King of Clubs Review

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Graphics: 7.0
Sound : 7.0
Gameplay : 8.5
Multiplayer : 8.5
Overall : 8.5
Review by Neil Sloan
I loooove to golf! I am not real good at it but, I love it. No matter if I am actually playing it, playing Tiger Woods on the Wii, or playing a quirky putt-putt game on the PC called king of Clubs. I love to play. I received a putt-putt game entitiled King of Clubs the other day and as it is a golf game, I was instantly drawn to it and installed it. Did I have fun? Is it good? Is it still installed on my puter? Well. I am not going to tell you yet. You will just have to read further.

As usual, sound and graphics come first in a GH review. However, since King of Clubs is not popping in either category, I am just going to condense both into one.

It is not that the sound and graphics are terrible, tis just that there is nothing that really stands out. There is different music for the different levels through the game and for the most part, they all fit the levels they are designed for and you can unlock more as you go. There are not many sound effects to speak of, cause let's face it, it is a putting game! Not many sound effects needed here. As far as the graphics go, they could have been better. It seems the only option for the graphics is low, med, and high. High really doesn't seem like it is all that much. I would like to know the resolution that is in but, it doesn't tell you that.

The design of the levels is not bad though! You go from prehistoric to tech and then some! The game itself is 3d but, within the levels there are 2d cut outs of different things depending on the level you are on. I have not really seen this before in a game. For example, they are sharks in the waters that are hazards, however, they are just fins on a stick that bob up and down and you can see the wood work on the back as they go around or when you are on the other side. I really like this as you don't see it everyday. The water, lava, and other things are not the kinda things you are going to see in triple A games but, it really fits this game.

I have spent two days playing King of Clubs for the review. Is it because I tourtured myself playing it? Noooo! I had fun and play it on my off time whilst I am on the puter! Your basic job in King of Clubs is to win! (Duh!) When you start, you have some options. Career, Tournament, Multiplayer, and Gopher Hunt. In career mode, you start off with a little bit of money and your basic putter. Before you start a course, you get to shop in the pro shop for different putters, balls, ball collors, ball trails, mulligans, and other things to help you along your career. At first, there is not much in the pro shop but, this will change as you progress. The first course is the pre-historic course. It consists of nine holes that have more than way one to get to the hole. Every hole has a way to get a hole-in-one but, sometimes it is not that obivious or you need a different putter to do it. There is also money to be had on every hole. Usually, you will have to decide wether to get the money or par the hole. It really does make you think and that is a good thing! The goal for each course is to get par or less. Each par or lower score on a hole gives you a point. Five points is bronze, seven points is silver, and all nine points is gold. You medal decides you money for the course and what is unlocked in the pro shop. Most people will opt to play the courses more than once just to try to achieve the gold, get the monies, and try for the all elusive hole-in-one. When you do get a hole-in-one, you do recieve more money so, it is worth giving it a shot. After you medal a course the next one is unlocked. There are two nine hole courses for each level. This is basically your career mode.

Before I move on to the other types of play, I will go over the pro shop a little bit as you will be spending a lot of time in here! As I stated before, in career mode, there is a limited amount of things in the pro shop. Fore (hehe) example, the pee-wee putter. This is good to use for close shots or shots you don't want going into a hazard. As you win more things show up in the shop. I'll list just a few. The silver chip putter. This allows you to chip at a steep angle but does not go that far. Good to use if you are right against an obstacle. Laser sited putter. Gives you a longer site for those longer shots. Then there are the balls. Things like the flying ball which, as you would suspect, stays in the air when used off a jump or with one of the chip putters. Or the speed ball that has some serious speed allowing you to get around the hole with a quickness. Mulligans are also available and they will cost ya but, they are a necessity as you will no doubt screw up a shot or two. (God knows I do) There is much more to be bought here but, I won't ruin it for ya. I should mention that in multi play, everything is available in the pro shop. Of course, you start with a limited amount of money. One more thing I should mention. You can't buy things between holes so, if you need something, you had better get it before you start the course!

Now for the tournament mode. Just like the career mode, you will start with limited money unless you played the career mode first, in which case, you will have your winnings and pro shop unlocks with you. The tournament mode pits you against the course pro and you are to beat him/her. The scoring is almost like in career mode. The difference is that you get a point for beating the pro but the scoring remains the same so, beat him on five holes and you get a bronze. Beat the pro, move on. This is a great way to perfect your stroke as the pro is usually pretty damn good! Got it? Good...moving on.

Multiplayer is just that. You and up to three other friends compete for putt master! (Ok, there is no 'putt-master' in the game but, there should be just for bragging rights) Everything in the pro shop is open when you start multiplayer. Everyone starts with $2000 to purcase the goodies in the pro shop. Use is wisely though or you are going to get a butt kickin. You can pick from any course you have opened. You can play just one hole, (although, I don't know why you would do this) nine holes, twelve holes, eighteen holes, and I think one more but, I can't remmenber. You can choose your favorite course to play from or go random which mixes up holes from all the courses you have unlocked which is my personal favorite. After you spend your money in the pro shop, you hit the course. Now, multi player is a little different from the career and tournament modes as the lowest score wins. There is no point system here. Also, there is more than money bags spread across the holes. There are also bags of balls which give you three random balls you don't have to pay for. This is a very handy bag and I suggest you get it at all costs. There is also a question mark coin. This will give your opponent a random club and ball. It would be nice if you could pick but, ya can't. After you hit the coin, on their next turn for one stroke, they have to use whatever was given to them. Sometimes it is good. For example, getting a chip putter and a free ball other times however, you get some things that just don't help such as a pee-wee putter and a curve ball. Bad for the person that got it (for the most part) but, good for you. There are other things spread through the holes but, I won't spoil it for ya. That is your multi player mode. Fun stuff!

The gopher hunt mode is a tad different from the rest. Every hole has gopher mounds with gophers popping out of them. Your job is to get them all! I have not played in this mode too much so, I dpn't know exactly what happens when you get all the gophers in a course. It is a nifty little diversion from the rest of the game though.


Overall, I really enjoy King of Clubs for the PC. There are a ton of levels, 96 I believe plus bonus areas to keep you putting for a while. The pro shop is great as well. The off the wall things you can buy really makes the game enjoyable and changes the way you can play the holes. My only gripes are the resolution option and some control issues. I would really like to be able to see what resolution I am in and be able to turn it up higher than you can in the game. The controls are kinda wonky. Holding the left mouse button and turning lets you aim but sometimes, it doesn't respond that well. Right cliking brings up the power bar and then you have to pull back the mouse then click the left mouse button to hit. I can't see why they couldn't have made this a tad easier. Other than that, it is a pretty solid title that is not leaving my computer for a while. I really enjoy playing and I am sure you will as well.

Scores:

Sound: 7 The music is kinda annoying and the sound effects are, well, what you would expect from a putting game

Graphics: 7 For what it is, the graphics are good but the lack of the resolution thing brought down the score

Gameplay: 8.5 Lots of courses and lots of options made this title really enjoyable

Multi Player: 8.5 Great fun! Especially when you get to screw over your opponent

Overall: 8.5 I really like the game! Lots of things to keep you playing and tons of levels. It is a cheap game so, if you like puzzles and golf, just get it!