After four years in early access, Golf With Your Friends finally launched in full last night. Blacklight Interactive’s club ’em up offers crazy golf for up to twelve players, on zany courses full of jumps, rolling logs, spinny things, hostile cephalopods, bounce pads, and bombings. It’s pretty silly, and a game I’ve known plenty of folks to have a ball with. Now it’s officially out, with the version 1.0 launch update adding a new course set inside an Escapists prison.
Golf With Your Friends is, y’know, crazy golf inside a computer. That means courses can do foolish things impossible or unsafe on your local course. You can play solo but it clearly is intended for multiplayer, with online and hot seat options. It also has a level editor with Steam Workshop support.
I recently discovered that many Americans do not know the term “crazy golf.” Apparently it’s better known to them as “mini golf,” as if bouncing glow-in-the-dark balls off dinosaur skulls under blacklight was normal golf, and mini golf just shrunk that game down to fit into a leisure complex. I choose to believe Jack Nicklaus earned his nickname, ‘The Golden Bear’, with his uncanny ability to bypass three whole holes on his local course by bouncing the ball off a teddy bear’s nose.
We Prematurely Evaluated the game back in 2016, when it was named simply Golf With Friends (which didn’t fly because Zynga trademarked “With Friends”). Rob Zacny said it was “already a lot of fun if you can put up with the annoyances of its rough edges.” It’s come a fair way since then.
Update 1.0 has added a 12th course, based on the prison breakouts of The Escapists. It’s also fixed bugs, reworked the out of bounds system for fewer false positives, put in new visual and sound effects for putting, and added new pieces to the level editor. See the patch notes for more.
Golf With Your Friends is out on Steam for windows, Mac, and Linux. It’s still available for the early access price of £7/€9/$10 for this launch week, then it will go up to £11/$15/€14. It’s also now on Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One.