Let’s go over the review of what is currently happening in the world of Minna no Golf. Game was announced two years ago that it was going to be in production for release this year 2016, however during this year’s Tokyo Game Show, it was revealed that they are releasing it in the summer of next year. [Which roughly reads as August 31st 2017.]
— ClapHanz (@Clap_Hanz) September 16, 2016
According to the event plans, First Public Day of the Tokyo Game Show was scheduled to be Team Battle Demo. The Last Public Day is just a normal demo where you can try out the game in the open course setting.
As a bonus for attending the event, you register your PSN account at the event and you will receive the PlayStation Booth Companion Costume for use with the game when it is released.
There was also a special New Mingol Event on stage during the first public day. It was broadcast and recorded on the day on YouTube. Here is the video starting at about 30 minutes into the clip:
I can actually see myself in this video… Anyway that onto the report, since there wasn’t anything else that officially happened for New Mingol.
Tokyo Game Show Day One:
I caught up with a couple of Mingol friends, and we went to test the game out. Maronpafe actually went all out and registered to try it through PlayStation Plus and turned up with a Tokyo Game Show Supporters ticket which gives you access to certain parts of the event earlier than other people. Because of this Maron actually was able to try out the Team Battle mode.
Sadly while I was there fairly early too, with standard ticket when my turn came around I noticed that they were not doing the Team Battle Mode anymore. Regardless I was able to test the demo completely and see what the fuss is all about.
So what did we learn from the Demo:
- There is no other shot modes at the moment except for Traditional 3 Click.
- Just/Perfect Impact is now a big deal to progress for the game:
- Putts now require you to set impact.
- Increases your status for certain attributes which require you to Just/Perfect Impact.
- Points system seems to have changed but since we were not able to make any special shots likely due to not enough stats or not implemented, we weren’t completely sure what was changed.
- Successfully making a long putt over 3m distance will increase Kuru Kuru / Backdoor shot status.
- Hitting a long drive, or probably out distancing your longest drive will increase the Power Stats.
- Near Pin, Just/Perfect Impact will increase your Control Stats.
- Performing a successful spin shot will increase Spin or Side Spin Stats:
- This may be a problem in game design later down so I would probably hope they put caps for character stats.
- What happens to players who enjoy playing with low shot hitters? Naturally over time their character becomes a High hitter?
- How about players who enjoy having/playing with characters with Natural Fade/Draw?
- There are some shots in this game that you wish for certain statistics in order to make a shot, so having too much of a status can hinder the performance of specific shots.
- Shot height for approach mode is now higher again similar to that of Mingol 5, but the game appears to be performing with a hybrid branch of Mingol 5 and 6 physics in the engine.
- Since the courses are now 9 Holes connected together we can once again tee off to other fairways and take risky shortcuts. In the Demo you can do this on the Par 5 to make an Eagle using a single power shot to the alternate fairway of the L shaped fairway.
- Team Battle from what we saw was just 4 vs 4 but without a personal experience I have no comment on this at the moment.
- So far the progression system seems to be on the right track, but some of the points I mentioned now makes me wonder where it will all go when we reach end game.
Non-golf related things in the Demo:
- Golf Cart Driving was cool, but you sort of miss the ridiculous running speed that is associated with the crazy Caddies in the older versions of Mingol.
- It is also a annoying to drive around when you happen to hit something and the cart stops completely. I drove along a bridge designed for the Golf Cart but there was some really strange collision detection going on making the experience not very satisfying.
- If they are going to make the cart driving something interesting, maybe rather than make it a simulator make it actually fun to drive. It really felt like I would just pop in and out of it for the increased Speed to travel around the course, but if the only bonus is the speed feels like wasted development. Maybe a Speed Golf Mode that requires you to race other players while using your golf carts would make good use of the feature.
- Fishing… I really don’t know what to say about this feature.
- In the Demo, it appears fishing required you to talk to the NPC to begin but this could be just for introducing the feature to players trying the Demo.
- Fishing also has it’s own status or progression bar.
- There appears to be a competition mode for fishing also where you can fish against other players to see who catches the biggest fish. This is also shown in the presentation.
- Character Customization… should have been something that was shown but it was not.
- Demo machines were set with character designs already set, but I think with the low amount of content being shown it would have been a good distraction to show us the character set up options.
- You can see the TGS Booth Companion Costume on the machines that were supposed to be used by the companions. The blue team during the presentation event also used the costumes for their characters.
Tokyo Game Show Day Two:
Most of the experimenting was done during the first day, but I returned on the second day to help a friend with shopping and also get a T-shirt from Final Fantasy XIV battle challenges. During then I had a discussion with my Mingol friends and we came to the conclusion that the reason why Team Battle was no longer shown during the first day and the presentation for it was changed/cut short was that there was an issue with the system. Many questions were still left unanswered but some of us got a hold of one of the three producers… yeah Three Producers.
- Most information seems to be kept under wraps, they wouldn’t even disclose if there would be support for Advanced Shot or any of the other shot styles.
- Talking to the Associate Producer from Sony, I received confirmation that the Team Battle Mode was having issues hence the mode was discontinued on the first day and the presentation for the game was slightly modified.
- In the video/presentation you will see that fishing and running around doing random things seems to have taken up quite a bit of time.
- During Team Battle, the rules of the game was changed so that it was more about who finished all three holes first instead of the actual Team Battle system. It was a shame because we all wanted to see the girls beat the guys right?
Since ClapHanz has been advertising nearly every single day for the last year or two I had a little talk with the Associate Producer to see if I could help them out. If their issue is about how to make the right Mingol Game, think I would be able to help. If it is about the lack of people working on the game… Then that would be a different issue. Well that ball is in Sony/ClapHanz Court now, so let’s see what happens!
What do you all think will happen? Will we end up with someone who is passionate about the game for most of their life working on the game or will the success of New Mingol be clouded in mystery?