In this piece we look back at the immensely successful Tiger Woods PGA Tour games.
Our Guide To The Tiger Woods PGA Tour Golf Games
Everyone is stuck inside at the moment so now is the time to dust off the old Playstation, Xbox or computer and get the Tiger Woods PGA Tour games back into your staying inside rotation.
The series of immensely successful games began in 1990 and was simply called PGA Tour Golf. Several editions were made over the next few years and then the decision was made to put Tiger Woods on the cover for the first time on the 1999 game.
EA Sports reportedly paid $10 million for the rights to use Tiger’s name and likeness. As a result the game would then be rebranded to be called Tiger Woods PGA Tour, followed by the year.
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Tiger Woods PGA Tour Golf Games
The 1999 game was not released without a hitch as an employee of Electronic Arts snuck a precursor episode of South Park called Jesus vs Santa onto the Playstation disc. This could be watched if the disc was put into a computer and selected ZZDUMMY.DAT with the media player.
The 2000 game received mixed reviews with many complaining about the difficult and inconsistent putting however a number of features proved popular, such as the nine different Tour professionals you could play with or against, the overall graphics, and several different formats. The Course Architect was also a very good feature in which you could construct your own course.
The next year EA Sports introduced a create your own player feature which seemed to go down well but the lack of Tour players and different courses held the game back.
2002 expanded off the back of those criticisms as lots more players were added as well as courses like Pebble Beach, TPC Sawgrass, and Royal Birkdale. The game received excellent reviews which ensured success in later years.
In 2003 little was done by EA Sports in terms of playability, it played pretty much exactly the same as 2002. But they did introduce little tweaks and new elements to really improve the product.
The sound of the game improved massively with improved commentary, more background noise like waves and birds, and also there was more emphasis put on animation from the players.
One of the things I remember most was how the game kind of went out of its way to compliment you and make it an incentive to improve your player with stats like top performances, personal bests, average scores, tour trophies, scenario medals.
2004 was the game I played religiously more than any other. There was a big expansion in the number of courses you could play such as Bay Hill Club and Lodge, St. Andrews Links (Old Course), Torrey Pines (South Course), TPC at Sawgrass (Stadium Course), TPC at Scottsdale (Stadium Course), Princeville Resort, Kapalua Plantation, Pinehurst #2, Bethpage Black, Spyglass Hill, Poppy Hills, Sahalee Country Club along with several fantasy courses.
The Game Face feature also expanded what you could create in terms of your own player and for the first time you could do a proper PGA Tour season as you enter four-day tournaments.
All the usual courses were on this game but the fantasy courses really took it up a notch with Greek Isles, Emerald Dragon or Paradise Cove.
Also the Legend Pursuit was a brilliant feature – you had to go up against a variety of characters and tour professionals to earn the honour of going up against one of the legends in the game who were Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Seve Ballesteros, Ben Hogan and Gary Player. Beat them, and you could then go up against Sunday Tiger Woods.
Another cool new feature was Tiger Proofing which allowed you to redesign courses to make them easier or harder once you unlocked them.
In 2006 the controls were tinkered with, with the right analog stick being the shape stick to allow you to fade or draw the ball in a different way. The caddie feature also came in but once you got good at the game you didn’t really listen to them.
Much of the game remained the same in 2007 although there was improvement in the graphics. They introduced Riviera, The National, The K Club, and the Ocean course at Kiawah Island too.
Once again there was little to differentiate this game from the previous years iteration.
The 2009 controls were a lot more forgiving than 2008’s and Hank Haney was also added to the game to help coach you.
The game with Tiger’s iconic 2008 US Open celebration on the cover was another I played a lot. The main thing I remember was the expansion in equipment and costumes you could use.
2011 was the first game to feature Tiger alongside another golfer, this time Rory McIlroy.
The one we all had been waiting for as Augusta National was one of the courses you could play on the game.
Chairman at the time Billy Payne said “EA Sports, Tiger Woods and the PGA Tour have developed an extremely successful franchise that responds to one of the popular entertainment choices of kids today. We hope our inclusion will foster an appreciation for the history and traditions of the Masters and inspire the next generation of golfers.” All the proceeds went to the Masters Tournament Foundation.
I remember how excited I was by this as I realistically knew I would never play Augusta. To many, this was as close as you were going to get.
EA Sports put the cover to a fan vote in terms of who would go alongside Tiger. The two most popular selections were Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler.
It also had a Kinect feature on the Xbox 360 where you could swing and the game would pick it up.
The Collectors edition also had has a Green Jacket presentation ceremony, five additional courses than the standard edition, and Augusta National’s Par 3 course and Tournament Practice Facility.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 game, players can not only take on the stars of today, such as Woods and McIlroy, but also the shining lights of yesteryear.
In a new ‘Legends of the Majors’ game mode, players could take on the late Seve Ballesteros, the big three of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Gary Player, as well as American legends Lee Trevino, Ben Hogan, Sam Snead and golf’s first international superstar, Bobby Jones.
Players could battle it our with these legends in all four Majors, perhaps taking on Jones in the US Open, Nicklaus in the Masters or Ballesteros in The Open.
This was the last game in the series with Tiger Woods in the name as in 2015 the game became Rory McIlroy PGA Tour 2015.
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