Product Type: Electronic Arts Xbox 360 games
Newest Review: ... they may use that facility in the future. One thing which will help new players is something which has been introduced to the series f... more
Can you win the masters?
Tiger Woods Pga Tour 12 : The Masters (Xbox 360)
Member Name: killiefan
Tiger Woods Pga Tour 12 : The Masters (Xbox 360)
Date: 08/06/11, updated on 10/01/12 (82 review reads)
Advantages: Augusta National is included, looks good and easy to play.
Disadvantages: Having to pay extra for some courses, no kinect.
One thing that has become noticeable with the Tiger Woods games over the last couple of years is that although the game still carries the name of Tiger Woods, they seem to be distancing themselves from him a bit. For instance last year they included another player on the cover of the game for the first time when Rory McIlroy was pictured alongside Tiger and this year Tiger has been taken of the cover completely, replaced by a flag, for the first time.
The first thing I would say about any game in the Tiger Woods series is that they are instantly playable, you do not need to be an expert gamer to get into these games. Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Masters is no exception and I believe that anyone could experience this as their first tase of the series and be able to play it straight away due to the gentle learning curve.
The controls in Tiger Woods 12 are very easy to use. After setting up your shot, you pull the left analogue stick back and forward to swing your clubs. After hitting your shot you can push the analogue stick in a chosen direction and tap one of the buttons to create spin on the ball, for instance if you want to create backspin. The putting is also done with the left analogue stick and this can be a bit trickier. The putting is a bit harder than in previous Tiger Woods games and I have experienced a bit of the yips on the greens missing a few times from close range. The greens on Augusta especially can be a bit unforgiving. In my opinion this makes the game a lot more realistic.
The only disapointing thing to do with the controls is more to do with what they haven't done, and for me that is the fact that it is not compatible with xbox kinect. I think that kinect would be perfect for a golf game and hope that they may use that facility in the future.
One thing which will help new players is something which has been introduced to the series for the first time this year and that is the introduction of a caddie. Just like a caddie would do in real life, in the game the caddie will give you options and offer his advice as to what type of club to use and shot to go for. Mostly the caddie will give you a couple of options including a risky shot which may include going for the pin with the risk of ending up in the water, he may also give you a safer option as well which could mean laying up short of the green. The caddie will also help you on the greens and give his idea of where you should line your putt up to. As your experience grows, so does your caddies experience and he will get better at helping you. I think that the inclusion of the caddie is an excellent addition although you do not have to go with any of their choices and can make your own shot decisions instead.
In Tiger Woods 12: The Masters there is a career mode in which you start out as an amatuer player. This career mode is called "The Road to the Masters". First of all you design your own player and name them which takes about five minutes or so. Your career then starts on the Amatuer tour, progressing to the Nationwide Tour. If you get through these you then get to play on the Q-School where you get a chance to qualify and earn your PGA Tour card. Once on the tour you play alongside all the pros like Tiger Woods and try to win tournaments and get your rankings up. Once you get your ranking inside the top 100 you earn your chance to enter The Masters.
The career mode is excellent and you get some genuine satiafaction as you progress through the various levels and start to move up the ranking. One major gripe that I do have with EA, and one that I hope they will not repeat in the future, is that on four of the tournaments on the PGA tour you cannot enter unless you download the courses on xbox live as these are not included as standard. After shelling out £40 for the game I think they are being very unreasonable to make you download four extra courses at a total cost of around £10. I certainly would not pay this extra cost and instead choose to skip these tournaments.
As you are progressing you get rewards for various things like getting birdies and hitting fairways and greens. This is called XP or experience points and you can use your earned XP to upgrade your golfers skills, for instance increasing ths distance you are able to hit the ball or making your putting skills better.
Another gameplay mode which exists in this game is called "Masters Moments". This is a good addtion and gives you a chance to play as some of the greats of golf and recreate some of the best moments in Masters history.
Gameplay rated 18/20
In my opinion the graphics in Tiger Woods 12: The Masters are excellent. There is a noticeable difference even from last years version of Tiger Woods. The courses and scenery around the courses is all stunning especailly on the Augusta National course which i guess EA have possibly put even more effert into than anything else in the game as this course is their main focus this year.
Everything has far more detail than ever before down to things like the grass which has a much more 3D feel and quality to it. Everything is designed really well including all the golfers and caddies who are really well detailed.
Graphics rated 17/20
In a golf game there is never going to be a great deal to mention regarding sound at all. In this one they have used real commentators Jim Nantz and David Feherty. Not widely known here, they are more aimed at the American market I guess as they have been regular presenters and commentators at the Masters in America for years. They don't say all that much but then again you don't expect much noise in a golf game. The other person who speaks to you in the game is your caddie who regularly gives you ideas and instructions.
Sound rated 14/20
There are a variety of online modes which will keep you interested once you have played the career mode. These online modes include daily tournaments in which you play a chosen course and post your score online against everyone else who has taken part in the tournament. Usually when you play in one of these there is about 1000 other people who have taken part and whose scores are displayed on the leaderboard. Similar to the daily tournaments there is an option to take part in a weekly tournament in which you have to complete four rounds rather than one
Another online mode that you can play is called 'Play The Pros'. This is where you play the same course as is currently being played on in the USPGA tour and you post your scores against the real life pro tournament scores.
The main online mode is where you set up games with other players who are online and compete against each other in games like matchplay, strokeplay and two versus two. One problem you get here is people quitting early if they are losing.
The online modes are very good and will keep you playing the game in the hope of improving against other players online.
Please note that if you buy the game second hand EA will charge you about £10 before you are able to play the game online.
Online play rated 16/20
VALUE FOR MONEY
I bought the game for £40 the weekend it came out but definitely have had my value for money already out of it, as it is a game that is easy to pick up and play at any time and has a very long lifespan due to the long career mode and also the online play. The price will come down and I have already noticed it advertised at about £25 online. One thing that brings the value for money down a bit is the sneaky trick of making some of the career events on downloadable courses only which cost extra.
Value for money rating 16/20
OPINION AND OVERALL RATING
I would recommend Tiger Woods 12: The Masters to anyone who likes sports games and also anyone else looking for a more relaxed but enjoyable experience on xbox. It has made subtle positive changes rather than any huge strides on the previous games but is overall a very good game and one I will be going back to for a long time to come.
Overall Rating 81/100
Summary: Enjoyable golf game.