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Tiger Woods 09 Review

Written by FooFan on Thursday, 4 December 20082 Comments

Written by Tetsu

I was disappointed by the last tiger woods - 08, for me it lacked soul. I couldn’t quite put my finger on why but at a guess I though it was down to the color palette and front end, It also had a grindstone feel like everyone on the dev team didnt want to be there. In the end I scored tiger 08 around 6.8 or so. Which was still a fair score and by no means a bad game.

Another year and of course EA show up with their yearly franchise which is now in to its 10th year with tiger’s name on the box. I wasnt planning on getting it this year but after IGN’s preview caught my eye it seemed to good to be true. There was talk of a new dev team, better colour palette, new front end, 1:1 swing mechanics and much more.

So I took it with a pinch of salt but decided i’d give it a crack. I’m very glad I did as this is an extremely fresh experience after the some what stale 08 venture.

Upon boot up its clear that this is a full-on Wii game with lovely big Nintendo style icons larger than life and begging to be pressed. Instantly you’re taken in to the tutorial mode which plays as expected and is a nice intro into the game, I wasnt really paying much attention though as the depth of colour and silky smooth frame rate stole the show. While certain things have been simplified to achieved this it still means 09 is way more vivid than 08, fresh and clear like a cool morning in autumn.

Its a shame the same cannot be said for the sounds which are the same old same old. overall the sounds arent bad, they just arent anything great. having said that all the basic sounds do their job OK apart from the crowd which annoys me a little. It would have been nice to have the option for a polite crowd rather than a drunken group of frat boys screaming and whopping at the slightest opportunity. I cant comment on the commentary as I switched this off before giving it the benefit of the doubt.

The courses are beautifully rendered with new textures that are simple but give a very real experience and one thats full of life.

There’s 20 courses in all and a plethora of game modes (create a golfer) and career options meaning that as a single player there’s always plenty to do. Multi player for me is where golf shines and me and my mate have had a blast playing a full 18 holes while chit chatting about general life matters.

The swing mechanics are awesome this year, I didn’t think last years was too bad but they have stepped up their game in 09, with the on screen golfer matching your swing with only a very small amount of lag and hitting the ball pretty much when you do. Putting swing is a little more tricky at first but you soon get use to it, and everything else in this area is as it should be.

However the putting system isnt as satisfying as last years. The systems now consists of a power bar which is used to gauge the strength of the shot, you pull back to the desired power and flick the wiimote forward with no extra power registering. The feel is slightly digital and spoils the continuity of last years putting system which matched the fairway game perfectly. one thing I do like alot is the fact they have got rid of putting time and only allow 1 unmovable preview per putt - unless you are playing with advance controls in which case you get no preview.

On standard controls draw and fade are added by changing your target, with advance controls its by adding twist but as the wii remote isnt 100% great in this area its not as accurate as standard mode. Next year with the inclusion of motion plus will surly be the way to go.

Online is superb, not having to wait for player to take their shots is awesome and keeps the tempo up. other players are just represented as a real time ball coloured trajectory line. What i dont like is the fact you get 30 seconds to set up and take a shot, if you go over the timer you get a penalty of a stroke. Now 30 secs is pretty good but its pushing it a bit to close on some of my shots and making the game feel just a little too rushed. I think 45-60 seconds would have been more suitable and more fitting with the golf ethos.

Now EA have really stepped up their game this year and like IGN I cant wait to see what they do with the motion plus next year as that could seriously elevate this game to golfing perfection.

As a golf game this is as good as it gets and is near perfect in so many areas now, It still needs a little more work but the difference between 08 and 09 is night and day. Its a shame the putting system has taken a turn for the worst but you soon get use to it and its a small concern for me when looking at the overall package.

Judging by the amount of fun i’ve had today i’d rate this as the best golf i’ve played on a games console, and the potential for next years edition is huge and very exciting.

Tiger woods is truly blooming now on the wii - As it should.

8.8

2 Comments »

  • JOE said:

    How did you get the putting to work? I have been trying and trying and I can not even hit the ball! I think what I am doing wrong is … I am trying to use a real putting motion (back swing & follow through) I have read on the Internet that the putting does not use a realistic putting motion, rather “flicking the remote control. Any advice or “lessons” you can give me which will have me “up and putting” will be greatly appreciated. I love this game until I reach a green. Then for me the fun stops! Thank you, have a nice day!

  • Betty said:

    I have the same complaint as Joe, I almost sent it back as being faulty, until I read his query? Joe complained in 2008.
    PLEASE can you help with the putting, it is pathetic to land on the green in two or three and then putting about five times before you hole the ball.
    Choice of the courses are great until you are on the green.
    Joe, if you see this and have an answer would you please pass it on. Thank you.
    HELP PLEASE

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