball with a
    smash, though.
    Service Point: A little bit before the peak of the serve
    My Verdict: Shy Guy suffers from the Jigglypuff complex. Shy Guy can
    potentially be the best player in the game, but his skills are hard
    to exploit. However, with some practice, you'll be able to defeat
    your Bowser-wielding friends.
    My Grade: A+
    This FAQ will be finished when I get some free time :)
    Victor Broccoli
    Copyright 2000
    Mario Tennis is a trademark of the Nintendo Corporation. All other
    trademarks and copyrights referred to are the property of their owners.
    Please contact for redistribution information. I don't mind if someone
    wants to repost this somewhere, but please have the common courtesy to
    ask. And, also, please include some sort of personal touch to it, so
    that I know that you've actually read this damned thing.

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