There simply is not enough golf games over at the Windows Phone Marketplace. But things are looking better with the release of Monkey Mini-Golf.
While it's a miniature golf game (nothing wrong with that but would it be so bad to have an 18 hole EA Sports golf game?), it has a certain appeal to it. Graphically, it reminds me a lot of the Donkey Kong games that hit later in that titles lifespan. The miniature golf holes do have a degree of challenge to them and gaming controls are simple, yet effective.
To read more on Monkey Mini Golf, ease on past the break.
Monkey Mini Golf's main menu is simple and to the point. You have options to start a new game, continue a saved game, view the leader board and access settings (sound effects/music on or off).
You have a choice between two golfers; Zeb (male character) and Mica (female character). After you're prompted to enter a gamer tag, you will see a series of pop-up windows appear that will instruct you on how to play the game.
Basically, you move your golfer from side to side while on the tee box by touch and when satisfied, tap the screen to pull up you aiming controls. A dotted line appears that can be adjusted by touch and when you get everything lined up just right, tap the screen again. To make your shot, tap the power bar that sits to the right of the screen to start your swing and a second time to set your power.
From there, the game is essentially a round of miniature golf. Holes are progressively unlocked and it appears you have to make par or better to advance. Along the course you will find bananas that can be collected for bonus points if you roll you ball over them.
Some of the holes have enough twists and turns to create blind spots. There is a camera button in the bottom left corner of the screen that will rotate around these spots to give you various views of the hole.
Game play was surprisingly enjoyable. It can be challenging to keep gamers interesting in a round of miniature golf but Monkey Mini Golf does a decent job of it. Some of the holes can just be flat out brutal and making par may take a few tries to achieve.
The animations and graphics are done really well. It's a bright, colorful game that represents the island theme nicely.
The only real nit I can lodge against Monkey Mini Golf is the lack of a Help Section. While the game isn't difficult to pick up, it would be nice to know how the bananas come into play and that you needed to shoot par or better to advance. There are little hints and tips that appear as the holes are loaded but a reference section would have been nice.
Monkey Mini Golf isn't Fable Golf but it can hold its own. From graphics to sound effects to challenging holes, Monkey Mini Golf is a very good game for your Windows Phone.
There is a trial version available for Monkey Mini Golf with the full version running $1.99. You can download both here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.