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Augusta National, 1934

January 27, 2013 Leave a comment

I know next to nothing about video games. Thanks to the kids, I played versions of Mario Bros. and Donkey Kong on early Nintendo game consoles years ago. That’s about it, other than occasionally looking in on what Joel’s doing when he’s home. But now a game is coming out that I can get excited about. In March, EA Sports will release the latest edition of their golf game, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14.

Video golf allows you to play on representations of real golf courses, famous ones from around the world. What’s exciting about Tiger Woods 14 is that it will feature Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters Tournament. Not today’s course. The 1934 course! That’s the year of the first Masters. From the press release two weeks ago:

For the first time ever, users will experience Augusta National Golf Club as it was when the course played host to the very first Masters Tournament — what was known in 1934 as the Inaugural Augusta National Invitation Tournament.

The development of this exclusive feature was researched with meticulous detail in an effort to re-create the original 1931 design of world-renowned golf course architect Dr. Alister MacKenzie and legendary golfer Bobby Jones.

[snip]

Game play will place players in a 1934 environment, which takes into account everything from the clothing to the equipment. On the golf course, users will discover a new way to enjoy the timeless layout, and as it would have played when the first Tournament field competed in the Club’s inaugural invitational. This includes everything from the golf course’s nines being reversed to its original green contours and speeds.

Spend a minute watching the video at the top and you’ll get an idea of what’s in store. How about that 12th hole (starting at the 32 second mark)? Beautiful as always.

Hat tip to golf writer and architect Geoff Shackelford for alerting his readers to the new release and the video, about which he writes, “for those of us fascinated by Alister MacKenzie and Bobby Jones’ original Augusta National design, the attention to detail looks amazing.”

Categories: Games, Golf, History

Flight Control

June 17, 2010 Leave a comment

In my last post, I explained what I’ve been doing the last twelve days with the time I might otherwise have spent writing blog posts. But what I described there hasn’t been the only distraction. There’s also Flight Control HD. I’ve never been much of a video game player. But three weeks ago I was browsing on-line at MacWorld for any articles about iPad apps when I came upon Essential iPad apps: 10 great games and decided to investigate. I’ve long been fascinated by flight controllers, so it was no surprise that the one game to catch my eye was Flight Control HD. (HD is the standard suffix to indicate that an app has been designed to take advantage of the iPad’s screen. There was a pre-existing version of Flight Control for the iPhone, though I don’t have it and didn’t know about it. Like all iPhone apps, it will work on the iPad, but only in a small space on the screen, or enlarged with poor resolution. The HD version is designed specifically for the iPad.)

In the MacWorld game round-up, James Savage explains:

Flight Control for iPhone is one of the greatest App Store success stories, and Firemint could have easily phoned in the iPad version by just giving us the same game with higher resolution graphics. Fortunately for Flight Control fans everywhere, the developer didn’t—the $5 Flight Control HD takes all the greatness from the original and adds loads more. Gameplay is still just as simple to learn and as addictive as ever—direct planes and helicopters safely to the ground by drawing their flight paths with your finger. With the extra screen real estate, this job is much easier on the eyes and ultimately a better experience. In addition to the four original iPhone airfields, you get four more with three of those in a higher-resolution format. With the bigger screen, there is now room to share control responsibilities with two-player co-op and versus modes.

That pretty well explains it all. I have nothing to add. Except that I’ve been controlling flights lately. Lots of crashes. Watch out.

Categories: Computing, Games