Innovation in game design hardly ever flows over onto the marketing design of these treasured time wasters. Is that the case with PGA Tour 2004? I am “putting up” this review to find out.
I am going to go out on a very stable limb here and say that if you are really looking to purchase a golf game you really won’t care what that package looks like. So the next thing the box art must do is appeal to those that would not normally buy the game, is that effective in this box design? I would say no frankly.
The over-used EA Sports logo, which sadly needs to hang up its clubs for good, is the focal graphic. The title of the game is too large and it spills over the sides of the circle like a put that just won’t go in the bloody hole. A super shiny, James Bond like, sticker is placed at the bottom. My number is US 0004115997 – I really don’t know what that means. Have there really been 4 million copies of this game made, I doubt that, but I could be wrong. That number might not mean that anyways, who knows and who cares really?
My eyes are fixed upon looking at it though, hoping that if I press it a hot Bond girl will put out of the box and want to play with my 9 iron if you know what I mean. In looking back from 2013 at a game for 2004 I have to wonder if this game could be considered rated E for everyone considering what the title character has done in real life to disgrace the world of golf. It’s sad that EA continues to fund this kind of behavior and the many, many kids that will buy it will not be told what he has done is wrong, that cheating will not get you anywhere in life. What happened to being a role model for youth if you are professional “athlete”? I would like to think in the old days if such allegations of steroid use and the things he actually was charged for would fore go his ever playing on the tour again, well a dreamer can dream can’t he?
The boring image used on the cover sucks frankly. I don’t want to beat around the bush. It feels like the big EA Sports logo is covering up something that we should be seeing. In other words the logo vs. the image of the golfer doesn’t work together. Look at his face, it’s like he almost knows the check he is getting for this game promo is not as much as it should be, what a jerk. Why is he so angry looking? Does he turn into the hulk in the 2005 version? Is he really Tony Stark, hiding under the huge EA logo? I would not want to buy a golf game with such a pissed off person on it.
At the top EA claims they are the #1 selling golf franchise, did they not have an exclusive contract with the PGA Tour thus making them the only selling golf franchise? Insert a hefty amount of laughter here. Well that is all I can think of for the front cover. I don’t care for the bold font face either I would much rather see a different font and make the player’s name a different choice as well. Its tricky marketing to say that this player in a way owns the tour, it’s not his tour, he is only a part of it. I don’t know why he is still part of the tour but he is just one player of many greats. Let’s see how the back looks.
Holy lots of reading Batman! The back is a mess. It reminds me of those old PC game boxes listing everything and anything to make a selling point. Let’s see what glorious things they are touting in this game. The phrase “Can You Beat Me? – Step up to golf’s ultimate challenge” – Who exactly is saying that? There is not credit associated with the quote that is very odd indeed. I would think that the ultimate challenge might entail, you know, actually playing real golf as this is one of the easiest golf games I have ever played.
When I can easily get 4 or 5 eagles a round there needs to be more challenge inspired into the game series. The box tags are “More PGA Tour Pros” – more pros than what? Last year’s expansion pack, I mean game. “More Places to Play” – You mean golf courses? How many more? Actually there are only 7 new courses so very tricky wording by EA on that point. Also to note is that most of the courses are fantasy in nature, not real, not appearing in real life. I felt this really took away from the authenticity of the game, guess that glossy PGA Tour sticker on the front really means nothing at all. Like the Nintendo Seal of Quality I guess.
I agree with putting John Daily on the box for the pro section, but why not do a 3 window split and included 2 more? Is this a contract issue that they penned with Daly? The picture for the places to play sucks frankly. It looks really compressed and the quality looks bad, why not use one of the pre-rendered course loading screens in the game instead.
Like most EA games, each year only minor improvements are made. A lot has been said about that so I won’t add to the anger of that marketing ideal. It seems not only do they add but always remove things that most people like. It’s like those overdraft fees along with service charges at banks that got bailed out , arghhh. The “Game Face” feature this year allowed you to make a character and change more about his appearance. In fact, you really don’t have that much customization options as compared to other games, or RPG’s for that matter, but it’s a step towards progress. It’s hard to make a woman character appear womanly, instead she looks big, hulking and out of place. Like a bi-sexual person on Fox News or something like that.
The features list is written too small, so most would just skip over it. It’s the fine print as it were of this game.
All-New EA Sports Game Face – Create and personalize your golfer like never before and adjust tons of attributes such as body, hairstyles, clothing, customizable logos, tattoos, celebrations and more.
– Honestly there are not a “ton” of attributes to adjust, most people can’t tell you what a ton is so score one for the marketing department.
New Game Modes and Golfers – Hit the links with five new PGA Tour Pros and eight new game modes including World Tour and Career modes.
– I would argue that both of these modes are not new. Career mode is nothing more than season mode that lets you play 10 seasons. There is not customizing or owner additions to this mode. The World Tour mode is just a renamed Tiger Challenge from the previous year, this is nothing more than a series of match-play games. Once again fancy marketing.
Your Invitation to Play – Synch up with your console’s internal clock to play real-time events year round.
– These are not really “real time” as you are not connected to other players or the internet, its simply certain matches you can play during the 2004 calendar year. If you don’t have your Xbox set to those settings you would never know they were in the game.
EA Sports Bio – Unlock special rewards in other EA games…
– I don’t know if this works as I don’t have any other EA games from 2004 to test this claim.
Take on 20 Different Courses – Seven all-new highly detailed courses, including the challenging Bethpage Black, Pinehurst No. 2 and Kapalua.
– I guess this is the most accurate claim on the packaging. None of the courses are really that challenging when I am averaging around 59 per round, I know I am doing so horribly at this game.
Well li know that was a bit nerdy of me, but take a look at your game boxes and notice how words and sentences are used. Sometimes they are misleading like in this game, its debatable if you could actually win a court case when suing for false advertisements. Why can’t things be spelled out clearly? Are companies really afraid people won’t buy their product if they don’t get talked into it? The rest of the box contains all the corporate; don’t sue us, mumbo jumbo from advertisers at the bottom.
This is a boring box I have to say. In being fair I understand they have a lot they want to sell gamers on and having an overwhelming amount seems like it would get more sales than not. The front cover picture is the worst aspect in my opinion. I would have made an action movie poster style, having the golfer swinging or putting with scenes and things from the game all around him, or other pros. The white box screams at me as being a generic product for a generic consumer. I have always felt this way about things in white boxes, as if I am buying generic food at the cheapest store in town. The white also adds to much contrast to the front image; it looks like the golfer’s picture is too dark from this effect.
I would in conclusion give this a D rating, it really could be more eye catching to stand out from the other EA Sports games. No wonder it’s hard to find boxes with used games when they are so boring to look at on your gaming shelf. Please let me know what you think of this box and some over your favorite memories with the game if you have played it.
– Box does list some features, even if they are marketing material.
– Questionable marketing claims.
– False advertising alerts / miss-information.
– Boring design, bad cover picture, lack of imagination.
Final Grade : D