Golf games have been around since the early days of Nintendo and have become a staple of all platforms. When you think about it, golf and video games are quite alike. Both have millions of players across the world who consider them recreational hobbies and could care less about the professional scene. Of course, one of these hobbies is way more difficult than the other, depending on what your understanding of difficult is. Nonetheless, golf video games have more than enough reason to be as popular and abundant as they are.
In fact, one great reason behind the popularity of Golf games is the challenge and realism that they offer. Very few sports games can match the kind of mechanics and physics available in some of the most prominent golf games. Despite the popularity among video games though, the original sport of golf has been gradually declining, and many prominent people have been taking measures to resurrect it.
As efforts by Steph Curry and the like to bring more players and fans to the sport take their course, here are some of the best golf games for PC that have kept the sport alive in the virtual world.
PGA Tour 2K21
Official PGA tour games have been in existence since the 90s and been developed by various companies with EA leading the race for a long time. But PGA Tour 2K21 by HB Studios is arguably the best official game of the sport so far. The game features all the courses from the original 2020 tour along with the original roster. The attention to detail of each course is quite remarkable and the mechanics is in keeping with the series’ legacy.
The multiplayer mode has been tweaked with some much-needed changes to gameplay variety. The overall design of the career mode and the challenges that the game offer make it a must try experience for fans of the PGA Tour.
Perfect Golf (2016)
This is the latest entry in the series of games named after golfer Jack Nicklaus. People who aren’t familiar with the sport may have never heard of him, but his eponymous game series has some of the best golf games on any platform. Perfect Golf is arguably the most realistic golf game to date with strict adherence to ball physics and trajectory detail. The game offers a wide range of courses and over 20 gameplay modes to suite your style of play.
The well-developed multiplayer mode makes the realistic game physics and other mechanics worth investing countless hours to master. This game could easily be in contention for the best golf game for PC ever, had it not been for the minimal marketing effort put in to promote it.
Dangerous Golf (2016)
An obvious oxymoron, Dangerous Golf features all the fun stuff that you wish you could do with a golf ball to make the sport more interesting. The arcade style of the game allows you to unleash your golf fury in over a 100 holes across 4 different nations. Of course the catch is that you get to play indoors and smash stuff while trying to score.
Dangerous Golf is one game where you do not want to score a hole in one. Creating as much mayhem as possible before your ball eventually gets into the hole is what this game is all about. If you think this is easy, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the mechanics which gets more challenging as you progress. While the game doesn’t have any rewards as such trying this in real life will earn you the coveted green straightjacket.
Sid Meier’s SimGolf (2002)
There is yet to be a Sid Meier’s simulation game that hasn’t completely blown away gamers and SimGolf is a title that’ll prove why. SimGolf is a serious golf simulation game with emphasis on crafting and tycoon style gameplay. You are tasked with creating a golf course with resources which can be unlocked as you progress. This is easier said than done though, as the game offers ample challenges to keep you on your toes with the course’s management.
You can also create your own pro golfer and take on tournaments. The game’s world building system is quite complex and is a great example of why Sid Meier’s games are so popular. SimGolf also has a sandbox mode which allows you to dispense with all the challenging stuff and create a golf empire at your own pace.
GolfTopia is a title quite similar to Sid Meier’s, but with more emphasis on real time strategy elements. This golf tycoon game allows you to build your own golf course from scratch and manage it to attract golfers and keep them happy. Of course, the game’s golfers, much like in real life, are quite demanding, so you’ll have to do everything to keep them happy while making the best of your resources.
GolfTopia involves a lot of micromanaging which is quite rewarding. Of course, one RTS aspect of the game involves golf’s oldest enemy – weeds. It is up to you to train and dispatch an army of drone warriors to deal with the rogue flora. Although heavy on tycoon and RTS elements, GolfTopia doesn’t skimp out on the actual Golf part either. You get to train your manager avatar to play golf and take on the visiting golfers.
Golf with Your Friends (2020)
This unique golf game offers a wholesome multiplayer experience that is both challenging and fun. You get to play with 11 other golfers as you putt your way through some innovative mini-golf courses with some wild themes.
The game also features a great level editor which allows you to create your own course and create a more challenging game for you and your friends. Be careful with the challenges though or you’ll end up driving a wedge between friends.
What the Golf! (2019)
Golf is often seen as a serious game with players spending what seems like hours judging a shot only to miss out and throw a rage tantrum. Well, What the Golf! lets you see the funny side of this dramatic sport with some hilarious use of game physics. This lighthearted take on the game of golf allows you to do pretty much anything you want to in a golf course which can include playing the occasional game of golf if you feel like it.
There are tons of levels and tons of items that you can use to make your golf course enjoyable one or an inhospitable wreck of a place where everything is designed to put you in a lot of pain.
100ft. Robot Golf (2016)
If you feel conventional golf is too slow, then here is a game with a Gundam twist. Just as the title suggests, it is a bunch of 100ft. mechs sorting out their differences Tiger Woods Style. Mortal humans have to worry about trees, sand traps and water hazards, but not the robot golfers. They just pummel the obstacles to make a hole in one which is usually a few hundred feet deep.
Designed purely for the sake of entertainment this game offers some hilarious gameplay set in a 90s style mecha world. Needless to say, when it comes to these 100ft. Robot Golfers, the sky is not even the limit with courses set on moon and any other place where you can imagine golf should be played.
Golf Club Wasteland (2021)
Post apocalyptic survival is all the rage these days, so Demagog Studios decided to make a golf game with that theme. Golf Club Wasteland is the passionate Golfer’s ultimate fantasy. The game uses the entire planet Earth as a golf course with holes set across popular monuments, landmarks and so on. Golf Club Wasteland stands out with its unique and immersive storytelling. The plot is set in the distant future where our planet is completely devoid of life and the 1% has left to live elsewhere. The protagonist, however, dubbed ‘the lone golfer’, comes back for one last solo round of his favorite sport.
As the game progresses, more is revealed about the events that led to Earth’s destruction as the lone golfer finds solace in a nostalgia radio station broadcasting from Mars. While the plot may seem like a copyright lawsuit from Microsoft/Bethesda waiting to happen, the narrative is tastefully driven with ample emphasis on the joy golfing. Demagog Studios have also added a graphic novel art book as part of the game’s content to expand upon the story.
The Golf Club (2014)
HB studios’ The Golf Club is one the most realistic golf simulation games out there with arguably the best graphics. The game features some incredible mechanics for the core elements of golf i.e., the swinging and the ball travel. This game strives to offer as real an experience of golf as possible in a video game. While suitable for all gamers from novices to hardboiled veterans of golf games, Golf Club offers enough challenge at all levels to keep you immersed and engaged.
The course creator makes this game stay fresh in terms of playable content and offers great replay value.