PGA Tour (video game series)

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PGA Tour
Tiger Woods PGA Tour current logo.jpg
EA Sports PGA Tour logo (2014-present)
Genres Sports, Golf
Developer(s) EA Sports
Publisher(s) Electronic Arts
Platforms DOS, Sega Genesis, Macintosh, SNES, Commodore Amiga, Sega Master System, Game Gear, Sega Genesis/Mega Drive, PlayStation, Game Boy, 3DO Interactive Multiplayer, Sega Saturn, Microsoft Windows, Game Boy Color, PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Mac OS, Mobile phone, Game Boy Advance, N-Gage, PlayStation Portable, Mac OS X, Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, Mobile, Wii, PlayStation 3, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
First release PGA Tour Golf
1990
Latest release Rory McIlroy PGA Tour
July 14, 2015

PGA Tour is a series of golf video games developed and published by Electronic Arts and later their EA Sports sub-label since 1990, the series primarily features courses featured on the U.S. PGA Tour, and other notable courses (such as those that have hosted majors).

In 1998, EA began publishing their golf games with the endorsement of Tiger Woods. Following the Tiger Woods 99 PGA Tour Golf release, subsequent titles were named Tiger Woods PGA Tour and released yearly.

Although EA Sports developed most games in the series internally, some SKUs have come from outside developers including the first edition, Tiger Woods 99 PGA Tour Golf, which Adrenalin Entertainment developed in conjunction with EA for the PlayStation and Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2001 for the PlayStation, which was developed by Stormfront Studios. IOMO also produced versions of the game for mobile phones for the 2002, 2004, and 2005 editions.

In October 2013, EA announced that it would end its relationship with Woods and replace him with another golfer for the next installment. On March 16, 2015, it was announced that Rory McIlroy, then top golfer in the world, would become the new title athlete of the franchise, which will now be known as Rory McIlroy PGA Tour.[1][2]

The series was responsible for several innovations in the genre, such as the now standard three-click swing method. In 1995 a critic stated in GamePro that "The PGA series flies high above the rest for two reasons: You can completely control a shot, and you play on the best courses around."[3] However, unlike other games in the EA Sports label, the series was often shadowed by other competitors such as the Jack Nicklaus series, Links series, Microsoft Golf or The Golf Pro.

Electronic Arts Loses PGA Tour License[edit]

The agreement with "The Golf Club 2019" comes after a similar long-term licensing agreement between the PGA Tour and Electronic Arts came to an end. EA had dominated electronic golf games thanks to a partnership with 14-time major tournament winner Tiger Woods. From 1999-2013 "Tiger Woods PGA Tour" was the top video golf game on the market. After EA and Woods ended their agreement in 2013, EA developed a similar game in 2015 in a partnership with Rory McIlroy. That game -- "Rory McIlroy PGA Tour" -- didn't fare nearly as well as the previous EA versions featuring Woods. The game was recently pulled from all digital storefronts, according to gamespot.com.[4]

But this is the end of an era: Although EA insisted that their relationship with the PGA Tour continues, those games will be officially pulled from digital marketplaces this week. Still, Electronic Arts (EA) would not rule out a future collaboration. “We continue to have an ongoing relationship with the PGA Tour,” an EA representative said.[5]

PGA Tour licensing director Matt Iofredo said the new partnership with "The Golf Club 2019" is part of the sport's on-going efforts to introduce golf to a wider audience.

Electronic Arts partnership with Woods[edit]

The World No. 1 has been the star of the hugely popular "Tiger Woods PGA Tour" series - a franchise partnership which has brought in almost $771 million since it began in 1999.[6]

EA Sports' deal with Tiger Woods is worth $ 6.2 [7] to $ 7 million a year at the height of his 15 years at EA Sports.[8]

After 16 editions built around a partnership that began in 1998, Electronic Arts has announced that its partnership with Tiger Woods is at an end. According to EA, the split is a mutual decision.[9]

“EA SPORTS and Tiger Woods have also made a mutual decision to end our partnership, which includes Tiger’s named PGA TOUR golf game,” the press release states. “We’ve always been big fans of Tiger and we wish him continued success in all his future endeavors.”[10]

In 2010, back when Woods hit a personal and professional skid that began with a messy divorce, EA continued to support the golfer, but with a caveat. “We have no plans to move away from [Woods], but it’s a business relationship on the basis of we make the best golf game, and he’s the best golfer,” EA’s then-CEO John Riccitiello claimed. The next two years were bad ones for Woods, who went from the top player in the world in terms of money earned through competitions, to the 68th in 2010 and then the 128th in 2011. In 2012, he turned things around though and finished in second place. He is currently the world money leader through 2013.[11]

After Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 (2013), EA's partnership with Woods and a licensing agreement with Augusta National Golf Club reached an end.[12]

Games[edit]

Original[edit]

PGA Tour Golf (1990)[edit]

This first game in the series was originally released in 1990 for DOS computers, 1991 for Sega Genesis, Macintosh, SNES, and Commodore Amiga, and 1993 for Sega Master System and Game Gear. It was developed and published by Electronic Arts for DOS and Macintosh, ported to Genesis, SNES, and Game Gear by Sterling Silver Software, to Amiga by Bluesky Innovations, and to Master System by Polygon Games. The Genesis/Mega Drive version features 6 professional golfers as playable or as CPU opponents; Fred Couples, Mark McCumber, Larry Mize, Joey Sindelar, Craig Stadler, Bruce Lietzke.

MegaTech awarded the game 93%,[13] and Mega placed it at number 10 in their Top Mega Drive Games of All Time.[14]

In 1994, PC Gamer UK named PGA Tour Golf the 48th best computer game of all time. The editors wrote, "It may be old, but games as good as this deserve a look-in even ten years down the line".[15]

PGA Tour Golf II (1992)[edit]

Developed by Polygon Games and released by Electronic Arts in 1992 for the Genesis/Mega Drive and in 1995 for the Game Gear, PGA Tour Golf II features the courses TPC at Avenel, TPC at Sawgrass, TPC at Southwind, TPC of Scottsdale, TPC at Eagle Trace, and PGA West Stadium. The Game Gear version features 4 professional golfers as playable or as CPU opponents: Paul Azinger, Craig Stadler, Fuzzy Zoeller, and Fred Couples. The Genesis version features an additional 6 professional golfers (for a total of 10): Tommy Armour III, Bruce Lietzke, Mark McCumber, Mark O'Meara, Larry Mize, and Joey Sindelar.

The Mega Drive version knocked Ecco the Dolphin from the top of the charts in the UK.[16] MegaTech gave the game 94% and a Hyper Game award, praising the number of features and the control method.[17] Computer Gaming World in July 1994 said that the Macintosh version's graphics were not as good as Links but much better than the PC version's. Citing its emphasis on simulation, the magazine concluded that "Unlike many sequels, this actually adds to the genre".[18] Reviewing the Game Gear version, GamePro praised the screen layout, controls, and detailed graphics, but criticized the long loading times, weak sound effects, and music.[19]

PGA Tour Golf III (1994)[edit]

Developed by Hitmen Productions and published by Electronic Arts in 1994 exclusively for the Genesis, the game features 10 professional golfers as playable or as CPU opponents: Brad Faxon, Jim Gallagher, Jr., Lee Janzen, Tom Kite, Bruce Lietzke, Davis Love III, Mark O’Meara, Jeff Sluman, Craig Stadler, and Fuzzy Zoeller. The featured courses are TPC at River Highlands, TPC at The Woodlands, TPC at Avenel, TPC at Summerlin, TPC at Sawgrass, TPC at Las Colinas, TPC at Southwind, and TPC of Scottsdale.

A reviewer for Next Generation lauded the game's realistic digitization of the players and backgrounds, selection of courses, new features, and addition of an arc meter to help control backspin. He summarized that "Other Genesis golf games have looked better (like the first Genesis golf game, Arnold Palmer Golf), but none maintain the depth of play or the true PGA experience like PGA III has captured." He gave it four out of five stars.[20]

PGA Tour 96 (1995)[edit]

Developed by Hitmen Productions and released by Electronic Arts in 1995 for the PlayStation, Game Boy, Genesis, 3DO, Game Gear and SNES. It has fewer courses and golfers than previous installments. The game features 10 professional golfers as playable or as CPU opponents: Brad Faxon, Lee Janzen, Tom Kite, Bruce Lietzke, Davis Love III, Mark O’Meara, Peter Jacobsen, Jeff Sluman, Craig Stadler, and Fuzzy Zoeller. The featured courses are Spyglass Hill, TPC at Sawgrass, TPC at River Highlands. The game has four modes: stroke play, match play, tournament mode, and practice mode. Golf clubs are assigned automatically by the caddy as the computer deems suitable for every lie and every situation.

PGA Tour 97 (1996)[edit]

Developed and published by EA Sports for PlayStation and Sega Saturn in 1996.

PGA Tour 97 received mixed reviews. Reviewing the PlayStation version, Dr. Zombie of GamePro praised the challenge offered by the new courses, the new camera views, and the retention of the strong assets of the previous installment. He concluded that "Two new courses and some snazzy enhancements make PGA Tour '97 more of the same but better!"[21] GameSpot's Glenn Rubenstein was more frustrated by the fact that the game was no more than a simple update of the previous installment, and argued that more radical change was needed. While acknowledging it to be "a complete golf package that updates 32-bit golfing as we know it", he scored it a 5.9 out of 10.[22]

Reviewing the Saturn version, GamePro's Air Hendrix remarked, "At first glance, PGA '97 has all the right answers: 14 PGA pros; 2 PGA courses; responsive, details controls; and a full set of modes and features. But the long load times and sluggish frame rate require more patience than an afternoon of fishing. Even worse, the disappointing course graphics look almost 16-bit, though the player animations are excellent." He recommended Saturn owners get VR Golf '97 instead.[23] Rob Allsetter of Sega Saturn Magazine gave it 68%, calling it "A decidedly lacklustre version of PGA Tour". He remarked that the loading times between shots disrupt the flow of the game, and the odd shading on the power bar makes it hard to judge when it is on the line. Echoing GamePro, he recommended readers get Actua Golf (the European title for VR Golf '97) instead.[24]

PGA Tour 98 (1997)[edit]

Developed by NuFX and published by EA Sports exclusively for PlayStation in 1997.

The game received an average score of 70.00% at GameRankings, based on an aggregate of 1 review.[25]

Tiger Woods[edit]

Year * PC PS1 Xbox PS2 Gamecube Xbox 360 PS3 Wii Game Boy DS PSP Mobile
1999
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014

* The year in the title of the game, not the year of release.

Tiger Woods 99 PGA Tour Golf (1998)[edit]

Reception
Review scores
PublicationScore
PCPS
AllGame4/5 stars[26]3/5 stars[27]
CVG5/5[29]N/A
EGMN/A6.12/10[30]
GamePro4.5/5 stars[31]4/5 stars[32]
Game RevolutionB[33]N/A
GameSpot7.7/10[34]7.5/10[35]
IGN7.8/10[36]7.1/10[37]
OPM (US)N/A4/5 stars[38]
PC Gamer (US)84%[39]N/A
Entertainment WeeklyA[40]N/A
Aggregate score
GameRankings76%[41]73%[42]

Developed by EA Sports and Adrenalin Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation in 1998; first title under the Tiger Woods endorsement.

The PC version received "favorable" reviews, while the PlayStation version received "average" reviews according to video game review aggregator GameRankings.[41][42]

Early copies of the PlayStation version contained a hidden file called ZZDUMMY.DAT which was an unauthorized copy of the South Park episode Jesus vs. Santa. The file was not actually viewable in game, but could be viewed by placing the disc in a PC. The game was recalled and subsequent versions did not contain the file.[43][44]

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2000 (1999)[edit]

Reception
Review scores
PublicationScore
GBCPCPS
AllGame2/5 stars[45]4.5/5 stars[46]3.5/5 stars[47]
Game InformerN/AN/A7.5/10[49]
GameProN/A2.5/5 stars[50]4.5/5 stars[51]
GameSpotN/A7.1/10[52]5.5/10[53]
GameZoneN/A4/10[54]N/A
IGN3/10[55]N/A6/10[56]
Nintendo Power6.6/10[57]N/AN/A
PC Gamer (US)N/A48%[58]N/A
PC ZoneN/A77%[59]N/A
Aggregate score
GameRankings66%[60]68%[61]73%[62]

Developed by EA Redwood Shores for the PlayStation version, Xantera for the Game Boy Color version and Rainbow Studios for the Microsoft Windows version and published by EA Sports for PlayStation in 1999 and Game Boy Color and Microsoft Windows in 2000.

The game received "mixed or average" reviews on all platforms according to video game review aggregator GameRankings.[62][61][60]

PGA Tour 2000's computer version received a "Silver" sales award from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA),[63] indicating sales of at least 100,000 copies in the United Kingdom.[64]

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2001 (2000)[edit]

Developed by Headgate Studios for the Microsoft Windows version and Stormfront Studios for the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 versions and published by EA Sports for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation in 2000 and PlayStation 2 in 2001.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2002 (2002)[edit]

Reception
Review scores
PublicationScore
GBAPCPS2
AllGameN/AN/A3/5 stars[65]
EGMN/AN/A7/10[67]
EurogamerN/AN/A9/10[68]
Game InformerN/AN/A7.75/10[69]
GameProN/AN/A3.5/5 stars[70]
GameSpotN/A8.2/10[71]8.1/10[72]
GameSpyN/AN/A86%[73]
GameZoneN/A8/10[74]8.5/10[75]
IGN6/10[76]8.2/10[77]8/10[78]
Nintendo Power2.2/5[79]N/AN/A
OPM (US)N/AN/A4/5 stars[80]
PC Gamer (US)N/A79%[81]N/A
BBC SportN/AN/A84%[82]
FHMN/AN/A4/5 stars[83]
Aggregate score
Metacritic64/100[84]83/100[85]80/100[86]

Developed by Headgate Studios for the Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 2 versions and Rebellion Developments for the GBA version, and published by EA Sports in 2002.

The PC and PlayStation 2 versions received "favorable" reviews, while the Game Boy Advance version received "mixed" reviews according to video game review aggregator Metacritic.[84][85][86]

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 (2002)[edit]

Released in 2002 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox and GameCube.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2004 (2003)[edit]

Released in 2003 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Game Boy Advance and N-Gage.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005 (2004)[edit]

Released in 2004 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 06 (2005)[edit]

Released in 2005 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Xbox 360 and PlayStation Portable.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 (2006)[edit]

Released in 2006 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3 and Wii.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 08 (2007)[edit]

Released in 2007 for Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3, Wii and DS.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09 (2008)[edit]

Released in 2008 for PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3 and Wii.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10 (2009)[edit]

Released in 2009 for PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 3 and Wii.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 (2010)[edit]

Released in 2010 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii and iOS.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12 (2011)[edit]

Released in 2011 for Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii and iOS. No longer distributed on Origin.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 (2012)[edit]

Released in 2012 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 (2013)[edit]

Released in 2013 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3; final title under the Tiger Woods endorsement.

Rory McIlroy[edit]

Rory McIlroy PGA Tour (2015)[edit]

Released in 2015 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One; first title under the Rory McIlroy endorsement.

Related[edit]

PGA European Tour (1994)[edit]

Developed and published by Electronic Arts for the Amiga, Sega Genesis, and Amiga CD32 in 1994, for the Game Boy in 1995, and for the SNES in 1996. The SNES version supports the TeeV Golf club peripheral.

GamePro gave the Game Boy version a rave review, saying that it "delivers almost everything that made its 16-bit relative the best." They applauded the selection of courses, effective controls, strong realism, and the graphics, going so far as to state that when played on the Super Game Boy the game looks "almost as good as the Genesis version."[3]

PGA Tour Pro (1997)[edit]

Developed by EA Sports and published by Electronic Arts for Windows PC in 1997.

The game received an average score of 58.00% at GameRankings, based on an aggregate of 1 review.[87]

Tiger Woods PGA Tour (2009)[edit]

Developed by Exient Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts under the EA Sports branding on April 23, 2009 for iOS. The game features commentary by Sam Torrance and Kelly Tilghman.[88][89][90][91] The game offers five golfers: Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Retief Goosen, Annika Sörenstam, and Natalie Gulbis. For courses, it has Pebble Beach Golf Links, Old Course at St Andrews, TPC Sawgrass, The K Club, Doral Golf Resort & Spa, Fancourt Links, and TPC Boston.

Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online (2010)[edit]

An online streaming version of the Tiger Woods PGA Tour franchise. Players may take part in single player modes or in tournaments. Tournaments are split into weekly and daily competitions, and are sometimes based on events currently happening in the PGA Tour. For example, during the US Open, the courses that have had the US Open have a discount on points.

Players can choose between monthly and yearly subscriptions with unlimited access, or choose to pay for individual rounds through microtransactions. Players who don't subscribe are still allowed to compete, although they are usually allowed to play only one or two rounds each day. Each day a player logs in, on their first login they receive ten microtransaction points and they receive five microtransaction points for completing the first round of the day. Game testing was provided by former Gravediggaz member and golf aficionado, Vince "Bonecrusher" Santos.

On September 6, 2011, it became integrated with the Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12 PC version. EA Sports retired Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online on July 6, 2013.

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