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Fox Sports Golf '99 Review

Calvin_Hubble By:
PUBLISHER Fox Sports Interactive 

Stroking can be fun!

Fox released Fox Spots Golf '99 for both the PC and Playstation, and you can check out the PSX review here. While I agree with much of the PSX review, there are a couple of places (mainly because of the change in platform) where Fox Interactive deserves a lot more credit.

There are no licenses or big names making their way into Fox Sports Golf '99, though there are unmistakable, hokey rip-offs. If you want some recognizable names, EA's recently released Tiger Woods '99 offers different pro golfers as well as The Man (boy) himself. You won't see the video capture animation like in EA's product, but you will see a customizable (not to mention generic) 3D golfer models.

Graphically, you've got your basic, 3D terrain (complete with obvious 2D trees). Before and after each swing, the camera is movable, and there are a number of different angles to check out that last shot. All the pans and camera movements are smooth (probably because of the fact that I'm running on a P2 400 with a Voodoo2). One area that Fox deserves respect is the damn fine water-reflection effect, seen in all water hazards, nearby lakes, etc.

The golfers are all decent 3D models with customizable skins. When taking a swing, the other golfer (or golfers) walk around behind or to the side of you, trying to get out of your way. However, after seeing many polygonal-clipping bugs as well assorted AI bugs, this idea falls square on its face. In the end, however, supporting D3D acceleration, Fox Sports Golf '99 is graphically on par with all the other golf games out there.

Like most PC golf games, there are two types of swings: the standard 3-click (one click to start, one click to determine power, and one to determine accuracy) and the "pro-swing" (using the mouse to somewhat simulate a golf-swing). While Fox doesn't really differentiate itself from others in terms of gameplay, I did have one major complaint about playing in general: there was no way to "shank" the ball. Even if the "accuracy" click was left out, the ball would just badly slice. On the other hand, one of the most impressive aspects of Fox's game is the different types of swings that can be achieved with different clubs, for example backspin, chip and roll, etc.

There are many aspects of the game (mentioned in the PSX review) that I did find irritating. Reading the green can become difficult due to the awkward graph mapped onto the green. Also, many of the courses look very similar and, while some holes can be interesting, many fall under the generic par 4 category.

In the end, despite the fact that the Playstation version blew chunks, Fox Sport's Golf '99 for the PC is really not that bad of a golf game. If you don't mind the fact that there are no licenses and all golfers look incredibly generic, it could be the one for you.

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