Golf (1984 video game)
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Golf[a] is a sports-simulation video game developed and released by Nintendo in 1984 for the NES in North America and Family Computer Disk System in Japan. The golfer has been identified as Mario in supplemental materials, albeit not wearing his traditional shirt and overalls. However, the game Captain Rainbow would instead identify the golfer as Ossan, which happens to be one of the generic internal names Mario had during the development of Donkey Kong. Additionally, the Game Boy conversion of this game would feature Mario on the Western cover art, but not the Japanese version.
The main player wears a white shirt and shoes with blue pants and uses a white ball, while the second player wears a red shirt and shoes with black pants and uses a red ball.
The user must first decide whether to play single stroke play or the two player selections of doubles stroke play or match play. The user is then placed at the tee of the first hole with a total of eighteen to play. It was the first golf game to feature a power/accuracy bar for swinging the club. The power bar method has been used in most golf games since.
The game has been ported to many other consoles after its release. Hudson Soft released a port of the game for the Japan-only PC-88 and Sharp X1 in 1985. The game was also ported to the Japan-only Famicom Disk System on February 21, 1986. Another release was made for the Classic NES e-Reader series on Game Boy Advance. Both the NES and Game Boy versions were released on the Virtual Console.
The game was hidden as an easter egg and tribute to Satoru Iwata in the firmware of the Nintendo Switch, prior to the system's 4.0 update. Iwata was the sole programmer of Golf (as one of his first projects for Nintendo) and later became Nintendo's CEO. It can only be accessed if the system clock is set to July 11 (the anniversary of Iwata's death) and then the user performs the "Direct" action that Iwata popularized during his Nintendo Direct appearances while holding both Joy-Con controllers on the Switch home menu. Exclusive to this version is the ability to use motion control.
The game can also be seen in Animal Crossing as a fully playable collectible.
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