e Love Golf! is the work of Camelot Software Planning — the team behind the excellent Mario Tennis game from a few years ago — and Capcom. And yet it fails to live up to most of the high standards set by either developer.
While the game's failings are not spectacular they add up to deliver a lackluster experience. First up are visuals; put quite simply there are better looking golf games out there for the Wii. The early courses of the game don't have nearly as much detail as some of the ones that appear later on. This is an issue, as it's hard to maintain interest in a golf game if there is no vista to hook you in as you travel around the course.
Look closely: the computer will
become very, very good at this
very, very suddenly.This does change as you earn new courses but the increase in course detail is only a result of the locale in which the courses reside. As for the layout of the courses, there is nothing overtly spectacular too them, though they do get progressively more difficult — which is a reward for the player who craves a challenge.
Speaking of difficulty, the game comes across as trying to target both the casual gamer as well as the more core golf gamer. Early challenges and one-player-versus-computer matches are incredibly simple. One would actually have to work to lose them. Once these early events are cleared the difficulty is increased exponentially. Whereas before the computer misses easy putts it's suddenly able to make even long putts effortlessly. While the increase in challenge should be welcome to golf game enthusiasts, the spike in difficulty is more likely to confuse and frustrate casual gamers.
We Love Golf!'s biggest weakness is in its swing mechanics. The game doesn't the Wiimote like it would a golf club — other golf games for the Wii have been able to do this, so it is a shame that Camelot didn't. I can understand why Camelot would want to make the mechanics more open to a casual gaming audience. But given the difficulty of the AI, having a simplistic interface doesn't make much sense, as expert players will want to be able to have fine control over their placement of the ball.
Setting the point of impact on the ball is very simple affair, which means it doesn't give players a lot of options. Fade and Draw shots are done by twisting the Wiimote left or right, and top or backspin is added by pressing the 1- or 2-button. Applying these effects to the ball is an all-or-none effect — you can't add a little bit of top or backspin.
This comes as a real reward.Setting your desired amount of power for the shot is accomplished by swinging the Wiimote to the corresponding spot. As soon as you move the Wiimote back, a ghost-marker starts to move to where your swing marker is. This system allows you to slightly adjust your power right before you make your swing. Once the markers meet they move back down to the ball marker. It's your swing at this point controlling shot accuracy. The only trouble with the power system is that the game places a recommended shot marker on the power bar. A good tool to have for people who are inexperienced for golf games, it'll annoy people who are more experienced. Worse, the power suggestion cannot be turned off.
The game also boasts the ability to play online, which is actually pretty fun. Holes are random and there is a shot clock to ensures that games move along in a timely manner. There is the chance of distraction occurring — messages can be sent while you make your swing, so be wary of people spamming comments in playing a close game.
The best thing going for We Love Golf! is its replayability. There are over a dozen characters to unlock, as well as costumes for them; and, too, the chance to get the ability to play as your Miis in-game. Alarge variety of courses to choose keeps things from getting stale, and there are accuracy challenges for those who want to work on improving their game.