When comparing Mario Tennis Aces vs The Escapists 2, the Slant community recommends The Escapists 2 for most people. In the question“What are the best couch/local co-op games for the Nintendo Switch?” The Escapists 2 is ranked 27th while Mario Tennis Aces is ranked 37th. The most important reason people chose The Escapists 2 is:
There is no right or wrong way to do anything, and it's entirely a risk vs reward scenario for anything you want to try. You are only limited by your creativity in escaping, as each prison has almost endless possibilities and encourages the player to make the best use of their inventory and be creative in handling every situation. Bed sheets can be used to cover cell windows from the prying eyes of guards, desks can be moved to reach out of reach vents, crafted tools can be used for various purposes such as breaking through walls or doors, and shovels can be used to dig holes. You can try to sneak around guards, or opt to hide in vents until they're out of sight. If you're feeling especially brave, you can even attempt to fight the guards and take their keys allowing easier access around the prison.
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Pro Couch co-op with a friend is tons of fun
Playing with a friend right beside you makes the game much more enjoyable. Reacting to each other in real-time is just better than playing against a computer opponent. There's no online co-op -- only multiplayer matches against random people -- meaning you'll have to be in the same room together to play.
Pro Solid roster of Nintendo characters to play as
There's a good variety of characters you can play as. If you're familiar with first party Nintendo games, then you'll see a lot of familiar faces here, like Yoshi, Bowser, Donkey Kong, Luigi, Peach, and of course Mario. Everyone has their own playing styles, with bigger characters like Bowser and Donkey Kong favoring hard-hitting power shots, and others like Yoshi and Mario that have a more balanced approach. You can go with whichever style or character you prefer, practicing with them until you master everything. Getting to see all of these characters together in one game is great for fanservice as well.
Pro You can compete against others online in multiplayer
When you run out of single-player content to enjoy, you can hop online to play against random opponents. The main game mode is the tournaments you can play, which rewards you with special characters if you score well. Online connectivity is good too, especially with the choice to drop out of matches beforehand against players who have bad connections. Playing online is a really great way to test your skills and improve your play, since anyone you get matched with is an actual player who has their own strengths and weaknesses.
Pro Intense and engaging tennis matches
Mario Tennis Aces is incredibly addicting to play. Matches are fast-paced and exciting, with one particular mechanic that keeps things unpredictable. Every time you successfully hit the tennis ball to your opponent's end of the court, you build up a power meter that you can use in a couple of different ways.
When you want to quickly finish off a match, you can slow down time and take aim at a vulnerable corner of your opponent's court for an instant win. Or, if they try to do that to you, you can instead expend some of your power meter to quickly reach the ball and hit it back. Things can get pretty tricky when you both use up your power meters at the same time, leading to some satisfying wins.
Pro Encourages experimentation and creativity
There is no right or wrong way to do anything, and it's entirely a risk vs reward scenario for anything you want to try. You are only limited by your creativity in escaping, as each prison has almost endless possibilities and encourages the player to make the best use of their inventory and be creative in handling every situation.
Bed sheets can be used to cover cell windows from the prying eyes of guards, desks can be moved to reach out of reach vents, crafted tools can be used for various purposes such as breaking through walls or doors, and shovels can be used to dig holes. You can try to sneak around guards, or opt to hide in vents until they're out of sight. If you're feeling especially brave, you can even attempt to fight the guards and take their keys allowing easier access around the prison.
Pro Good balance of game systems make for a rewarding simulation
Taking action in the game uses up your stamina, so you'll still have to make time for things like eating and sleeping if you want to have energy for things like digging through walls, fighting other inmates, or cutting through vents and gates.
Items such as shovels and cutters have limited durability, so they can't be used endlessly. Raw materials can be found around the prison to craft items, or you can buy items from fences using money earned by running fetch quests for other inmates. No matter how you acquire them, crafting materials and finished goods are limited so you'll have to use your items wisely.
Time is an important factor that has to be managed too, with certain activities having to be done at certain times. This limits the amount of time you have to roam the prison, since you have to show up for meal times and roll calls. Free time can be used to craft, roam the prison to determine the guard patterns, or finally put your ultimate escape plan into action.
Juggling each and every one of the various aspects of the game results in a very deep and rewarding simulation experience.
Pro Solid progression of difficulty
The difficulty increases as you progress, with each prison becoming just a little more intricate and more challenging to escape from than the previous. The prisons themselves get more complex with more obstacles to overcome such as tougher guards which results in more ways things can go wrong. The progress feels good and natural, as you're always building on what you learned in previous prisons to escape from the newest one.
Pro Great pixel art style for retro fans
If you enjoy a more retro style, then this game is pure eye candy. Simple but charming, the pixel art is colorful, with the sprites having a nice variety in animations when they're shoveling, searching, running around, fighting, or partaking in any kind of activity that would require movement. The tile sets for the game world are nicely detailed, colored and shaded. You won't get tired of looking at the same tiles over and over due to the sheer amount and variety of the art assets created for the game.
Pro Lots of replayability
No two games will play out alike. Each prison is an open sandbox, so it's definitely not a linear experience with a defined escape blueprint. Prisons can be replayed over and over to beat your previous time, measured in how many in-game days it took you to escape, which leaves plenty of room for trying new things on each successive playthrough.
Pro Co-Op multiplayer mode adds a new depth to gameplay
Working together creates a whole new experience with loads of possibilities. In co-op mode, you play with up to 3 teammates either online or locally as you work towards escaping the prison together. This adds a whole new dynamic to gameplay as working together creates experiences that just aren't possible when playing solo. Someone could distract the guards, while another searches rooms for crafting materials. One player could run around collecting items, while another scopes out the guard's patrol patterns. Some can complete quests to collect money while others are working on digging tunnels.
Pro A couple of alternative prisons add a change of scenery
Tired of bricks, cold floors, and cement cells? For those who want a change of scenery, there is a prison set in the wild west, and even a futuristic space prison. This adds a little bit of variety to the look of the game while keeping the same gameplay mechanics. It's a nice touch and gives your eyes a break from staring at the same tilesets over and over.
Con Very wide skill gap between experienced and inexperienced players
Mario Tennis Aces can be unwelcoming to new players. While playing co-op or online, it's tough to catch up with everyone else who knows how to time their power shots with the meter. If you don't pick up on this mechanic fairly quickly, you may feel like you're getting left behind. You don't necessarily have to use the mechanic if you and a friend agree not to, but this sadly makes matches pretty dull. Running against computer opponents is a good way to get your feet wet before moving up to other levels of play.
Con Limited gameplay options for solo players
If you're the type who prefers to game alone, then Mario Tennis Aces might not be for you. There's only one single-player mode, while the rest of the game is mostly dedicated to co-op and online play. The solo mode is also extremely short, clocking in at around four hours. Aside from that, there really isn't much else for you to do.
Con Certain characters are locked behind online tournaments
The primary way to unlock new characters is to win tournaments, but this isn't entirely fair. They're only available for a limited amount of time, with the rewards changing from tournament to tournament. Even though some of these characters are in the actual game as opponents in the single-player adventure mode, you can't get access to them unless you unlock them through these tournaments. If you don't like playing online, or if you don't have the means to pay for Nintendo's online service once it's implemented later on in 2018, then you're basically out of luck.
Con Single-player adventure mode is pretty difficult
The game's adventure mode makes up for its short length with some real difficulty. It's a rough introduction to the gameplay, as some of the matches and bosses are really hard. There's plenty of variety to things, like courts that have certain hazards in your way and uneven terrain such as tall grass, as well as inventive boss designs like a giant squid that shoots out tennis ball-shaped blobs of ink. But all of these things can get quite overwhelming, especially if you're using the single-player mode to get better at the game.
Con Getting caught by guards can be overly punishing
It's frustrating when you spend several hours grinding quests for other inmates, collecting items, crafting, and carefully planning your escape, only to get caught by guards and lose all your items or killed. This effectively means you have to start over, wasting hours of your own time and days of in-game time.
Con Can feel grindy at times
Running around doing fetch quests for other inmates, or searching for crafting materials for hours on end can get stale after a while.
Con Tutorial doesn't cover much
The tutorial will only walk you through the barest of basics, resulting in the player having to learn the game's various mechanics on their own.