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Tiger Woods 12 has been released on PS3 Move and been provided for us to preview/review by the publisher.
Believe it or not we are still playing it. Here are some extracts of what we made of it in chronological order:
"i wouldn't describe myself as a big golf fan. for most of the year, if i stumble across televised play whilst flicking, then i'll likely move on. and yet, as seems to be true for a surprisingly large number of people, there is one event that has always captured my dedicated attention in a way that far surpasses all its peers - The Masters..."
- Tired Gamer (Tue, 26 Apr 2011)
Tiger Woods 12 consolidates both technology and brand as the series mirrors Tiger's return to normality. The Master nomenclature looks to underline similarities in the three - MotionPlus, Move or Joypad controlled - versions of the game, but it will be the usability of controls that will be make or break for Tiger 12.
Last year's Tiger Woods releases were a mixed bag. Tiger 11 (Wii) was the fifth motion controlled version of the game on the Wii (and the second supporting MotionPlus), which meant it could finesse every aspect of play. Tiger 11 (PS3) on the other hand offered innovative new Move controls that broke new ground on the platform, with all the associated missteps and pain that usually brings. Then of course Tiger 11 (360) continued its steady progress from previous years with fewer novelties but, some would say, more sensible development decisions.
This year the headline is not about controls or innovation, but coverage. Having added the Ryder Cup in Tiger 11 we now have the addition of the Masters Tournament. Unless you follow golf closely you may not realise how big a deal this is. The Masters, played on the hallowed grounds of Augusta National, is the most sought-after prize in professional golf.
You can see the sense in highlighting this coup. It is not only a much requested feature by the Tiger Woods gaming community, but it also unites all three flavours of the game - Wii, PS3 and 360. However, beyond the headline, the more important questions to be asked of any new Tiger Woods game are how the mechanics and controls have been moved forward this year.
Lurking behind the headline we find some more interesting tit bits about Tiger 12. The Caddie Experience option, for example, will offer strategic advice on shot selection and reading greens. A Broadcast Presentation view complements the first person view with new commentary from Jim Nantz and David Feherty.
As I suggested above, it is the PlayStation 3 Move version has the most to gain after Tiger 11's downloadable support of the motion controls felt like more of an after thought than something integral to the development. Having now had a full year with Sony's new technology and a larger install base to aim at, Tiger 12 (PS3) should be able to set right many of its initial mistakes.
This is rounded off by the usual re-jigging of personalities and locations. New players in Tiger Woods 12 include Zach Johnson (2007 Masters Champion) and Bubba Watson (2010 Ryder Cup). New courses range from Augusta, Royal Melbourne, Atlanta Athletic Club, TPC San Antonio, St Andrews Links to Pebble Beach Golf Links.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Maters will be available in North America on March 29 and worldwide on April 1st, on the Wii, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
With so many different perspectives it can be hard to know where to start - a little like walking into a crowded pub. Sorry about that.
But so far we've not found a way to streamline our review output - there's basically too much of it. So, rather than dilute things for newcomers we have decided to live with the hubbub while helping new readers find the columnists they will enjoy.
Our columnists each focus on a particular perspective and fall into one of the following types of gamers: