Author Topic: Cursed to Golf (Switch) Review Mini  (Read 3706 times)

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Offline John Rairdin

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Cursed to Golf (Switch) Review Mini
« on: September 23, 2022, 05:37:39 AM »

An excellent golf game that is not for the faint of heart.

Cursed to Golf is a rogue-like 2D golf game. After a freak accident, the player character is killed and sent to the underworld, and in order to escape, they’ll need to golf their way out across several worlds. Each of these contains a random selection of courses, which will be different on every run, along with a boss fight. As you progress through each world you’ll occasionally be able to choose to branch off and gain rewards, in exchange for challenging a more difficult course. These branches will often give you access to cards. Cards grant you one-time-use abilities that are extremely helpful. Cards are also the one thing you’re able to carry with you from run to run. Any cards removed from your inventory and placed into storage will be available to you in future runs.

The underlying golf mechanics are about what you’d expect. After selecting a club you’ll click once to set your power and again to set your angle. However unlike many golf games you can back out of a stroke and take another stab at setting your power. It is the one and only way in which Cursed to Golf is somewhat forgiving. You can also add spin to the ball after it's already been hit, allowing you to finesse your landing and pull off otherwise impossible trick shots. Each course has a set number of available strokes. Run out of strokes and you return to the beginning of the game, or a manually placed checkpoint once you make it far enough to earn one, but even then, that checkpoint is only good once. You can increase the number of strokes available by destroying gold and silver statues along the course, or by using specific cards.

Cursed to Golf plays excellently, but as alluded to earlier, it is remarkably unforgiving. Even as someone who plays his fair share of rogue-likes, rogue-lites, and rogue-somewhats, Cursed to Golf can feel cruel at times. Much of this comes down to the fact that at no point will earlier worlds necessarily get significantly easier. Defeated bosses will stay defeated but the road to get to them will be as treacherous as ever. Your character doesn’t change much beyond a few unlockable abilities or carry anything forward beyond one time use cards. As a result, as you replay early worlds, you may feel like minimal tangible progression is taking place. While it is hard to call this objectively bad, it does greatly limit the audience of Cursed to Golf, and I can’t help but feel like some accessibility options or legitimate character progression could have smoothed this over, without harming the premise of the game.

Cursed to Golf is an extremely compelling, if also unforgiving, game. It succeeds at being an incredibly unique take on both the rogue-like and 2D golf formulas. The difficulty may be off putting to some, though, and an argument can be made that it would be better off with some adjustments made in that department. That being said, it is hard to deny the underlying quality and charm that this game exudes with every swing of the club. Cursed to Golf is a big deal for relative newcomer developer Chuhai Labs. While the studio has developed and published several titles and their lineage can be traced back through multiple companies well represented on Nintendo platforms, Cursed to Golf may very well be the game that puts them on the map.