EA has announced it’s collaborating with Augusta National Golf Club to feature the Masters Tournament in Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 12.
This will be the first time in the franchise’s 20-year history that players will be able to “step onto the grounds” of the Augusta National course, albeit virtually because we all know none of us are worthy of its turf.
As if that’s not enough, here’s some gushing praise from EA, Augusta, and Tiger Woods himself on the matter:
“For more than a decade, the Masters Tournament has been the most requested and coveted feature for the Tiger Woods PGA TOUR franchise among our fans,” said Peter Moore, president of EA Sports in the press release. “Pairing the number one golf video game franchise with the most prestigious golf tournament in the world is a perfect marriage and we’re thrilled to bring our fans this exciting opportunity to experience Augusta National Golf Club like never before.”
“Our sincere motivation is to draw an even greater audience to this wonderful sport and continue to inspire its growth by building off the success seen in previous versions of the Tiger Woods PGA TOUR franchise,” said Billy Payne, chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters Tournament. “The beauty of Augusta National and the rich history of the Masters have inspired the dreams of golfers for generations. Three years of collaboration with EA SPORTS has resulted in a game we feel presents a truly authentic Masters experience.”
“I am very happy and excited that the Masters Tournament is featured in the Tiger Woods PGA TOUR game,” said Tiger Woods. “There are many new and unique elements in the game that will make everyone feel like they’re really competing at Augusta National. This is great for the sport and will connect a new audience with the Masters, a tournament I’ve been fortunate to experience since 1995. Continually growing the visibility of golf is important to attracting newcomers to the sport, and I agree that showcasing the Masters Tournament in the game will bring an entirely new dimension to that approach.”
New features for the game, along with new enhancements are detailed below:
- Masters Moments – Play through memorable, historic moments as players try to measure up against some of the sport’s greatest legends.
- Tiger at the Masters – Relive each of Tiger’s four wins at the Masters by attempting to equal or beat his scores in each round of the Tournament.
- The Caddie Experience – Behind every great golfer is a trusted and reliable caddie. Players will have a caddie by their side on every swing, providing strategic advice, from shot selection to reading greens, helping them become a more successful golfer.
- The Closest Thing to Being There – For the first time ever, EA SPORTS™ utilized a new state-of-the art laser scanning technology at Augusta National Golf Club to laser scan every hole featured in the game. This will provide players with the most authentic digital representation of the Tournament and Par 3 courses. Every tree, every azalea and every undulation in every green was recreated down to the smallest detail.
- Broadcast Presentation – Feel the emotion of every swing as called by the all-new commentary team of Jim Nantz and David Feherty, who headline a completely revamped TV broadcast presentation package.
- Career Mode – The all-new career mode will closely mirror the journey of an amateur golfer’s rise through the ranks and chase the title of Masters champion.
- New Players – Over 20 professional golfers to choose from, including Zach Johnson (2007 Masters Champion) and Bubba Watson (2010 Ryder Cup – Team USA).
- Championship Courses – Take on the best of the best on sixteen of the world’s most celebrated courses, including Augusta National Golf Club, Royal Melbourne Golf Club (Australia), Atlanta Athletic Club, TPC San Antonio, St Andrews Links and Pebble Beach Golf Links.
Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 12: The Masters will hit retail in North America on March 29 and worldwide on April 1 for Wii, Xbox 360 and PS3 with Move support. The later will include five additional courses via the PS3-exclusive Collector’s Edition.
The PS3 and Xbox 360 versions will run you $59.99 and the Wii version $49.99.
Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 12 Collector’s Edition on PS3 will be available for $69.99.
Screenshots for the game are in the gallery below, along with a Tiger-less game cover for all three versions. There’s also some screens of Zach Johnson and Bubba Watson in action.
EA denies it’s backing away from Woods with Tigerless cover
Speaking to Eurogamer this evening, Peter Moore denied that EA was in some way stepping back from its relationship with Woods, despite the fact that the golfer doesn’t appear on today’s released pack-art.
“If the insinuation is it’s a reflection of EA Sports backing away from its relationship that goes back literally 13 years with Tiger, that’s not the case whatsoever,” said the EA Sports boss.
“This is obviously a very important day in our history and an important day in the world of golf videogames, and focusing on the Masters is the right thing to do.
“But Tiger is right there on the PS3 version of the game with Move support, which was very good for us and Sony last year. We’ll continue that.
“This is something that’s very special, very different. You shouldn’t read anything into the fact that Tiger’s not featured on the box art of that particular edition.”
The absence of Woods on the pack-art led to instant speculation that EA was distancing itself from the golfer based on Woods’ scandalous 2010.