Swingerz Golf


Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 8

Sound: 1

Gameplay: 9

Overall: 9


Swingerz Golf looks like Sony's Hot Shots Golf. It's interface, putting, characters, and unlockables are completely stripped from that Greatest Hits franchise. What's different is the far more difficult and unforgiving gameplay. To play Swingerz, you need to know how to play golf.

swingerz2gc.jpg (30350 bytes)While that may immediately turn people off who are unfamiliar with the sports finer aspects, Swingerz incredible set of options once on the course makes sure any mistakes are your own. Swinging is a matter of using the C-stick, and like EA's Tiger Woods franchise, pushing straight forward for an accurate shot. The on-screen indicator lets you know exactly what went wrong/right so you can adjust for the next shot.

The number of camera angles easily surpasses any other golf game available. Though buried in a sub menu, overhead and angled shots (and still customizable from there) let you see every hazard that the standard side view may not be showing you. This is especially helpful for a crowded fairway filled with trees, or a tricky putt for when the grid isn't in plain site. Even then, you can quickly change the color of the grid with a tap of the d-pad to make it more noticeable. Developer Telenet truly thought of everything.

While any golf game is measured by its multi-player, it's the engrossing single player that keeps you coming back. Tournaments unlock new items like clubs, balls, shoes, or charms. Each, as you should expect, has their own advantages. Unlike other golf games, you're limited here. Every accessory has a point value assigned to it and you can't start playing if your character is over that limit. It's an extra layer of deep strategy you'll need to focus on before heading into play.

That continues on the eight courses. The designs allow for little error, but great rewards if you can pull off some miraculous shots. Some of the courses need to be thought out shot by shot, weighing the advantages of your character against the hazards. The goofy exterior looks like Hot Shots, but in the end, Swingerz is more complex than even the PGA licensed Tiger Woods games.

swingerz1gc.jpg (29737 bytes)Swingerz finally fails in the audio department. If the grating, repetitive, and high-pitched voice work doesn't push you to insanity, the music will. This barely qualifies as music, and resets itself after every hole. Given that you can breeze through a quick 18 holes by skipping shots with the B button, it doesn't take long before you're digging into another sub menu to turn off everything related to the audio.

While overlooked by just about everyone, Swingerz is easily judged by its cover. It's not a game to be underestimated, and there's enough gameplay time to justify a purchase regardless of price. Swingerz Golf is completely worthwhile for a golf fan, and makes for an easy replacement for a year of Tiger Woods.


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Last updated: Sunday, June 25, 2006 11:17 PM