Quantcast
Powerstar Golf is in the rough - Destructoid




Game database:   #ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ         ALL     Xbox One     PS4     360     PS3     WiiU     Wii     PC     3DS     DS     PS Vita     PSP     iOS     Android


Powerstar Golf  



Powerstar Golf is in the rough


8:00 AM on 07.20.2013
Powerstar Golf is in the rough photo



Powerstar Golf is a launch title for Xbox One. It's an arcade golf title, but it's no Hot Shots Golf. On the surface it seems like it's par for the arcade-y golf course, but a few issues have it stuck in the sand traps.

If you were to pull out the big-headed/small-bodied Japanese characters of Hot Shots Golf and replace them with taller, comic book-ish characters, you'd have something that looks a lot like Powerstar. The courses are sharp and clean, and the HUD is exactly as you'd expect. Its environments look nice, though there's nothing about it that screams next gen.

The control scheme and shot mechanic are also pretty similar to Hot Shots. It uses the three button press swing -- once to start the swing, again to set the power, and one more time to set accuracy. Even course navigation and the putting grid are right in line with what you'd see from Clap Hanz's work. 

What's different here is that Powerstar has special abilities assigned to each character. A character named Frank has a super-powered swing. Another, Reiko, has a magnetic shot that helps players close the gap in shots that were almost there. These are limited-use abilities, so you'll have to be careful to use them when you really need them.  

Another neat advantage comes with separate caddie abilities, which lets these players see putt preview lines, or skip golf balls across water surfaces.

So what's the problem with Powerstar Golf, then? There seems to be a lack of polish, which has it falling flat in a lot of areas. Take the shot gauge, for example. The small bar you follow with your eyes to know when to press the button to set shot power and accuracy is so small and thin that it's almost unbelievable. It looked about as thick as the letter "I" on the television I used to test this game. Worse, on the bar's return trip, after setting shot power, the bar moves on a colored field that makes it even more difficult to see. It's pretty bad when the most important part of the shot gauge is incredibly difficult to track due to its size and color.

The user interface has other issues along the same lines. The UI font is so small that I had to put my face up to the screen to read some messages. Again, very important messages, like shot distances, are so small that I didn't want to bother reading them.

They can improve on the presentation pretty easily, but I think the feel of gameplay needs even more work. While setting the shot landing zone works nicely (done with the analog sticks), camera movement and other related controls feel a bit rough. More importantly, the swing mechanic itself feels clunky and slow. Though it looks just like Hot Shots Golf's classic swing meter, it feels like a fair bit rougher. I just could never get connected with it.

And while it may float someone else's boat, the art style isn't doing it for me. The courses look fine, but the characters fall flat. Frank, the big-chinned power swinger, looks like your generic thick-chested cool guy from an American cartoon. Reiko, a scientist, wears goofy oversized glasses and has twiggy legs. 

I'm glad that the Xbox One is getting an arcade-style golf title at launch. I hope that a bit more polish can be put into Powerstar Golf before then.

Powerstar Golf is in the rough photo
Powerstar Golf is in the rough photo
Powerstar Golf is in the rough photo







Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.






timeline following:
Powerstar Golf



2:00 PM on 05.22.2014
Powerstar Golf is now 'free' with paid DLC

Microsoft Studios and developer Zoë Mode have altered the pricing of Powerstar Golf such that there's now a free demo-like base version of the game and content has been relegated to DLC packs. Your progress made here wil...more



1:00 PM on 11.20.2013
Review: Powerstar Golf

As a young gamer, often times my first foray into the wide world of sports was through videogames. Before I knew how to run a slant route in a real-life game of football, I knew how to run something in Tecmo Bowl and Madden. ...more



1:00 PM on 11.07.2013
Powerstar Golf: full of RPG-like systems, cloud features

Xbox One golf launch title Powerstar Golf didn't gel with me the first time I played it, but after seeing the depth of some of its systems last week I feel better about it. Its RPG-ish leveling system and cloud-based competitive features sound like something I could really get into. more




Sports

10:30 AM on 12.03.2014
OlliOlli jumps over to Wii U, Xbox One, 3DS next year

OlliOlli is bringing its hot moves and catchy beats to Nintendo 3DS, Wii U and Xbox One early next year, British indie publisher Curve Studios announced today. Roll7's side-scrolling skating game launched exclusively on Play...more



8:00 PM on 11.30.2014
Sportsball dev on inciting rivalries, Wii U exclusivity, and big birds

[Sup Holmes is a weekly talk show for people that make great videogames. It airs live every Sunday at 4pm EST on Youtube, and can be found in Podcast form on Libsyn and iTunes.] Last week on Sup Holmes, w...more



1:45 PM on 11.07.2014
Old Man Tony Hawk making another game with Activision

46-year old skateboardman Anthony Frank Hawk tweeted this today: "I'm currently working with Activision on a console game for 2015 (along with a new mobile game). I think fans of THPS series will be hyped." I've looked at tha...more



View all Sports






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more