Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 PSP
Published by: EA Sports
Developed by: EA Sports
Release Date: Out Now
There was a time when purchasing a handheld version of a sports game meant that you were getting a drastically cut down game. This isn't always the case nowadays thanks to the power that some of the handheld gaming systems have. The PSP is actually not that far away from the PlayStation 2 in terms of its capabilities and the UMD (a format I'm not really convinced about) offers around a third of the capacity that a single layered DVD offers, which is truly impressive. Games such as Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 have benefitted from these superior handhelds with the PSP version of the game offering 14 courses, 11 Pro Golfers, a variety of modes, good graphics and even the option to play online.
The modes on offer in the PSP version of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 are Quick Play (where you can either take a tutorial or engage in Stroke, Match, Skins or Stableford game variations), PGA Tour Career, Mini-Games (which include Shooting Gallery, Putting Frenzy and Mental Games) and of course you can take part in two-player Ad Hoc and Infrastructure games too. The courses on offer this year include Westchester Country Club, TPC Boston, Cog Hill and East Lake. Aside from Tiger Woods you'll also find the likes of Vijay Singh and Annika Sorenstam included in the 11 professional golfers on display.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 is the first Tiger Woods game I've played on the PSP and I have to say I've been rather impressed with it. I've never really liked the analogue stick (if you can call it that) on the PSP and I suspected that if you had to use it to control your virtual golf swing then it would be poor to say the least. After only a few holes though I was surprised to find that wasn't the case at all and that the analogue golf swing was absolutely fine. I would still have liked to have seen a three button press golf swing included but I'm more than happy to use the analogue stick as it feels accurate enough.
The concept of confidence is something that has crept into the Tiger Woods series of late and the PSP version isn't exempt from this. Doing bad shots will naturally decrease your confidence and make your player even more likely to mess up their next shot. Should your player’s confidence become too low you'll have a message from your caddie suggesting that you should take a Mental Game to regain a little confidence. If this seems like a crazy inclusion, it's because it is. After a particularly poor shot I was offered the opportunity to take a Mental Game and was charged with signing as many autographs as I could within a certain time limit. How did I sign the autographs? By pressing buttons of course. You'll see a sequence of button icons appear on the screen and you'll have to press the buttons in the appropriate sequence in order to move on to the next autograph. I did well enough to refill about a sixth of the confidence bar but to be completely honest I would rather have spent the time continuing my round of golf.
I have no complaints with how the game looks. All of the included courses look great and the golfer models certainly look good enough. The frame rate even appears to be respectable and constant too, something you can't say about every version of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08. The load times are also decent and there's none of this waiting around for several minutes like you have with a fair few PSP titles. The general presentation of the game is also fine with clean and uncluttered menus that can be navigated with little fuss.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 for the PSP has the same problems as the other versions of the game for deaf gamers. The commentary (although rather limited in this version) isn't subtitled. The hole flyovers aren't subtitled either. Thankfully the caddie tips are shown in text (and can be recalled) as are the snippets of historical information for each hole. All of the important information in the game is shown in text so you'll not going to miss out on anything that's essential.
With this being the first Tiger Woods game I've played on the PSP it's rather difficult to look at the game in comparison with the previous versions that have appeared on the console. Taken in isolation, the game is one I would recommend to those who are looking for an enjoyable golf game to play on their PSP. Other reviews of the game seem to be indicating that the game isn't too different form previous versions (something our rating doesn't take into account) but on its own merits Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 is well worth the asking price for any PSP owing golf fan.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 for the PSP is actually pretty impressive and is highly recommended if you're looking for a golf game to play on your PSP.