Over the past years EA Sports has really been beefing up their lineup with some of the best sports games we have ever seen. One in particular that has been my favorite is the Tiger Woods PGA Tour series, that has been deemed the best golf game over the past few years, with little to no competition. Now EA Sports are back on the links to see if they can keep the magic alive in Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005 for the PlayStation 2.
One of the most interesting choices EA Sports has made with its golf series is the game under the Tiger Woods name since it was created. Now we all know that Tiger is in sort of a slump right now and that he lost his #1 in the world ranking, but let me tell all of you that his video game isn’t following suit.
To start this review let’s talk about the Game Face feature that was introduced in the 2004 edition of Tiger Woods. It was this feature that allowed you to really customize every single little part of your golfer’s appearance. This was one of the most complex and customizable create a player options ever created. Now get this in 2005 you get Game Face II, which is even better then before. Now with more options and an easier way to go about it, you have a great amount you can mess around with in Tiger Woods 2005.
One of the most talked about features of Tiger Woods 2005 was the "Tiger Proofing", which was supposed to allow you to really take control and customize the courses. And that it does let you do, you will be able to customize all of the courses in the game in the manner you want. The only problem is that it just seems to simple, the Tiger Proofing mode seems like a cheap course editor that doesn’t have a whole lot of options. You are pretty limited to exactly what you can and cannot do in the game. The idea behind the Tiger Proofing was a great one, and at first playing around with it seems enjoyable enough, but in the end it just doesn’t have enough depth.
In my eyes the most welcome and impressive addition to the game is the Legends Mode that is divided up into two sections. You have the Legends Tour which puts you up against six of the best golfers of all time being Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan, Gary Player, Seve Ballesteros, and of course, Tiger Woods. In this mode you will have to go up against the legends but before you get there you will have to go through some of the EA created golfers. The other half of the legends mode is the Scenario mode, which throws a ton of different objectives at you similar to the previous scenario modes of years past.
One of the new gameplay enhancements that may upset some of the diehard Tiger fans is the Tiger vision. When you finally get your ball onto the green you will have one chance a round (unless you change it), to click Tiger Vision. What this does is it tells you where to place the marker to sink the putt. Now many of you may be against this, and I will tell you right now I am not a huge fan of it, and I choose not to use the Tiger Vision. For those of you who are wondering why they would put this addition in, it is to help those who are first starting out in the series, and to have a way to sink those longer putts.
For the most part though the game mechanics of Tiger Woods 2005 have remained pretty close to last year’s edition, with a few minor tweaks here and there. There are actually a few less courses this year around, which leaves us with fourteen courses, which is still a rather large number.
The online support was first available last year and is again this year and similar to last year everything still seems very functional. EA Sports really didn’t add or remove anything from the online mode, which looks identical to last year’s.
Overall Tiger Woods 2005 sticks with the winning formula and adds two legends modes that really top it off for me. The Game Face II can be a bit creepy but is an amazing tool, and the tiger proofing could have had more customization. But overall we are looking at one great golf game that stuck with the wining formula.
In years past we have seen a Tiger series that seemed to hit its peak in the visuals a few years ago and kind of just rolled with it the last two. Were there any major visual upgrades this time around?
Tiger Woods 2005 takes the winning formula from the previous games (similar to the gameplay) except for this time doesn’t do a whole lot to improve upon it. The graphics of Tiger 2005 don’t seem to be much different then before. In the game you will find that the one and only thing upgraded from last year is the lighting effects. When you play at different times of the day you will notice that the lighting effects seem to change up very nicely. Besides that the character models seem solid and so do the courses. Each course does a great job of accurately depicting the course they are trying to represent.
Overall I was just a little disappointed that there weren’t more upgrades to the visuals of Tiger Woods 2005, as it seemed time for some. But nevertheless EA Sports stuck with what worked and it still does look quite good.
I really believe that this year’s version of Tiger Woods 2005 is a lot more fun then last years. Not because of the Tiger Vision, or because of really any new gameplay enhancements. To me it just seems like EA Sports did a nice job of correcting some of the problems that were found in last year’s version, as well as adding the great Legends mode. The Legends Mode isn’t as deep as it could be, but for as long as it lasts its quite fun to play. Along with a slue of other modes, you are looking at a game that really is a whole lot of fun.
Although there wasn’t any huge changes in this years version of Tiger Woods PGA Tour the ones that were made were good enough to create a game that has all the makings of a great game. For anyone looking to hit the links on their PS2, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005 is the way to go.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.