Golf With Your Friends was on my wishlist for a good few months before I bought it. It never really grabbed me, never stood out. That is until I started playing games with a fairly active subreddit community who convinced me it was worth it. It being an Early Access game, it’s always tough to call whether or not it is worth it. Especially a game that is so dependent on having people around to play it with.
On Course for Success
There are ninety different holes across five courses in the game, but each one is brilliantly crafted. There are, of course, some very simple holes that don’t require too much thinking, but the majority do pose some challenge to the player. You’ve got your standard mini-golf holes – there are windmills, tubes to fall down and perilous pits to avoid. But in amongst all of those, you have some brilliantly thought out hazards and obstacles. Long jumps, conveyor belts, pickled heads and ghostly apparitions are just a few of the additional things you need to utilise or avoid in order to get around the courses successfully. It does make each course unique, and even with practice it’s very difficult to get around with a low score.
Each course feels unique too. With five different themes, it’d be easy to reskin a few holes and just get on with it. Not in Golf With Your Friends though. Every hole, whether it’s on the Forest level or the Haunted level, is different from one another. They all suit the theme they’re in as well. All of the Candyland holes are disgustingly sweet, covered with chocolate and candy. Every single one of the Oasis holes are a painful, terrible assortment of hell-holes that are absurdly difficult, just like being in an Oasis. It really shows how much time and effort has gone into the game when you play through some absolute masterpieces.
Playing online is, of course, the best way to enjoy this game. If you have a bunch of your friends, it’s great fun, especially if you play with custom rules. Laughing at your friend who has to play as a cone, or playing to knock your pal as far away from the hole as possible is brilliant. Especially if you’re on mic with eachother. Hearing your friends swear bloody murder at you because you cocked up their score is hilarious, but could spell the end of a friendship.
For such a simple game, it’s challenging to find some real flaws. There is one fairly obvious issue, which is right there in the title. I did try and play the game on my own, and it’s just so boring. It’s the same game play, and yeah, you could learn the holes better, but without any competition, it’s just so dull. The other issue I found with it is that the UI is dreadful, particularly the menu screens. You can see what they’ve tried to do, but if you click too fast, you get multiple menus and the ability to click on all of them at the same time. As it’s in Early Access though, there is still hope that the UI issues can be resolved prior to a full release, if there ever is one.
The Final Word
Golf With Your Friends is a cracking game, as long as you have people to play it with. If you can convince your friends to get it, and you’re all on a Discord server together, then you can have some great fun playing it. There are still public lobbies to join, but they tend to be a bit crap. Overall though, I’ve not had so much fun playing online mini-golf since I was a teen, so definitely worth it.