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Review: Infinite Minigolf for PSVR

The sequel to PS3’s Planet Minigolf, Infinite Minigolf, has finally made it to market. It’s across all major platforms including PSVR, which is the version what we will be reviewing today. Is putt-putt in VR a hole in one or is it or is a few strokes over par? Read on to find out.

Audio:

The audio in this game is rather basic, but they do fun things with the sounds. All of the power ups have their own sounds, the voice over actors just give little a “Yeah!” if they do something well, and the levels themselves have little sound effects. The closer you get to objects the louder they sound, I know that sounds obvious, but even in VR that sense of 3D sound plays even better. After a while you don’t even need to pay too close of attention to know what’s happening on screen before it tallies your score (for example), you’ll just hear the objects and power ups that your ball hits and you’ll know what, if anything, you’ll be getting. And there is one item, a big purple diamond, that I swear sounds identical to picking up a ring in Sonic the Hedgehog. I’m probably wrong, but I love the sound of it. There are just so many items in this game and reasons to have sound effects that you know that they had fun with it all. The team behind this game put a lot of time and effort into it from beginning to end and it just shows. 10/10

Soundtrack: 

The soundtrack to this game is simply adorable. The menus and store music has its own music that fit an overall “get to work” vibe. But each of the 3 worlds sport their own musical ensembles that really put you in the mood. I would love to see them sell the music on vinyl, even the soundtrack for the first game. This stuff is absolutely magical and I have to say that the Halloween world captures that Nightmare before Christmas vibe but still stays light in its delivery. It does not sound overbearing. In all of the worlds, it felt like the music existed there. Like how there are always sounds in a world, in this game, it felt like the music was just part of the sounds and the music is continual even if I wasn’t present in the world. That sort of vibe made me do that thing where you hum a song and that song staying with you draws you back to the game. It’s just fun music overall! 10/10

Visuals: 

The visuals are in a true cartoonish fashion, but in a game like this, it’s a necessity. You have a Halloween world, a Christmas world, and a giant bedroom. You can’t logically make everything look one for one like it does in real life, you’d end up with a giant game that would take forever to download. Furthermore, having a real looking Santa Claus or realistic ghost in this game would be beyond terrifying, I wouldn’t ever want to actually play it. No, the aesthetic that they chose is a good one to keep the franchise going with. But still, the cartoonish look is well polished and has no ugliness to it whatsoever. And when I say “whatsoever” I mean even in VR mode it is truly inspiring. And when in VR mode you are still in the role of the camera so you can look all directions from where you’re placed to truly take in as much as you can. I can’t give this game enough credit because it is chock full of the smallest and the biggest details. Nothing feels rushed or overlooked in this gem. The only reason that I cannot give it a perfect score is because I would say that this game, or at least the Christmas level, could stand to have a day and night cycle. Snow looks wonderous during different times of the day, and instead, we are stuck with the same lighting in each level and I think they could’ve done more there. 8/10

Gameplay: 

This game is the quintessential minigolf game for the home. I didn’t even know that I wanted a minigolf game, but when I played it, I remembered how fun a good one can be. They may have even topped some of the best entries in Mario Golf series. The gameplay is simple enough, you choose where to place your ball at the beginning, choose which what you’re going to hit the ball, and then choose how hard you want to hit it. There are no holes built into the game, they’re all made by users like you and me. So in that regard, sometimes the holes can have technical issues, but I only came across one in all of my playing of the game. So if a person builds a good course with fun pickups and power ups, you can rest assured that you will have fun because the mechanics that were built are solid. And the developers even delayed the game a little bit longer to add cross platform content sharing. Yes, that means you can make content for the game on your Nintendo Switch and people can play it on their XBOX One, PSVR, or Steam if they so choose.

The course building is something that was well thought out, but clearly not for me. I enjoyed playing all of the created content that I could get my hands on. The courses built can never help you cheat and get lots of money or cards to unlock things with as that is still regulated by the game based on a number of factors. But the creator can choose how many strokes par is and such (as some courses are longer and more difficult). I for one think that if there was at least one Infinite Minigolf iteration for each console generation going forward, it wouldn’t be a bad thing at all. We hardly ever get a game like this. I mean the level designs have ramps and loops and tunnels and so much stuff that even if you hate one course, theres about 50 courses that you will like. The gameplay all in all is great across solo mode, the editor, local multiplayer, and online multiplayer. There just isn’t much more that they need to fix. I don’t even know the last time that I played a game that was practically perfect without a patch! 8/10

Replay-ability: 

The entire game is literally infinite. So you can’t actually beat it. From the unlockables to the customizations, to the designing of holes, to the playing of the (currently) over 7,000 customized holes, and so much more…you have plenty to do. You will never reach an end until they shut down the servers across all of the platforms. I think the part that you probably won’t be entirely playing over and over again is the VR (as you’ll see in the next section). Heck, even the multiplayer adds a layer not in the Solo mode as you can play against someone in a standard 8 hole format. It’s just a blast to pick up time and again! 9/10

VR Reflections: 

The best part of the VR experience for me was seeing the overworlds (around the hole that you’re playing) all around me. It is so detailed and welcoming in all 3 of the worlds. That being said, you can’t freely walk around it and truly take in all of the detail. I do love that they have us in control of the character in 3rd person mode as well. It helps aim the ball better I would say. The downside is that despite this game being a VR compatible game, you cannot use your PlayStation Move controller and play a good ol’ game of putt putt. If the developers of the game are reading this, please let me play some first person putt putt in my home!

The level creation is almost downright pointless in VR mode though unless you have the controls memorized. They give you a small in game TV screen to watch so you can see what you’re doing a bit easier, but the actual problem is the text. You can look at this screen as much as you want and squint and get close to it, but I simply could not read half of the text. The text is important to tell you what does what, how the things are used, how to manipulate the pieces and so on. I love that they let this work in VR too, as it shows that they’re trying to innovate, but how could they not have noticed the small text. It’s got to be easily patchable though through game updates, so let’s hope that they do that.

The game is indeed fun in VR mode, I’ll give it that. Is it necessary though? I would say that the answer is no. I accomplished so much more in the normal mode than I did in VR. I was achieving hole in ones or at least taking fewer strokes to get to the hole. The game in VR is gorgeous, but it needs to be a bit more ironed out before I could recommend it to anyone. However, since this game comes with a non-VR mode instead of being 2 separate purchases, it is still worth giving VR a go every once in a while.  7/10

If you’re interested in the PSVR/PS4 version of the game after reading my review, you can buy it by clicking here.

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