Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 Review for Nintendo Wii

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 Review for Nintendo Wii

So, the Wii MotionPlus accessory has finally arrived, and EA is jumping on the bandwagon before even Nintendo with simultaneous releases of both Grand Slam Tennis and the latest from the Tiger Woods franchise. We’re here to take a look at what the peripheral adds to PGA Tour 10. Is the virtual game of golf indeed seeing a revolution in gameplay?

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 screenshot

If you haven’t yet run out to buy one of these $20 extras, you can buy Wii MotionPlus packed in (for an additional $10) with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10. For the price of your typical next-gen title, you’ll get the whole shebang, and with a host of new games gearing up to make use of the accessory, it’s an investment that should reap plenty of dividends.

But we won’t keep you waiting regarding the verdict on how MotionPlus affects the gameplay in PGA Tour 10. Is it everything fans have been waiting for? In a word: yes. One thing to stress, however, is that golf itself is a very subtle game, and the average player likely won’t be blown away by the changes MotionPlus brings to the new Tiger Woods. That said, there’s a level of accuracy on offer here you simply won’t find anywhere else. Additionally, EA Sports has fine-tuned the experience so that it’s still inviting for players of all skill levels while simultaneously offering gameplay depth serious virtual-golf fans demand.

It’s also worth noting that you’re not truly getting 1:1 motion control in every sense of the term. If that were the only way to play the new Tiger Woods on Wii, at least half the audience would likely be lost. You can make very subtle – and we do mean very subtle – changes to draw and fade on a ball, but regardless of how you swing the Wii Remote, you’ll still always hit the ball. Your club is locked in a straight line with your swing position, yet the power of swings seems to register with extreme accuracy (this is only in comparison to other virtual-golf games, as real-life golf is likely to be quite a bit more physically demanding). The level of accuracy with regards to power is especially felt when putting on the green, and it’s pretty amazing how well the game reads swings.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 screenshot

Keep in mind, however, this is only when playing with the MotionPlus accessory. We did run the game through its paces without it, and well, it performed worse than the golf offering in WiiSports. We won’t go so far as to say it’s unplayable, but when you remove that MotionPlus, PGA Tour 10 goes from a game of skill, finesse, and accuracy, to one of frustration, inaccuracy, and luck. If you’re planning on playing this game without MotionPlus, we beg you to reconsider.

So, EA Sports has mastered the basics of the new motion accessory, but what about the actual package? Well, the publisher didn’t come to this year’s party empty-handed. As a matter of fact, you’ll almost be getting three games in one with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10. It’s a huge package that makes the perfect excuse to opt into Nintendo’s new motion revolution.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 screenshot

For starters, you’ll get a deep and deeply satisfying career mode, complete with persona customization that rivals Fallout 3. When you first begin, you can tweak everything from the distance of your character’s eyes, the heaviness of their eyelids, to the boldness of their cheek bones. Basically, if you spend enough time with the editor, you can create someone who looks eerily like yourself. Of course, none of this will affect your game, not until you begin to assign points to various stats for your player. As you move through the ranks, you’ll be able to improve your golfer, and there’s an impressive amount of game to invest in here. You’ll hit courses based on calendar events, and there’s a whole shopping element included as well.

In addition to career mode, there’s a Play Now option, which lets you jump right onto the green for a few holes. Modes such as “Skins” and “Stableford” allow you to approach the game in various ways, and it’s a great way for you and/or a few friends and family members to get your game on without any hassle.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 screenshot

If you’re looking for a break from the typical game of golf, however, you can jump into a fully realized, very accurate, and extremely enjoyable game of Disc Golf. Disc Golf gives you a great selection of courses to choose from, and the feel is simply wonderful with Wii MotionPlus; it perhaps even represents the benefits of the accessory better than the main game. Tossing discs feels great, and it’s a nice change of pace from the career mode.

The fun doesn’t stop there, however, and EA Sports has packed in yet another mode – Golf Party – and it’s a sort of Mario Party on the green. You can play with up to four players, taking turns competing in various mini-games that revolve around… well, golf. Again, MotionPlus will play an integral role when it comes to enjoying most of what Golf Party has to offer, and the variety includes some very well-thought-out diversions. One of our personal favorites is a unique take on Reversi, where the object of the game is to shoot balls onto a board in order to turn tokens to your color.

Of course, any modern golf game would be incomplete without affording you the ability to play online, and EA offers a handful of solid options that should add tons of replay value to the package. Unfortunately, you can’t play Golf Party or Disc Golf online, but the traditional-golf options should still give you plenty of mileage. You can compete in tournaments, which include besting some of the world’s top pros, or you can opt to play against other players in real-time.

Getting started requires establishing a free account with EA’s service, but playing online is pretty painless after the initial set-up. There’s a lobby system, though it was completely barren when we attempted to play online via that route. However, when choosing the “Play Anyone” option, it took only a few seconds before the server hooked us up with another player and we were out on the green. Online play was mostly smooth, with just a couple of lag pockets, and the “addiction factor” was evident after just a couple of holes.

In terms of presentation, PGA Tour 10 offers a very intuitive interface with loads of useful tutorials. The in-game graphics, for the most part, look good for a Wii title, though certain views can be extremely blurry and unsightly. From a distance, the trees and grass all have a nice furry look to them, though up close things start to quickly lose their sheen. Regardless, the visuals on offer here never interfere with the gameplay, and they get the job done nicely.

The music is equally fitting, and Disc Golf has some energetic themes that really add flavor to the experience. Furthermore, the sound effects are a surprising boon, and when you hit that first ball off its tee, you’ll be amazed at how such subtle feedback can affect the level of immersion.

Tiger Woods games have closely followed the tradition of Madden football, and we’ve seen quite a few iterations of the franchise over the years. However, PGA Tour 10 on Wii – and we stress, with MotionPlus – is truly a revolution in virtual golf. Casual players likely won’t be blown away by the improvements, but true golf fans will quickly, and jubilantly, appreciate the amazing differences MotionPlus has brought to the game. Is it a title for everyone? Maybe. The Golf Party and Disc Golf modes should be something any gamer can enjoy, but Tiger Woods golf is still the main attraction here. It’s easily approachable for newcomers, but your success out on the green will rely solely on skill.

When the camera does its initial pass over a course, the graphics are impressive. However, the visuals start to lose their appeal as you inspect closer in. 4.4 Control
Wii MotionPlus makes a world of difference in PGA Tour 10. However, it doesn’t actually make the game of golf any easier. The game, now more than ever, will call for skill and concentration. 4.0 Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music is fitting, and many of the sound effects add a great deal to the immersion factor. Crowd effects are pretty good, and the commentators do a fine job of being annoying when you’re over par. 4.5

Play Value
There is a ton of content packed into this latest Tiger Woods (including MotionPlus if you opt for the bundle) – so much, we didn’t have space to mention everything in our review. Three games in one, real-time weather, online play, and more.

4.4 Overall Rating – Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Wii MotionPlus Integration: Through EA Sports Motion, gamers can now experience a true-to-life golf swing and have the ability to work the ball with precise draw and fade capabilities.
  • Play the Prestigious U.S. Open: The U.S. Open makes its inaugural appearance in Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10. Known as one of the toughest tests in golf, Bethpage Black will challenge every player’s golf skills with its extremely challenging course conditions.
  • Real-Time Weather Conditions: Powered by The Weather Channel, real-time weather now effects gameplay by providing current conditions at actual courses. Putts will roll slower on wet greens and drives will be shorter due to the rain soaked fairways.

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