Golf games are gaining popularity again, so let’s take a look at Golf With Your Friends, out today.
I was a PGA Tour fan back in the early 90s, then the only other title I recall playing was Outlaw Golf which was a lot of fun.
Golf With Your Friends isn’t the conventional game of golf, but mini-golf or another term more common; crazy golf.
It’s a quirky little game that kills an hour or two if you’re down the seaside or similar, and in the right company, very enjoyable.
So how does today’s title shape up?
Golf With Your Friends PS4 Review
When I saw Team17 attached to Golf With Your Friends, I was keen to play it.
There’s not much to add to the humble game of mini-golf, but in summary, you have a series of holes where you need to get either on par or under it.
One of the features the game boasts is the number of players that can join all at one time: 12.
The gameplay is turn-based, and the order stays the same throughout, so if you’re trailing, you don’t get to go first.
When reviewing games before they’re out, it’s quite hard to get a group of people in a lobby all at the same time, so my experience online was somewhat limited so this Golf With Your Friends PS4 review is focused more on the local multiplayer mode.
Now that’s out of the way, let’s look at the stages.
But, Of Course
There are nine stages to play in the game from forest themes to Egypt, space to pirate-inspired locations.
Without hesitation, we played the exclusive Worms course and weren’t disappointed.
The score is the same as the original Worms games, and I could have sworn I heard a few soundbites throughout, but it was hard to hear anything with all the laughter.
I have never heard my daughter laugh so much at a game for about 80% of the time.
The other 20% was the classic sulk as I soon overtook her on the scorecards, albeit by four points.
Why was she laughing so much?
She was laughing at my unlucky streak of jetpacks, mines and exploding sheep, but more on that in a moment.
Pitch And Putt
Let me level with you on my first impressions of Golf With Your Friends: poor.
The load screens took an age, some of the stages looked a little uninspiring, and despite the sharp graphics, a bit dated.
Additionally, the movement of the ball didn’t have the right weight to it and would fly off in unrealistic directions.
Then it all changed with jetpacks.
In the game, you control the direction of the ball using the left stick and pulling back/pushing forward to dictate the power, followed by the X button to commit it.
You can add some spin on it too with the right stick.
Should the ball land in the water or burst through a jetpack in the Worms section, you can hold X to hover, though with a limit to the pack and you can’t change direction.
The number of mistimings and over-egging a chasm were so frequent; my daughter had trouble breathing through my misfortune.
There was something so hilarious and immersive in hitting the ball in a calculated shot that backfires last minute as it hits a barrel or any other exploding device, resetting where you tee off once more.
It was evident that despite my best intentions, I wasn’t going to be the next Tiger Woods.
On the green, not off it.
But it’s this trial and error, the puzzle-like element that wins you over, as everyone is vulnerable to the very many hazards throughout the game that it won us both other, as it did for the rest of the family.
And this is one of the main reasons why it scores high.
The full 18 holes don’t drag, but it’s not a quick game, and there will be moments of frustration as you try getting out of a corner.
Speaking of corners, the camera angles can be dire in certain positions.
While you have L2 and R2 to zoom in and out, there will be occasions where you can’t see the ball or where you’re going, putting you at a disadvantage; often adding another stroke to the scorecard.
Aside from the base game, there are a ton of other features such as an exploration mode(!), but the best feature is the hockey mode.
Swapping out the ball for a puck, the physics are significantly better.
With the puck, you lose all sort of control when airborne, or clipping an object to spin in a different direction, plus you have a net as your goal instead of a hole.
Perhaps one of the stranger aspects were the customisations – not just the colour of your ball or puck but adding hats.
However, they’re all just bonuses to a surprisingly enjoyable party game.
I doubt I’ll play this alone (I tried and didn’t have the same enthusiasm), but it might be worth considering to unlock all the customisations.
Golf With Your Friends is a brilliant party game that requires a bit more commitment from players – not because it’s difficult, but compared to say something like Gang Beasts or Use Your Words, stages are quite long, and you need to invest in it a bit.
That said, a glass of wine, a keg of beer, or carton of Ribena go hand in hand, and like its real-life counterpart mini-golf, the game is as good as the company you surround yourself with.
But the game is excellent regardless.
I asked Team17 if they wanted a game of mini-golf, but they said they were Moving Out, but in the meantime kindly provided the review code for the game to keep me at bay – thank you!