Infinite Minigolf is Zen Studios’ second Playstation VR title in quick succession. It’s also available on PC, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch, and can be played without a VR headset as well.
Minigolf games have been around for an eternity, it seems. Even back on the old Atari ST and Amiga computers, I was playing games like Mini Golf and Zany Golf quite a bit – the formula was easy to understand, instantly recognizable between games, and videogames allowed for a lot of creativity in course design. It’s a genre that never left (especially in indie game development), and almost thirty years after my Atari ST I’m now playing Infinite Minigolf on a PS4. It’s not Zen’s first stab at the genre – it follows their previous release Planet Minigolf.
Much like the games that went before it, Infinite Minigolf is easy to play – especially if you disregard some of its crazier mechanics that are introduced by way of power-ups. The controls are easy, though limited to the DualShock gamepad as there is no move controller support at this time – which surely will disappoint those who figured they’d be swinging a golf club in VR in the middle of the living room. Perhaps this is because a regular controller gives you more flexibility in the use of the game’s power-ups, which include (temporary) manual control of the ball or launching it up in the air to overcome tricky obstacles.
The “infinite” part in its title refers to the staggering amount of content that’s available in the game, and the potentially limitless extra amount of content that can be played through the user-generated library of courses as well. I know it’s mathematically impossible, what makes things even “more infinite” is the fact that courses that were generated on a different system are also available to you. In other words, there is compatibility across PS4 and PC users when it comes to user-generated content. Cross-platform multiplayer, however, is not possible yet.
Even without the user-generated content, there is already a wealth of holes available to play – hundreds of them, in fact. Thematically, they’re divided up into three worlds: a Toy Story-like kid’s room, a Polar-themed Santa’s workshop and a Halloween-themed section. They’re all immediately accessible, but each 9 hole course (after the initial ones) has to be unlocked by completing others. Add to that the fact that both local and online multiplayer are supported and you’re looking at a lot of gameplay time here – and as with any minigolf activity (virtual or in real life), it’s more fun to play together. For those who are competitive beyond a round of multiplayer, there’s also the chance to compete on the online leaderboards.
Visually, and this isn’t too surprising considering the genre, Infinite Minigolf goes with a cartoon-like approach. This works very well in VR mode, but can come across a little dated when playing it without VR enabled – it wouldn’t look out of place on a PS3, which has the excellent Hot Shots Golf rocking a similar visual style. Nevertheless, this most likely has to do with the choice to create a title that is compatible with both VR and non-VR players – and we understand the decision to keep the experience consistent.
We’ve already touched on it before, but the editor in Infinite Minigolf is truly excellent, and will definitely add to the lasting appeal of the title. You’re not just looking for cross-platform compatibility for whatever you make, you’re also dealing with one of the easiest and most intuitive course editors I’ve ever played around with. Putting a hole and some obstacles together is really easy, and it’s definitely possible to have some fun with it as well, crafting outlandish challenges for others to tackle – especially when they’re not using power-ups.
Infinite Minigolf is a fun minigolf title for the latest generation of consoles and PCs. It builds on a familiar formula and leans on accessibility, replayability and fun. It doesn’t reinvent the genre or push the boundaries of VR or audiovisual delivery, but it does what it sets out to do, and does it well.