Pretty good music/sound effect
Easy to start playing
It is sad when projects are canceled quite late in the development cycle, and in some cases, even when the game is completed or very close. It happens because of a variety of factors - rising costs for example, or no support from a publisher. This was actually the case with this game. Minigolf Maniacs had been in development by Dynamix in 2000, when Sierra pulled the plug. Still, before a tale of a lost game happened, something else happened that allowed the full-uncompleted version to be released. So the game which was actually close to completion, is available in all it's glory. And what a promising game it was turning out to be. It has some very interesting courses, many different modes, great music and sound effects, and very easy to get into and start playing. This a great all around mini golf title.
Note: Now another note to mention. There is a nice modification that has been developed by a group of individuals who had been in touch with former Sierra employees, and this mod essentially completes the unfinished game. It gives you extra holes, features, and bug fixes that were not yet implemented. This mod is highly recommended to download, if you want to really enjoy the game. You can get the mod here
Now when you first start the game, you have many different modes to try. You can jump in right away with tournament mode, or try your hand at practicing different holes. Also, many different varieties of play - from stroke play, to skins, to even coin collecting where you try to collect as many coins as you can while still making the fewest amount of shots as possible. Also, there is speed run, where getting a fast time and low score is the key. You can then pick your character - you only have five at first - and even the style of your ball, putting style and much more. There are many options to choose from and it will take you some time to experience them all should you choose. The characters you choose are also rendered nicely and each of them have lots of different animations and expressions that you will see as you play the game.
Once you are in the game, all you have to do with the default putting option is aim. Click your left mouse button and hold it down till you determine how powerful you want your shot. Release the mouse, and away your shot goes to the hole. Your goal is to get the fewest number of shots. The fewer, the better.
The courses themselves are very nicely designed. Each one presents a unique challenge, and some will really make you think about how you will make the shot. There are also different themes presented, such as winter, the Wild West and more, as you play the game. The music and sound effects in the game are top notch. This is to be expected, since it was going to be a commercial game, and the developers nailed it nicely. The choices they used to ensure the music is there, but it will not interfere as you play the game.
The game, as mentioned earlier, is also easy to start playing. Stick with the easy putting option at first, as it really makes the game much easier to get into. If you like later on, you can change it up to the true putt, and tri click putt if you want a challenge. Do not forget that you can always practice the holes before entering the tournament to plan your strategies and see how to approach different shots. Also, there are power ups you can collect in the game to give you an advantage against opponents, this is only available in the practice and other options, but not available during the tournament.
There is also a hole editor, where you can make your own courses. You can head to the mod site I listed in the second paragraph to get some custom holes. So if you want to add some more variety, feel free to use the editor which was a great option to have as it does add to the replayability of the game.
The only minor point I should mention is that the game has, in tournament mode, golf announcers. Yes that's right. Like the real game, there is golf announcers who make such comments as "Nothing fancy here, just needs to make a good putt". Moreover, many more comments of those nature can be heard. Pretty cheesy in my opinion, but somehow I expected such a thing to happen in this type of game. It is not a bad thing as they mostly comment at the beginning of the hole and the end of the hole. It is not constant chatter - thankfully - as you are planning your shots, so that's good.
This is definitely a fantastic mini golf game, and you should definitely try it if you are a fan of the sport. In addition, make sure to download the mod as well, to really complete the game and fix up some issues. You will not regret it. So check out Minigolf Maniacs and see it for yourself.
Review by: DeathDude
Safe for all ages
OpenGL graphics accelerator.
240MB available hard drive space.