It’s probably for the best that Sidebar Games published Golf Story themselves because I can’t imagine it would have been easy to pitch an RPG where you play golf.
This interesting combination immediately got my attention, but I do understand how some would have very little interest in this, especially if they’re neither fans of golf games nor RPGs.
So is the Golf Story up to par?
- Humorous story
- Lovely visuals
- Fun gameplay
- Lacks depth
- Limited replayability
The story follows a guy who’s trying to recapture his love of golf in a world where everyone else has a passion for the game in spades. Unsurprisingly, much like how everyone in Pokémon is obsessed with pokémon, everyone in Golf Story is obsessed with golf, often to comic effect.
With its odd combination of mechanics, Golf Story has definitely set itself a challenge. For the game to work, it needs to get both the golfing and the story right. The gameplay is a modern twist on 90s JRPGs and the golfing is simple enough to be accessible and fun at first. However, the golfing gameplay starts to feel a little stale by the end.
Fortunately, the game’s writing is excellent. While you may be getting a bit sick of the golfing by the end, you’ll probably still be enjoying yourself. The story, as silly as it is, should be enough to convince you to see Golf Story through to the end.
While the golfing outstays its welcome over the course of the story mode, there are other modes where you can play a few holes either on your own or with a friend. The multiplayer and quick modes are enjoyable but they are merely small extras with the story mode being the game’s main selling point.
Additionally, the game looks great with some charming and delightful visuals. While the style isn’t very original, there’s some great pixel art to enjoy if you’re into that sort of thing.
I’m a big fan of this game and really enjoyed playing it to completion. However, despite it combining two genres that don’t often go together, it doesn’t really add anything new to either of them.
The game’s combination is unique, but it’s component parts aren’t. With Golf Story, you get a fairly standard RPG and a fairly standard old-school golf game. There are a few quality-of-life improvements that wouldn’t have been present in a 90s RPG or golf game, but towards the end of the story mode, you might be waiting for it to end.
After all, Golf Story’s main selling point is that it’s an RPG and a golf game; it’s neither a golf game or an RPG in its own right and it only really works as a game when both core concepts are combined.
While you won’t get much from replaying the story mode again, the extra modes should be enough to stop you from uninstalling it.
Golf Story is exclusive to the Nintendo Switch.