Golf is one of the hardest sports in the world. It is a game of variability. The conditions change from day to day. The lie, the club required, the amount of wind, and most importantly, the course. Courses are unique and all have their own characteristics that will challenge an area of your game. Some courses have narrow fairways and sharp doglegs, while others require precision into the greens. The hardest ones require a golfer to possess an excellent short game and putting skills to turn in a low round. In PGA Tour 2K21 there are endless amounts of courses you can select from to test your ability (thanks create-a-course!). In this case, I have chosen from the 15 official PGA Tour 2K21 courses and whittled the list down from there.
These are real-life replicas of the courses you see at PGA tournaments on TV. All of these will test your golfing ability in one way or another. Although there may be differences in opinion on course difficulty, let us take a look at the selection of courses I believe will test your abilities in PGA Tour 2K21.
Innisbrook Copperhead Course
The famous few finishing holes at Innisbrook are known as the snake pit. They require precision at the end of a round to bring it home. The Copperhead course will test a player’s driving ability. The course is long, tree-lined and the hazards are magnificently placed at the exact distances golfers will be trying to place their ball. Often there is a combination of bunkers placed on both sides of the fairway, or a water hazard that is cut into the dogleg forcing golfers to make a perfect swing.
Players who can work the ball off the tee with fades and baby draws can take advantage of the angles against these hazards. Beware, on a windy day at Copperhead, all it takes is a gusty breeze or a bad bounce to put a ripped drive into the hazard. Club selection off the tee is important and working the ball into the wind will also help players hold a straight line off the tee.
TPC Sawgrass is the home to The Players Championship. It is famous for its 17th island green. Toward the end of a round, the 17th hole can ruin dreams and break hearts. Just like Copperhead, trees line the fairways of this course from tee to green. To score low, Sawgrass will test a player’s ability in the approach game. There are several holes, especially with Sunday pins, that can be tough to access without a precise approach shot.
For example, the Sunday pin placement on the fourth hole is in the back left-hand side of the green, extremely close to the water with not much room on either side. A tough pin to go straight at, but a precise shot towards the middle of the green can utilize the slope, and backstop and slide the ball back towards the cup. This is only one of many approach shots on Sawgrass that will test a player’s ability.
Riviera Country Club
Riviera is unique. From design to location being right in the heart of Los Angeles, it is not the kind of golf course that will challenge many players off the tee or in the approach game. However, the area that Riviera will likely make its biggest impact is in the short game. This course will play short for many golfers, and if you are struggling with your approach game or find yourself faced with windy conditions, you’ll need your A+ short game.
Several greens at Riviera are protected by deep bunkers, including greens with a variety of collection areas behind them. You’ll need to master the flop shot, soft pitch, and bump and run to be able to get up and down for par. You’ll also need to prepare your game for uphill, downhill, and side-hill lies that will affect how the ball comes off the ground and into the green.
TPC Deere Run
Depending on the pin locations, TPC Deere Run can be a challenging course and one that will test your putting ability. If a golfer can’t shoot darts from the fairway, TPC Deere Run will challenge putting at lengths of 14 to 25 feet. Every green has an even speed of break — not too fast that it will force a player to play lots of break, but also not too little that will make a putt a simple read.
Be prepared to play an ample amount of break from all sides of the hole. If players miss a few putts early in the round, this course can cause headaches during the round as players press to make more birdies.
Quail Hollow is a sneaky tough golf course that will challenge players in all areas and their opportunity to score low. The fairways at Quail Hollow are narrow and if golfers are wayward off the tee, the rough here will make it very hard to attack pins for easy birdies. Most of the greens at Quail Hollow possess false fronts or upper levels that fall off quickly into a bunker or collection area.
Especially in firm conditions, Quail Hollow plays fast and golfers may watch a nice approach into a green unfortunately trickle off the green and into the bunker. A misplaced chip or pitch shot at Quail Hollow will likely have unfortunate results and test the mental game of a golfer.
Golf is a game where you can’t really play defense or affect your opponent on anything but a mental level. All you can do is control your game and your decision making.
Your opponent is the golf course. There is no difference in PGA Tour 2K21. As you improve, you can change the difficulty of your clubs and visual aids. You will find courses to continually challenge aspects of your game. That is the best part about golf, it is a game that can’t be won, only played. Grab your clubs, and gear and test your abilities on these courses — and all courses in PGA Tour 2K21.