Golf (NES)

Golf Box Art


System: NES

Release Date: October 1985

Developer: Nintendo

Publisher: Nintendo

Genre: Sports

Oh boy, this is going to be our first overtly negative review. Even Baseball wasn’t this bad. What we have here is a bunch of things that aren’t fully fleshed out and a game that gets improved upon over and over and over again over the years.

Playing out of the sand.

I mean, you start it up and there’s no music on the title screen. Or anywhere else in the game. Just bad sound effects. You’re at the first tee, you see the wind and its direction, you see how many yards to the hole. Now choose your club, aim yourself in one of the directions you’re allowed, and swing. Ok, the ball went some distance. How far? Figure it out. There’s a table in the instruction manual that tells you the max distance of each club. Use that.

Teeing off.

Now, I’m not sour that they put the club distance in the manual, that’s not a big deal and lots of golf games saved memory by doing that. What I’m sour about is that you have to make your best guess about how far you hit the ball. Didn’t hit it full power? Well, too bad! That lack of information is just infuriating and I’m hoping we don’t see it again on the system.

Chipping it in came as a big surprise.

Another problem is that when you try to aim your shot, it’s not a smooth movement to where you want to go, there are discrete points that you can aim. Only want to move 10 degrees to the right? Too bad, 33 degrees or nothing. Try hooking and slicing to aim instead. Not player friendly.

10 over. Not bad for playing blind of important information.

About the only thing I like about this game is the player graphics and the course graphics. I guess it’s probably the first game that used the three-click swing mechanic, which is the only way to play a golf game, but man is this not a good game. I know that it was Miyamoto designed and Iwata programmed, but c’mon man!

Graphics: 2.0

This is the only thing Golf gets right. And even then it’s mainly just the static course design that I like the most.

Sound: 0.0

This is the first fail that I’ve given out. No music either, just bleep, blip, swish. Lame.

Gameplay: 2.0

This is the first game that I know of to use the 3-click swing mechanic. It gets a C just for that.

Difficulty: 1.0

This is an example of bad difficulty because you aren’t given the information you need to make good decisions and have fun.

Fun Factor: 0.5

I’m reaching to give it a D- for fun. I didn’t have fun, instead I had frustration.

Overall Grade: 1.1

Earning a D, Golf doesn’t pass my class. It is not a good game. There are at least half a dozen other golf games on the system, I expect they will all be better.

Golf Video Review on YouTube

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