The biggest knock I’ve seen against Rory McIlroy PGA Tour is its lack of course selection. Having shipped with only 8 real-life courses (plus a ninth if you pre-ordered the game), diehard fans of the franchise destroyed the game’s reputation, likely before they even got a chance to play it.
I’m no diehard golf fan — I think the last EA Sports golf game I bought was Tiger Woods 08 — so maybe I’m not the best person to be offering an opinion of this game. But I know video games, and I can easily tell when it feels like there isn’t enough to do in a game. That’s 100% not the case here. There’s more than enough fun to be had in Rory McIlroy PGA Tour, and it’s sort of a shame that this game got such a bad reputation so quickly.
Let’s start with a couple facts. This is the first officially licensed golf game for the current generation of consoles. It’s not the first golf game, though; as weird as it sounds, I played Powerstar Golf more than most other Xbox One launch titles. But being officially licensed means real clubs, real golfers, and real courses.
And even though 8 courses may not seem like much, golf, in its very nature, is a repetitive game. I’ve spent most of my time in the Pro Career mode, where I play the same course four times in a row to complete a tournament. If those 8 courses are good, I don’t care that there aren’t more.
But there actually are more! There are 4 “fantasy courses” that add to the game’s variety, and a whole challenge mode (with something like 170 challenges) that add hours of replay value. While they’re not challenges I’m dying to go back and re-play, they’re a lot of fun to play the first time through.
Your opinion of Rory McIlroy ultimately comes down to your expectations. If you’re trying to compare it to the best Tiger Woods came on the Xbox 360/PS3, you may be let down. If, instead, you judge it on its own merits, it’s clear that this is a polished game with more than enough variety and well worth your time. (You know, if you like golf games.)