‘The Golf Club 2019’ wants you to get serious about golf. And you should

golf club 2019 impressions the 20180831142014

Over the past four years, HB Studios has quietly filled the cleats once occupied by EA Sports’ Tiger Woods PGA Tour series. Its (relatively) young The Golf Club franchise focused on a deep simulation of the game and a massive library of courses, thanks to an online creator that lets users design their own tracks.

Still, something was missing: the courses golf fans see on TV. The Golf Club 2019 remedies that with an official PGA Tour license. While The Golf Club 2019 isn’t the best golf game ever made, it does plant the seeds of a new official golf game franchise.

The Golf Club 2019‘s official partnership with the PGA Tour means not only official courses, but also a proper career mode. Your aspiring golf champion starts in the Web.com Tour to earn a spot on the PGA Tour. Throughout the season you earn points that go towards your Fed Ex Cup ranking, which ultimately leads to the playoffs. It’s a great change of pace from The Golf Club’s previous career mode, which was hardly more than a selection of events strong together.

The career mode uses a mix of real and HB Studios designed venues. Though partnered with the PGA Tour, it only has six official courses, all of which are PGA Tour-operated TPC venues. These include TPC Summerlin, TPC Scottsdale Stadium, TPC Southwind, TPC Deere Run, TPC Boston, and TPC Sawgrass. Of those six, TPC Sawgrass stands out as the iconic venue of The Players Championship. Each official course is rendered in immaculate detail, but the brunt of the season still happens at fictitious courses.

Though it now has real-life courses, The Golf Club 2019 is missing one other key aspect — real players. You won’t see any Tour pros here. You can’t play against current leaders, nor against legends like Jordan Spieth, Tiger Woods, or Dustin Johnson. It diminishes the tension at the The Players Championship when you’re chasing a made-up golfer down the stretch instead of Webb Simpson, the 2019 Players champ.

While it has a limited selection of official courses, The Golf Club 2019 offers plenty of turf to play on. The Golf Club community has used the level editor to add new courses since the first release in 2014. That means you can play on thousands of courses. Obviously, not all of them are great, but it’s easy to find a challenging and well-designed track that you’ve never played before. In theory, you could play The Golf Club for dozens of hours and never play the same course twice.

If you want to get in the course creation yourself, you’ll find the course creator itself is intuitive and fun to use. Designing and playing on your own courses is a unique thrill. Creative players may spend more time designing courses than playing the game.

While The Golf Club 2019 inches closer to offering the authentic experience of the now defunct Tiger Woods PGA Tour, make no mistake —  this isn’t an EA Sports golf game. That’s good news if your a serious fan of the sport. The Golf Club 2019 is difficult, though it never feels unfair. If you pull the stick back too fast or follow through too slowly, expect an errant shot. If you don’t keep the stick straight, am unintentional slice or a hook will happen. You can’t stop the ball on a dime like in Tiger Woods — distance control and varying your shot type is key. Greens are slick and must be read manually, cementing the short game as the means for success. The Golf Club 2019 isn’t just about getting on the green and whacking a few balls. Success demands patience and practice.

That said, once you grasp the controls and get to know the ins and outs of its intricate systems, it’s an immensely rewarding experience. With 2K and the PGA Tour on board, it seems that The Golf Club series could have a bright future. As it stands, The Golf Club 2019 is the premier golf sim today.

The game is available now on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

Cars

Crisp and connected, the Volkswagen Golf will get a digital reboot in 2020

Volkswagen is putting the final touches on the eighth-generation Golf. The hatchback will still be recognizable as a member of the Golf family, but it will receive a crisper design inside and out.
Gaming

Apple Mac users should take a bite out of these awesome games

Contrary to popular belief, there exists a bevy of popular A-list games compatible for Mac computers. Take a look at our picks for the best Mac games available for Apple fans to enjoy.
Gaming

Need a new Switch game? These will scratch the itch without emptying your wallet

Besides its great AAA games, the Nintendo Switch also has plenty of cheaper options. Here are some great Nintendo Switch games under $20, including some new versions of old classics.
Gaming

These are the must-have games that every Xbox One owner needs

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From Cuphead to Halo 5, the best Xbox One games offer something for players of every type.
Gaming

This quirky, crank-operated console delivers an exclusive new game each week

Playdate is a handheld console from Panic that will deliver 12 games across 12 weeks. Owners won't know what they're playing before it arrives, but one of the games is a creation from Katamari Damacy designer Keita Takahashi.
Gaming

Senator’s loot crate bill has the video game industry nervous

In a new interview, Republican Senator Josh Hawley speaks on talking with the ESA about the loot crate ban bill, whether or not he believes this will gain traction, and the ideas that pushed him to put this bill into motion.
Deals

Amazon Memorial Day sale: Apple Watch, Surface Pro, and 4K TV Deals

Amazon is discounting a number of different items. Smartwatches, tablets, 4K TVs, smart home devices, and laptops are all getting discounts to stay competitive with prices from Walmart and Best Buy.
Deals

The best Nintendo Switch deals and bundles for May 2019

Looking to score Nintendo's latest console? We've smoked out the best Nintendo Switch deals, including discounts on bundles that feature must-have games like Super Mario Odyssey, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
Computing

Here’s how to watch AMD reveal its new Ryzen chips at Computex

AMD will be holding a pre-Computex keynote on May 27 to announce its new line of 3rd-generation Ryzen processors and accompanying Radeon Navi graphics cards. Here's how to watch the keynote live wherever you are in the world.
Computing

AMD's latest Navi graphics cards are incoming. Here's what to expect

AMD's Navi graphics cards could be available as soon as July 2019 — as long as it's not delayed by stock problems. Billed as a successor to Polaris, Navi promises to deliver better performance to consoles like Sony's PlayStation 5.
Gaming

Here are the dates and times for your favorite publishers' E3 2019 conferences

E3 2019 is quickly approaching, and it will feature conferences from some of the biggest game publishers in the world. Here is the E3 2019 conference schedule, as well as what we think will be at the show.
Mobile

Get your gaming on the go with the 25 best Android games

The Google Play Store is loaded with both terrific and terrible gaming titles. We vetted the store to bring you some of the best Android games available, whether you're into puzzles, shooters, racing games, or something else entirely.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in Destiny 2: Forsaken

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Gaming

Adventure Academy is an MMO for kids that combines learning with fun

Age of Learning’s follow-up to ABCmouse is an educational MMO called Adventure Academy. Targeted at kids ages 8-13, Adventure Academy has a comprehensive curriculum and all of the rewarding trappings of a modern MMO.