Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2006
As the EA machine rolls out another year's worth of licensed-up sports titles, it's great to see a name which has caused quite a stir in recent years. Yes, Tiger is back for another round in his very own Tiger Woods PGA Tour. What's made Tiger Woods such a successful title in the home gaming arena is the swing mechanic, with EA's rather inspired choice to adapt the roller ball style swing technique of arcade games like Golden Tee to the analogue sticks of home consoles. It's a refreshing change from the 'tap-wait-tap-wait-tap' button method that has been the staple of the golfing game for around two decades. They've improved on this again this year, and the subtlety of the swing goes to a new level as you are required to use both analogue sticks to hit the ball. As before, the left analogue stick controls your swing, but now you can use the right stick to alter your trajectory, or, if you are on the green, adjust the strength of your putt. Another theme this year is the all-new Rival Mode. The idea here is to pitch yourself against the greatest players of all time in the very prime of their careers. So obviously you'll be able to go a few rounds with Tiger using the same state of the art clubs as he uses today, or you can go back in time and play Jack Nicklaus at his very best, using an old-fashioned bag of wooden clubs. There are five periods in which to prove you are the best player of the age. Of course, this game is called PGA Tour, so you get to do plenty of PGA touring as well. There are 16 licensed PGA tour golfers to battle against across 15 real-life PGA golf courses including Pebble Beach Golf Links, St Andrews, Reflection Bay and Doral Golf Resort. Another nice feature is the wager. You can prove how confident you are by betting on your shot before you play it. The more outrageous your boast, the more money you stand to win. With a new swing mechanic and rival mode, this edition of Tiger Woods has much to commend it over last year's game.