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Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 14 - Xbox 360


Bicycles > Orient: Tiger Boy 14''

First off, let's consider the most critical part of the game: the swing. One of the strongest improvement for Tiger 14, the swing might appear largely the same as last year, but it feels a bit more forgiving this time around. A meter that mimics the swing action of the golfer on screen starts when players draw back on the analog stick, then transitioning to the downswing when the stick is pushed forward. It's a basic motion, but the point of transition between the backswing and the downswing is key; a longer backswing leads to an overswing and potentially more power while a shorter backswing takes something off of the shot. There is a sweet spot for a perfect transition, but it's possible to find it with enough practice, keying in the right tempo so that flicking the analog stick too quickly or too slowly isn't a worry, affecting a shot’s accuracy.

The way in which you approach your shots is up to you this time around as caddies are gone in Tiger 14. Their omission is most noticeable in the short game, as there is no longer an aiming spot based on their read of the green. There's still the option in lower difficulty levels to activate a putt preview, but that’s it. It adds more of a challenge to putting, which may be welcomed to some players and add a few strokes to the scorecards of those less capable of reading the greens. The absence of caddies also means that players will have to think a bit harder about how to line up shots from tee to green. To get the best results, elevation, wind speed and direction, and lie also have to be taken into account.

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Tiger Woods 14: Better with Kinect

The Tiger 14 experience can be customized in a number of other ways to satisfy players of all skill levels and abilities as well. The Amateur setting practically guarantees low scores and is the quickest way to learn to play without too many penalties. It’s almost like an arcade experience at this setting, with 18-hole scores in the double digits below par while getting the feeling of utterly dominating AI tournament fields. Bumping up the difficulty adds more realism to the experience, requiring tighter accuracy on analog swings, the need to execute precise diagonal motions for draw or fade shots, and subtle movements of the Strike Meter before shots which can lead to mishits or chunks. Also, a new “Simulation” difficulty has been added this year to really test a player’s mettle. No putting lines, no spin, no yardage just reading the course and trying to make the best decisions. Basically, there's many ways to enjoy Tiger 14 based on player skill and preference.

Playing Tiger 14 online opens up even more gameplay modes. Country Clubs return from Tiger 13, with more maximum members (now up to 100). Once connected to a Country Club, every event a player completes accumulates status points for that player and their Club. Status points are used to determine who the Club Champion and Club Pros are for each Club, allowing them to compete in special online tournaments each week. These titles reset weekly, so new Club Champions can be crowned if someone has an exceptional week or if the previous Champion doesn’t play as much. Thankfully, players can switch from one Country Club to another at any time without being penalized.