Although we’ve known for a while that EA SPORTS would eventually come back with a professional golfing simulation title–just not in 2014–the appearance of EA SPORTS PGA TOUR at yesterday’s EA press conference at E3 2014 could be categorized as somewhat surprising. In the trailer–which runs just under a minute–EA SPORTS was able to showcase some of their new Frostbite 3 engine developments, including a focus on wildlife around the course.
And then, things got serious; well, seriously fantastical.
In a stark departure from the heavily sim-focused tone of the Tiger Woods PGA TOUR franchise beginning with Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 12: The Masters–the first title of the series to feature The Masters tournament at Augusta National–we saw extreme fantasy courses come back in a huge way with the debut of an apparently Battlefield-themed course, complete with fighter planes flying over head and, oh yeah, a giant battleship crashing into the shore.
It remains to be seen how the development team at EA SPORTS will manage to balance out the minute attention to detail and authenticity required by the PGA TOUR with courses featuring explosions, but it looks like we’re now less than a full year away from finding out for ourselves. EA SPORTS PGA TOUR will be released in Spring 2015 for the Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4.
Check out the full press release from EA below, and check out our Community to let us know what you thought of the trailer!
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – June 9, 2014 – A return to the virtual links is near as today Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) announced EA SPORTS™ PGA TOUR®. The new title will feature gorgeously detailed real-world courses, as well as epic fantasy courses that offer not only new settings, but their own unique challenges. EA SPORTS PGA TOUR will launch on Xbox One, the all-in-one entertainment system from Microsoft, and the PlayStation®4 computer entertainment system, in Spring 2015. The first video of EA SPORTS PGA TOUR can be seen here.
The game will be the first EA SPORTS title to utilize the power of the Frostbite 3 engine to render stunning courses and open up the golf experience like never before. With the ability to stream full environments, players will truly be able to play the ball as it lies no matter where it lands.
“Frostbite 3 is really the perfect piece of technology for us to use as we create EA SPORTS PGA TOUR,” said Executive Producer Brent Nielsen. “There is no better engine out there for creating complex, lifelike environments, and it has allowed us to recreate some of the world’s most beautiful courses, as well as create some new ideas of our own. Also, for the first time ever we’re offering a game that’s completely free of load times after you start your round, allowing you to move seamlessly from one green to the next tee without breaking immersion.”
“The technology driving EA SPORTS PGA TOUR opens up so many new opportunities,” said Denise Humphreys, PGA TOUR Senior Director of Partnerships. “Two of our favorite new features are the ability to play from hole to hole with no load time, plus having views of the entire course, allowing the gamer a more real-world experience.”
This newfound freedom will come in handy not just for PGA TOUR courses fans know and love, but also in the new fantasy courses that will make their debut in EA SPORTS PGA TOUR. Why take two shots to get a ball around a beached battleship in the Battlefield Paracel Storm course when you can fire a ball right at the bow, bounce it off the deck and land on the green in one?
“One of my favorite things about the game is discovering new shortcuts and alternate routes to the hole on fantasy courses,” stated Nielsen. “Players are encouraged to wander off the beaten path and find new roads to success. Now that the entire course is open at all times you are as free to be as creative and imaginative as you want in your pursuit of a low score.”
EA SPORTS PGA TOUR is developed in Orlando, Florida by EA Tiburon and will be available in Spring 2015 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.