Platform: Playstation Vita
Developer: Camelot Software
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Everybody’s Golf is a low key, moderately successful franchise that has popped up in the launch window for the Playstation 2, Playstation Portable, Playstation 3 and now the Playstation Vita.
It’s combination of cartoon-like characters and realistic courses has been a staple since the first installment fifteen years ago. Although the game doesn’t aspire to simulate golf realistically and lacks any licenses for real players or courses, there is still plenty of depth and content to the game.
The control mechanics appear simple at first but as the courses get more sophisticated and the opponents more difficult, you will find yourself learning to use more advanced shot selections and techniques to shave off a precious stroke or two from your round. The game has a nice gradual learning curve in the single player Challenge Mode which is the primary option for levelling up your player and unlocking new content.
I think the last time I played an Everybody’s Golf game was on the Playstation 2. For the Vita, I found the current iteration to be an entertaining diversion. The 9-hole matchplay is pretty well suited for a short burst of play and there are some great additions to the franchise to keep you coming back. There are the usual things like unlockable characters and customizable gear but the new feature I really liked was the online golf tournaments that run daily. It’s a lot of fun to jump in and test yourself against players around the world and currently, its got about a thousand participants playing each day.
As it turns out, I’m probably one of the crappier players of Everybody’s Golf and I rate in the bottom two hundred pretty consistently. I enjoy the challenge though.
On a side note, I appreciate developer Clap Handz’s restraint in not cramming this game unnecessarily with features that ‘take advantage’ of the Vita’s touch screen features. From what I can work out, you can touch the sheep and pigs that roam the course and they make a noise and run away. That’s fine by me.
Everybody’s Golf for the Vita is a pretty simple proposition that doesn’t reinvent the wheel. However, its time-tested gameplay holds up nicely and makes this an easy recommendation for when the mood takes you for an arcadey sports title. For a measely $20 on the Playstation Network, it’s a steal.
Summary : A solid, reliable launch title for the Vita. The Everybody's Golf franchise is one of the unsung workhorses of the Playstation software library.