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Winning Putt

Winning Putt is a 3D golf simulator that incorporates RPG elements and a wide range of customization through items and gear. Take to the green, level up, and compete in tournaments against other players.

Publisher: Bandai Namco
Playerbase: Low
Type: Golf Simulator
PvP: Tournaments/Casual Play
Release Date: January 14, 2016
Pros: +Lots of customization. +Guilds. +Extensive tutorial.
Cons: -Level-restricted courses. -Heavy grind for gear.

Overview

Winning Putt Overview

Winning Putt is a golfing simulator that incorporates RPG elements in realistic settings. Travel to lush courses and swing through 18 holes to earn the highest score. Customize your character with an assortment of presets and sliders, and select one of three player types: Power, Accuracy, or Balance. Level up by completing challenges and earn gold to purchase new items. Gear up by visiting the game's shop for golf balls, bags, and a set of clubs to optimize your gameplay. Before each swing analyze wind direction, the slope of the course, mentality, stamina, and the club equipped. Use items stored in the golf bag to revitalize your energy, such as snacks or drinks, or GPS and mini-maps to garner a better view of the terrain.

Winning Putt Key Features:

  • Club Enhancement - enhance your golf clubs to increase your stats and drive the ball farther.
  • Extensive Tutorial - learn the basics of golf through a tutorial elucidating each aspect of the game.
  • Various Environments - built on CryEngine, golf across gorgeous courses from around the world.
  • Tournaments - climb through the ranks, from rookie to pro, by winning tournaments and completing courses.
  • Realistic Variables - for the perfect swing players have to take their club, ground slope, wind direction, stamina, and mentality into account.

Winning Putt Screenshots

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Winning Putt Featured Video

Full Review

Winning Putt Review

By, Marc Marasigan

Winning Putt is a 3D Golf MMO set in a fictional picturesque country club. Players compete with NPC’s, other players, and themselves to move from being an amateur to the pro leagues, and eventually reach the top of the rankings. The game's graphics look amazing with great character models and lush, highly-detailed terrain (gotta love that grass), which isn’t surprising considering that the game runs on Crytek's CryEngine—a powerful game engine used by more graphics-intensive games like Evolve and Armored Warfare. The sound effects are spot on and realistic. Although the background music is a bit "meh" if you ask me. Personally, I'd rather turn it off altogether and blare out my own tunes. The voice acting could also use a bit more work, along with a few more voice-overs in general. I know golf is supposed to be a "quiet" sport but a little more commentary apart from the constant, and mildly annoying, "fairway", “rough”, or "approach" remarks wouldn't hurt.

Looking Like A True Golfer

Before stepping into the fairway players first create their characters. Players can choose from three character types: Power, Accuracy, and Balanced, which are  self-explanatory. Players can also get the chance to choose their character’s gender and customize their appearance. For a golf game, Winning Putt features a surprisingly in-depth character customization system which offers a ton of options that can rival those of Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Black Desert Online. Sliders are available to tweak minute details like eye size, body type, height, and a variety of other options. Not really what you would normally expect from a golfing game. The options, however, are limited to conservative golfing looks and attire. The most extreme look I’ve managed to create so far was a golfer sporting a purple Mohawk.

Golf Academy

Every great golfer started with the basics which is where players will be starting their careers in Winning Putt, courtesy of Christina, the gorgeous, albeit slightly high-pitched instructor at the golf academy. The tutorial consists of a handful of objective-based lessons on shot control, targeting, choosing clubs, putting, and getting out of tight spots; ultimately ending in a quick 3-hole round which players must complete within 16 strokes to pass the academy. Once players have completed the tutorial, they are automatically transported to the country club’s square where players will be spending most of their time outside of matches.

Go For The Sweet Spot

Winning Putt is, at its core, a golf-game which means that players will be spending most of their time swinging their fictional clubs in one of the game’s many playable courses. But don’t expect the game to be as in-depth as PGA Tour or other golf simulators. The game can easily be picked up by newbies and veterans of golf sims alike thanks to the game’s classic three-point click system typically used in most golf simulators. The first click sets the target, the second-click determines the power, and the third click determines the accuracy or push/pull on the ball. Just remember to hit that all-important sweet spot and you should be golfing like a pro.

Golf Meets RPG

Winning Putt is far from being your run-of-the-mill golf simulator. The game also features MMORPG elements like leveling, character stats, skills, enchanting (yes, it's actually called enchanting in-game, no idea why), guilds (clubs would have been more appropriate but that's the way it is), and PvP, as well as a central square where players can roam around and talk to other players, buy items, and acquire quests from NPC's. Unfortunately, these quests won't have you hacking poor cute and defenseless creatures to death with your golf club, but rather requires players to complete specific requirements during a match such as scoring Par or better 5 times in a 6-hole course. Not nearly as fun as bludgeoning mobs with one of your "Legendary Enchanted" golf clubs, but hey, it's a golfing game. What do you expect?

Taking On The Competition

Want to play a round of golf with your buddies? Then head over to the game’s multiplayer lobby where players can choose to join a variety of room-based matches where they compete against other players’ replays or ghosts, or in real-time. Players also have the choice of going head to head against a single player, or joining tournaments against up to 4 players in a variety of game modes, including betting rounds where players can gamble their in-game gold for bigger prizes.

The Club Shop

Since the game was launched there has been a constant debate on whether the game is pay-to-win or not. I’m leaning towards pay-to-win rather than pay-for-convenience since important items like golf clubs, caddies, enchanting items, as well as a number of items that give stat bonuses can easily be purchased using the game’s premium currency, Platinum. Although, these items can also be purchased using Gold, the in-game currency, saving up enough to buy a set of golf clubs for your level takes a whole lot of time, effort, and grinding, which paying players can easily avoid with a simple swipe of their, or their parents’ credit card.

The Final Verdict – Great

Honestly, I’ve never been a fan of golf games aside from a few games of Pangya and a brief stint with a Windows 95 golf simulator decades ago. Which is why I was thoroughly surprised that I was enjoying Winning Putt. The game does have its flaws such as its pay-to-win business model along with a few minor aspects such as the lack of crowds and commentary but overall it’s Winning Putt’s simple, fun, and surprisingly addictive gameplay that makes it one of, if not, the best MMO golf games around. The game’s superb graphics and comprehensive character customization system also earns it plus points in my book.

Screenshots

Winning Putt Screenshots

Videos

Winning Putt Videos

System Requirements

Winning Putt Requirements

Minimum Requirements:

Operating System: Windows 7 or higher (32/64 bit)
CPU: Multi-core Processor
Video Card: Geforce 86xx or Radeon HD 83xx
RAM: 3 GB
Hard Drive: 3 GB

Recommended Requirements:

Operating System: Windows 7 or higher (32/64 bit)
CPU: Multi-core Processor
Video Card: Geforce GTX 460 or Radeon HD 6850
RAM: 4 GB
Hard Drive: 4 GB

Music

Winning Putt Music & Soundtrack

Coming Soon...

Additional Info

Winning Putt Additional Information

Developer(s): Webzen Onnet
Publisher(s): Bandai Namco

Game Engine: Cryengine

Announcement Date: January 14, 2016

Open Beta: January 14, 2016

Development History / Background:

Winning Putt is developed by Webzen Onnet in partnership with Bandai Namco. The Western Open Beta was announced and released on January 14, 2016. The game previously released in South Korea, and was first displayed at G-Star 2013.

  • Aretilda

    This game is very hard to control.

  • I wonder how this compares to the reigning golf MMOs like Pangya and Shot Online. Graphics seem to look better, but the anime look of Pangya may have more staying power.

    • simplyrockin

      The gameplay mechanics in winning putt are extremely shallow. There's no substance behind the look. Its a good 3click golf feel but there's no significant progress and you are never rewarded for skill. Everyone, every class, every skill set chosen, etc, all shoot identical. Not uncommon at all to have a 4 player game with varied leveled players where each other's balls never get more than 10yards away from each other on every shot of every hole. Its been dead in the water since launch and worse yet the only updates have been feature unlocks and more pay items. There's been few, if not none, bug/technical fixes/updates.

      • Haen

        This has kind of been my experience with it as well. I think I'm about level 15 or so now and not being able to even make gir on most holes is frustrating. And it feels like there is nothing I can do to remedy that short of spending money on a set of clubs and even then, it looks like there is a common, uncommon, rare set in that club pack.

        I hear a lot of reviews touting how hard it is to hit a perfect shot and I actually really appreciate that. Except missing slightly doesn't really penalize you at all. The ball deviates so slightly from a nice shot and the fairways are so big that even a bad miss rarely puts you in the rough, which still isn't that big of a penalty as all it seems to do is speed up your swing gauge and make it more dangerous to use a wood. Which when you can't make the green in 2 anyway doesn't even matter all that much.

        I would like to see a better pvp model too. More tournaments. Playing 1v1 or in a group is frustrating as the guy who spent money has such a clear advantage that playing perfectly will still net you a loss. But the matches where both players are even are exciting and tend to happen more frequently.

        Hot Shots Golf is my franchise of choice, but sadly we haven't seen a new game from them in a while and while I was hoping this could tide me over for a bit as I loved Pangya for a long time, I'm already kind of quitting after a week.

        • simplyrockin

          Yeah, I uninstalled and haven't looked back. Someday the PC will have good golf again!

          PS; I love me some Hot Shot Golf as well. Now there was some actual character variety and fun, goofy stuff on top of a genuinely good golf experience. My buddies and I used to play Hot Shots Golf 3 on PS2 endlessly. Good times.

  • phil_liverpool

    I can't believe they messed this up. I thought it was a replacement for shotonline. Bring back Tiger Woods online, SOMEONE, PLEASE.

  • peachytaru

    This game is lovely and shows potential, but the company really needs to focus on what player feedback is saying.
    The space course was rather absurd considering the locales of other courses. They've been adding content that is pointless as opposed to adding more courses. Most updates include issues for more people.
    Understandably, this is still sort of a Beta test, but it feels like they either have a very small team or aren't prioritizing their content updates well. A lot of things seem to be steered towards encouraging people to buy stuff, but the Platinum (currency) to dollar ratio is not very good. 10 dollars for about 5000 platinum, which really can only buy you 1 or two clothing items.. 2 or 3 sets of special golf balls for 100 holes for each set... Or any number of other things that aren't really worth it.
    This is also, sadly, coming from someone who has invested money in getting a Founder title (the temporary items being the most helpful, and the permanent caddie - The title is minimally helpful) and even their recent addition of a space suit.

    This game has massive potential and looks great, but it needs proper work, and it doesn't feel like Bandai is investing enough into it.

  • Mick Clarke

    I love the game, the concept and the ability to play MMO. Saying that however I am incredibly disappointed in the game play for the Levels. You say there are Super Easy, Easy, Medium and Hard levels, well let me tell you this.
    Super easy isn't.
    How the F#$% can you play on greens that aren't playable as a junior or beginner. These greens are made for the pros and experienced p[layers. Also wind is a major influence in the early levels when it shouldn't be
    Basically if you start at the super easy, the greens should be flat and thge wind should be negligible then it increases with experience and levels. that's how other golf games play it so why shouldnt you. No way to improve or keep players when you can't get this simple thing right