PGA Tour Golf 3

With this latest addition to the classic PGA Tour Golf series, EA Sports fills many of the gaps in its previous versions. Beautifully polished graphics and game-play refinements enhance the already- awesome action that has put PGA Tour at the top of the leaderboard.

Incredible Eagle!

Chock full of options, PGA Tour III sends you blasting down the fairway with top pros like Tom Kite, eight courses (half are new), and tournament, skins, match- play, shoot-out, and practice rounds. Golfers can customize everything from their club selection to the views of the course, and full stats and instant replays record the action.

ProTip: Don't use draw or fade to compensate for strong winds. You'll get more distance out of your shots if you adjust the aiming cursor.

Highlighting the impressive controls, the spanking-new Ball Lie window shows you exactly how the ball sits on the course. A great addition to the PGA series, this window helps you pick the best shot and accurately adjust the draw, fade, and arc on the ball. Changing the arc lets you fine- tune top spin and back spin, which adds a new layer of complexity to the action.

Always underestimate the distance on a pitch shot by a good 10 percent to allow for its long roll.

Is It the View?

The visuals are the biggest improvements over PGA's predecessors. Phenomenal graphics complement the sharp game play. Gorgeously detailed digitized backgrounds surround each course, and striking sprite animations provide eye-catching realism. Revamped sound effects round out the sensory experience, but the tunes have a bubbly, mellow edge that belongs in a New Age bookstore, not on a golf course.

If you face a tough putt with a sharp drop or rise just before the hole, intentionally miss to the uphill side, which adds some last- minute spin that counteracts the slope. In the picture, calculate your shot as you normally would, then miss your aim a notch to the right.

Golf pros won't hesitate to reach for their wallet and buy this fun, vastly improved game. Casual fans who already own PGA II, however, should rent the new one before buying -- going from the great PGA II to the stellar PGA III may not be worth the bucks to occasional hackers.

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