PS Vita Preview: Hot Shots Golf (Working Title)

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PS Vita Preview: Hot Shots Golf (Working Title)

When I first laid eyes on the PS Vita in January, I was floored by UNCHARTED (now officially dubbed UNCHARTED: Golden Abyss), eager to try Super Stardust Delta with dual analog sticks, and mesmerized by the use of AR in Reality Fighters. But I knew that the game I’d be coming back to on flight after flight, year after year, would be Hot Shots Golf.


I’ve easily sunk hundreds of hours into the Hot Shots Golf series dating back to the PS2 days, with the majority of that time on the PSP’s Open Tee line. Based on what I’ve played of Hot Shots Golf, the hours will keep piling up on PS Vita.

The first thing I noticed was how the game’s cheerfully colorful visuals benefit from the PS Vita’s stunning OLED display. Don’t compare it to the PSP’s Open Tee series; Hot Shots Golf’s visuals on the PS Vita are even more polished than those of PS3’s Hot Shots Golf: Out of Bounds. Gorgeous character lighting, dazzling water effects, fluttering birds, swirling leaves — this is as pretty a day on the links are you’re likely to see.


The basic gameplay of Hot Shots Golf has held up over five console platforms, and the PS Vita gameplay remains as comfortable, familiar, and addicting as a well-worn pair of jeans. Developer Clap Hanz is working with Vita’s powerful hardware in order to create a drop-dead-simple user interface, and the early results show promise. Use your finger to move your golfer around the tee box to give you a better angle around doglegs, then touch the screen where you want the ball to land – the game will automatically select the right club for the distance.


For the moment, the dev team isn’t looking at going full touch on the shot mechanics. Buttons still have their place in gaming, and if it works, it works. Here, it works.

But you’ll know how far gaming has come when can you peer through the PS Vita’s 5’’ OLED display to search for hidden objects scattered across the courses, shifting your window into the game world by simply moving the PS Vita. Very cool stuff.

It’s also no surprise to learn that Wifi and 3G multiplayer are planned, and will incorporate a leaderboard for you to keep track of your progress versus that of your friends.

Hot Shots Golf is planned as a day-one release for PS Vita, beginning what will likely be another years-long dominance of my portable gaming time.

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4 Author Replies

  • Everybody’s golf did not bore me like I initially assumed it would. Now this game might be even more impressive with the new features and the device’s controls and what not. I kind look forward to checking it out!

  • why no video? that makes no sense

  • I’m not a particularly huge fan of golf, but this looks really cool. I think I’ll get this on day one along with the Vita.

  • Finally – you promised information on this title several days ago…

    A HSG title has yet to disappoint me so I’m looking forward to this one as well.

    Is Clap Hanz also working on a new PS3 HSG or perhaps some new courses for Out of Bounds, heck, even a trophy patch?

    • Clap Hanz is working on this. I wouldn’t count on any updates for HSG OoB at this point – the game is over 3 years old.

  • LionsguardAgrias

    Awesome! Launch game?

  • Will the PSV be out for holiday 2011 in NA? It would be a tremendous mistake and missed opportunity if it wasn’t. Jack Tretton seemed confused – waffling – on the issue when asked at E3. I’ll be spending most of my gaming time on this as the AAA console stuff is total pap these days.

  • @6

    I agree, Holiday 2011 in NA PLEASE!!!!

  • Will this game still have the traditional meter for us old trad players?

  • Oh YES!! But… please.. do not “localize” this title.. do not remake all of the characters into ugly nasty looking stereotypes to “appeal” to the western market… please… just don’t do it.. you ruined HSG 3 & 4 with those hideous character changes…

  • Gollf… Really??

  • With this and Uncharted, it looks like the Vita will have some high quality games launching with it.
    Good work, Sony!

  • Awesome. I’m buying this game at launch. But still, Vita’s best launch-window game remains as Project Gravity!

  • Awesome, Vita is looking really good. I am stoked for a new HGS game. But we need a new HGS game on the PS3 with MOVE!!! Tiger Woods plays decent with the MOVE but I want my fun and silly golf game with Trophies come on Clap Hanz, bring us HGS 6 on the PS3.

  • Huge fan of the series. Hopefully they go back to being more challenging. Open Tee 2 was way too easy and the new characters/caddies were annoying. Hopefully there will be a lot more new courses and less recycled content. Also additional mini games are also welcome.

  • Appropriate that you got to post for this game Jeff.. Looking forward to it very much and I’ll have it at launch. Glad to hear they are working on multi-player, since I’m still waiting on my rematch lol. I only lost by 1..

  • Question, you know when the PSblog android and Iphone app will be hitting the US store? Also will that Keyboard for the PS3 be coming over to the US? (The new bluetooth one).

  • Buyin’ it!

  • It’s shocking how much of my time the HSG series for the PSP still demands of my time after all these years.

    I have no doubt that this will be no different.

  • Can’t wait! Buying this day 1 with the Vita. I love Out of Bounds and was upset it did not get Trophy support or a sequel! Hot Shots OOB is better than any Tiger Woods game.

  • Yes more hot shots golf. So NGP games will have trophies and stuff. Will PSP get shafted?

  • If this is a launch game I will pick it up with the system. I want to know after HSG comes out if Clap Hanz will make another Tennis version. I also would like to see what they could do with Football (Soccer), Volleyball, Snowboarding & Hockey. Both Golf & Tennis have been great from them so it would be cool to see what they could be to these other sports too.

  • Hurry up already. Us Hot Shots fans have been waiting 4 years for a new game:p

    Please tell me the developers played Phantasy Golf Pangya. That game iterated on the Hot Shots Golf formula and did a bunch of things right Hot Shots needs to pick up on.(License chalanges, The Story Mode, Points for birdies are used as currency etc).

    Also, please bring back the Mini Golf.

  • Hot Shots Fans: Amazon has the 12 game bundle Pack for Hot Shots Shorties for PSP for only $5.

    Pick it up, the 12 games are well worth it.

  • Hot Shots Golf’s visuals on the PS Vita are even more polished than those of PS3’s Hot Shots Golf: Out of Bounds #nosebleed

    I can not wait for this baby!

  • Considering HSG OOB on PS3 is getting a 3D, move, and presumably trophy patch, will HSG Vita support cross platform play?

  • Hot Shots Golf for PS3 is still one of my favorite games. Loved the PSP ones too. If I get a Vita, which I probably will eventually, this will probably be the first game I get.

  • Give us FIFA 12 as well please!

  • That first guy is frightening.

    I like Hot Shots, but think they should really take advantage of the cartoony style and put some minigolf-style courses in there. Sure, keep the regular 18-hole courses, but throw in a few 18-hole putt putt courses. Shoot the ball through the spinning windmill and all that. A good minigolf game is a rare find, and I think with the solid mechanics that Hot Shots brings to the table could actually make that possible. Because ultimately if it’s between playing on a fictional Okinawa beach course with nothing particularly unusual about it and playing Pebble Beach, then I’m going to go with Tiger Woods. Hot Shots needs to bring stuff to the table that Tiger Woods doesn’t, and I think minigolf could be that missing part of the equation. Just my two cents.

  • That first character model looks like crap. I hope the vita can push out a little more polygons than that…

  • @25 ThreeLeggedFreak


  • @Tunstin1

    It’s a Famitsu rumor.

  • Or it was revealed in Famitsu, I forget.

    It didn’t say if it was going to be a re-release or a patch or both.

  • love this

  • are we gonna be able to watch HD movies on Playstation Vita? do we need to sign a contract to get the 3G version or can we get it without a contract? will both models support same features except of course 3G ?

  • ThreeLeggedFreak


    3D and Move was confirmed by Famitsu this week. Remember that last year at TGS they had a demo of it in 3D. It makes no sense for them to reopen the code now unless they plan to do a re-release, and if they’re opening the code they might as well include a trophy patch in there and hopefully fix the horrendous file size installation (5GBs). Whether or not this patch and/or re release leaves Japan remains to be seen.

  • Fingers crossed!

  • PLEASE make sure you make turn-taking multiplayer, allowing people to verse eachother without having to be connected to the internet all the time. It would be cool to just have something pop-up when you hit the next Wi-fi spot: “You have 3 shots to take against 2 friends and 1 stranger” etc. etc.

    The potential is quite good, in that respect.

  • this is great and all, but what about a new Hot Shots for the PS3????

    i’m waiting for that hotness!

  • While the game looks gud and all and i don’t wanna sound rude or anything, but when will there be a bog post on Sly 4?, I just want more of it, but its pretty intriguing how u guys r making a hot shots for golf…

  • i cant wait till the vita comes out

  • cool i want to get it!


  • Please give us the option for Japanese VA. I asked for this multiple times for HSG5, but no one seemed to care.

  • So what are we going to see for an FPS game on the vita ? Is anything coming soon? GOLF ???? LAME

  • Hot shots for vita, great. Vita for AT&T only, dumb. Will you guys have a good web browser for the vita, like firefox mobile, opera, google chrome? With real flash, not like the previous ones.

  • I’ve been interested in the design of the Vita and the fact of the 3G data plan :O, I have two questions…one being how much will the data plans be to pay for the 3G and will the 3G plan be exclusive to only one company?

  • Hi do you know when are we going to get details about the Ps Vita game set in the Bioshock Universe? thanks!

  • i really want to know game prices!!!!!! 39.99 seems good

  • @45 they say it will be exclusive to att&t

  • jimmyfoxhound (#9)

    I could’t agree more! The last thing I want to see in HSG is some “westernized” heavy metal dude with tats and some stupid saying like “that was totally wicked dude”.

    One of the things that make the HSG series great is the japanese cultural influence and those lovable, quirky characters.

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