Microsoft is bringing its own brand of tennis to Xbox. Developed by Power and Magic Developments, Top Spin will be an Xbox exclusive and Xbox Live enabled tennis title offering the best of simulation and arcade worlds currently dominated by Virtua Tennis (the sequel to which is due out on PS2 next month, we're guessing Microsoft have also spotted).
Top Spin will feature sixteen of the world's best tennis players, but gamers can also create their own tennis personalities. By the sound of it, you can set your player to behave like a true gent or lady, or like a whinging prima donna, arguing every line call and slamming his or her paddle to the floor in disgust. And Microsoft claims that Top Spin encourages players to take risk by fighting hard and searching for the Zone, "where every forehand, backhand and overhead slam overpowers the individual on the other side of the net." Sounds a bit like Slam Tennis.
The Xbox Live functionality is an obvious boon over its rivals. Top Spin will feature the obligatory worldwide ladders and plenty of competition for the top spot. However, it'll take more than arcade gimmicks and online play to usurp Virtua Tennis - we await P&M's attempt with great interest.