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Review by: Pete Hines
Published: July 21, 1999
If Carmageddon and Links LS got thrown into a blender, the result might be something like Links Extreme. This latest title from Access looks to take the popular Links series in another direction, or maybe another dimension, and provide a golf experience that uses elements of combat and plain old wackiness. The action takes place on several demolition driving ranges, the equivalent of a golf shooting gallery, as well as on a bizarre 18-hole course called Mojo Bay and a nine-hole trip back to a World War I battlefield. While the basic interface and gameplay from the Links LS series are here, the game is really nothing like its namesake.
There are four different ways to play golf in Links Extreme. The most simple is the driving range. You get a set of explosive golf balls that you launch at various moving and stationary targets, like hot air balloons, armadillos and so forth. You can choose to play with or without a time limit and use a number of different swing types, including kwik, amateur, classic and power. The kwik swing is only available on the driving range and allows you to aim and shoot, while the amateur level requires a marginally more difficult swing. The classic swing lets you use two or three clicks to perform the more traditional swing found in most golf titles. The power swing allows you to simulate the motion of a backswing and downswing by moving the mouse right and then left, clicking at the point of contact.
Once on the range, you take a crack at moving targets on a theme of driving ranges. It’s a combination of a shooting gallery and a pinball game. Hitting more difficult targets, such as those that are moving quickly or are in the air, gets you higher scores and a chance at bonuses. You move to the next driving range when you reach a certain score on the current range. You can play the driving range with or without a time limit, which either gives you plenty of time to line up just the right shot or forces you to hit everything you can before time runs out. While you can obtain extra balls via special targets on the range, you don’t earn additional balls when you move to the next driving range. You also can’t change the number of balls you play with. As a result of this strict setup, the driving range loses some of its luster after a bit. It’s an entertaining amusement for when you have a few minutes to kill on the computer, but it’s not an option that alone makes the game worth getting.
Poison Golf allows you to try to play a hole straight up or to simply try to blow up your opponent. Doing damage to your opponent or being the first to finish the hole are both equal options, much like in the aforementioned Carmaggedon, where you can either win the race or destroy your opponents. You have a couple of different types of balls, each of which does different amounts of damage. This means you don’t have to have the ball land as close to your target with some balls as you do with others, which directly correlates to how accurate your shot has to be. Grenades require a much more precise shot than a Big Bertha, which only needs to be in the same area code to do damage. Poison Golf can be played against a human or more than one computer opponent on either course.
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