There are two types of golf games out there. One, namely Tiger Woods PGA Tour, relies heavily on high quality graphics, settings for everything, and an experienced player. The other is easy to play, able to start a game quickly, and doesn’t distract you with needless extra features. Mini Golf Ace falls into the latter category.
When starting the game, the player is provided two options: Start and Highscores. Highscores displays a history of your high scores. After starting a game, you’ll be shown a revolving view of the course for that specific level. Everything in the game, except the ball itself, is a shade of blue which gives a very unique feel to it. Instructions do not show up when playing for the first time, however they are easily accessible by tapping the ‘?’ character in the top right corner.
To hit the ball, the player hold a finger on top of the ball, pulls back in the opposite direction of where the ball will go, and releases. The distance between the ball and where the player releases their finger determines the strength of the hit. When the ball is far away accuracy becomes less attainable, especially with the harder courses.
The developer has made a delightful use of the iPhone’s accelerometer. By tilting to the left and right, the player is able to move the camera around the ball’s gravity. This can become distracting, however, when the player tilts the iPhone when pulling back to hit the ball. I would hope the developer could disable the tilt recognition when the player is trying to hit the ball.
Some courses are very challenging. If the player is unable to make the ball into the hole by 6 shots, the game will count that course as a ‘missed level’ and move the player to the next course. There are 18 courses in total, the easiest at the beginning and the hardest near the end. If the player exits out of a game in progress, the game will prompt them to continue the game the next time the app is launched.
There are a few bugs with this game and I hope the developer will release an update that fixes the following. The main menu is very unresponsive, especially when first starting the game. After pressing the Start button, the game takes at least 5 seconds to make it to the “Add a Player” screen. Press the little pencil icon next to the Player 1 field and the keyboard shows up 3-4 seconds later. Generally the game itself feels very unresponsive when dealing with any of the menus.
Another bug deals with the physics of the ball. If the player hits the ball and it doesn’t make it all the way up the vertically diagonal course, the ball comes to a near stop and rolls back down the course very slowly. One level I played can take nearly a minute for the ball to come back down to an area where I’m able to hit it again.
These minor bugs should not distract you from picking up a copy of this game. I’ve been playing Mini Golf Ace for almost a week and a half and still enjoy playing it when I’ve got a little free time. For $1.99, you get a great game that has nice graphics, very easy to play, and can be very challenging.
The developer has published a video demonstrating the game in action. Check it out: