World Cup Table Tennis HD brings realistic table tennis to the iPad

Jun 19, 2011
Games

Skyworks’ World Cup Table Tennis HD is not a perfect game, and many will find its controls frustrating and difficult to master. However, if you are a big table tennis fan, and are willing to spend the extra $1.99 to unlock the full game, there is much to enjoy in this app. Personally, I love […]

Skyworks’ World Cup Table Tennis HD is not a perfect game, and many will find its controls frustrating and difficult to master. However, if you are a big table tennis fan, and are willing to spend the extra $1.99 to unlock the full game, there is much to enjoy in this app.

Personally, I love the game of table tennis, with my favorite paddles tucked away from the elements in my storage closet. That being said, I really wanted to love the app, but at first I didn’t. The first problem I found was the pricing. Unlike Skyworks previous app Arcade Hoops Basketball HD, there is no lite version of World Cup Table Tennis HD. What you get for that initial 99 cents is a simple tournament mode that might quickly bore some players, and frustrate others with controls that are difficult to master.

The problem of controlling the paddle was my second issue. There are currently no other methods offered other than a swiping gesture. I found it frustrating at times that my finger had a tendency to “grip” the iPad surface inconsistently, ruining a shot. I suppose a stylus could fix this problem, but that’s going above and beyond what should be needed for an app like this.

To gain proper perspective for this review, I needed to unlock the full game. I’m glad I did. The amount of content that’s unlocked for an additional $1.99 is substantial.

Arcade mode allows the player to hone the skills necessary to beat the best opponents in other modes. Targets of varying sizes pop up, and need to be struck to score points. I found this to be the best mode for practicing the sometimes difficult swiping motion that is required for all modes in the app.

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Career mode has you facing 20 different nations, facing the USA and Finland opponents first, and ending with the perennial powerhouse China. If you beat a nation in career mode, it will be unlocked and available to be used in the expanded Tournament mode.

Finally, and probably most unique, is the head-to-head mode, which pits you against another human on the same iPad. The viewing angle changes in this mode, and requires a slight adjustment to the swiping gestures. My son and I spent a good deal of time trying to best each other in this mode, and I’m sure many more full versions of the app would be sold if there was an easy way to try head-to-head mode first.

All of these modes add depth to the app, and each of them gives opportunities to unlock achievements in Game Center and special upgraded paddles. All of these items will take a lot of time and effort to unlock, and will give a nice feeling of accomplishment if you succeed. It will be quite a long time before I feel as though I have conquered this title, but I’m having a great deal of fun doing so.

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Wayne Stuckey

After receiving his bachelor's degree in management information systems on planet Earth, Wayne decided to settle down and live there. He writes from the plains of the Midwest.

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