Sony Corp.’s Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational for the Playstation Vita is a solid launch entry for the new handheld. Top physics, a range of new courses, and customization options keep the tournament at the top of the leaderboards.
Game modes include Single Player, Multiplayer for LAN versus against up to eight local users, Online for online ranked scoring, Customize, and Shop to purchase new Character Outfits, Clubs, Balls, Courses, Lobby Character changes.
Single Player includes Challenge and Stroke modes while Online includes Daily International Tournament to enter and submit scores online, Lobby, and Online Rankings.
Controls are perfect with golf swings and putts that utilize standard analog controls. The standard three-button process to start, measure power, and swing are unchanged from prior installments.
The physics engine is still top grade with swings and ball movement affected by hit placement, terrain, and wind factors. New courses offer a steep challenge with plenty of terrain fluctuations and hazards.
New touch controls are easy with camera options, tee-off spot change, distance and elevation check, and a shot landing check. A new camera option includes gyroscopic functionality to allow users to view a top-down shot of the golf club and pan around to view a simulated landscape of the course.
Each tournament win will earn the user points which can be used to purchase new items at the store. The Store features plenty of custom options to outfit users with over-the-top character changes.
While the title does not include full online multiplayer functionality, a new Lobby function allows users to create an avatar and chat in a virtual space. The touch screen makes it a breeze to crank out messages or users can choose from pre-set phrases to engage with other golfers.
The graphics engine is solid at 30 frames-per-second. Each course is well-constructed with lush terrain, moving landscape, and various weather conditions. The sound engine includes soft elevator music for a relaxing vibe on the range.
Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational is another leading golf title by developer Clap Handz. Though online multiplayer is missed, the variety of courses, custom options, and new touch functions are a hole-in-one for golf fans.