Pangya: Fantasy Golf (PSP) review
"This game is a time-killing, cute-girls-dancing golf epic. Using the "tap for power, tap for accuracy" gauge system that evolved across years of video game golfing, Pangya mixes tournament play with versus-mode battles against oddball opponents (such as a policeman who looooooves fried chicken), an assortment of challenges (such as ten tries to make a hole-in-one), and ridiculously cute costume changes."
A great crisis once befell the isle of Pangya. By drilling holes deep into the ground, nefarious wizards drained the island's life force, casting Pangya into a dark era of doom and despair! A hero arrived from another dimension -- a land called Earth -- to end the vile sorcerors' wicked ambition. With his magical staff and orbs of pure energy, he plugged the holes littered about the land of Pangya.
In honor of the hero's hole-plugging achievement, a new sport was created: Pangya: Fantasy Golf. Every so often, island fairies spirit Earth boys and Earth girls (I hear they're easy) to the lush golfing greens for some celebratory swings. While this no doubt brings tears of worry to parents' eyes, the lads and lasses who arrive at Pangya find themselves surrounded by magic and mystery during their holiday.
Their holiday now becomes your holiday. Playing first as Scout or Hana, and later as over a dozen cute or cool characters, this game is a time-killing, cute-girls-dancing golf epic. Using the "tap for power, tap for accuracy" gauge system that evolved across years of video game golfing, Pangya mixes tournament play with versus-mode battles against oddball opponents (such as a policeman who looooooves fried chicken), an assortment of challenges (such as ten tries to make a hole-in-one), and ridiculously cute costume changes. The alternate outfits and Haruhi-style dance scenes are good for more than mere weeaboo glee (although it should be noted that Pangya is actually Korean); playing in new attire earns bonus money to pay for new clothing!
Or it pays for new equipment, if you insist on actually performing better instead of just looking better.
New clubs and balls can be purchased to improve statistics such as power, accuracy, and curve, although such things needn't be mastered to achieve a modest amount of success. A bit of course analysis and a smidge of timing go a long way towards victory. Even special shots such as the "spike", "tomahawk", or "power curve" are a breeze to pull off. The sheer simplicity of play makes it easy to fall prey to the game's charm. The story mode is effortlessly clever, forcing players to experience each golfer's storyline before seamlessly leading into a surprisingly well-prepared second episode.
That's the ultimate appeal of Pangya: experiencing everything each character has to offer. These goofballs are funny, cute, and occasionally even sexy. There's this semi-sideview shot of cover girl Arin where you can make out the . . . erm, "finer details" . . . of her bouncy breasts. Call me a perv, but those things are big and perky enough that any red-blooded male just has to look! The loli-goth, pig-tailed piratess Kooh is another cutie who lived up to her energetic appearance in the catchy vocal intro; her optimistic, naive view of life comedically clashes with her grim profession. And when you think you've seen everyone and already picked a favorite, a whole second set of characters appears along with a golf course lifted straight from Hell itself.
Whether you play to complete all of the gameplay challenges or play to collect all of the costumes and unlockable artwork, Pangya: Fantasy Golf will provide dozens of hours worth' of charmingly addictive fun. Heaven help you if you actually try to complete and collect everything . . . but I suppose there's nothing wrong with an extended holiday, especially when enjoying it with such charming company.
Staff review by Zigfried (August 16, 2009)
Zigfried likes writing about whales and angry seamen, and often does so at the local pub.
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