|The new menu system works pretty well, it is instructive and easy to use, only offering "what you need to get going" and keeping the more advanced and less used options to one side for those who really want to tweak. As you choose your options you are treated to a huge rendered version of your current golfer standing next to the menu practicing his swing and looking cool. |
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 is another step down the road in a game that has been evolving for some time now but where Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 has excelled in my eyes are the graphics. I know that processors are growing in power and capability at an expediential rate but still this version has come on leaps and bounds since I last saw this game. It truly is blow-away.
Tiger 2003's weather and lighting effects are second to none. The game has excellent-looking clouds drifting across beautiful skies, fog hovering over the putting green, flags that flap in the wind, and super realistic rain. Unfortunately these environmental conditions don't change in real time (leave that for the next installment) you can still expect to play games in glorious sunrises, heavy storms and plenty of other superb weather. Tiger 2003's golfers also look great. Moving like real humans punching the air when you play a wicked shot and gauging their shot by checking out a few angles and even bending over to move a little tuft of grass that may be in the way. Camera work in the game is also suberb, you basically have the option to view your shots from any angle you would possibly need TV tower, from the hole etc. etc. One nice little feature is: by right clicking your mouse you can hide the game interfaces which gives you an uncluttered look at your shot.
When you take a shot the camera shows you the first half from the camera you chose to shoot with then spins to what the game thinks will be the best angle to view the ball landing from. I have to agree with the game AI it shows you what you need to see every-time without fail. This is a immense part of playing golf it is imperative that the views are correct and in Tiger 2003 they are!!
Sound-wise I don't require much from a golf game. The ambient noises such as birds or sea are very good. David Feherty and Bill Macatee, take care of the commentating (which personally I don't use much) this is a little woody but not that important in my eyes.
Now, for the controls Headgate pioneered the mouse-motion TrueSwing back in the late '90s in Sierra's PGA Championship series and have been able to put together a proper rendition of it in Tiger 2003. The TrueSwing system accurately takes into account where you start and stop your swing and how much side-to-side variation you apply. Though some old school golfers may prefer the three-click swing, if you opt for Tiger 2003's TrueSwing, your mouse will feel as much like a club as it possibly could.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 is a game that gets you really close to the golfing experience. Set in beautifully rendered locations with a super smooth quality and great attention to detail applied to every aspect. It offers more courses, more golfers, a nice range of things to do, a superb rendition of the mouse-motion swing and an answer to the question of what to buy your Dad for Christmas. If you hate golf games this could be the one that changes your mind.
If you love golf games then may loose the next 12 months of your life to it but BUY THIS GAME NOW!!
9 out of 10