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Gamer Tuesday

June 25, 2013

Pap the Disney Gamer's Highlights Erik's Favorite Disney Things Week: Disney Golf

Developed by: T&E SOFT Inc.

System: PlayStation 2

Disney Golf

This week, we are celebrating everything that Who's Who Wednesday writer Erik Anderson loves in the Disney universe! It is a week that already showed us the joys of a bountiful Hawaiian feast and Hidden Mickey's in an exotic bazaar in Adventureland! Now, we are digesting the feast and taking a break from all the adventure for a nice, relaxing game of golf... Disney style! Today we are taking a look at Erik's favorite Disney game, the appropriately titled Disney Golf, originally released for the PlayStation 2 on October 17, 2002!


In developing a Disney game, video game companies often take ideas done by other companies, and create the Disney version of it, slightly altering to fit the needs and expectations of the Disney fan. While that may sound like a cynical thing to do, it is a very common practice in the video game industry. Such is the case with Nintendo. They have perfected the art of taking a game idea and creating the Super Mario Bros version of it. Out of that practice we have received some of the best sports games ever released, like Mario Golf and Mario Tennis. The key element is to utilize the franchise's appeal and ideas to further enhance the gameplay concepts, and also make it appealing towards families as well as players who may not be interested in sports, yet still make it deep enough for fans of the genre to invest time on.

Disney Golf

Disney Golf sets out to do the same thing, but under the Disney name. The game was developed by a Japanese company named T&E SOFT Inc, who have had previous experiences in the video golf genre with the Everyone's Golf series. Gameplay wise, the rules of golf still apply to the Disney version. The objective of the game is to complete the course in as less swings as possible, avoiding sand traps, making note of the speed and direction of the wind, and applying the right amount of strength onto your swing. You'll partake in various tournaments that take place around various fictional courses, each with their own obstacles and layouts that affect where the ball lands after being hit. Completion of these tournaments nets unlockables such as new courses to play in as well as characters.

And speaking of characters, it wouldn't be a Disney game without the appearance of Disney characters! Characters from the Mickey and friends universe take over the playable character roster. Much like in Nintendo's Mario sports series, each character is ranked under a different category, such as Normal (the character's skills are average), Power (the character has great strength), Skill (the character can pull off great shots) and even a Kids mode where younger players can understand the game better. This is important as their performance can affect the outcome of the game, and when the courses become trickier, you will need to use the characters to the best of your abilities. As simple as this may seem, it adds some depth to the gameplay while still retaining the appealing Disney charm. Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, Pete, and even Morty (Mickey's nephew) and Professor Ludwig Von Drake make appearances in the game!

Disney Golf

Disney Golf, however, has one peculiar element that makes it stand out from other Disney sports games, and that is the absence of Mickey Mouse as a playable character! That's right, Disney Golf is one of the few Disney games in which Mickey is not a playable character. Instead, he is the narrator for the game, offering advice on bettering your golf game. The decision is an odd one, but it does feel nice to have Mickey be the one to guide you through the game.

Presentation is something Disney Golf excels at. It being a Disney property, the quality of the animation is top notch. The characters are nicely modeled in 3D, and express a wide range of emotions depending on how they are performing on the course. So expect Donald to get angry when he gets a double bogey, or for Minnie to cheer when she lands a hole in one. This is also thanks to the performances brought by the official voice actors, including the late Wayne Allwine serving as our narrator for the game. The courses themselves also look nice and feature really nice touches such as castles off in the distance. Needless to say, Disney Golf is a game brimming with a ton of charming personality.

Disney Golf is a very fun golf game that has the depth of the actual sport, but with the Disney charm everyone loves. Young and adult alike can get a lot out of the game, and even if Mickey is just a narrator in this game, the usage of the classic Disney characters is great. If you love golf and Disney, don't hesitate to pick up a copy!


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