A new player has entered the golf gaming space with EA Sports PGA Tour now available to fans. 2K's PGA Tour title has had a clear run at being the best golf game for many years, but now some competition has emerged.
It is still early days for EA Sports PGA Tour, but the early signs are promising with incredible graphics and exclusive access to The Majors, not to mention some of the world's most iconic courses.
However, PGA Tour 2K23 is still a brilliant game and has certainly set the benchmark high. With Tiger Woods on their side, 2K will be confident of retaining the top spot among golf games.
The gameplay in both 2K and EA's games is definitely realistic enough for die-hard golf fans to enjoy. PGA Tour 2K23 currently offers two swing mechanics (Analog and three-click), while the latter is coming later in EA Sports PGA Tour, with both games set to offer players the choice of how they want to play.
2K's gameplay feedback is much more intuitive and appears less cluttered on the screen, allowing you to easily see feedback on your input and rectify weak areas in your game. After playing EA Sports PGA Tour, you will get used to the different feedback it offers, but it doesn't appear to affect your game in such an obvious way.
However, that is where 2K's advantage ends in this department, as EA's title brings course characteristics to life. Different courses will play in a unique fashion, with firmer greens, harder fairways, and longer rough areas! This requires you to alter how you approach shots, thus no round feels the same on EA Sports PGA Tour.
PGA Tour 2K23's gameplay remains fairly consistent regardless of the settings you choose, but EA's game offers a bit of variety to allow gamers to enjoy golf the way they want to.
The option to add spin/roll to the ball by pressing buttons in the flight, or the animation that accompanies a perfect drive may feel gimmicky to those searching for a realistic experience, but these features can be switched off. The choice in EA's game allows players to tailor their experience to their needs.
One downside we have seen during our first impressions of EA's title is the swing meter can be obscured by the background. The optimal swing bar can be very difficult to spot if there are trees or darker colours in the background, making it difficult to nail your swing!
Aesthetically speaking, EA Sports PGA Tour is stunning. The technology used in recreating the courses has done a sensational job of bringing them to life, it really is excellent.
The crashing waves at Pebble Beach and blossoming trees at Augusta National have been highlights of ours so far. The graphics in PGA Tour 2K23 are by no means bad, but the level of detail in the various courses does not match that of EA's title.
Player likenesses are fairly well-matched in the games with no obvious advantage either way. Golf's top stars have been brought to life, although EA does seem to have a better handle on each player's unique swing.
While there may not be much in it, the level of detail in EA Sports PGA Tour elevates the graphics to a level not seen before in golf games.
EA Sports PGA Tour has The Majors, PGA Tour 2K23 has Tiger Woods. The draw of Tiger Woods alone is overwhelming, just look at the crowd for his practice rounds at Augusta before this year's Masters event!
2K also has an array of top golfers available to use in the game, along with other sporting superstars like Michael Jordan, Steph Curry, and John Cena! The list of courses available in PGA Tour 2K23 is extensive too, so there are plenty of options.
EA's biggest draw this year is The Majors, specifically The Masters, and the inclusion of Augusta National. As previously mentioned, Augusta has been brought to life in the game and will be the destination for plenty of fans upon playing the game for the first time, as will the Home of Golf, St. Andrews.
As licenses go, it is difficult to look past The Majors in EA Sports PGA Tour, although the allure of Tiger Woods does make it a close-run thing. One player who is yet to feature in either game is Rory McIlroy, and the Northern Irishman may be something of a golden goose for either franchise.
EA Sports PGA Tour is still in its infancy, but as shown above, it does appear to have the edge over its rival game PGA Tour 2K23 in several key areas. Career Mode is one area of the game we are yet to truly test, and 2K's MyCareer sets the bar high for the game mode.
Read our first impressions EA Sports PGA Tour Review
Read our full PGA Tour 2K23 Review
The Ryder Cup is also set to be added to EA Sports PGA Tour, offering players the chance of glory in golf's most coveted team event. EA looks to have made the most of their year-long delay for the game, but so far, it has been worth the wait!