According to Wikipedia, the first computer game in the golf genre was a game called Computer Golf! and it came as early as 1978. So now, 43 years later, I’m in it Golf Club: Wasteland which actually does something new with the genre.
In a not-too-distant future, the earth has perished and humanity has fled to Mars. The super-rich are bored and can thus choose to go back to earth to ride a round of golf in the blown-out ruins of what was once our planet. Play a round of golf that you will soon forget.
The game mechanics are simple and you have only two things to keep track of: Your left joystick and then the A button (if you are running Xbox). You direct and specify the force you are going to use in the stroke with the joystick and when you are satisfied, press A. Unlike most other golf games, the view is only from the side. This is because you are playing through burnt out houses and other buildings, so it is important to keep your tongue straight in your mouth. Once you have hit your shot, your avatar goes where the ball ends up. So you do not have to move yourself through buildings and such.
The thing that is a bit tricky with the game mechanics is that you do not get to see a preview of how the ball will lose height and about how far the power of your stroke will last. So there will be a lot of retakes before it gets right. Herein lies one of the problems I found with Golf Club: Wasteland because it is not entirely easy to set and keep track of how much force you are going to put into the stroke, while setting the angle. It gets too otight which leads to a lot of frustration on the more difficult courses.
You can play through the whole game in a kind of story mode where the number of strokes and such does not matter much, but then you can really go in and play for points and complete the courses in the least number of strokes. It makes that Golf Club: Wasteland still holds for a fairly large number of hours of gambling for a silly little money.
The graphics are nice and clean and a bit reminiscent Inside. The backgrounds are full of humorous signs and glitches to today’s society (especially to a certain, former, American president). Then the soundtrack is incredibly well done. You will hear the radio program of the future with new music and presenters leading their programs and conducting interviews. It is super-well-made and cool and gives the game a completely different dimension than “just” being a golf game.
In conclusion, I really like it Golf Club: Wastland and had the game designers just solved the game mechanics a little better and then this would have clearly become one must. It will instead be a warm recommendation Golf Club: Wasteland!