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Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09 Review - Wii

6.5
Gameplay: 7 stars 7
Graphics: 5 stars 5
Audio: 5 stars 5
Multiplayer: 7 stars 7
Innovation: 5 stars 5
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Introduction

So Tiger Woods has returned for another year, but this time he’s bring some rather significant changes to the table. The most minor of these is the name – the new ‘All-Play’ subtitle reflects the casual gaming bent of the Wii and the gameplay additions made to help anyone have fun when playing. But does this come at the expense of depth for the golf pro? Read on to find out.

Gameplay

Anyone with a Wii has no doubt spent a couple of minutes in Wii Sports’ golf mode, and then switched back to bowling when they got annoyed with fighting imprecise controls and being unable to make accurate, low-power shots when needed. The big question with Tiger Woods 09, then, is whether a few years of Wii experience has produced better golfing controls than that launch title. The answer is yes.

The unfortunate thing about this game is that despite it being the best golfing title I’ve played on the Wii to date, next year’s update with the MotionPlus will undoubtedly blow it out of the water thanks to the superior sensitivity and better tracking of rotational movement. Nonetheless, this year’s edition features pretty impressive control. It’s really quite easy to precisely nail the distance and power of each shot. You can change between clubs to adjust the range, then simply hold the Wii remote downwards, hold B, wind up and swing away. You can add spin to the ball in mid-flight by pressing a direction on the D-pad and then waggling the controller until it hits the ground, allowing for a bit of adjustment if you realise you failed to consider the wind speed and direction when lining up a shot.

In Standard control mode, you can simply manoeuvre the target zone left and right to where you want it with the D-pad, and you have the ability to see a preview of your putt’s path once per shot. While this definitely improves your ability to sink putts, it never feels too cheap thanks to the limit of one preview per shot. You can’t correct a poor angle and then double check you’ve got it right. If you swap to the All-Play control scheme, you get to see a projected flight path of the ball for each shot, which makes it easier for beginners to see how they are lined up.

The Advanced setting theoretically forces you to add in draw and fade as you swing by twisting your wrist appropriately, rather than just using the D-pad. This is where the MotionPlus will help out next year, because unfortunately the Wii Remote is just not sensitive enough to pick up subtle movements, forcing you to really overdo the twisting if you want to see any effect. As a result, most of the time it feels basically the same as Standard mode. You also lose the putt preview, leaving you reliant on experience and the visual overlay showing the slope of the green to plan your approach. Of the three options, most people will ...

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