The Mario Tennis series is a bit like that former tennis prodigy who never quite broke through to the big time.
Early signs of spontaneous genius appear to have been gradually ground out of them, as they turn into a thoroughly solid but firmly second-tier pro.
Those hoping that Mario Tennis Aces would be the entry to swear at the umpire and rip a jumping topspin lob over its recent history are in for a disappointment, but there are glimmers of the old maverick spirit.
Working on your shots
Just like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is to real motor racing, Mario Tennis Aces is to the game of tennis.
That is: a hyper exaggerated but still recognisable form of the sport, as played by an extended roster of major and minor characters from Mario’s day job. No, not plumbing. His second job.