Publisher: EA Sports
Developer: EA Sports
by: Nick "bapenguin" Puleo
Last year’s Tiger Woods game was one that I skipped, not because Tiger himself was making a mockery of himself in the news thanks to his pimpin’ ways - I just generally don’t see a need to get a new golf game every year, or heck, every two years. It didn’t take long after playing the demo version of Tiger Woods 12: The Masters to see that this year’s was something I’d be willing to invest my $60 into...granted I got $25 of that back thanks to Amazon pre-order deals.
Since golf games have gone to analog swing control, I’ve found myself more comfortable using the right stick to swing than the left - so when a game doesn’t give me the ability to do that I get frustrated. Luckily for Tiger Woods 12 the controls are extremely customizable. Really, that seems to be the mantra of this year’s game - making things the way you want. The biggest addition is no doubt a caddie feature that will recommend clubs and shots for you. It’ll not only help you learn the game of golf, it’ll help you zip through a round much quicker. Obviously you can turn this off if you want - again - customizable.
Graphically the game is solid, but nothing great. I’d like to see textures get closer to photo like and less cartoony. The player progression system is tied to completing challenges and making good shots. You’ll earn XP and can then upgrade your core stats in driving, putting, and chipping.
My one gripe with the game is the putting system seems wildly inaccurate. Even after a few dozen rounds and pumping up my putting skills I have trouble sinking putts. Perhaps its a bit too realistic, but the frustration factor is definitely there.
Overall Tiger Woods 12: The Masters is a solid game that excels at presentation. Commentary by Jim Nance of CBS adds to the authenticity and the game does an excellent job at broadcast style overlays. There’s a ton of courses in the box but there’s also a dozen or so online to the tune of an additonal $60 worth of DLC. A trend like that is a bit worrying - $120 for the “full” game - it seems buying a golf game every 3 years will become a monetary necessity now.