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The Tour Report

February 5 2013

8:31 PM

Game doubles as 'history book'

Bobby Gates inspects a wooden driver like the ones used in Legends mode of Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 14. (Photo courtesy EA Sports)

By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- Hunter Mahan liked the sweater he was wearing on the big screen but he wasn't quite so sure about those knickers Tiger Woods had on.

"Tiger doesn't look so good," Mahan said with an impish grin. "I don't know if he can pull (the look) off."

Mahan was playing himself in the innovative "Legends of the Majors" mode of the Tiger Woods PGA TOUR 14 video game that will be released next month. The game's lead designer, Mike DeVault, played the character of Woods at the press conference held in conjunction with the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

The Legends mode encompasses six different eras of the game and features all four major championships for the first time. One of the most interesting spins in the game is the painstaking recreation of Augusta National, circa 1934 -- hence the knickers, ties and sweaters on the players. 

"Whenever you go into that particular era you take on the characteristcs of that era," DeVault explained. "So here's Tiger, he's using a brassie to tee off with -- a Nike brassie."

The equipment is programmed to respond as it would have in each of the six eras the game encompasses. Playing Augusta National in 1934, for example, the trajectory of the ball is lower and it comes off the club differently. There will be a learning curve for gamers, as a result.

"The club sounds like a wood and the ball actually sounds a little bit more hollow," DeVault said. "We really to cover all the bases in all these different eras I think people are really going to enjoy it."

Once gamers complete the Legends mode that unlocks all of the eras to use at any of the courses in the game -- and with any of the 25 players included in the project. Mahan, for one, is excited about the new features.

"I think it's a whole cool aspect," Mahan said. "It's diving into the history of golf. People who are playing it -- especially kids -- they don't know anything about this style of game and the courses and how they've changed over the years. I think it's really interesting.

"It's like a history book and at the same time you get to play a neat game."