A slumping professional golf career, injuries, and a host of off the course issue led to last year ending up a bad year for Tiger Woods. Things were so bad in fact that he wasn’t even on last years box, and the words Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12 were so small most players thought they were buying EA Sports Masters Golf. However, people have a short memory and Tiger is starting to become competitive again so he is once again on the box for this year’s Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13. But he isn’t alone, he is sharing the cover with fan favorite Rory McIlroy, EA could be hedging their bets… just in case.
In earlier years the game was very easy, there was never any days where you just couldn’t get your swing working like you wanted. I think EA finally realized this because this year’s big change to the series is total swing control. It gives you complete control of how you approach and hit the ball. This change finally gives the series the difficulty that it needs, but it also turns off a lot of players. For the first 10 or so tournaments I played I was continually placing near the bottom of the field, shooting 13-18 over par. I was almost at the point of giving up and just not reviewing the game, but then I started to get used to the new system and master it. But even after mastering the new total swing control, it’s still easy to have an off game. After placing in the top 5 for 6 straight tournaments, I had a streak where nothing seemed to work and I couldn’t get a top 25 finish to save my life. No more will you start winning right off the bat, but instead you will have to put the time in to get a good golf game. To me, this gave the game its most realistic imitation of golf that I have ever seen in a golf game.
Tiger Woods 13 also includes the usual game modes, The Masters returns, single player career, and online play. But there is also another game mode this year and that is the new Legacy Challenge. In Legacy Challenge, you play as Tiger Woods at various parts of his life starting with his toddler years and moving through his future. The last goal is to recreate his success and ultimately win more majors than Jack Nicklaus. Ultimately the new mode kind of falls flat isn’t nearly as fun or satisfying as the in-depth career mode.
Overall I give Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 a passing grade, it adds Total Swing Control, which really changes the way the game plays. And new additions such as Xbox 360 Kinect and PS3 Move support really gives professionals and amateurs alike the ability to hone their golf skills. Everything else in the game is just lipstick on a pig, not adding anything lasting or significant. New players or those looking for a casual quick fun game may want to stay with last years version as it is easier to pick up and play than the new version is. Also, last year’s version was available on PC, Mac, PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii. While this year’s version is only available on the Xbox 360 and PS3.
This review is based on my observations of the Xbox 360 version of the game.