Most fun in miniature golf by par. Golf with your friends Switch Review

I am a terrible golfer. Do not get me wrong, I am not hating on golf, in fact having participated in a quite a few company golf outings. I g...

I am a terrible golfer.
Do not get me wrong, I am not hating on golf, in fact having participated in a quite a few company golf outings. I get the allure, but I stink at it. However I like to think that I have a pretty strong putting game. This brings us to mini golf. An entire game based around the putter shot and having fun with friends and family.Put a windmill or two in the way and what can go wrong? Indeed as you probably guessed, I still stink, though I am having a blast each time I play. Attempting trick shots is great fun even if it usually ends up costing us too many shots. No one is really keeping score anyway, are they? Excuse me , I think the groundskeeper wants a word....

Now you can enjoy the thrills of mini golf at your home or when played on the Switch, anywhere, anytime, with Golf With Your Friends from Blacklight Interactive and Team 17.
Golf With Your Friends , which from here on I will refer to as GWYF has been a Steam early access mini golf game since 2016 which this week sees its official release. Out of the box GWYF comes with 11 courses, 18 holes each, and 5 modes of play. It further more comes with a bunch of settings and customization to build the game to your personal preferences. Mini golf is of course more fun when playing together. GWYF is no exception and so it lets you bring 11 friends to play with you, in either a pass the controller mode in your living room or simultaneous mayhem online.

Controls are straight forward and though I initially felt that mouse and keyboard would be the best way to play a game like this, the conversion to controller works almost equally well. The left stick controls the force you hit the ball with as well as any spin you want to give it and the right stick is used to set the angle. Hold the right shoulder button down and you get a bit more control for those micro steps you need to get it just right. One button lets you fly the camera free mode for a set amount of time per hole to see what is behind the next obstacle and how to get to the end. You can also make the ball jump a little which can make the difference of falling of, or just making it over the hill, but physics can be stubborn so be careful with its use.

The courses in GWYF are of a wide variety. From a standard friendly outdoor forest or a museum to scary haunted castles and an explosive volcano. Team 17 even added some themed levels based on their other IP's Worms and The Escapists.
Each course has its own challenging puzzles that sometimes come with features that would not work in real life such as rocket packs, canons and warp zones.
When you are getting bored of the straight forward classic more you can dig your teeth in some of the wacky game play variations. Why not try to play Dunk mode where all holes are replaced with nets. A well timed jump at the end of your stroke and swoosh, nothing but net. What you say ? You are more of a hockey aficionado? Try hockey mode, can you get past the goalie?
Party mode adds Mario Kart style mystery boxes, roll over them and get power ups you can use to help yourself or hinder others. Leave behind a sticky honey trap or change the shape of an opponents ball in something less useful using the randomizer. Messing with your friends has never been more fun.

If that is still not enough you can try some of the settings to further customize your game. Want to implement a crippling time penalty? Go ahead add more strokes. Want to be able to to hit the other players ball with yours? Turn on ball collision and get ready for mayhem. Perhaps you want to make the ground extra bouncy this round. Make it feel like you are playing on bouncy ball rubber. The only things that seem to be missing is an option to be putting the other players ball or hiding it when they are not looking.

The challenges can be pretty big and at times it is hard to gauge how the physics are supposed to work, even if you have not messed with the settings. Camera angles can be a bit hard and even in free cam mode it van be difficult to find where you are supposed to go or how to get there. But as you play each course more and more most holes will be come easier to play around their par numbers.
Each theme feels unique and looks fantastic. Especially the worms theme is very inventive with its own additions to the game play it is very on topic and feels very Worms like. It feels like playing in small theme park at times. But where everything is golf balls and explosions.

The graphics feature bright colors and textures based on each theme and still hold up well even on the smaller switch screen. There is some clipping or camera collision at times which makes it hard to see at times. The style of the entire game is very playfu, do not expect realistic simulated grassy fields or sandbanks. Instead imagine yourself more in a cartoon landscape.
The sound effect are crisp and work well, from hitting the ball to the satisfying roll of the ball into the tin cup. Every time that ball goes in , it delivers that rewarding sound, followed by a polite applause. The music however is limited and gets monotonous fairly quick.They are happy calm sounding melodies, that feel as if they were pulled from some young kids show. And they can be relaxing at first but after 18 holes you either no longer register it or you are about to pull your ears off. You are probably better of turning the music down or off and play your own tunes on the back ground. But who knows, this is just my opinion, not fact. Perhaps you want to download the official soundtrack and listen to it on the road. For me it is too limited and with a game that give so many customization and options it is disappointing to see the lack of choice here.

Golf With Your Friends is an excellent game on any computer on console. It can be a relaxing distraction from more intense shooters or platform games. Something to let you breath for a little even as some of its course can get pretty challenging. The many options the game gives you in how you want to play and the plethora of customization makes it shine, not just as a mini golf game but as value for money. The physics and the camera can make it hard at some moments to get the perfect shot but it overall the experience is great. And as the icing on the cake , the multiplayer option to play with 12 people make Golf With Your Friends a party go to. The ability to restrict servers to friends only or even invite only ensures you can be safe from online trolls. Unless of course your friends love trolling you.
There is no cross play between PC and the different consoles which is too bad so choose your platform of choice wisely.
Golf With Your Friends is fun solo and a blast when playing with others. It is out now for you to try yourself.

Game information:
Title: Golf With Your Friends
Developer: Blacklight Interactive
Publisher: Team17
Release date: May 19, 2020
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Steam, Xbox One
Version Reviewed: Nintendo Switch
ESRB: E10+


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