App Reviewed on: iPhone XR
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The idea behind Golf Blitz is genius. Turning arcade golf into a frantic racing game seems like the very thing you’d want to put on your phone and play forever. And it is, except for the fact that Golf Blitz also happens to have an annoying free-to-play model that can make matches completely infuriating.
In Golf Blitz, up to four players compete in a kind of golf race, with the object being to sink your ball before others do. In traditional golf, you’d be considered “first” if you took the fewest number of strokes. This isn’t the case with Golf Blitz. Instead, there are no turns and all players can hit their balls as many times as they want in real time in an effort to complete the course first.
So, for example, you could hit your ball 15 times and all the other players could hit theirs 5 times, but if your ball ends up in the hole first it doesn’t matter. You win. Of course, this scenario is unlikely to happen because there’s a cooldown period you have to wait through between swings, but the fact remains: Golf Blitz is all about speed, which makes for a pretty goofy and hectic gameplay experience.
This ludicrous concept is paired appropriately with holes that have sticky surfaces, spinning objects, cliffs, and unnatural geography to ensure that every race is both frenetic and absurd. To make things even more ridiculous, players also get three pre-assigned power ups (e.g. speed shot, sniper shot) to use in matches that they can deploy as long as they have enough special meter, which accumulates over time during matches.
All of these elements come together and make Golf Blitz feel like the golf equivalent of Mario Kart. There aren’t exactly the annoying rubber banding features here, nor is there any driving (of the vehicle variety, anyway), but Golf Blitz definitely channels the fun and frustrations of an arcade racer more than it does just about anything else.
Driving you crazy
In order to enjoy Golf Blitz, you need to be capable of embracing party game nonsense. There are courses that seem unfair, weird physics accidents that can and will happen, and plain old lucky shots that your opponents will hit when you least expect it. I don’t always enjoy games that have such chaotic design, but I respect it as a design choice for particular titles, and for Golf Blitz, it feels appropriate.
What I have a harder time appreciating about Golf Blitz though is its free-to-play design. Aping the exact same multiplayer monetization popularized byClash Royale, you can expect to spend a lot of time in Golf Blitz waiting to unlock rewards, and then using those rewards to gain a leg up on other players. This always inevitably creates an unbalanced multiplayer experience where you feel like you have to invest a lot of time or money to keep up with the competition, and it sucks.
The bottom line
Golf Blitz is a game of highs and lows largely thanks to how unpredictable every match can feel. Unfortunately though, the game’s free-to-play design drags things down such that you experience more lows than you probably should. This won’t necessarily stop me from busting out a few more rounds of Golf Blitz down the road. The core of it is that good. I just wish it could treat players a little more fairly.