The Golf Club 2019 feat. PGA TOUR [PS4/XB1/PC]

Discussion in 'Other Games' started by Chris Davies, 29 August 2018.

  1. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    This was stealth-released yesterday after 2K have struck a deal with HB Studios. But I don't think we'll see the benefit of that investment until the next game.

    Personally, I'm really disappointed with it. The graphics are PS3-era (other than the lighting), the ball rolls like it's on ice from time to time, and barely anything has changed since the previous game.

    And yet it's still the best golf gameplay I've experienced.

    I think it's the golf equivalent of PES...
     
  2. cowden_harley

    cowden_harley MOANING PRICK

    3 October 2003
    Central Park
    Cowdenbeath FC
    LOL i was wondering about this as I am eager for a golf game. would you recommend?

    Its been getting good reviews
     
  3. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    It's all so barebones - coming from a game like F1 2018, it's absolutely shit, to be honest. There are no licensed players or even licensed player NAMES. You can't even input YOUR name - you have to be known as your gamertag on every leaderboard.

    You can develop "rivalries" with people - and it comes up e.g. "J. Carson vs FOOTIEGAMER"...

    You can rename and redesign all the players (in the qualifying tour and the PGA Tour itself) but A) you can't edit their ability (so you can't make sure Tiger Woods is any better than the next guy) and B) it would take you a good couple of days of editing. Again, it's like PES...

    The graphics are horrendous, and although there's online matchmaking, it's all one-off games (no tournaments) - unless you join a "society". There are public societies set up by the developers, but you'll find a bunch of cheats always occupy the top 10-20 positions, so unless you have a friend or two in the same society to provide you with some competition (you also need to have the same handicap to be in the same official society, unless you create your own two-player society, which is pointless), it's a bit dull.

    Yet the gameplay is really solid, excluding ball roll (wedge shots just don't stop rolling). The user-designed courses don't look great in the new game either, and the ball rolls all over the place because of how people who make their own courses tend to go overboard when making steep surfaces.

    For £45 it's an absolute disgrace in all honesty, it's a Unity-designed game with literal rough-edges. You can see thumb-sized pixel blocks at the edge of certain surfaces.

    But the gameplay is undeniably really good. The best I managed on the hardest difficulty settings last night was +2 after 18 holes. But you've already got guys shooting way, way, way below that.

    If I was a reviewer I'd give it full marks for the gameplay and 1/10 for everything else. So probably 6/10 overall...
     
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  4. cowden_harley

    cowden_harley MOANING PRICK

    3 October 2003
    Central Park
    Cowdenbeath FC
    Cheers Chris I will maybe hang off for a bit for a discount
     
    Chris Davies likes this.
  5. kamy100

    kamy100 Premiership

    9 June 2003
    Blackburn, UK
    Thanks Chris, you saved me £45 which I have just used to purchase F1 2018.
     
    Chris Davies likes this.
  6. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    I've just posted this on their forums. @Matt10, you play TGC, any thoughts?

    Hey guys.

    I'm an avid golf gamer, from the days of good old Links to now. But nobody wants to hear a year of backstory...

    I felt inspired to post because I'm not seeing my personal viewpoint represented by anybody else, and I'd like to give my feedback so it can (hopefully) be taken into serious consideration by the developers (who, unlike other devs, seem to actually read and respond to their community's thoughts).

    Coming from any other modern sports game in the same price bracket to this (and I'm not exclusively talking about big EA games - the most recent example I can think of is F1 2018), I've got to be honest here. It's a pretty nasty shock.

    With the absolute greatest of respect, in comparison to every other console sports game I've played, this feels like an "early access" title. Great gameplay or otherwise, I feel thoroughly ripped off given the price.

    1) In the first round I played (Web.com tour on a TPC course), my introduction to the game - I couldn't get over just how bad the graphics are for a game I've just forked over £45 for.

    Yes, lighting has improved, and from some very select angles you see something that would make a good screenshot. But the majority of the time it just isn't very good. These are just a few examples of what I mean...

    After every shot, during the ball flight, there's a massive (and impossible to ignore) hitch in the frame-rate that's been there since game one. Watching streams of the game before it launched, this stuck out like a sore thumb.

    There are some buildings in the backdrop that just look like giant white cubes - and this is on an official course. Your eye can't help but be drawn to them, the models are so poor. There's no finesse or photorealism to them whatsoever.

    But worst of all, this is LITERALLY how bushes are put together and how they appear at close range - in a game from 2018, running on a PS4 Pro:

    [​IMG]

    Again, I'm not exaggerating or being nasty here, bushes are literally just a few pieces of flat textures shoved together in an asterisk-style shape. That wobble in the wind.

    Even the golf ball has a halo around it like you've developed glaucoma whilst playing - and I'm sure turning off "bloom" fixes it but if that's your response, you're missing my point entirely (same if you say "it's a small team").

    The package, in terms of graphical complexity, just screams "indie", but the price isn't indie - and this isn't game one, it's game three. You can't produce something so far behind the visual authenticity of the Rory golf games and charge the same price for it - not without guys like me feeling thoroughly short-changed, anyway.

    Not that it matters now... You've got my money. Speaking of which; I was one of the guys who said I'd pay for DLC courses with them being official and scanned for accuracy - but let me tell you, there's absolutely no way I would now. They look and feel no different to community courses in my eyes.

    2) I've been praying for a career mode. I don't care that it's unlicensed (i.e. all fake names) - even though it seems insane that a PGA license doesn't grant you permission to use PGA player names - but after I've sat for 6-7 hours and painstakingly recreated the competitors from the real tour, why can't I share this work with others?

    If we can share courses, why can't we share golfers? If there's a licensing reason behind this (i.e. PGA wouldn't allow it), what is the point in the license, other than for the licensed courses which - again, I've got to be frank - look and feel no different to the community courses, as far as I'm concerned?

    This isn't even my biggest bugbear - nor the fact that I don't think we can alter player abilities (so if I insert e.g. Tiger Woods, I can't make him any better or worse than any other player - let alone make his short game or long game any different to any other player like you can in Links)...

    But I have to appear on the leaderboards etc. as my gamertag? You've gone all-in on licenses and "authenticity", then when you look at the scores (after every single hole) you've got - "B. Barker, N. Davies, G0LFER4LYFE84, T. Thomas"?

    3) Gameplay. Yes, it's the best gameplay out there (and it's why I play the game). But I would argue this in no way represents a significant upgrade (and not one worth a whole new game and a price increase).

    My first round, on the hardest club settings, I finished +2. It feels - and okay, I'm making a prediction here rather than stating a fact - like I'm going to be shooting silly scores in no time at all.

    It feels like the only thing that makes the game challenging* is ridiculous wind conditions, or wedge shots that roll for days - hence why setting the PGA Tour difficulty to "very hard" just sets every fairway and green to very firm / fast.

    If the only way you can make the game challenging is to essentially cheat you by making you play golf on an ice rink... It's not a great simulation, surely?

    [size=8pt](*Or alternatively, removing green grids etc., which I personally think is madness - you're looking at a flat image, you need assistance to see breaks.)[/size]

    I've not joined a society yet so I dread to think of the kinds of low scores people are already posting - yet it seems like the attitude towards this is that "it doesn't affect you so why do you care". Can we even lock societies to just the hardest clubs yet? To make it as realistic as possible, and as fair as possible?

    If you're playing in a society / tournament where every round you've got someone hitting scores not even the pros can manage... It's just not golf, is it? It's super-robo-impossible golf. You expect that of Mario Golf, and EA's golf games too (because realism was never their biggest aim). But I thought TGC was supposed to be different.

    ----------------------

    I just really cannot accept that this is a big enough change from TGC2, in any area (including gameplay), to NOT ONLY be an entirely new edition, but to be a FULL-PRICE TITLE. Sorry, but it's not in the same league as any other console sports title that costs this much money.

    If the price increase is to pay for the PGA branding, I'm sorry, but it's absolutely 100% not worth it in my eyes, given what little it's added to the product (official courses that I don't think are any different to the others, and a career mode that, although much appreciated, would be just the same without the branding).

    I'm hoping for lots of patches that upgrade things but if this entry constitutes a new release, I can't see there being any development that won't just become TGC 2020. But I won't be buying it based on my experience here.

    All of this is absolute genuine feedback - if I was a troll, I would have posted a couple of lines and a few insults. I hope it's taken in the spirit in which it is intended (constructive criticism, from a disappointed gamer).
     
    Matt10 and Placebo like this.
  7. mattmid

    mattmid Champions League

    15 December 2011
    This sounds like why I still play Links :)
     
    cowden_harley likes this.
  8. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
    Had a few rounds of this and it's very good. A nice step up from TGC2, which was already good. The graphics are very good and courses look beautiful, even the 6 licensed ones. Once again, there will be an infinite amount of them to play as time goes by. Putting, chipping and driving all feel very intuitive and an improvement over the last game. The short game feels great. Menus and PGA representation are very slick. The swing feedback mechanism works well. Heavy rough still needs to be tougher though and there needs to be more spin on a lot of approach shots.
     
  9. bsmaff

    bsmaff International

    11 August 2003
    Welwyn Garden
    Exeter City
    Are you and Chris playing the same game?
     
    Placebo likes this.
  10. cowden_harley

    cowden_harley MOANING PRICK

    3 October 2003
    Central Park
    Cowdenbeath FC
    LOL that was my thoughts lol
     
  11. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
    Dunno chaps. I played a shed load of the TGC2 and enjoyed it, despite it's issues. This is a solid improvement and in my opinion is the best golf sim since the 2000 Links games. It's not a AAA title though and doesn't have the big budget bells and whistles of the old Tiger Woods game, which I disliked. For me, it's akin to Big Ants cricket and and Tennis games, which are rough around the edges in places, but very have enjoyable gameplay.
     
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  12. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    Then you can't sell it for the same price as those games.

    That's the problem I have. The previous games were around the £20 mark. This is a whole new product, sold for £45, but it's still an indie game with terrible graphics, featuring the same lines of commentary they were using in the first game (!), that ships with six courses (no better than the community-made courses IMO), and with a career mode full of fake players and imaginary courses. Despite having the biggest license in golf.

    But even the gameplay's got issues. Lots of people are pointing out on the forums now that if you want to play an iron to a small green tucked in behind a bunker, you just cannot stop it rolling off. The game hates backspin now.

    When you put the PGA Mode on "Very Hard" - all it does is change the course conditions on every course to "very firm fairways" and "very fast greens"... I mean, come on. That's like putting PES on Superstar, so it makes the wind blow 50mph in the direction of your goal.

    If it was £20 I'd say, the gameplay's great, who cares about that stuff. For £45, sorry, it doesn't wash. Not when it's so similar to the previous game.

    It's even got the same "freeze" after teeing off while the game's figuring out where the ball's going to go! Unity is clearly a piece of shit!
     
  13. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
    Other than the lack of backspin, I disagree with all that really. The game is 49.99 her in the states, which I think is fair. However, I would have paid the full price, 'cause I love me some good digital golf. There are some gameplay issues but nothing game breaking. It general it plays and looks great. I haven't experienced any freezing while teeing off. Just the sheer amount of courses available and to come makes the package worthwhile for me. The start of the new PGA licensing is a nice addition too. Anyway, different strokes for different... (pun intended).:)
     
  14. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    How many of those user-made courses are good though, let's be honest... I read an HB Studios press release a while ago that talked about the "thousands" of courses available, but at least 75% of them are guys who've pressed the "random course generator" button and then published it, or worse, they've made a few holes and then got bored.

    Don't get me wrong, there are some fantastic real-world recreations of courses on there. But when you're relying on others to provide the content (the courses ARE the game remember, it's not like a football game where a stadium is just the surrounding graphics - how well courses are designed dictates whether the game is good or bad)...

    I've lobbied for better course creation tools - on PC, there are guys who fade a Google Maps window over the editor screen so that they can make brilliant recreations of courses (which I can't do on a PS4). I wish they'd improve the editor and release it as a free tool.

    But more importantly, if we could import elevation data depending on Google Maps coordinates, which is out there, it'd make real-world courses a lot more realistic a lot more quickly, I think. But with this PGA license, I've no doubt they're going to move away from user-created content on the double (even though IMO the licensed courses look no better than the community ones).
     
  15. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
    Well, if they do move away from the user created courses that would be a bummer. But they haven't so no need to borrow misery. But, I dunno, I think you're being too harsh. It's a frickin' good golf game, in my opinion of course.
     
  16. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
  17. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
    Seems like he/she doesn't have any major complaints other than multiplayer, which I have no idea about as I don't play games online. I like the commentary. It's mature and not too over the top. Definitely don't want the smart-ass comedy act of Faherty and McCord from the Tiger Woods days. I like the sound in general. Ball sounds, club sounds, crowd etc... all very serviceable.
     
  18. Gunslinger

    Gunslinger Championship

    5 September 2016
  19. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    Played online last night with a friend and it sums up my experience with the game in a nutshell.

    We went into matchmaking and into "alternate shots" matchplay mode - it took 15 minutes to find enough players (this is on launch day - give it a couple of weeks and I think you'll really struggle to find any players in matchmaking outside of the society events).

    We started off and within a few minutes it became apparent that every shot from our opponents was rendered in a really jerky, 5-6 frames-per-second motion. They'd swing through the ball, nothing would happen, and then a second later the ball magically flew off.

    Not only that, but the ball clones itself upon contact...
    One ball stays where it was hit from; the other flies off towards the hole.

    For £20 I wouldn't care. For £45, it's a bit of a disgrace.

    But as we pulled a 2-DWN deficit back to AS on the 17th, only to lose it on the 18th because my friend hit the ball into the water, I thought to myself, "I really enjoyed that" and "I want to play this again immediately". (Unfortunately, we couldn't find another game.)
     
  20. Matt10

    Matt10 Champions League

    5 February 2004
    Really good post, Chris. I haven't even ventured into the game yet as I'm waiting for payday to arrive.

    As someone who runs the true sim tour there, I need to address the gameplay ease first and foremost. Noone will play these HB courses either as we use real courses as much as possible from designers.

    Regarding club difficulty, this was the hot topic for a while there. We felt master was way too easy - just way way way too easy. Golf games have this back-forward motion, which does not represent the real game at all. The last game that got that right was the option in which Tiger Woods 14 allowed you to rotate the swing arc diagonally, so it felt more like an in-to-out swing path. I've been asking for this for years on TGC.

    I look forward to the game just for the sake of a new game. Played all I can of TGC2, but still enjoying it. Hopefully we can get the game as realistic as possible, to the resources we're given.

    I'm with you on graphics as well - noticed that on many streams. I know my PC will not be able to handle some of the highest settings either, so those cardboard trees you posted would be a welcome upgrade as mine appear and disappear like Houdini!
     
    Chris Davies likes this.
  21. PRO_TOO

    PRO_TOO Team Heffernan

    25 May 2003
    Rego Park, Germany
    Team Heffernan
    Since last weekend I’m sick at home and what better game to play with one stick when you can’t use the right hand for a week?!

    Been playing TGC, TGC2 (lately) and nearly everything that’s released since Links386! That was a game you had to start using a command line in DOS, kids... ;)

    The latest version is pretty much like its 2 predecessors! The core gameplay is still solid and the best feature of the title, imo. The swing mechanics are nice with master clubs. But some minor weird gameplay mechanics remain.
    The graphics got a little better as aliasing is not flickering as much as before and some nice weather effects are seen. Animations are good but could be more and more in variety. What about walking cut scenes and such?!
    The sound is ok. The ping of a driver is nice while crowd and commentary are just ok. A lot of potential wasted here too.
    The PGA license is poorly implemented; only 6 real courses and no real players. At least it keeps me motivated playing the AI when on Tour.
    Like always there is hundreds of free user created courses.

    All together it’s an ok/good game like the years before. For 20 bucks there isn’t much out there in regards of simulation. I see it as an (small) update.

    The big next step in golf games (sports games in general) might be coming with the next consoles in 2021/22. let’s see.

    But as i said: i can play it with the left hand only. :D

    “BABA BOOEY!!!“
    :EASY:
     
    Last edited: 2 April 2019
  22. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    That's the problem - it feels like a game you buy because you HAVE TO, almost, because there's no other choice. Which almost always results in a bad game.

    There are two modern golf games left (three if you include Rory McIlroy PGA Tour, which died a long time ago and plays like you're hitting a sticky ball on a velcro green)...

    TGC, and Jack Nicklaus Perfect Golf on the PC - which I bought out of sheer frustration with TGC, and shortly after I bought it the developers abandoned it because they found their fortune in the physical golf simulator world (and I believe their software is used by Sky Sports now), so even if JNPG was great (which it's not - it doesn't have a career mode for starters), that's dead too.

    For me, the gameplay in TGC isn't great. On the hardest club set, from day two or three of having the game, I've not mishit a single shot. I've hit bad shots, because of my judgement, but the execution is always perfect - and hitting straight shot after straight shot after straight shot (320+ yards a time) gets unbelievably boring.

    You can make it harder by turning off green grids etc. but A) that doesn't affect the tee-to-green, and B) I find it a bizarre thing to do anyway - you're playing in a 3D world through a 2D interface (i.e. your TV) so how else can you see the break on a green? You're not just "making it harder", you're doing the equivalent of taking your glasses off or keeping one eye shut "just to make it a challenge". That's insane, in my opinion.

    Add to that how simple the career mode is - where turning up the difficulty level turns on high winds permanently for the rest of your career (which just goes to show you how thoroughly basic the game is, what a shit shortcut to "difficulty" that is)...

    As well as how terrible the new licensed/unlicensed system is (where official courses look as bad as unofficial ones, and they all look, feel and play the same)...

    ...honestly, I think it's a pretty bad game.

    But they get a free pass (like PES does to a large degree) because A) they're not EA, B) there's no competition and C) they're "all about gameplay".

    When you look back to Links 2003 - in the career mode, which you could customise to death, AI players had attributes (like the players in PES/FIFA), and you got a real sense that they were playing as they would in real life. It was another world from TGC, and harder to master. 15+ years ago.

    @Matt10, where do you stand on TGC at the minute? Do you think I'm being harsh?
     
    Last edited: 2 April 2019
    mattmid likes this.
  23. PRO_TOO

    PRO_TOO Team Heffernan

    25 May 2003
    Rego Park, Germany
    Team Heffernan
    I watched some TW14 gameplay videos before installing TGC2019. :) great fun that was on PS3!!

    I don’t think you are to harsh. It’s your honest opinion. And you are not wrong.
    I see the parallels to PES. maybe that’s why I am ok with it. Same reasons maybe.
     
  24. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    Tiger Woods 14 is the second best golf game out there after Links 2003, for me. I just hate that I can't download all the DLC for it - and that it wasn't released on PC so that it could be modded to look like a modern game.

    If I knew what I was doing - and if it was even possible (I have no idea) - I'd mod/break my old PS3 just to be able to download the DLC from somewhere and play it as a complete golf experience.
     
  25. mattmid

    mattmid Champions League

    15 December 2011
    Totally agree. Links is still the only golf game I play. I bought JN like you and apart from looking nice it doesn't have a lot going for it. In fact checking on steam now I have apparently played 7 hours. In 2 years, not a great advert for it is it!? Also it seems to kill my pc with the graphics card fan and pc fans working overtime even when my player is just standing on the tee waiting to hit. I usually come back to give it another try once in a while and last about 2 holes before losing interest.
     
  26. Matt10

    Matt10 Champions League

    5 February 2004
    It still has a lot to improve on, especially in the swing mechanic. Using tempo as the main requirement is a bit non-golf. The golf swing, in general, is hard to master. I love that TW14 had the swing axis at a diagonal vs just straight up and down like TGC19 does. Not sure if TW12 was the same, but I've been wanting a different swing mechanic for a while.

    In terms of reading the break, etc. Right, it's never going to be perfect without the grids, but we make the best out of it. I've provided putting tips, etc, on how to read the breaks. Once you start rolling them in, it's a pretty rewarding feeling.

    Here's a video I put out couple months ago to introduce the True Sim Tour:

     
    PRO_TOO likes this.
  27. Dennis_87

    Dennis_87 Championship

    27 September 2017
    Let's see what George Carlin,one of the goats,has to say about golf...lol

     
  28. mattmid

    mattmid Champions League

    15 December 2011
    I finally took the plunge on GC2 when it was on sale on steam for £17.99 a couple of weeks back. Got to say I'm loving it so far (PC version). Lack of backspin is my only real complaint so far. Love the putting, really seems like you get a 'feel' for the greens and like real life, get in the wrong place on the green and it's going to be hard to get down in two. It's a shame there are no real players and like @Chris Davies mentioned, to edit them would take hours and hours and other than the handicap figure you've no real way to gauge who to name what to get a realistic ranking. Also the fact you can't rename yourself is a bit ridiculous! I guess the real names may come now they've dipped their toe into the PGA licence. But other than those quibbles I'm really enjoying it.
     
  29. Chris Davies

    Chris Davies Chief PESsimist Staff

    14 May 2003
    Tranmere Rovers
    I have to admit, since moaning about how PGA Tour 2019 is fucked online (and it is, the scores that people post are so outside the realm of real golf that it's pathetic)...

    ...I've been really enjoying it offline. I didn't really buy it to play offline, and there's a million things missing from the career mode, but it's a good challenge and they've changed the game for the better in their patches.

    My biggest hate is that upping the difficulty in your career just PERMANENTLY sets fairways and greens to firm-and-fast, which is absolutely stupid - the worst and laziest development shortcut I've ever seen in a sports game (and I'm including the old PES games where the AI would cheat you on the higher difficulties).

    But the gameplay is so good and so difficult to master (for me, not for anyone online it would seem) that I'm having a good time regardless. The gameplay in 2019 is much better than 2, in my opinion. Really good. As long as you're playing offline.

    Rumour has it that a new one will be announced soon (also, it was free through Games with Gold on Xbox One last month) - for me, they desperately need to...

    * Allow more AI player editing options (give players attributes)
    * Prevent people online picking easy difficulties and scoring -18 consistently
    * Upgrade the graphics system (even the licensed courses look terrible)
    * Allow you to play against the AI "live", watching them play - playing alone sucks
     
  30. mattmid

    mattmid Champions League

    15 December 2011
    I just realised I meant 2019 (which I guess you figured anyway as I mentioned the pga!).

    That's disappointing to hear about the difficulty level permanently setting fairways and greens to firm-and-fast. That really is lame. A big part of the fun/challenge is varying fairways and greens, particularly if it's round to round as well as course to course.

    I did notice looking at some stats of courses that some of the best ranked scores and other stats were ridiculous, online really does bring out the worst in people.

    I'd agree with all of that bar the graphics which look really good to me (maybe a PC/PS4 difference going on there??) It would be excellent to have the option to play alongside an AI player when playing your career. The career mode is great but it just lacks that bit of immersion that something like that would give it I think.
     

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