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Video Game / Sid Meier's SimGolf

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A random golfer

Sid Meier's SimGolf is a Simulation Game made by Sid Meier, Firaxis Games, and Maxis, released to Windows on January 23rd, 2002 by Electronic Arts. You play as a professional golfer who owns a small patch of land that has been declared as a golf club. One part of your goal is to build a lucrative golf club, expanding your lands and designing golf holes while providing excellent services to your customers with buildings and refreshments. You earn simoleons from members of your golf club as they complete each hole, buy refreshments, or use any of your buildings. You then spend said cash to designing your holes, providing buildings and staff, and paying your employees.

The other part is, well, being a professional golfer. Challenge the players in your golf club and accept challenges from pros, with the holes you designed as the golf course. You earn money with each winning shot. Eventually, you'll be asked to host a tournament! Failure to make your guests happy causes them to eventually leave your club or cause tantrums (which then makes other golfers unhappy), whereas failing to win in a golf game makes you lose cash!

It is an addictive game that pretty much captures the player much like other Maxis sim games. And speaking of which, it takes cues from The Sims, having a similar language, and even a mode where notable characters from said game acts as patrons of your club.

Not related to another game named SimGolf made by Maxis.

GolfTopia a game which is released on Steam and GOG, is essentially a futuristic Spiritual Successor of this game.

This game presents examples of the following tropes:

  • All Deserts Have Cacti: Justified in that the desert areas are in the Americas. The cacti replace the trees for obstacles in the desert.
  • Bizarre and Improbable Golf Game: Generally averted - obstacles prevent any "magic" when a ball collides on them, and hitting a building automatically stops the ball.
    • Of course, it can be invoked. See Screw the Rules, I Make Them! below.
    • Though golfers will continue to play if the ball lands in the middle of a group of crocodiles, or other usually dangerous animals.
  • Captain Ersatz: The celebrities that appear upon placing celebrity lots in your club will bear names like "Brittney Aguilera". They even have a short musical chord playing when a player is nearby, some of which are seemingly similar to the songs sang by the celebrities they are based from.
  • Character Customization: You can choose your character's gender, face, the colors of their clothes, and various quotes they say, and set their initial golf skills. You can also similarly customize the guests to your course.
  • Command & Conquer Economy: In fact, the buildings you pick just drop down from the sky to where you decided to place them! Justified that you are the owner of the club after all.
  • Harder Than Hard: Impossible Difficulty in Tournament Mode. You're playing against near Perfect Play A.I., and the skill point penalties are a lot harsher. Your shots will also be less accurate than normal, and the chances of lucky bounces are greatly reduced. Better come in with a near minmaxed golfer if you want to win one of these tournaments.
  • Head Swap: The golfers' design.
  • Hulk Speak: "Me hate dandelions."
  • Luck Stat: Affects the chances that the ball makes a lucky bounce.
  • Point Build System: Your character's golf skills - you get a set number of skill points you can give them, and earn more by completing certain achievements. Though their skills also change as they play.
  • Punny Name: I.M. Picky and Ivana Richman.
  • Rage Quit: Golfers who have had it with your terrible services or are constantly failing in a course will eventually go angry and quit their session. Better have a marshal or security nearby to make the golfer stop, otherwise the raging NPC will make other golfers unhappy.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: Whenever you are in "golf playing mode", you are not restricted from terraforming your golf club. While this is understandable because golfers might need to be tended while you play, this allows the player to cheat. See your ball landing towards a rough or into a water? Replace it with a green or fairway tile before the ball lands! See your enemy winning? Replace the tile to where the ball of your opponent lands with an obstacle.
    • Of course, doing this repeatedly will make your enemy angry, causing him or her to throw a fit on the absurd difficulty or even worse, leave.
  • Shout-Out: The game contains many references to The Sims.
  • Simulation Game: Both a sports management and a construction simulator!
  • Space-Management Game: Part of the battle in building holes is to be able to build on a given space. Also, you start with a small land which you can later expand by making sure a specific VIP enjoys your golf club.
  • Speaking Simlish: The game uses some of the voice clips in The Sims. It's not surprising when you hear "Myshuno!" in both this game and that game.
  • Spy Speak: In one of the stories, a couple foreign spies meet on the course and use this.
  • Tantrum Throwing: Angry golfers may throw their clubs.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Surround the hole with buildings or statues, and put a lake around that. Then, watch as golfers throw their clubs in frustration as they try to make the nearly impossible shot. Watch the line of golfers grow waiting for the last guy to finish. Or put a bench next to the tee, right in the line of fire.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: Piss off your golfers enough, and they will storm off the course in a rage, throwing a tantrum, and freak out the other players. They'll also quit their membership, and won't come back, reducing your greens fees over time.
  • Walk on Water: Your golfers can traverse through water hazards that even serve as lakes or sea without trouble. Of course, they'd prefer if you build a bridge path.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: Your golfer avatar, like the other AI golfers that frequent your golf course, can get angry over the same complaints. If your player golfer gets too unhappy and leaves your golf club in a rage in Simulation mode, it is Game Over, regardless if your golf club is highly profitable with a bunch of celebrities hanging around. In Tournament Mode, this will instead be a forfeit of the current tournament being played.