It wasn’t until Tiger Woods on the Nintendo Wii that gamers realized the true potential of motion control in sports games. Now, with the Playstation Move, gamers can finally experience a high-definition golf experience with full motion control support. Toss in true 1:1 controls and you have yourself a platform that can provide a much more immersive golfing experience than the Nintendo Wii has ever dreamed of – or so one would think.
As seen yesterday, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 with the Playstation Move showed a lot of promise. However, it also showed limitations in controls due to the lack of a D-pad on the Playstation Move controller. Today, I teed off with John Daly’s Prostroke Golf – which, for an alpha E3 build, showed a lot of promise.During my limited one hole playthrough of the game, most of my focus was around the weaknesses of its competition, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11. Keeping in mind that this is an alpha E3 build, things such as rough character models and animations were overlooked. Course detail and graphics on the other hand were hard to overlook at it was extremely impressive when first being introduced to the course ahead of me.
Once a club was in hand and I was ready to tee off I went straight for their “zoom to aim” feature or “caddy view” as they call it. It was at this point that I was pleasantly surprised with Gusto Games solution to move the position reticule without a D-pad. Tiger Woods requires you to move a small white dot within this reticule and push it towards the outer edges in order to move it in the direction desired. John Daly on the other hand requires you to simply place the pointer where desired and hold down the trigger button to bring the reticule to that position. Should you wish to simply move it towards that direction, you can tap the trigger button and it will incrementally move you towards that position as well which allows for much more precise movement whether on the green or the fairway which is a much less frustrating implementation.
Once ready to swing, you go into first-person view (very similar to that of Tiger Woods on the Nintendo Wii). This is one feature that was actually missing from Tiger Woods on the PS3 with Move support and is honestly almost essential for a realistic motion control golfing experience. Despite having played Tiger Woods just yesterday, it actually wasn’t until this golf “outing” that I was able to truly realize the precise, 1:1 controls. Seeing the face of the club up close and lightly turning the Move controller showed just how precise and realistic the controls are. It is because of this that proper swing mechanics and execution is paramount.
Making my way through the rest of the course was as fluid as one would hope – despite having to fight my out of the sand because of shanking the drive. Once on the green, fighting over the controls to adjust my approach of the hole was non-existant. However, the power mechanics seem at bit too casual for my liking. When in caddy view, you are able to see the percentage required in order to make it to the reticule position. When in swing view, a meter is shown that allows you to see the amount of power that will be used when making your swing. Because of this, the player is able to just keep their eye on this meter while making their swing which in turn makes one of the most difficult parts of golf far too easy.
Once again, this is an alpha E3 build and concerns in power mechanics may be moot come release. Nonetheless, this is one Playstation Move supported game that has caught my attention. The potential is there, the controls are right, now to just hope that difficulty adjustments are fine tuned and approachable by both casual and hardcore.
John Daly’s Prostroke Golf is available on the Xbox 360 and PC this fall. Available game modes include Challenge, Tournament, Exhibition, and Practice. While the game modes don’t look as inviting as Tiger Woods, but the gameplay and controls are in the right direction. Expect more updates as we receive them and a full review shortly following its release.