Let's hear it for the three-click swing system, eh? Pioneered by Nintendo itself in 1984 NES game Golf, this simple but effective mechanic has been a staple of golfing video games ever since. It's endured because no one's really managed to better it: some would argue the case for Tiger Woods' analogue control, and Nintendo might point to the remote-based mimicry of Wii Sports Club. But neither quite captures the elegance and rhythm of a perfect swing the way this does.
Mario Golf: World Tour is a particularly fine exponent of the three-click system. You tap A to begin your backswing, once more as your club reaches its peak to start bringing it forward again, and again to connect with the ball at the right time. It's the physical satisfaction of that final click that makes it. Analogue and particularly motion control lacks that all-important layer of abstraction: the closer you get to the real thing, the more you notice the differences. So while the camera might zoom down the course to track the path of your shot, without that sense of connection between club face and ball, it's like you're forever taking practice swings.
Here, the bar moves at quite a fast pace - a full-blooded drive is easy enough to do fairly regularly but you'll need good timing to hit peak power every time. And middling the ball is an even finer art. Sure, after a while you'll be attuned to the rhythm of a perfect shot at full power, which zips down the fairway with the obligatory rainbow trail, but what about when you need to give it a bit less? What about when you're in the rough or the bunker and that sweet spot shrinks to just a pixel or two in width? Or when you're deliberately trying to catch a bit of draw or fade to curl it around an obstacle?