Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004
Golf … a sport with which I will never come into contact with in reality without any external stimuli (read: gift certificate of several thousands of euro’s from a Golf shop). Virtually, this is of course a totally different matter.
Electronic Arts’ Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004 gives every willing gamer the possibility to dress nicely with whether or not ridiculous clothes and get a bag of golfclubs (with caddy!)
TW PGA Tour 2004, to which we’ll refer in the rest of this review as TW2004, is a golfing game to my heart and has a washing list of features worth mentioning.
As starters we can state that TW 2004 support the EA Sports Game Face feature. This ‘tool’ gives us gamers the possibility to adjust a huge amount of parameters and accessories to create a game character that completely fits our needs: leg thickness, torso, boobs, cheeks, haircolor & style, nose, ears, tattooes, … everything ! I need to honestly admit that I was busy already for fifteen minutes creating my character which had to resemble my humble self in the digital world. I won’t speak further about the result of this attempt, however (*wink*). Bottom line: a great tool that increases your attachment with the game.
Whoever thought that with golfing there’s only one way to play definitely hits the ball wrong: World Tour, PGA Tour Season Mode, Scenarios, Real-Time Events, Traditional Games and Arcade Modes are at our disposal to give a nice hit to that ball. Those who want to see a bit of the world best choose World Tour, PGA Tour Season Mode gives you the possibility to play up to 10 seasons after each other while Real-Time Events gives you events that are actually being played at this very moment, according to the internal clock of your XBox console…
The Traditional Games contain 8 different styles: Stroke Play, Match Play, Skins, Practice, Stableford, Alternate Shot, Best Ball and Fourball. In Arcade Modes we find the following: Battle Golf, Long Drive Shootout, Skillzone and Speed Golf.
This is all way too much to go into detail of course, but be sure you’ll be busy for several hours and boredom will not strike easily when this game has nested itself in your console…
Since these days we can enjoy joysticks on our gamepads, EA has nicely used these to make the hitting of the ball very interactive. The left thumbstick needs to be moved backwards to start the golf movement and then move it back forwards at the right movement to perfect your hit on the ball. Very nice but also very frustrating when you hit some grass while your ball ends up in the water again…
The rest of the controls vary from adjusting the spin-direction to camera movement, in the beginning a bit hard to remember but you get used to them pretty fast.
Visually, TW2004 really shines: great golf courses, nice surroundings, vivant characters, great facial animation and moves when doing (un)succesful moves…
While playing you can earn money which you can spend in the Pro Shop, the place to be to upgrade your “out-of-the-box” golfer and get him some nice jewelry, clothing or tattooes. It’s even possible to buy new animations that will be used by your golfer as reaction on certain evens during play.
As we’re used from EA, the audio track is pretty good. There’s several default tracks present and to make everything configurable there’s the EA Sports Trax which makes it possible for you to play some of the songs you put on your own XBox aswell… a function PS2 owners can only dream of and for me personally it’s a nice surplus.
I hope I didn’t forget to mention anything noteworthy, the first hours of gameplay are rather overwhelming with all the features Tiger Woods 2004 contains although you certainly shouldn’t take this as a negative point. EA has created a nice line between arcade and simulation, add to that the washing list of game modes and the audio/visual qualities, and we can only conclude that TW2004 is a real topper that should go in several shopping bags during the year end shopping.