REVIEW: Square Strike Wedge is a short game magic wand

The short game is arguably the most important aspect of one’s golf game, and as we know, it can be tricky sometimes. The Square Strike wedge is a club that aims to make it easier to hit cleaner short game shots, and you may be familiar with the club, as it has been seen on Golf Channel among other places.

I had the chance to try out the club which was created out here in the Chicago area, to test and see how it really helps your short game. Immediately, the first thing I noticed was the weight of the club, as it does not have the feathery touch of a traditional wedge.

This is a good thing, as it will help you balance the power of your chips and pitches better. In short, you’ll very rarely over hit your shots, and this is a great way to test your feel around the greens.



Another thing you’ll notice is its unique grip which is skinny in size and has a white line going all the way down the middle of it. This grip design can help with proper hand placement on chip shots, and as we know, it’s easy to overlook how you hold the grip.

Then, we come to the most important, and most intriguing part of the Square Strike wedge; the club head. The club head is shaped like a blocky square, hence the name “Square Strike”. The head is beautiful, and much thicker than traditional wedges and features a lovely green color on the back of the head.

The one part that stands out on the Square Strike’s head is its “machete rail” design on the bottom of it. What this does is, help you swing smoother on impact on chips. This slick feature helps you cut through the blades of grass, and help you hit the ball squarely almost every time.

Having hit some balls with the Square Strike, I must say that I really enjoy it and love how smooth it feels on impact. You don’t even have to hit the ball as hard on chips, as you can essentially use a putting stroke to hit a good shot.

Although the main focus of emphasis for the Square Strike is the short game, it also is a nice club to use for full swings as well. It’s slightly heavy weight makes it a little tougher, but it’s a still a smooth swinging club. However, it is still best used for chipping and pitching.

Overall, the Square Strike wedge is a great weapon of choice in your bag of swords. It’s a fun club to use, it’s uniquely different, and it helps make your golf better, even if it’s just a tiny bit.

Hitting chips and pitches are fun anyway, as they are personally my favorite shots in golf. The Square Strike makes hitting them even more fun.

Chipping contest anyone?

You can learn more about the club at SquareStrikeWedge.com.

You can also follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio if you so wish!


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REVIEW: Sci-Core Golf Balls may be best practice balls out there

Sci-Core practice balls are soft but have true golf ball feel. Image courtesy of their website.

Golf is the most versatile sport in the world as there are numerous ways we can play and enjoy it. The Sci-Core practice golf balls by Swing Coach help open the door to a world of possibilities where you don’t have to limit yourself to just the driving range.

Immediately, what I liked about the Sci-Core balls is the beautiful orange color which makes it easy to identify your ball when practicing around. Plus, it is the color of my alma mater, the Illinois Media School (you knew that was coming if you follow me on Twitter).

After hitting some chips and pitches, I will say that it may be the best practice ball that I’ve used. The rubbery outside of the ball is smooth, and bounces off the club face beautifully.

It’s also a solid enough ball to where you can get some actual ball flight without having the fear of breaking something such as windows. You still want to be careful, but the soft rubber skin of the ball takes some of the worries out of your practice session, wherever you are.



One of things that I’ve written about in the past is Urban Golf or Street Golf which is the playing of the sport in the streets. The Sci-Core balls are excellent for this fun variation of the sport as well, and due to its unique orange colors, make it visible in any weather condiditon.

Not only are the balls great for irons and woods, but it is also fun on the greens as well. The balls roll nicely after striking with a putter, and it feels light off the face.

The lightness is helpful because it may help you improve your touch with the sniper stick (putter). You’ll know not to hit the ball as hard on putts, so when you go back to using your regular ball, then you’ll be able to judge the power of your putts better.

Overall, the Sci-Core golf balls are fantastic, and if you’re someone like me who enjoys practicing golf wherever possible, then these golf balls are among the best in the sport today.

You can visit SwingCoachClub.com for more info on the Sc-Core golf balls.

Feel free to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio!


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REVIEW: Infinite Minigolf is a great golf experience with rich customization

 

 

 

Minigolf games are among the most fun to play in the world of video games. Zen Studios nailed the experience with Infinite Minigolf, a fun, and addicting experience with the putter.

 

Zen Studios is more noted for their pinball games, but they’ve also created quite a minigolf game with Planet Minigolf which was available on previous generation consoles. Now, the sequel/spinoff for the game is out, titled Infinite Minigolf, and it has a familiar gameplay style to that, of Planet Minigolf.

Immediately, you’ll notice a simplified main menu which gives you the option to play solo, play online, and customize your character (which we’ll get to). If you choose Solo Play, then you’ll have your choice of three locations: Giant Home, Nightmare Mansion, and Santa’s Factory.

This is where you can choose what to do. If you pick Quick Play, you’ll be dropped onto the tee of a hole at your selected location.

Here’s the awesome part though, in Infinite Minigolf, you can design your own holes. So when you choose Quick Play, you’re automatically playing on a random hole created by another user.

This is an awesome way to enjoy a quick play mode in a sports game. No two holes are alike, so you’ll never know what awaits you on the next tee.

Best of all, you can continue to play as long as you want. There’s no limit of nine or 18 holes.

Want to play three holes? Go ahead. Want to get all PGA Tourish and go 72? Knock yourself out.

Also, you won’t be running out of holes to play anytime soon, as there are over 11,000 holes built as this piece is being written. No doubt that this number will continue to grow.

With this many holes, the replay value is very high.

The gameplay is very smooth with a very solid putting stroke animation, as well as its ability to test your timing and power judgment. The ball physics are excellent, as the ball rolls as smooth as you’d see in real life.

Power-ups return in the game, bringing the extra fun and strategy to each round you play. And playing on so many different hole designs, the imagination can run wild.

As you play, you can unlock cards based on how you played. These cards are the game’s currency and your ticket to new gear.

In most packs, you receive two cards. Each card will show a silhouette of the item you can get.

If it’s the silhouette of a shirt, and there’s a number “2” below it, this means you’ve earned two cards you can use towards the purchase of shirts for your golfer. Birdies, eagles, and aces can help you net cards on the course.

Off the course, you can buy packs with gold coins that you can earn on the course by completing challenges. That can be reaching a certain score by the end of a hole or using a certain power-up during a round.

Even purchasing a new item can you earn you some coins. You receive 100 coins each time you complete a challenge.

Once you’ve got enough coin, you can choose between three packs in the store. One pack being 500 coins, while the others are 1,000 and 2,000 respectively.

The most expensive pack guarantees you an avatar item that can be worn or used immediately. This one top of four cards, you get as well.

You can also play in tournaments, which serves as the career mode for Infinite Minigolf. You play nine-hole rounds in the three locations.

There are four bosses for each location. However, you do not play against them, you are tackling the courses they built, as you battle against three other CPU avatars.

Each boss has three courses, starting off on “casual”. In order to unlock normal and hard difficulties, you must complete the casual tourneys.

It’s a fun and simple career mode that can really help you rack in some coins and cards. The tournaments also play as sort of a metaphor for traditional golf in that, you’re dancing with the courses, which means you are in a boss battle with the designers.

That’s the case in Infinite Minigolf as well.

Customization is the juice of the game and is what makes it so fun. You can choose between a male or female character and change their looks any way you like, from shirts and hats to hairstyles and shades, you can really style your golfer out.

You can also change your putter and golf ball as well. One of the cool things that I liked is that most of the putters that you can use are replicas of traditional golf putters.

So if you want a little pro golf flare, you can use one of the dope PGA Tour style sticks. If you want to change things up, you can unlock some specially themed putters. These can be a classic, pixelated putter, a cane, or even a hockey stick.

With a ton of fun customization options, it makes you eager to earn some more cards to unlock everything. This will also require you to level up, which you can do as you continue to play the game.

The course creator is full of great ways to put your armchair architect skills to the test. You can get creative in so many ways, because, you can do more than place your routing and add power-ups to the mix.

You can even add certain transportation methods to help you get to the hole after a perfectly hit shot. You can even place a drone to send balls to different locations on the hole when hitting to the drone’s starting spot.

Having played several holes, there are definitely some incredible holes designed by the community. It’s this creativity that helps give a game great longevity, and Infinite Minigolf does a great job in this department.

Online play features several modes. You can either play for fun or play competitively like in most games.

You can play in online tournaments both for fun or for competition, which takes four to eight players to play. If you just want a good ol’ fashion duel, you play one vs. one or you can have a classic foursome as well as Hole or Nothing which also requires four players.

If you want a date with madness, you do a “Crazy” round which is eight players in a non-tournament setting. Overall, the online has a fairly solid amount of options for every type of golfer.

The one flaw, the game does have is the lack of locations. Certainly, the 11,000 plus holes help keep the game fresh, but seeing the same scenery between three locations can get a little tiresome after a while.

That said, most smaller titles do an excellent job of staying fresh with new content. So, I’m confident that we’ll see more locations in the near future, to add to the experience.

As a whole, Infinite Minigolf does a great job of receiving the torch that was passed down by Planet Minigolf which was a ton of fun to play. The new game is more personalized with better golfer customization options and even more wacky course design features.

All of this while still keeping the quality gameplay that PM had. From fun cartoonish graphics to solid animations to great ball physics, Infinite Minigolf is a winner for next-generation mini golf games.

Final Score: 8.5/10

 Feel free to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio!

 


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REVIEW: Snell “My Tour” Golf Balls are the sport’s secret weapon

The golf ball market has become a giant, with millions of dollars spent on golf balls each year. There are a ton of exciting new brands that continue to pop up across the golf landscape, and one of those is Snell.

 

Snell is a brand that has continued to grow in popularity since it started in 2015. Dean Snell, the company’s Founder, is no stranger when it comes to high-quality golf balls, as he is the co-inventor of the iconic Pro V1 golf balls by Titleist.

 

The goal of Snell is simple, and that’s to create a professional quality golf ball for amateurs to use for a great price.



 

I had a chance to try out the “My Tour Ball” at my home course of Randall Oaks, and will immediately say that it’s one of the best golf balls out there. It’s especially impressive around the greens on the chip and pitch shots.

 

It doesn’t roll hard, and when you hit a clean shot, it’ll plant itself where you want it. Almost like a heat-seeking missile. It feels great from the tee as well, because when you hit a good shot, you know it, and the Snell ball gives you a boost of confidence on the next shot.

 

It’s one of the softest golf balls in the sport, making you an instant threat to hit it close from right off the greens. As we know, short game is crucial to the success of anyone’s game, and the Snell balls are tops in this area.

 

On the green, the ball rolls smoothly, and bounces off the club face beautifully. The perfect align tool on the ball definitely helps you drop some putts.

 

All in all, the Snell My Tour Ball is the secret weapon in golf ball technology. It’s one of the best balls you’ll play with, and at an affordable price which is refreshing in a sport noted for expensive equipment.

 

Finally, one of the nice things about the Snell brand is that they do a good job of appealing to the generation of golfers. These aren’t the golf balls of yesteryear, they’re the balls of the future.

 

You can learn more about the Snell brand and their golf balls at SnellGolf.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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REVIEW: 100ft Robot Golf brings fun, unique view at the sport

100ft Robot Golf was a game that was announced sometime last year. It gained some popularity due to it being one of the first games to ever hit the PlayStation VR headsets.

It also received its fair share of promotion from PlayStation themselves. But now, after watching the game develop over time, it has finally released and it is quite a unique experience with a different view at golf.

Obviously, you know the game is going to be wacky, because the game literally is what the title implies. It’s giant robots battling it out for world golf dominance.

For starters, I played a couple of holes (you can see my video above) with the amazing robot that was piloted by five dogs (nope, not joking, and I’m glad I’m not). It was fun, but took a little time to get a feel for how to play the game, but it wasn’t too tedious of a task to pick up how things work.

But, certainly, having a little tutorial would be good in the future for newcomers. Being able to destroy buildings in your path, and pulling out a “dog sword” to cause even more damage was quite an absolute joy however.

The golf experience is also cool, and smooth. Swings look good, and ball movement looks solid as well. So despite all of the craziness surrounding the game, there’s a sprinkle of traditional feel to it which is a nice combination.

Golf + crazy = fun.

There are four courses you can play on, making it a total of 36 holes. You can play in a city, in a mountainous village, and even in space and an underwater city (BioShock Golf anyone?).

Ball flight even is effected to reflect the location you’re in. Example, if you play in space, the ball seems to fly a little slower. A nice way to utilize these environments.

The game also features a numerous amount of characters to choose from, and as mentioned, I love the dogs (and so does almost everyone else). One of the more interesting aspects of the game, is the fact that each character has their own swing style.

What I mean is, one pilot may use a meter that goes straight up for power. Another pilot may use the classic curved meter (one tap power, one tap for accuracy). I found this to be a pretty neat feature, and may give players a reason to select a certain character.

However, this is also a good reason to have a maybe a free-roam tutorial, so virtual robot golfers can get comfortable with different in-game characters. Could be a good way just to wreak some havoc for no apparent reason as well.

The game’s broadcasting was pretty funny, but also a little repetitive at times. The broadcasts are done by the McElroy Brothers, who are popular comedy podcasters. I honestly never heard of these gentlemen until I played this game, and they definitely did a good job of keeping you giggling as you played.

The game also features a campaign mode which has a classic anime feel to it. So, if you were born in the mid-80’s or early 90’s, (like yours truly), then you will definitely appreciate this. Having growing up watching shows like Dragon Ball Z, I couldn’t help but kind of laugh at the nostalgic nature of the anime campaign.

I also laughed because it was filled with a ton of funny moments and cut scenes. Some parts in the ending in particular were pretty funny as well as an intro into one of the tournaments done by one of the broadcasters which was sort of a mic drop moment. During that same tournament, the antics of one of the characters, a young, skateboard loving girl was also a little bit of a knee slapper.

Although the campaign had a lot of silly, fun cut scenes, and brought all of the characters to life, it was also a fairly repetitive experience. Each character has their own rival, and you’re playing as each pilot to win each tournament. You do get medals for winning, which you can use in stores to purchase new customized items for each character’s robot.

The cool thing about the campaign was that, not only was it full of funny moments, it allowed you to play as almost every character in the game. The only problem was that, trying to learn a new character’s swing on the fly was tough at times, and can cost you to lose a hole if you’re aren’t quick witted enough.

Nonehtless, the campaign was a fun, simple story about the world of Robot Golfing. The characters made the experience, a silly, awkward, and fun story that fit the game perfectly.

Unfortunately, I have not had the chance to experience online play, as it was tough to get a game in. However, I can only imagine that this could most definitely be a hot mode to play.

The gameplay is fun, so imagine four robot golfers dueling it out on the course? Everyone beating their brains in and destroying buildings with golf clubs just to save par? It’s online golfing gold.

The game could certainly have some more courses and deeper commentary. Sure, you could say the campaign could’ve been more robust but it was fairly well done considering the incredibly tiny squad that put it together.

But, overall, 100ft Robot Golf was a solid effort by a very tiny development team (try two people as well as some others who helped with artwork, voice overs, etc). The devs even played roles in the campaign during cut scenes. But, in the battle to make golf more hip and fit into a new generation of sports fans and gamers, you can’t help but applaud No Goblin’s efforts and I can only imagine what the PS VR experience is like.

One final note: “Good dog”.

Final Score: 8/10

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio (may change it soon)! I’m working on a 100ft Robot golfer myself! I shall call him “The Wondrous Panda” and he will look like a ninja!


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REVIEW: Dangerous Golf is an explosive way to experience the sport

The sport of golf is many things. It can be played for relaxation, for excitement, and can be played many different ways, more so than any other sport.

But how about playing a version of the game where the goal is to destroy everything in sight? Well, that’s what the folks at Three Fields Entertainment decided to create with Dangerous Golf, a video game made for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles.

I had the chance to jump in and play this explosive new golf game. The version I played was on my PS4.

Right off the bat, I will say that the game is very satisfying. What I mean is that, destroying almost everything in your path with a flaming golf ball is one of the best feelings in a game.

The goal is to break as many things as possible and raise the money in damage caused. Then, you drop your ball, and putt and if you can get it in the hole, then there’s bonus cash, if you miss, money will be deducted.

Like in real golf, there is a lot of strategy involved. Such things include, deciding where to aim your shot and start your destruction and dropping the ball close to the hole.

Where you drop the ball is crucial. Because, if you drop, and the ball lands behind an immovable object, then you’ll likely miss the putt barring a miraculous ricochet shot.

The gameplay overall is smooth and the loading times are fast. One big flaw for the game at launch was how long restarts took.

According to Three Fields and players, the restart load times were around 30 seconds. Now, it’s two seconds, maybe even less than that as they are lightning fast.

Another thing that pops out at your is the stunning graphics. The game utilizes a powerful graphics engine and fits beautifully with the new generation consoles.

As you can tell in the screenshot above (photo is of my gameplay), the walls, floors, cups and flaming golf ball all look gorgeous.

The game has four game modes for the player to enjoy. These modes being Solo World Tour, Co-Op World Tour, Party Golf and Online Clubhouse.

The Solo World Tour is the game’s career mode where you play over 100 unique holes in four different countries. You can tee off in a kitchen in the United States, a gas station in Australia, a mansion in France (pictured) and a castle in England among other locations within these countries.

Different holes even have unique weather conditions. For example, on a hole in the French mansion, it was storming outside and added to the atmosphere.

Another fun part of the World Tour are the putting challenges. The goal of these is to putt the ball into as money holes as possible within a time limit, each hole giving you a certain amount of money.

You can earn rewards on the World Tour including smash headlines, signature smashes and World Tour cups. The World Tour mode is very deep, as you can also earn new abilities such as pistol putt and the ability to glue your ball to wall (Oh! Bustin’ Rhymes!).

Co-Op World Tour is the same thing as World Tour except you can team up with a friend throughout the experience.

Party Golf is a classic couch mode where you simply grab your closest friends and tee it up. This definitely makes it easier for some trash talk as sometimes, nothing brings more fire than gamers playing in the same room.

In Online Clubhouse, players can take on other dangerous golfers from around the world to compete for the highest score. Up to eight players can play against each other on three randomly picked holes and with over 100 unique holes, adds to the depth of the experience.

Overall, Dangerous Golf is a lot of fun, and has some very solid replay value. Whether you’re a golf fan or not, you can appreciate the mass destruction that little golf ball can cause.

My only hope is that we see a new location or two with new holes to play. But, with the combination of good gameplay, beautiful graphics, a solid career mode and a fun online experience, Dangerous Golf is a winner in my book of sports gaming goodness.

My score: 8/10

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio! I’m talking golf dangerously!


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REVIEW: Best Grips bring style and unique feel to golf

 

Best Grips is the name of the company that makes grips that feature terrific design combined with great feel. They are able to back up their name, as the grips really are good on the hands.

 

Featuring a leather design, the traction is different from other grips and is effective on the swing. The grip you see pictured is the “Augusta” design and as you can see, with the green leather and yellow stitching, it reminds you of The Masters and famed Augusta National.

Heading to the range, trying the grip for the first time, I was impressed with how it felt with and without a glove. One thing I noticed immediately was, after hitting several balls, I had no blisters (I wasn’t wearing a glove at the time).

This is a major plus for those who may feel a glove could be too “heavy” or “thick” on their hand, making things a little uncomfortable. If you fancy no gloves, this is a very solid grip.

If you do wear a glove, it’s just as good. The stitching on the back really make an impact on the grip and this is a plus for glove wearers.

Without the stitching, the club may be harder to hold on to. It would be still be a solid, but just a little harder to hang on to.

So, not only does the stitching go beautifully with the design of the Augusta grip, it has an impact on keeping the grip in your hand. After all, we as lame golfers are prone to the slipping of clubs out of our hands, causing property damage.

Overall, the grip is great and if you appreciate artistic design, cool leather, and a unique feel, this is a fine grip. They even have grips made with pigskin (Their football grip) and another one with alligator skin.

You can check them out at BestGrips.com.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio! Always making sure my swing is one point (Which is almost never)!

 


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REVIEW: Golf clubs in a backpack by DV8 Sports

 

Summary: You know I’m going to be biased and say that golf is the greatest sport in the world. However, one of the big things that’s holding golfers back is the convenience of the game.

 

That’s where DV8 Sports steps in, the company that created a set of golf clubs in a lightweight backpack. Yup, that’s right, golf that you can bring with you anywhere.

 

It all started at an airport when DV8’s boss (Now Chief Technical Officer) Pat Brady noticed an argument at an airport taxi. The argument was between men about their golf club sets being too big to fit in the trunk.

 

This would have to result in one of the men not bringing their sets. This is when Brady asked himself “How can a set of golf clubs be more compact?”

 

That’s when the DV8 clubs were born. A KickStarter campaign was started in 2014 and the sets quickly surpassed its goal $50,000, reaching $85,000 in funds.

 

It took the company five years to complete the clubs after countless hours of testing. According to Brady, it was easy to make the clubs compact but the trick was to make sure the clubs performed at a high level.

 

Well, after numerous tests, a chart showed that the DV8 clubs hit farther then most name brand sets. The driver in particular was five yards longer.

 

Thoughts: The bag is beautiful and features strong straps to stay on your back as you go through your golf adventures on and off the course. The bag even features a slot for an iPad or Android tablet so you can record your own swing (You would need the DV8 tripod in order to do so unless you have a tall chair to stand the bag on perhaps) among other things.

 

The bag also features a small compartment on the bottom where you could you could place your golf balls, tees, etc. And of course the bag features a spot on the side to hold your water bottles.

 

What makes the clubs so compact  is that each set includes one shaft and up to 14 club heads. What you do is attach the grip to the shaft and then choose which club (head) you want to use for a particular shot.

 

Once the shaft and grip are connected, it takes three seconds at best to put the club head on. This is where the technology of the DV8 golf clubs shine, as they use a coupler feature to make it easy to snap the club head onto the club.

 

The clubs swing very nicely. It’s as if you’re swinging traditional clubs, you couldn’t tell that it was assembled…..out of a backpack.

 

I was really impressed with how well they hit. Hitting pitch shots with the wedge was extremely smooth and a lot of fun and I was able to take hard, full swings without the fear of anything breaking.

 

I was able to take the wedge and stick in my regular backpack with no problem. It was amazing getting the chance to walk up to the local golf course, knowing that you had a club in your bag, without carrying a full set of clubs.

 

The shafts are graphite which are great for extra power in your shots. You can also select the shaft size that is best fitting for your height thanks to the club fitting chart that DV8 has on their website when choosing your set.

 

Another nice benefit is that despite the clubs’ design, you can still change grips at anytime. It’s also easy to clean the clubs as you could remove the head to clean it and it’s nice since the shaft doesn’t get in the way.

 

The set is also good if you have a small car, ride a motorcycle or rely on public transportation to get around. You can easily take the clubs with you or if you’re like me, you might just grab one or two clubs and put them in your regular backpack or suitcase.

 

Pros: 

  • The clubs are very easy to carry around and solves one of golf’s big question marks and turn it into a an exlamation point and that is, finally making golf more convenient.
  • They hit terrifcly. You’d easily think you’re hitting one of the name brand clubs.
  • Quick to assemble. Takes no more than three seconds.
  • Excellent for the traveling golfer who enjoys playing different courses.
  • If you go on an airplane, the clubs can come on the flight with you without having to be put below the plane with the suitcases.
  • Great if you have a small vehicle or rely on public transportation. Also great if you play off-course golf.

 

Cons: 

There are no cons with the DV8 golf clubs. The only thing that may be a con to some is that, since you’re using once shaft, you will have to use a regulation, round grip when you putt.

Unless you decide to put a putter grip on your shaft which is fine as well. Or, you can get a second shaft, just for your putter but the shaft is fairly expensive.

 

Overview:

Overall, there are no flaws to the DV8 Sports golf clubs as they play as good as any name brand clubs out there. A set can be a little pricey (Cheapest set starting at $499) but if you want a wonderful combination of golf clubs with high quality and the freedom to take your clubs anywhere without hassle or stress, then these are great weapons of choice on the course.

The DV8 clubs are truly a revolution in golf and was something that was really needed to help make golfers’ lives so much easier and to make it simpler to get out on the range or course often. If you’re someone who enjoys traveling to play different golf courses, the DV8 clubs allow you to use your own set of clubs without having to rent some.

Finally, the DV8 sports golf clubs are an absolute game changer for the golf world. Making the game more convenient could potentially bring more folks into golf, especially the kids and I think DV8 nailed an ace with this one.

You can learn more about the clubs at DV8Sports.com.

 

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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REVIEW: EA Sports Rory McIlroy PGA Tour

 

It has been two years since the release of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 and with a new name and next generation consoles, Rory McIlroy PGA Tour by EA Sports is ready to step up to the tee.

 

The game features 12 real-world courses including TPC Sawgrass, St. Andrews Links, Whistling Straits, TPC Boston, Bay Hill, Royal Troon, Chambers Bay, Wolf Creek, East Lake, TPC Scottsdale, Quail Hollow and PGA West.

 

The game also features unique fantasy courses including Paracel Storm, a course based off of the map from Battlefield 4 as well as Coyote Falls which is located in the Grand Canyon.

 

In total, the game has 17  courses.

 

Golf Channel’s Rich Lerner and Frank Nobilo replace the broadcast team of Jim Nantz and David Feherty from the last few editions of the game.

 

The game starts with a prologue that puts you in the shoes of four-time major champion and the game’s namesake, Rory McIlroy.

 

You start by hearing Golf Channel broadcaster Rich Lerner introduce you to the game and take you through some tutorials showcasing the new gameplay options. These options include the ability to play either in Arcade, 3-Click or Tour modes.

 

Arcade is the easiest setting which features a blue aiming arc to help you hit shots as well as the ability to use power boost to overpower drives and put spin on the ball while it’s in flight.

 

3-Click is a classic gameplay style that has been seen in previous versions of EA Sports golf games where tap the X (For PlayStation 4) or the A (For Xbox One) three times until the sweet spot is hit on a meter.

 

Tour mode is the most difficult option where there is no blue aiming arc, no power boost, no spin control and you can’t zoom in to your target, relying only on a hole map to navigate a hole.

 

After the tutorials, the prologue continues and you are put into a scenario where you play as McIlroy in the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay Golf Course against two-time major winner, Martin Kaymer.

 

McIlroy speaks to the gamer as you go through each on-course scenario, giving you advice and talking to you about the pressure and emotion of playing in a major championship. After the prologue, the entire game is now available for the gamer to play.

 

You have six game modes to choose from. These include Play Now, Pro Career, Night Club Challenge, Online Tournaments, Head 2 Head and the ability to play the Prologue again.

 

Pro Career gives you the chance to create a golfer and build his or her legacy on the PGA Tour, starting with the Web.com Tour Finals at TPC Sawgrass.

 

Once you earn your PGA Tour card, you will start your first season by playing in the BioWare Classic which is played on the Wetlands, a fictional course created by EA Sports.

 

You will be able to compete in three of the four major championships in Pro Career. These being, the U.S. Open, Open Championship and PGA Championship.

 

Due to an expired license, The Masters has been taken out of the game along with Augusta National Golf Club. In its place is the EA Sports Spring Invitational which has been in the franchise’s past releases prior to the deal with Augusta National.

 

Wolf Creek Golf Club in Mesquite, Nevada is the host course of the Spring Invitational. EA has mentioned via social media that Augusta National and The Masters could make a return so it’s possible that the contract could be renewed.

 

The Night Club Challenge is a mode where you play various mini-games in a night time style setting across three courses. These courses being Wolf Creek, Paracel Storm and Coyote Falls.

 

You use a variety of boosts to help you get around obstacles which may include taking control of the ball mid-flight or putting a rocket boost on it. You can unlock clothing for your created golfer as well as fantasy golfers.

 

Online only allows you to play simultaneously as to where in previous versions, you were able to use turn-based play. Ranked matches only allow you to play nine holes while unranked matches allow you to choose a full 18 hole round.

 

In ranked matches, your record shows based on where you placed. For example, if you beat the other three players in your foursome, your record would be 3-0-0 but if you finished in second, your record would then be 2-1-0.

 

The online is quite limited, taking out game modes like Match Play, Alternate Shot, Skins and even the 3-hole mini game.

 

The simultaneous play is the only way to play online. Difference is, you can see your playing partners wherever they are.

 

Online Tournaments give you two choices: Amateur Open and Pro Open. The courses are picked at random and you play to try to get the lowest score and get to the top of the leaderboard.

 

There’s tournaments for the three styles of play, Arcade, 3-Click and Tour.

 

PROS:

  • The gameplay may be the best in the series. Having the gameplay styles to fit any type of virtual golfer plays a huge role in that.
  • The graphics are beautiful and the realism of the golf courses really pop out at you, especially in the evening setting.
  • The broadcasting feels more natural and sounds more like a conversation than in previous versions of the game. They do a great job of describing each hole on a course, like you’d see on TV or hear on the radio.

CONS:

  • There isn’t much content in the game despite the great gameplay. The game modes are low and Pro Career gets repetitive fast and is not rewarding after winning tournaments.
  • Online integration is limited and features no team based modes
  • The broadcasting gets really repetitive as well. You’ll likely hear the same things many times and adding new courses seems to be the only way to hear fresh commentary.

FINAL VERDICT:

With a variety of gameplay styles to fit the needs of the gamer and with breathtaking graphics to go with it, Rory McIlroy PGA Tour is the best playing game of the series.

But with such a low amount of game modes, player customization options, a weak career mode and  limited online options, Rory McIlroy PGA Tour just missed its tee time.

Final Score: 6/10

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio !

 


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REVIEW: Clothing by Ahead will make you get to the course in style

ahead

 

You may be familiar with the brand, Ahead as this is the brand you see a lot at golf tournaments, specifically, events such as the BMW Championship.

 

Their company is loaded with numerous styles of shirts, jackets, hats, shorts, etc. They also have golf accessories and small golf packages that make for nice Holiday gifts.

 

I had the opportunity to take a look at four specific pieces of clothing that may be beneficial for your next golf outing. These items include, the Payne Stewart hat, the Ahead fedora, Chatham Fleece jacket and the Montery Stripe Polo.

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The fedora – Nothing combines an old school look with modern style as much as a fedora. This timeless classic features a straw material giving it a unique look that also will do a great job of keeping the sun out of your face.

 

The hat feels plenty comfortable and does a nice job of not making your head feel suffocated like with some hats. The fedora is also light weight which adds to the comfort and will work nicely on those hot sunny days thanks to the long, round brim of the hat.

 

Sorry for the horrible photography skills!

Sorry for the horrible photography skills!

 

The Payne Stewart – The Payne Stewart hat was made famous by none other than Stewart himself as he would go on to win three major championships wearing this cap. The first you’ll notice right away is immense comfort.

 

The fedora has it’s own kind of comfort but the Payne Stewart feels soft, so wearing it is a pleasure, especially when you need it most (Bad hair day perhaps?). The hat feels great whether you’re wearing it backwards or frontwards and goes well with numerous styles of clothing.

 

One of the best things about the Payne Stewart is that it can be worn during any season. During the summer, it can be worn to protect from the sun while in the winter, it can be worn like a knit, keeping your head worm.

 

Payne Stewart helped bring classic golf attire back to fruition and the hat will represent this quite well.

 

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Montery Stripe Polo – One of Ahead’s newer shirts, the Montery Stripe Polo features a beautiful silky feeling and has a multi-shaded stripe design on it, giving a unique look to the typical stripe polo. I’ve mentioned the word “comfort” a lot and I’ll say it yet again.

 

The Montery Stripe Polo is one of the softest, coolest and most comfortable golf polos around. The terrific material of the shirt has a lot to do with it and this short is great for a hot round of golf or if you’re in a hot building.

 

The professional design on the polo makes it great for any occasion, whether it’s a leisure activity or it’s a business meeting. Some polos may bother you around the neck with their collars but with the softness of the shirt and the collar, there’s no worries about any tightness.

 

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Chatham Fleece Jacket – The Chatham Fleece Jacket features a material soft enough to be a blanket for a good night sleep (If you’re into wearing jackets in bed), it’s that comfortable. It also has the warmth of a coat almost.

 

It was extremely cold outside here in Chicago the other day, wearing the Chatham Fleece Jacket was light but I stayed plenty warm. That is, for at least a certain amount of time but I was out there for a while and had no issues (If only I was wearing gloves though, ouch).

 

Even being out there swinging my 9-iron, it felt great and didn’t feel like it was in the way. This is a great jacket if you’re someone who plays golf in the streets or is a driving range warrior and the hood of the jacket keeps you warm as well as any other small jacket around.

 

Final Verdict – Overall, these pieces from Ahead are “Ahead” of the game and there’s something for every kind of golfer and for every season so there’s nothing stopping you from hitting the course. The gear is customizable as well as you can put a logo on the clothing item(s) you choose which helps make them more personal.

 

The level of comfort, especially on the Chatham Fleece and the Montery Stripe Polo is very solid and was quite impressed with the feel of them. So, to make a long story short, the golf clothing from Ahead is just flat out awesome.

 

You can check them out at AheadWeb.com

 

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio!

 

 


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