To my mind the Tiger Woods series, unlike the man himself, has done little wrong over the years. It is has long been the best golf game on the market, and the latest edition, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14, grabs that notion and runs with it.
There are flaws however, and questions to be asked. The most prudent being, "Why am I playing a game entitled 2014, in April 2013?"
The game opens to a series of non-interactive stills telling you what is new about the game. You can’t skip this sequence, and it’s long, dull and frustrating. However once the game begins, it’s like you’ve wheeled your clubs out the clubhouse door and onto the first tee of God’s own personal golf course.
If, like me, you charge straight for the mode where you create yourself and guide that virtual self through a professional career, then you’re in luck, because this may be the best career mode in any EA game. It doesn’t live up to the career modes offered by 2K Sports, but it’s pretty close.
You start by playing amateur championships, attempting to become good enough to go pro. It’s a while before you even see the likes of Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, let alone play alongside them or start beating them. This vague nod to realism is welcome, and gives you something to strive for.
The newest feature that the game, judging from the advertising campaign, seems to pride itself on is the legends mode. This mode offers a series of challenges that need unlocking, and get harder and harder. You play against the legends of golf: Niklaus, Player, Palmer and many more including of course, Woods.
Legends mode will appeal to the golf nut. If you’re a casual fan, like myself, then you’ll be far more into the other modes, of which there are several. All the classics return, and the ability to ‘play now’ on any of the top courses in the world remains unrivalled in any of the EA Sports series.
As always, I’d say Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 is best enjoyed with a mate or two, and a cheeky wager. However, anyone seeking a golf game should look no further than this one.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14
:: Publisher: Electronic Arts
:: Developer: EA Sports
:: Format: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
:: Rating: G