Zzap1st October 1986
Published in Zzap #18
Hole In One
Hole In One is Mastertronic's addition to the growing range of golf simulations for the C64. You start on the fairway, legs astride, in your Pringle jumper and checkered flares. Your caddybag is beside you and although it may look empty, it contains a veritable plethora of assorted sticks, sorry, clubs from which to choose.
The first thing to do, as any experienced golfer will tell you, is to have a drink - which may explain the character's unusual stance. Then, choose your club from a selection of irons and woods - it's best to start with a one wood. Once you have selected a club, an arrow appears at the top of the screen. This can be moved to change the direction in which the ball travels. Pressing the fire button gains control of the club, and pulling back on the joystick swings the club. The stroke is played by pressing the fire button a second time. You may have to play several shots to get the ball onto the green, but once you get there you can go for the hole, which is presented in a small window in the bottom right hand corner of the screen.
By correctly positioning an arrow behind the hole you should be able to sink the ball. There is also an option for a two player game where each player takes his or her turn as dictated by the rules of golf. Oh, and there's a practice option which allows you to tour the course.
I've never played Leader Board, but it's not at all difficult to tell that this is a third class rip-off. What we have here is a game which should be called 'Mr. Deformed Sprite Gets Hold of a Twig and Hits a Hydrogen-Filled Ball' because that's all there is to it.
What annoys me most (I was amused at first, though!) is what happens when you hit the ball into a lake: the screen redraws the surroundings and you see yourself standing on the surface of the lake! The program then realises this is impossible and returns you to the tee! Oh dear.
As far as I'm concerned, a cup of tea and a round of sandwiches are far more enjoyable than a round of Hole in One.
After Leader Board, we're back to the really dire golf programs. This is really bad, maybe with a little extra programming it could have been good, but as it stands it a really dull golf game. It's also frustrating, boring and completely and utterly *naff*!
The graphics are very poor - the loading screen looks like an elephant man playing golf, the main sprite is completely deformed, and the ball moves as though there's a 90 mph gale on the course as it goes all over the shop.
Save your pennies and buy Leader Board; it's more expensive, but miles better.
If Hole In One looked, sounded and played more like Leader Board then it would be amazing. Unfortunately, it doesn't and isn't. With a bit more effort, Hole In One could have been as good as Leader Board but with English style golf courses.
However, the golfer looks rather deformed, although he is well animated, and the ball movement is poor - very unrealistic. I like the way the scenery is drawn, but I don't like playing the game. It's a shame Hole In One doesn't look and play better - it would have been great.
Reasonable title screen and good in-game presentation.
The backdrops are effective - the golfer and ball are not.
A few simple jingles and spot FX.
Fairly addictive, despite the unrealistic and unusual way the game plays.
Just not playable enough to be compelling.
Value For Money 44%
The cheapest golf simulation available...
...but not one of the best.