A Little Golf Journey is the relaxing Switch game I didn’t know I wanted


I like golf a bit. I used to play, mostly badly, when I was younger, and I always like to watch majors when I get the chance. I have also become addicted to the PGA Tour 2K21 and play at least one round of adventure golf per month during the summer. A little golf trip on Switch and PC kind of combines all of these things into a relaxed stroll of a game that I’ll be happy to play for some time to come.

Basically, this is a game of golf like any other: you have to hit a ball through an environment, end up landing on a green, and then put the ball in the hole. It is golf by any definition. What A Little Golf Journey doesn’t care too much about are the things that usually go along with it all – the things that might deter some people from playing the sport.

Even the map screen is beautiful.

There is no club selection here. There is no Par, no birdies, no bogeys, no competition. Each hole, being part of a kind of world (accessible via an old-fashioned Mario-type map), gives stars. You will earn a certain number of these stars based on the number of strokes it takes to get the ball into the hole. More stars open up new areas, but there is never any sense of danger or stress. “Oh, no, I sent the ball to this lake!” No worries, just restart the hole, no harm. You didn’t just lose a middle finger after being three strokes ahead of the last tee.

As you aim your shot, you can more or less see where the bullet is going to land and you preset the power, with optional power boost and precision aiming easily accessible with the push of a button. Putting is all about strength and there is a guideline to make sure it is almost impossible to miss.

You might think this all sounds good, but hey, maybe a little pointless? Why bother if there is no challenge? But the good thing about A Little Golf Journey is that there is a challenge, but rather it is about finding the best way to place the ball to get a low score and earn the most stars. Can you line up your second shot so you can hit between trees? Is it possible to skip part of the hole by cutting towards an island in a lake? And what are they strewn with these strange objects?

Getting as many stars as possible is indeed a challenge, but it’s a bit more puzzle-centric than traditional golf, which itself is kind of a puzzle game when you think about it. These weird items are collectibles or special items that unlock additional challenges on the course that when completed open up secret holes that are added to the main map.

It’s all pretty shattering, and it’s beautiful in a less is more way. At some point, I will have seen all there is to offer (there are over 100 holes), and at this point there will be less to do than in a normal game of golf (where you can potentially play forever in competition with others or just improve your own personal bests), but as long as there’s more to see I’m going to keep playing. I just gland.

Disclaimer: Tested on Nintendo Switch. A copy of the game has been provided by the publisher. Also available on PC. Priced at £ 15.49.

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