Posted by Darren Calvert
Volleyball is one of the fastest team games around, and this NES classic recreates the speedy sport in a way that anyone can play.
Volleyball represents yet another of Nintendo’s dated sport simulations. Comparing to its early NES stablemates such as Soccer, Baseball, Ice Hockey and Tennis this game is easily the worst of the bunch.
Considering it was originally released in 1986 it is understandable that the graphics and sound aren’t very sophisticated, even for a NES game. The players continually bop up and down all the time which is off-putting. In addition to this the ball is bigger than the player’s heads. What really lets this game down is the ropey gameplay, you never really feel like you are in control of the action and connecting with the game.
The players all move as one, together, in little groups directed by the same D-Pad input. It isn’t really that easy to determine what is going on in the game to be honest. If the ball has been volleyed back toward the far, bottom corner of your court area, for example, you'll probably end up controlling the two players closest to that region at the same time. If it's sailing a little shorter, and looks to land nearer to the net, you'll likely instead gain temporary control of your front three net guards. Tres confusing!
If you don't manage to return the volley with a single hit of your own, then the wacky, near-random shifting of control will continue to different men on your team until such time as you do manage to get the ball back over to the other side, or else you miss a hit and the other team scores.
There is a two player mode of course, but let’s face it, you are not going to find anyone sad enough to want to play this abomination with anyway! If you want a decent Volleyball game then you would be better off waiting to see if the excellent Super Spike V'Ball ever makes it to the Virtual Console. It sets rights all the faults of this earlier attempt at recreating the sport. Give this one a miss!