Golf with Your Friends is minigolf game that allows you to play with up to 12 of your friends on 13 courses with different themes like Museum, Space Station and Haunted house. The game’s pretty straight forward: there’s a ball and there’s a hole. You have 2 minutes or 12 strokes to get the ball into the hole. Otherwise, you’ll score a 14 on that hole. It’s not turn-based, so everyone plays at the same time. The balls won’t collide unless you turn the setting on. There are a bunch of other settings too, like the amount of gravity, random ball shapes, and power-ups. These make the game into more of a party game with much less predictability and it’s really fun with a big group of players. You can also personalize your golf ball by changing the color or putting a hat on it.
Now that I’ve thrown around the word “fun”, it’s time to switch over to frustration. At least that’s what happened to our 3-player group when we went in for some “casual good mood games” and the night ended in the small hours with one of us pulling the plug on their PS4 in frustration.
Almost every course has parts that are unbelievably difficult, especially the few last holes at almost any course. We ended up having scores of 8 and upwards on almost every hole on some courses. Part of it is probably playing the courses for the first time, but it’s still just brutal. The holes have so many tricky spots that you end up going out of bounds in that you’re on your 12th shot before you know it. You have to completely memorize the holes and get better through trial and error. This is acceptable, but when you randomize each players’ ball shape and someone gets handed something like the acorn or the cone shaped ball, the holes are just impossible to complete when you have to do specific jumps over gaps. I wish there would be more down-to-earth courses that have fewer mandatory jumps and more loops and things you’d actually find at a minigolf course. Courses more suitable for the whacky, party side of the game.
There are different modes in addition to the classic like hockey, dunk, explore, and party. Hockey and dunk modes have different kind of holes and hockey also has a puck instead of a ball. Explore is a mode where there’s no time or shot limit so you can get to know the holes. Party mode has all the power-up, collision, and jump settings enabled with a bit looser time and shot limit than the classic mode. I literally just found out what the party mode is, and I think that we would have avoided a lot of curse words if we had chosen to play that instead of the classic mode.
At the end of the day, it’s a fun game that’s really challenging and requires some trial and error to be able to exceed in. My advice is to not take it too seriously, don’t worry about the par number the first few times and just have fun shooting a ball around. On a scale of triple bogey (+3) to albatross (-3), I’ll give this game a solid par (E).
Photos are screenshots taken by the author.
Developer: Blacklight Interactive
Platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS, Linux
Release date: January 29, 2016 (Full release on May 20, 2020)
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