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Engaging The Golf Video Game Time Machine

Time and nostalgia; two things people seem to have an abundance of these days, including myself. It’s led people to do an excessive number of challenges on social media, dig deep into the archives of online video, and, for some, play an inordinate amount of video games.

I also noted that even LPGA players like Tiffany Joh and Jane Park have taken to the internet to play video-game golf matches.

This had me thinking about the evolution of golf video games, considering how life-like some of the current ones are.

But how much better are they from the ones that some of us endured several decades ago when the modern personal computer was just arriving in many homes?

For me, games like PGA TOUR Golf, first released in 1990, and Jack Nicklaus Greatest 18 (1988), were the games that took up my time like a sponge in my younger years. It’s been three decades since they darkened my screen and the evolution of those originals has easily surpassed them with the escalation in computing technology. But, by how much?

In my quest to rekindle my youth and satisfy my curiosity I fell upon ArcadeSpot.com which allows you to play thousands of arcade games, especially the classics, online through a modulator.

It was there that Jack Nicklaus Golf, the 1991 version, was waiting for me.

The rush of nostalgia upon seeing the graphics for the first time in years was palpable. Sadly, that proved to be the height of my excitement.

Undoubtedly a child of 2020 would turn away from this pursuit quickly; chunky graphics, slow speed, and all manners of what feels like cave-man level tech don’t usually appeal to this set, but truthfully, fifty-year old me was not far behind.

Sixteen colours, simple game play, annoying music – somehow this captured me for hours at age 21. Then again, what option did we have at the time?

Now that I have the luxury of perspective I realize how bad the game really was.

Ultimately though, I don’t really care.

As bad as it is, this is a time portal I’ll look to use in the future, or just to while away some self-isolation time.

And if your kid happens to complain about the function of the latest golf game with otherworldly features that they can play right in their hand, carve them out a few minutes on this bad boy. They’ll change their tune.

You can find the game at this link.

Here is a screencast of playing a couple holes, just to prove out my observations.

Jack Nicklaus Golf 1991

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