Wot I Think: Worms Crazy Golf

By Brendan Caldwell on November 10th, 2011 at 12:01 pm.

Gosh, this looks exciting.

Team 17 recently had the idea of combining their Worms games with a crazy golf game. We gave it to Brendan so he could tell you Wot He Thinks.

Dearest Jim,

What happened to us? You don’t call. You don’t write. You time your visit to GameCity festival so that you arrive on the very day that I leave. I’m in tears at this juncture. Genuine water-from-the-eyes tears. And then all of a sudden you want to play a round of golf? Really? Golf is the most barbarous of make-up games. If I wanted to walk around in an eerie emulation of the countryside with a club in my hand I would just wait until Skyrim comes out.

Disappointingly yours,

Brendan

Dearest Jim,

Taking account of your lack of reply, it dawns on me that you meant Worms Crazy Golf and that the original intention was for me to review it. Please accept my sincerest apologies, along with this side of ham as a good will gesture. I will of course testify to the quality of this game.

I have been ensnared by it for only an hour or so now and can already tell it is unmistakably a game both about worms and golf, in meticulously equal measure. You are of course aware of the Worms franchise, in which negotiations between many nations of invertebrates break down, leading to an interminable and ultimately apocalyptic war (I believe as an Orwellian allegory relating to the Sarajevo incident). Well, Worms Crazy Golf is a surreal spin-off from that most serious subject. It is quite refreshing and at the same time, faintly worrying. Europe is once again in turmoil, after all.

But I will not let it be said that a more traditional Worms game is preferable, even in the face of a contemporary international maelstrom. For traditional Worms games are passé. Many British citizens, among others, have simply lost their enthusiasm for the series, their joie de Holy Hand Grenade.

Although this is a new ‘angle’, the mechanical components of this spin-off are very faithful to the series. Charging the swing of your driver replaces the charging of a recoilless rocket. The golf balls can act in similar ways to the weapons and utilities of old. With these means, one can deploy parachutes, slow time or defy gravity mid-shot.

Meanwhile, the randomly generated battlefield – once a profound metaphor for the arbitrary and pointless nature of war – has become a precisely designed miniature golf course, adorned with sheep, geriatric women, worms, moles and (of course) many, many landmines. Just like a real golf course, I dare say! It is all very strange but at the same time it blends together well. Frankly, it is folly that the developer did not realise this possibility before, so suited to the majestic game of golf (I did not mean it when I called it barbarous, please forgive me).

Ah! But I have been over-writing again and I am unsure if you require more than a brief few notes. Please respond if you wish me to continue my appraisal of this most delightful of videogames.

Yours sincerely,

Brendan

Dear Jim,

Since I have not heard from you I can only assume that you are busy. I understand that the work of a videogames reporter involves a busy schedule but I am nonetheless disappointed that it does not seem to involve writing – that is to say, writing to your acquaintances.

However, it strikes me that you may wish for a more detailed analysis of the game you sent me, Worms Crazy Golf. Having devoted a few hours to it I can say that the inclusion of four 18-hole courses and many special challenges – wherein one must make the most accurate of trick shots to gain a place on the global leaderboards – give the game a good decent lifespan, considering its low price.

There is also the ability to personally tailor one’s worm by purchasing golf clubs, special balls, voicebanks, et cetera. An assortment of fashionable (yet wholly superficial) hats is among the finest of these tailored goods and is something I am certain your readers will enjoy. The absence of a bowler and top hat will obviously be of concern only to the lower orders who know very little about appropriate golfing headgear. Ha ha ha. Excuse the jest. I know such proles aren’t among your readership.

I find myself at a loss of what else to mention. It seems to me a very solid game, even if it does not offer much by way of surprise.

Please write to let me know of any future correspondence you wish to receive. I am afraid you might have moved on from your address (either that or you are steadfastly ignoring me) so this will be the last time I write in the absence of a letter.

Regards,

Brendan

Jim,

Your continued silence has left our friendship in irretrievable disrepair. The Greek Prime Minister has more money in his wallet than I have patience for this correspondence. It does not help that the game you sent me, Worms Crazy Golf, only reminds me of our ailing friendship. I shall be bold, Jim. I dislike many things about it.

I dislike the way the game is so blatantly and primarily designed for iPad users, and that this is clear from the cursor being a small pointing finger, like the finger of distrust that I often find myself pointing toward you in absentia.

I dislike that this undeserved pre-eminence of touchscreen controls has left the mouse absolutely redundant, in the same way that our mutual respect is now redundant.

I dislike that it suffers from that most ancient of syndromes whereby a single failed shot compels you to hit ‘Escape’ followed by ‘Restart’ over and over again because you know you cannot possibly make Par (I find myself locked in a similar loop as regards our association).

I dislike that the game wrests control of the camera from you, and zooms in to an inappropriate degree when you most need to see the whole of the course laid out before you – in the same way that these one-sided missives have ‘zoomed-in’ on your innate disregard for my feelings, making your betrayal – yes, betrayal – as clear as Alpine lake water (full of poisonous, invisible bacteria).

And finally. I dislike that the multiplayer – so engaging when played between friends at one terminal after tea or drinks – does not appear to have an ‘internet’ included. Meaning the only way I could ever have enjoyed a game of Worms Crazy Golf with you is if you were here, next to me, as true compatriots MAKE EFFORT TO BE.

In conclusion, after sustained hours playing your game, Worms Crazy Golf, I have decided to relinquish it to the library. It is novel, in its own annelid fashion, but it is not for me, Jim. Nor is this charade of a closeness between us.

This will be the last time you hear from me.

Goodbye,

Brendan

Dearest Jim,

Can I review Renegade Ops, please?

Yours,

Brendan

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25 Comments »

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  1. Snids says:

    SOMEBODY review Renegade Ops at least…

    P.S. Give it a good review. Because it is brilliant.

  2. Gnoupi says:

    And another emotional/crying story on RPS this week.

    I mean, just look at the poor desperate puppy in this one-sided relationship! *takes tissue*

  3. Bhazor says:

    Ok, did anyone else end up reading them in voices in their head? I ended up with inpatient Twilight Sparkle.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      I just read it in Brendan’s pleasant Irish brogue.

  4. mongpong says:

    “the finger of distrust that I often find myself pointing toward you in absentia.”

    Hahaha – this made me laugh out loud (or LOL if you are under the age of 12)

  5. caddyB says:

    I want to poke, too.

  6. bill says:

    I just realised that Worms (Or this, or preferably Scorched Earth) would be pretty cool on my new android phone…. I’m excited because I finally have one of these newfangled smartphones so i’m going to bore everyone and try and work it into every comment or conversation for the next few weeks.

    Until either I get Baldur’s gate running on it or someone releases Frontier on it. Or i could try x-com i guess…

    • Snids says:

      Search for GemRB on the android market.
      Then prepare to spend a week getting BGII to work like I did. Finally cracked it.

    • Uglycat says:

      I have the official worms thingy on the Iphone, and it’s fiddly as anything. Ipad maybe, but I’d shy away from smart phones (unless you really really want it)

    • bill says:

      Hmm… i thought it would be a good fit. X-com it is…

  7. Premium User Badge

    sonofsanta says:

    I suspect the retooling of the Worms allegory to a round of golf is a comment on the current economic nightmare we find ourselves in in the Old World, with many national and transnational governments staffed by multiple Nero’s fiddling whilst Rome burns.

    Worms as ever presents a horror story meant to hold a mirror up to the worst case destination of our current actions, and golf, as the de facto leisure activity of the business bourgeois, here represents the a clear metaphor for the lack of attention we have paid to the growing disaster that is the European economy. The laissez-faire approach to banking regulations may have seemed a favourable wind at the time, but now we find ourselves attempting a hole perpendicular to the transit of the rest of the course, and such a favourable breeze now represents a dangerous crosswind, threatening to blow us off course and into the boggy lake that lies off our right shoulder. Whilst it is still possible to achieve the green, it will take consummate skill and care to arrive there safely, and there are many unexpected hurdles still in our path e.g. landmines, such as one would not normally expect to see.

    I therefore award this game, that I have not and do not intend to play, 9 Euros out of The Collapse of Western Democracy.

    Carry on.

    • Brendy_C says:

      This is a superb summary of the euro-antics. Bravo.

    • Raiyan 1.0 says:

      “9 Euros out of The Collapse of Western Democracy.”

      Amazing.

  8. Juan Carlo says:

    Not really surprising that there’s no multiplayer. It doesn’t seem to be team17’s specialty. Worms Reloaded went for like 6 or 7 months with broken multiplayer (in which you could start games, but only see other people like 1 in 10 tries) before team17 bothered to patch it.

    It kind of sucked as the game nearly died during that period. People would try to start multiplayer games, but couldn’t, so I suspect alot of people figured the game was dead and just gave up on multiplayer entirely. Which is especially sad as team17 released like 4 different paid DLC during that perod, yet it took them ages to bother fixing the multiplayer (which is like the whole point of Worms. Who plays Worms single player?).

  9. Shazbut says:

    Man, that was an enjoyable read. Well done

  10. Premium User Badge

    bsplines says:

    “The Greek Prime Minister has more money in his wallet than I have patience for this correspondence. ”

    You ‘d be surprised at how much money he has in his wallet… probably much more than Greece anyway.
    As for the game, no mouse support and no internet play? It already looks like an ipad port and to hear that they have omitted such things makes it baffling that it was even released for the PC

  11. nootron says:

    So… Alec got Skyrim and you got Worms Crazy Golf. Did you cry a little when those assignments were made? Perhaps make a hasty mental plan to poison Alec’s tea?

  12. Brumisator says:

    Are Team 17 complete idiots? Nowhere on their site does it even give a link to where you can buy the game. even the “buy game” button redirects to the 2001-worthy page about the game.
    Of course, I can just go to steam and get it from there, but it doens’t make their site any better.

  13. Fistulator says:

    This article was simpliy brilliant.

    • Bob says:

      I totally agree.
      If the game was as good to play as the article was to read, I would purchase it.

  14. MellowKrogoth says:

    I don’t want to hear about Team 17 anymore after them threatening to sue and going batshit insane on (as in, going personally on their IRC channels and forums to insult them) open-source lookalike Hedgewars, because players hated their half-assed Worms Reloaded and went to play that instead.

  15. Shazbut says:

    I don’t know if anyone will read this, but I’ve just come back to this review 3 years after it was posted because I still remember it. Best article on RPS, perhaps