Tennis Australia, and developer Big Ant Studios have announced their newest title and on-going franchise, AO Tennis, the first officially licensed game for the Australian Open, and it's coming to Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 on January 16, 2018 for Australia and New Zealand. The Global release date is yet to be announced, however Big Ant Studios expect it to be sometime in a Q1/Q2 2018.
Big Ant Studios, the Australian game studio known for the Don Bradman Cricket and Rugby League Live franchises, say AO Tennis will contain a combination of fully licensed, photo realistic players, and AI for each that will play just like their real-life counterparts, thanks to the decade's worth of historical shot data they have programmed them with. This means that for any given time in a match, the shot will be chosen based on what that player would most likely do thanks to information telling the AI what they have done in similar situations in the past.
Listed in Big Ant Studio's forum post regarding the games announcement, Big Ant CEO, Ross Symons, is quoted as saying:
“With previous tennis games, the world #1 would be challenging to beat, because his or her in-game attributes would be set to merely make fewer errors. That worked well at the time, but we’ve taken things to the next level.
In AO Tennis Rafael Nadal is the hardest player to beat because in game he plays like his real-life counterpart; he plays a game style befitting the #1 player in the world.”
The quotes section on the post go on to say that AO Tennis will contain "comprehensive customisation options, allowing players to create their own athletes, sponsorship logos, clothing and stadiums to play in. An in-depth career mode will allow players to start out ranked 1,500th in the world and work their way up to the glory of world #1. All major tennis surfaces – hard court, clay, and grass – are fully accounted for, and each affect how the game plays. "
AO Tennis releases in NZ and Australia on January 16, 2018 on Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. The Global release date is yet to be announced.