50 Games in 2012 – #10 Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 [PS3] (Completed April 5th)

Before having an income buying games was often a hard drawn out task to complete. Sports games were one of the many ways I made games stretch over several months to avoid boredom. Mostly my interest has been in the NHL franchise and FIFA but another Sports series I've played off and on was Tiger Woods PGA Tour. Last year posed a breakthrough for the franchise; finally EA had been able to acquire the rights to the Masters which was fantastic. Following up such a massive success was going to be difficult for the Tiger Woods 13 but I couldn't resist the urge to pick it up on Master's weekend and find out.

Sports games are often criticized for there small development cycle and little innovation but many games in recent years have proved great sport games can be made in a short amount of time. TW13 doesn't really break the mold of this concept because many new features feel patched on. Largely the games actual mechanics run really well. Each round of golf is enjoyable to play and the career mode continues to show more depth for the player. These are all positives I was happy with with TW13, unfortunately many of these pluses are things carried over from last year. The one new mode TW13 poses is Tiger Legacy mode. This mode is a look into the life of Tiger Woods from toddler to present day. The prospect of this mode was interesting but in practice it was menial and sleep inducing.

Presentation wise TW13 looks great. The animations are cleaner then ever and the transitions between shots look crisp and have a TV sense about them. Creating my character was roughly the same but the real life models look better then before and the courses continued to polish each year. Jim Nantz also lends his commentating to this years game and rounds out a real solid feeling in game presentation to enjoy.

What's new gameplay wise in TW13 is largely the new swing mechanic. Based solely on your analog stick you get a better error representation with your shots if your not careful. Putting is also changed to analog control improving on the previous time based style in previous iterations. Boost pins are also an added gameplay touch that let your golfer get extra bonuses at a limited amount. Besides this you get the same experience of past games but the improvements made definitely are welcome inclusions rather then passable add-ons.

Largely Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 comes off as a hit and miss title. On the one hand I had a lot of fun playing rounds in both career and in play now where the controls and presentation were top notch. Besides the core gameplay though Tiger Woods other modes lack the fun that a regular round can bring. In the end your left with a half-baked experience where the gameplay is fun but the overall package is lacking.

Game Summary:

Date Finished: 4/5 | Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 (PS3)

Pros: New swing mechanic works well and the game is thoroughly polished.

Cons: Tiger legacy mode is a pass while the rest of the game is very similar to last years outing.

Conclusion: Little worthwhile improvements make TW13 a small step forward from 12.


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