Fancy yourself a budding Nick Faldo? Well, here's the perfect training to get you ready for the real golf courses! Pro Golf Simulator is fabulous fun to play on your own or with friends. The course is packed with colourful graphics of ponds, bushes, trees and a whole host of obstacles to overcome. Should you get fed up with playing the course, there's an editor included so you can design your own!
For beginners at golf plenty of options are included: you can practice any hole you like or just have a go at the putting - you'll soon be on your way to getting a hole in one! Be careful where you aim your shots, a wrong swipe could lose your ball forever or sink it to the bottom of one of the ponds for the ducks to play with!
Pro Golf Simulator is a reasonable attempt at putting the sport onto your computer. What I want now is a crazy gall simulator, much more my kind of game!
Can't say I'm a great golf fanatic. So what if Sean Connery goes ga-ga over it? Nobody's perfect. And watching it on telly is even more booooring. I mean, come on - how can anyone possibly get excited watching a bunch of seriously boring old farts (and boring old farts with the kind of sad plaid dress sense that'd make even Michael Fish's hair stand on end - if he had any) hit a small white ball into a hole with a large stick? It's beyond me. But golf simulators? (with the exception of a few, Leaderboard for instance). So "Hooray!" I thought when they rammed this game down my throat and said "'Ere, sunshine, do us a review of this", "An excuse to spend the review slagging off golf simulators!" And it was then I came across a teensy-weensy little problem - I just can't find anything wrong with it... Aaarrgh!
Not that this one's vastly different from the other three trillion golfy games available course - it's just a case of wacking a ball about from top view into the hole with the appropriate club and the appropriate power. But what it does it does well. It's just so bloody annoying. What can I do? I mean, I can't say that I like it - just think what that would do for my image! Hmmph.
You know you're in trouble when the most complimentary thing the normally overenthusiastic Codemasters can find to say about one of their games is "Incredible!. 75% (Your Stinklair)."
Actually Pro Golf Sim is a bit better than that - at least it's pretty comprehensive, with all the authentic features of the game including bunkers, rough, trees, lakes, islands, selection of clubs, a zoom feature in the putting stage, scoreboard, wind meter and dogs stealing your balls (guess which one of these I made up).
Up to four players can take part, and there are options for various controls, putting practice, or practicing a particular hole, before you plunge into the full 18-hole competition.
Your first option is to examine the course, using the joystick or keyboard control to scroll around the nicely detailed backgrounds, which look in some ways as if they've been pinched from a Kung-Fu Death Commando Wombats game. Once you've assessed the difficulty of the hole you press Fire to play, first choosing a club using the pointing-finger cursor at the right hand side of the screen.
Once your club is selected you set the direction of your stroke using a rotating indicator on the pin, then strike by holding the fire button until the strength gauge rises to the desired level. On releasing the fire button, the hook/slice indicator starts to move across the screen; hit Fire again when it's in the desired position, and you'll see the ball whizzing , hopefully, towards the green. Al this is accompanied by nice title inset animated sequences.
Once you get close enough to the hole, the display changes to a close-up showing the flag, your ball and the strength gauge (no hook slice meter). If you hole below par you go onto the next hole; if you go too far over par, you forfeit that hole. There's a scoreboard display between holes, and obviously this is all a lot more fun it there's more than one competitor.
The big bonus is that there's also a course design option; using a selection of pre-programmed graphics blocks you can assemble the most fiendishly difficult courses, save them to tape and inflict them on your friends.
Pretty pictures, authentic gameplay, decent music and sound effects and it's only £2.99. I think you could safely indulge in a copy of Pro Golf Sim without being labelled a boring old f**t.
Reviewer: Chris Jenkins
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