When golf goes well, the average Joe will feel like Rory McIlroy. But when things go wrong there’s not a more frustrating place to be, and Rory McIlroy PGA Tour certainly delivers on both fronts.
The first EA Sports golf game to hit next-gen console brings a new sharpness to the screen as well as a new name on the front cover. Gone is Tiger Woods, forever the face of golf and EA Sports’ series of annual releases, and in comes the current world No 1 in McIlroy - strangely Woods isn't even included on the game.
Upon starting the game you’ll be encouraged to go through an in-depth tutorial, and whereas the more expert golf gamers among you will want to get straight to the action, we recommend that you give it a run through to find the style that suits your level of difficulty.
You’ll be rewarded in being thrown into the toughest ask the game has to offer essentially – the Chambers Bay Golf Course, host to the recent US Open which was both highly criticised yet thrilling to watch. As McIlroy, you must fend off an old foe to win the tournament by using your recently honed technique before embarking on your own career as yourself.
The Pro Career mode is quite rewarding – when it goes right. Beginning in the amateurs you must earn your keep and force your way onto the pro tour, where you’ll soon be mixing it up with McIlroy, Jordan Spieth and Co where errors get punished and then some – much to The Independent’s experience.
Beyond the career mode and a wealth of courses that includes the ‘home of golf’ St Andrews – scene of this week’s Open Championship – there’s a Nightclub Challenge mode, and no, it isn’t what it sounds like. A set list of challenges will see you attempt to accumulate as many points as possible, with different rewards awaiting the further down the line you get. Examples include trying to hit targets while the course is hit up in neon lights while playing with a farmer-like character. Think playing Top Golf while in a trance and you won’t be far off.
There’s the usual option to play against friends or rivals, depending how good you rank against each other, while you can also take on the best the world has to offer – literally – via the online mode.
The one problem, like most golf games, is getting used to it. Having immediately set the gameplay to the most difficult setting, missing two-yard putts suddenly becomes quite an issue, and it’ll leave you infuriated with yourself. Just like golf.