TopSpin 2K25 Review: Fault or Smash?


TopSpin Tennis is back after a 13-year break. Is TopSpin 2K25 a smash or a fault?

For what it's worth, I'm very limited in my knowledge of tennis. I'm a casual fan at best - but I was excited to give TopSpin 2K25 a try.

The first thing I did was jump into the TopSpin Academy - and it might just be the best tutorial I've ever played in any sports game.

There's about an hour of tutorial challenges to complete, which break down the controls and the best strategies to use in games. It was put together excellently, with each lesson building upon the last. By the time I was done I felt like a pro.

Well... maybe not quite. But you get the idea.

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Which brings me to the gameplay itself. It's crisp and responsive, albeit a bit tough to master. Everything comes down to timing and accuracy, which means you're holding down a button and then releasing in the green zone of the meter.

It's relatively standard sports game stuff, but the timing threw me off for a bit. But once I got my legs underneath me I was delivering returns down the line with precision. It felt great.

My time with TopSpin 2K25's MyCareer was a bit short, but I never felt the need to spend real money on VC - which is definitely a good thing.

There's a lot you can do, including mini-games and challenges, but obviously you're in it for the actual tournaments.

There's something fun about seeing your player hold up a trophy - but you need to manage your energy levels. Because if they get too low, you're going to get an injury.

As you continue to play, you'll be able to upgrade your player by hitting certain objectives based on play style. Again, I think it's great that I never really felt any pressure to buy VC to accelerate the process.

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Overall, I've had fun playing MyCareer. I don't think it's perfect - sometimes it's tough to find the motivation to grind out challenges - but I've enjoyed it more than most MyCareer experiences.

I think TopSpin 2K25 is a game that fans - especially those who have been anxiously awaiting a sequel since the early 2010's - will enjoy quite a bit. And most of that boils down to just how clean, crisp and responsive the gameplay is.

Once you figure out the controls, it's a lot of fun to jump in and play matches against the computer - and it's even more fun to play against your friends.

However, we'd be remiss to ignore the almost painfully small roster size. Currently the game features 25 players - with more coming via DLC later on. The DLC model is okay by me, but only having two dozen pros to choose from at launch is a bit disappointing.

Final Thoughts

TopSpin 2K25 is a fun, complex tennis game with a limited roster but tight controls. I believe all tennis fans will enjoy it as the sound design, player models and lighting all provide an excellent gameplay experience.

For novice fans, no worries, because the tutorial mode will have you up to speed in no time. I was very nervous that I'd have to grind out practice mode just to be passable at the game, but it was a lot of fun to learn and improve with each lesson.

MyCareer, while tedious at times, is a pretty pleasant experience that gives you a lot of freedom. You can play as much as you want, in whatever style you want.

Overall, if we're doing the whole 'out of 10' thing, I'd give TopSpin 2K25 a very respectable 7/10. This seems like a great way to reestablish a franchise that's been gone for more than a decade.