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Best Modern Update: The Golf Club 2 at Amazon
"Truly the next generation of this genre with lifelike graphics, physics, and local matchmaking."
Best for Realism: John Daly’s ProStroke Golf at Amazon
"Commentary and realistic ambient sounds make it easy to forget that you’re not out on the green."
Best for Arcade Style Gameplay: Tiger Woods PGA 2004 at Amazon
"Still a fun and accessible PC golf game with a distinct arcade feel."
Best Old School Classic: Links 2003 Championship Edition at Amazon
"With enduring charm all its own, its real-time functions will please any golf purist."
Most Iconic: Peter Jacobson’s Golden Tee Golf at Amazon
"Aging gracefully into an unintended parody of the genre, it still commands highest present-day ratings."
Best for Mini Golfing: 3D Ultra Minigolf Adventures at Amazon
"Its themed courses with insane obstacles are perfect for players who just want to have fun."
Best for Golf Course Management: Golf Resort Tycoon II at Amazon
"A management strategy game where you can build and customize your own courses."
The Golf Club 2 is the more modernized pick on the list among PC golf games. The immersive golfing sim offers the next generation of what the genre has to offer with lifelike graphics, physics and online matches that keeps it up to date.
The Golf Club 2 features a progressive-based, single-player career mode where players start off as an amateur and gain prestige by building up their rank through tournaments. Competitive online and local matchmaking means you can go head-to-head with up to three other golfers by playing their courses and competing against their scorecards. Players can even design their own unique courses through the game’s extensive level designer that lets them landscape, create surfaces, texturize and add tee positions.
John Daly’s ProStroke Golf does everything it can to provide an engrossing golfing experience unlike any other. It’s easy to get engulfed in the game’s virtual world with its commentary, ambient sounds (think random birds chirping and wind) and first-person mode that lets you line up your shots and take a swing.
John Daly’s ProStroke Golf features a unique gameplay aspect called the ProStroke control system that lets players deliver accurate shots with no barriers to performance other than by their own control. The game includes 12 different courses with a variety of game modes, including a practice option and tournament challenge. There’s no need to level up either, as players can jump right into the game without any commitment.
Though dated, Tiger Woods PGA 2004 is still a fun and accessible golf game for the PC that has a distinct arcade feel to it. Gameplay is fairly straightforward and easy to get used to where nearly any newcomer can pick it up and start golfing immediately.
One of the highest rated golf games among critics, Tiger Woods PGA 2004 focuses more on emulation than simulation, and while it can please experts, it’s specifically designed for fun in mind. The variety of game modes allows you to do everything from practicing different stroke types to setting up your own custom seasons. There’s even a player creation option where you can make your own golfer with custom details that let you change everything from their hairstyle, facial bone structure and even teeth.
Links 2003 Championship Edition may show its age, but it still has a certain charm to it that you can’t find in other golf games for the PC. The game’s physics still hold up to today with its realistic approach of player interaction that would please any PC golf purist.
With its Real-Time Swing feature, Links 2003 Championship Edition has you mimicking the movements of a real-life golf club handling experience. You’ll draw back on your mouse to imitate a backswing to adjust for power, and then smoothy push forward to execute your shot. The game’s countless features include six championships, 20 worldwide courses and even customizable 3D character models with intimate detailing like giving them comments.
It’s somewhat of a legend, but Peter Jacob’s Golden Tee Golf — the oldest golf game on the list dating back to the late 90s — still holds to modern popularity. It is currently the top-rated PC golf game on Amazon with a 4.5-star rating and was listed in Play Meter and RePlay magazine to be one of the top five most played PC golf video games for 19 consecutive months since May 1996.
So why Peter Jacob’s Golden Tee Golf? By today’s standards, it’s an unintended parody of golf games. From the retro style graphics with real-life rendered character models and animations superimposed on digitized landscapes to the goofy commentary and audience reactions, it has aged into a unique form of gaming entertainment. With 18 hole courses, LAN multiplayer and arcade-style gameplay, Peter Jacob’s Golden Tee Golf holds up as a classic for both gaming enthusiasts, collectors and anyone wanting a taste of the past.
3D Ultra Minigolf Adventures is the select choice of PC golf games for players who just want to have a fun, laidback mini golf experience. The game includes uniquely designed courses with 36 challenging holes and has you avoiding interfering obstacles like swaying pirate ships, ducks, and lasers.
Where do you want to golf? 3D Ultra Minigolf lets you choose themed courses like a carnival, an old western setting and even outer space. Each course is designed with elevated greens, bunkers, bridges, water hazards and other insane obstacles that get you planning and anticipating each swing. There’s even a level editor that lets you design your own course using a combination of tees, straights, corners, ramps and other components.
Golf Resort Tycoon II is not so much a golf simulator as it is a management strategy game where you can design, build and manage your own golf courses. The game’s modes include a limited tutorial, sandbox mode, challenges and even a 3D golf game that provides an entertaining break from its main game.
If you just want to dive in without the pressure, sandbox mode will allow you to build to your heart’s delight without any expectations. The game’s main mode will give you the option of various difficulties where you’ll start with a limited amount of money in building a resort with the end goal of pleasing guests. You’ll get to customize fine details in your resort, including adding restaurants and landmarks, maintaining your greens and hiring pest control to take out gopher infestations.