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Skeleton Coast
by Microsoft

Links Corner Course Database ID Number - 1132
Release Date CRZ Filesize Par Course Length
2002-07-30  86,664,033  bytes 72  7596 yards
Type Style CRZ Filename
IMAGINARY  TROPICAL  skeleton.crz 
Course ID Course Key
13b50c86f2cd41ecb8359ab363bf14db  007b337703f93601910313aef12300c0 

CLIPNOTES by Ben Bateson (ousgg)

Imaginary, tropical course.
Concept  4/10
As an illustration of what Links 2003 is capable of, this fails miserably. The designers appear to have gone to town with some (admittedly impressive) rock work, and left the advanced APCD techniques out in the cold. The course itself starts well, but rapidly becomes unoriginal and derivative (does the screenshot remind anyone else of Pebble Beach?). The course is allegedly set on the African coast, but the design does little to convince me of that. Not a great attempt.
Appearance  6/10
I will certainly concede that the rockwork looks very impressive and the elevations are neatly done, but the course radiates artificiality. The grass is much too bright and too green for these latitudes, and the wide open and sparsely-planted areas do not impress. The ocean mapping has been superseded many times since by part-time designers. Skeleton Coast, in effect, just falls back in amongst the crowd.
Playability  6/10
The novelty value of playing a fantasy course quickly fades, as the designers have really not stretched themselves enough. Because a lot of holes are stretched to unnecessary length, and because - ridiculously - there is only one set of tees, there is insufficient variety here, and it has little repeat playability value other than to take in the nice scenery.
Challenge  7/10
Unusually for a fantasy course, this is pretty easy. Although the hazards are well-placed, the fairways are wide open and it's hard to find deep rough. The elevations often run across fairways and make approach shots tricky, but the greens are not severely sloped and will accept putts. Overall, it's a very fair round of golf.
Technical  6/10
The seam blending is a joke. As this is one of the main selling points of APCD 1.5, much more should have been made of it. Planting is not always typical of the course, and seems to be a jumble of different plants with little reason to them. While the rocks are spectacularly carried out, there are still too many flaws here, and we should be expecting better things.
Overall A playable course, and one that offers an un-Microsoft-like very fair challenge, but with little sense of its environment. Misses out on some of the technical importance of its release time too. 29/50
Please remember that Clipnote reviews are the opinion of one person and do not constitute an 'Official' Links Corner review of the course.

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