On the heels of Woods joining 2K Sports’ golf franchise, EA is back in the game as well.
Just two weeks ago, Tiger Woods announced his return to video games as the new face of 2K Sports’ PGA Tour golf series. Now, to kick off Masters week, the studio behind the golf game that formerly featured Woods as its cover athlete made it clear that it was throwing its hat in the ring, too.
For the first time since 2015, EA Sports PGA Tour is back.
At this time, it’s not clear just how many PGA Tour golfers will be playable in the game — Woods certainly will not be among them given his exclusive deal with 2K — or which iconic courses will be rendered in all their glory for the current console generation. But in this early stage, both EA and the PGA Tour are excited for what’s to come.
“EA Sports and the PGA Tour have created some of the most memorable golf video game experiences together, and we couldn’t be more excited to expand our sports portfolio with a new golf title on next-gen hardware,” said Cam Weber, general manager and executive vice president at EA Sports. “Our team of passionate golf fans is meticulously recreating the world’s top courses such as Pebble Beach, and we can’t wait to give fans the opportunity to compete on some of the most iconic PGA Tour courses and win the FedEx Cup.”
The game will be powered by EA’s Frostbite physics engine, made famous in other EA series like FIFA, Battlefield, Madden, and Star Wars Battlefront. An earlier version of Frostbite was used for Rory McIlroy PGA Tour, EA’s last edition of their golf franchise before it was discontinued.
After being seriously injured in a car accident in late February, Woods is expected to make a full recovery. He’s given no indication that his career might be over. After winning the 2019 Masters, he made seven tournament appearances last year and has not competed in a PGA Tour event since the 2020 Masters last November, at which he finished 38th.
For years, if you wanted to be golf’s best, you had to get by Tiger first, and that remained true for EA’s golf franchise, which bore the 15-time major champion’s name and likeness on every edition from 1998 to 2013.
Times may be different now, but it’s more than clear that with this new jolt of competition between developers, golf video games are in a better place today than they were yesterday.
And the EA-versus-Tiger battle for supremacy will be a spirited one.