Review: Outlaw Golf 2 (XB)

Outlaw Golf 2
Genre: Sports (Golf)
Platform: Xbox [PS2]
Publisher: Gold Star Publishing
Developer: Hypnotix
Release Date: 10/21/04

The Outlaw series of games relies on sexpots, stud muffins, and simpletons as characters and decent gameplay to set itself apart from the other video T & A games. The game is funny, but is it really any good?



MODES:

Outlaw Golf 2 boasts several different modes of play. The quick game that does away with most of the formalities of selecting different things is here as is an exhibition mode that means you just play a quick round of golf on any unlocked selected course with what ever character you choose. Those are good for a quick romp against a friend but the meat of the game comes from the Outlaw Challenge mode and Tour mode.

Outlaw challenge is the means in which you improve a characterâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s statistics for tour mode. The challenge is a series of different tasks that you compete in and if you meet the required point goal you pass. The challenges range from putting, driving, to hitting cows and other tweaks on the game of golf. Early on these challenges can be a bit irritating because of the low skill level of your initial selection of golfers but soon become easier and provide a means of hands on learning.

The tour mode is where you select a golfer and take them through specific types of golf game situations. Some are quite normal: like the skins game or your basic round of golf. Others are a baseball style golf game or a team game that has money for strokes. The problem comes from the fact that you have to beat a tour game to unlock another. This can be annoying when you are having a problem with one particular game and would like to do another tour game for the same character but cannot because of the impasse reached through the lack of all the tour parts being open. Still the tour mode can be quite fun and the Outlaw challenge is not only a good way of improving your skills but is also essential to improve your chances at tour mode.

There is Xbox live play too, in case you want to play your friend in Hoboken and humiliate him with your hippy golf machine.

Modes: 6/10



GRAPHICS:

While not much can be done with golf courses, the flatness of the trees does spoil some of the beauty of Outlaw Golf. The female characters are all the sexpot exaggerations of women weâ┚¬â”žÂ¢ve come to expect, with bosoms bouncing, derrieres barely covered, and tan lines present. The males range from comical (Ice Trey and Country Clem) to beefcake (Killer Miller and El SauvÃÆ’©). They characters are all nicely done and their outfits showcase their personalities well. The game occasionally has a few clipping problems (mainly with the spectators) and a few bad camera angles that make setting up a shot harder than it should be but those are minor quibbles. The game is nice to look at, not the belle of the ball but you wonâ┚¬â”žÂ¢t chew your arm off in the morning unless you are bored.

Graphics: 6/10



SOUND:

Dave Attel has been signed on to do commentary for Outlaw Golf 2, but while I do like the raspy voiced New Yorker he just does not seem over the top enough to capture the feeling of the Outlaw series. The announcer from Outlaw Volleyball should have been kept on because the faux enthusiasm and quaint sarcasm worked much better than the somewhat bored quips and cynicism that Attel brings.

The dreaded â┚¬Å”Here comes (insert name here)â┚¬Â disease, where the sound has a slight pause when the name of the character coming up to hit the ball is dredged up by the system. This is a bit annoying and does break some of the mood trying to be set by the game. Also the commentary seems to be very thin and the characters are not as animated or chatty as they were in previous games.

The music of Outlaw Golf 2 is notable and is quite catchy. The modern rock tunes can blare out and often times a player may find themselves bobbing their heads along while they are setting up for a long putt. While sometimes the soundtrack can overshadow the game, by catching the attention with a quick hook, it does not loom large over the presentation.

The voice acting is suitably stereotyped. Donna Maroni sounds just like the turnpike trollop that she is meant to represent and Country Clem sounds like he could be seen at any national discount retailer whoâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s home base is out of the deep south. When characters do speak it is usually comical and not wooden.

Sound: 6/10



CONTROLS:

Outlaw Golf 2 is not an excuse for tits and ass with a golf mini-game. The actual golf takes precedence over any of the stylings and trappings of the raunchy humor. Golf is the name of the game and the controls are made to mirror that philosophy.

The left analogue stick is used to control the swing, with the right analog stick used to control where exactly you will hit the ball to provide backspin and whatnot. You can hook and slice a shot should you move the stick a tad off center, but sometimes you have to do this in order to avoid some of the obstacles. There is a power meter that has a percentage display on top, which can be adjusted for the amount of power you want to put into a swing before you address the ball (which is a fancy way of saying: get ready to hit the ball). The power meter will then show you a white space that is the area you need to hit to get the ball close to the exact distance you have sought with the adjustments to the meter. This process can make lining up a shot to be a science and you are provided a chance at a â┚¬Å”ghostâ┚¬Â ball to see how your shot will pan out, but these are limited.

Putting is about the same but you can use the X button to call up an estimated course for the ball, allowing you to adjust your aim for differences on the putting green. This can be done 3 times and can be a life saver. You also have to hit the power meter mark to get enough power into your putt. Too much power means you may kiss the lip of the cup, too little means you may end up on the cusp of the cup. Hypnotix by no means skimped on the golf game that the attitude is wrapped around.

Controls: 6/10



BALANCE:

The composure meter is the feature that receives the most attention, making the game harder when you do poorly and easier when you do well. Through completely Outlaw Challenges a player can raise the natural composure rating of a selected character but early on a few bad drives into the rough can become the start of a terrible round of golf. To try and balance the ease in which the game can quickly become an exercise in terrible golfing there are the beating tokens.

Beating tokens are issued for aces, eagles, birdies, and consecutive pars. A character starts with one beating token when a round of golf starts and may use those tokens to beat their caddy to improve their composure. To actually beat your caddy requires you to go through a mini-game wherein you time A button presses to a fist moving across the bottom of the screen. When the fist meets the caddyâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s picture you hit the A button. Complete the all 5 fist swings and your composure meter fills up entirely. This is all well and good but a problem comes from some of the AI controlled golfers continually improving.

If you fall behind it becomes harder and harder to make up ground as the AIâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s composure seem to be maxed out, leaving you little margin for error. Should you have a bad hole you have to spend your beating token to subdue the damage done to the composure rating. This can be invariably annoying and a tad cumbersome.

However Outlaw Golf 2â┚¬â”žÂ¢s learning curve is not too steep, meaning that it is possible to improve your game and compete with the AI opponents. The trouble comes from actually beating them the first time. Once you get over that hurdle the rest seems to fall in place. Once you being improving the individual golfers the game can swing into the realm of being a tad too easy, so the pendulum of difficult in Outlaw Golf 2 sways a tad too much without finding a nice medium.

Balance: 3.5/10



REPLAY ABILITY:

There are 6 characters to unlock in Outlaw Golf 2, 4 courses to unlock, various outfits, clubs, golf balls, and 13 different styles of golf to play through. The problem comes from having to slog through every single characterâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s tour mode to unlock everything. Eventually waiting through the AIâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s turn gnaws on oneâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s patience. It gets worse when there are 3 CPU controlled characters to wait for, which can kill the mood for the more impatient sorts, hurting the chances youâ┚¬â”žÂ¢ll want to play again and again. The Xbox Live support adds to the chances a person will play Outlaw Golf 2 more often with the hopes of finding similar minded people to play against and make jokes about Ice Trey and Fresh Fruit.

Replay Ability: 3/10



APPEAL:

The audience for Outlaw Golf 2 is very specific: fans of sophomoric, â┚¬Å”lowâ┚¬Â humor and fans of the series (almost always one in the same but not quite always). Outside of that perhaps horny video game players may pick up Outlaw Golf 2 to ogle some polygon tits and ass, but with Dead or Alive existing then some of those fans may be siphoned away.

Hypnotix knows their audience and has forged a relationship with the more ardent fans on their websiteâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s message board. However many people will just not be compelled to play the game even after seeing it in action unless they have a specific sense about them.

Appeal: 3/10



ORIGINALITY:

The composure meter is not new but it is an interesting twist and golf games that are humorous and outlandish are not exactly the rarest find in the video game kingdom. Still, Outlaw Golfâ┚¬â”žÂ¢s ability to laugh at itself and locales are a change of pace from Hot Shots Golf and definitely a big departure from Mario Golf. The only game that really comes to mind recently that was like Outlaw Golf is Swingerz Golf but that was released quite awhile ago.

Originality: 4/10



ADDICTIVENESS:

This game is a very hit or miss title and if you like it you will play it until you have unlocked every last thing in the game, take to playing people over the internet, and playing a few people at home. If a person does not like this game they will see playing it as a chore and put off playing any more than 10 minutes at a time, at most, should the doldrums overtake them and make the revâ┚¬Â¦ person not want to pick up a controller for awhile.

Addictiveness: 3.5/10



MISCELLANEOUS:

The character designs and humor that Hypnotix has put into Outlaw Golf 2 are actually interesting. Though Summer, the poster girl of the Outlaw series, is a bit boring, characters like El SauvÃÆ’©, Ice Trey, and Harley make up for some of the lesser characters on the roster. The over the top stereotypes and politically incorrect manner in which the game approaches existence helps show that the game does not take itself or anything else too seriously, which is a refreshing change of pace.

Miscellaneous: 4/10



RATINGS:

Modes: 6/10
Graphics: 6/10
Sound: 6/10
Controls:6/10
Balance: 3.5/10
Replay Ability: 3/10
Appeal: 3/10
Originality: 4/10
Addictiveness: 3.5/10
Miscellaneous: 4/10