The Golf Club review for PS4, Xbox One

Platform: PS4, Xbox One
Publisher: HB Studios
Developer: HB Studios
Medium: Digital
Players: 1-2
Online: Yes

EA Sports’s PGA Tour series has taken the year off, and the folks at HB Studios Multimedia have decided to take it upon themselves to fill the void with their new golfing simulation: The Golf Club. When it was first announced, I was excited (if not optimistic) that I would not have to go a full year in limbo for my virtual golfing experience. Alas, it looks like I will still need to wait for my golfing fix. While The Golf Club plays a fine game of golf, there are just too many hiccups — from the presentation, to the lack of modes and options — to really recommend this title for anyone but the diehards who can’t put it off a year.

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Besides the quite expensive price of $35 for a digital only title, The Golf Club is too rough around the edges and feels like a pay to play beta rather than a finished product. Visually, the frame rate stutters, the players and courses are bland and lifeless (except the water), the audio is dull and fake sounding; from the less than enthusiastic announcer, to the plastic sound of the ball hitting the fairway. There are only single round and tour modes, with no stat tracking career mode at all. Let us not forget the fact that there is not one PGA licensed course or player to be found. The only real less than generic aspect is the course creator which is fantastic! The fact that you can literally recreate (if you have blueprints) any of your favorite real to life courses with simple drag and drop controls is outstanding. Sure getting used to it with a controller may take some time, but once you have it down you will be creating courses faster than Tom Fazio.

That being said, I don’t want to beat up on the game too much as there is a solid game of golf to be found here, but it comes at too much of a price for this reviewer and golf fan to really recommend. Sure the game can be enjoyable at times, you can play through 18 holes in rather short order, and being able to rate and share courses is a plus. I’d be lying if I didn’t say the play mechanics weren’t true to life, but the game is just too barren to call itself a nearly full priced title. Even at $19.99 I would have a few qualms with the game’s lack of content but at least I would have fewer reservations in recommending it.

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I’m sure many will find my lack of words in this review as being obtuse and uninformative, but seriously, I spelled it out the best I could giving the content I was dealing with. The Golf Club is just as bland and mediocre as its name, and at best it should be purchased when it hits the PS Plus or Games with Gold bargain price under $20. If I didn’t know any better I would have thought this game was a playable course creator rather than a full-fledged golf title. As it is now, especially without a trial for fans to judge for themselves, the game is too hit or miss for me to say that spending $35 is a wise option here.

Grade: C-