When time allows, I really enjoy playing sports video games. I especially like mobile apps that let me play my games wherever I take my mobile devices. I really like golf games for the challenge that they normally provide. I recently downloaded Par 72 Golf III from RESETgames onto my iPad 3. I found it okay for a short time but not one that I would play long-term with the career builder mode as I would with other golf games. I found this game lacking in golf authenticity.
Par 72 Golf III is available as a free downloadable app from iTunes for nearly all versions of iPhone, iPad, and iPod. The lite version is free but contains an ad bar. The full version sells for $1.99. The game requires iOS 3.0 or later and takes up only 2.2 MB of space.
The controls are hard to find at first. They are small buttons right near the edges of the screen. A small golf club icon near the bottom right selects the club to use. Two arrows surround the golfer to line up the shot. A small ball icon in the bottom right corner begins the swing. A power meter then appears. Touch the meter right at its top for maximum power or judge where to tap for a needed percentage of power.
What I like
The overhead views after the shot make seeing where the ball goes easy. The top left corner shows the needed information on hole number, yards to the pin, score, club selection, and wind speed and direction. They are easy to read and out of the viewing area. I like the resume feature for returning to the game in progress at a later time.
Even though the buttons are very small, working the controls is simple. Just touch the correct button to select clubs, camera view, angle, and shot. Choosing the correct club is easy because the list tells each club's maximum distance, and I can compare that to the distance from the hole. The power meter moves slowly enough to click at the right time for the correct amount of power. I also like that the buttons are up against the edge rather than close to the center so they do not clutter the viewing area.
Things to improve
I keep getting what looks very much like the same holes. Most of the holes look very similar. Most are all perfectly straight with few dog legs, trees, or sand traps. It took me into my fifth game before I saw a dog leg. With the exception of a few holes and hills in the middle of some of them, only the distances and pars seem to change much.
Many holes are surrounded by rocky terrain, especially on the mountain course. Bad shots happen in all golf games, but this one has players hitting off rocks. Many of the greens I have played are at the top of a high hill, so putting too hard makes the ball roll down a steep hill to the point of having to chip again. I even had to chip out of a crater. These items in themselves are not too bad, but they take away from authenticity.
1.5 stars, well below-par golf game
I give Par 72 Golf III for iPad only 1.5 stars out of five. The game play is simple and will suffice for a short time. The price is low. However, I like my sports game realistic. The graphics and scenery of Par 72 are nowhere close. Par 72 scores well below par on my course.
iTunes Preview, Par 72 Golf III, itunes.apple.com/us/app.
Raymond grew up in the days of Atari and watched the progression of home video game consoles. He has played sports games on most consoles and personal computers as they became available. He now owns multiple game systems and enjoys most professional sports games. Follow Raymond on Twitter @RayBureau
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- Sports & Recreation
- sports video games