Have you ever wanted to run your own golf course? Call it innovation or just plain 'tycoon’ riding; SimGolf is just another average management tycoon with a twist.
I was extremely interested in SimGolf, after reading a lot of previews, knowing Sid Meier had a great deal to do with the game and that the game had Potential (just like most tycoons around today). The game concentrates on the Course Creation, in the most simplistic way possible: you have to lay the tiles the way you see fit, your Visitors (AI) then rates your course based on its own variables and decides what 'type’ of course (such as easy, imaginative, long...) it is. Other aspects of the gameplay include laying buildings that enhance the overall visitor abilities and golf experience, Playing your own courses (although in a rather limited approach) and even be challenged against “PRO” golfers to win money and experience.
My greatest concern of the game is its interface, Sid (I presume) had agreed/created an interface so similar to The Sims’ (Also from the same EA Family) that I was both shocked and amused in the worst way possible, the game lacks the complexity of a serious game and is not to be considered a Serious tycoon, it is, in my opinion, directed towards younger sectors (lets call it “My First Tycoon: SimGolf”). The characters in the game are much more 'personal’, for a reason, it seems you can mix’n’match pairs in order to create havoc (or harmony) between the golfers.
In my opinion, this is not to be considered a serious Sim(ulation) but more of a young Tycoon with a rather large (personalized) twist. If you’re old enough to play Serious Sam and expecting another mind sassy game from Sid, you’ll be deeply disappointed.
The engine feels like a modified version of the Civilization 3 engine, the graphics are crisp, bright and very cheerful. The graphics engine isn’t 3D and does not try to imitate one; you can swing around like The Sims, only the graphics are fully 2D. The character models are also spirits, so no great detail has been giving on the actual Goal course, though when they speak, you can see a nicely rendered 3D character face to represent the spirit talking.
The graphics are more than enough, very close to excellence for a game of this kind (although a photo-realistic game would be nice too
The Sounds / Music:
I was quite disappointed in the music selection of the game (which randomly changes every now and then), the most sensible description is 'dull’, nothing more and nothing less. The one thing about the sound portion of the game are the sound effects, like the sound of the club hitting the golf ball or when a character is annoyed, on the other hand, the characters don’t express themselves in English but speak in The Sims language (which is a serious turnoff).
I’ve met two types of gamers, one that enjoyed this game a lot and one that despised it. I can honestly say that if you call yourself an intellectual being, you will hate this game, but if you adored The Sims, you might want to check this one out.