App Army Assemble: Dinkigolf - Is this quirky 2D mini golf game up to par?

We ask the App Army

App Army Assemble: Dinkigolf - Is this quirky 2D mini golf game up to par?
| Dinkigolf

Dinkigolf is the latest game from A to Play, the developer of Pachoink, which was featured in another of our App Army Assembles. Their latest endeavour, as you'll have guessed from the name, is a 2D mini-golf game where you'll tee off in strange locales such as active volcanoes. We handed the game over to our App Army to see what they made of it.

Here's what they said:

Rohit Bhatia

Coming from playing Stickman Games and now newly crowned king in 2D golf game "Golf Blitz" you need a distinction to even up the bar of Golf game. Unfortunately, Dinkigolf does not seem to it. The Graphics are ok but the zoom and bounciness of the ball and it does not show where the hole is as we cannot even pan the screen to see it. Makes it unplayable to me. Then there are things like sand traps, no matter I hard I hit if it's a double layer sand then the ball gets stuck. I lost a couple of shots to it and got above par. It's not a very bad game but it feels it could be improved in some areas.

Gal Haber

There is a new contender entering the 2D golf arena, and it’s taking on the likes of Golf Blitz and the Super Stickman Golf series as well as oldies like Desert Golfing. Does it succeed? Well, in a word, no.
Dinkigolf uses the mechanic of pulling back on the ball and letting it rip Angry Birds style. Each of the current 54 holes can also earn you up to 3 stars, depending on how many strokes you took. But the problems start early on.

For example, you cannot view the whole course, and instead, the game uses signposts on the field to hint at where your next shot should be aimed at. I didn’t like this solution. I like to know where I’m headed. Next, the ball physics just feel odd with the ball bouncing awkwardly of walls. There are no guidelines when you aim the ball adding to the trial and error gameplay. The level design ranges from uninspiring to uninspiring and frustrating.

Dinkigolf does try to add some variety with portals and moving walls but the basics are just fundamentally off. We’ve also been spoiled in the past by other games with inventive multiplayer modes but Dinkigolf is single-player only. The best I can say is that at least the game doesn’t false advertise as Dinkygolf is indeed, regrettably, dinky.

Paul Manchester

Fore! A fitting exclamation as another of my shots fires off-screen into the unknown. Unlike many golf games, I was instantly annoyed by the lack of ability to scan the course to plan my round. This leaves players often teeing off without much idea in which direction the hole or obstacles are positioned (even with the slight zoom offered whilst powering up a shot).

The controls are simple and work well, however, the ball seems to move a little unpredictability with a strangely implemented wind mechanic. This meant that there was a definite amount of luck to each hole. Speaking of which this game is not short on holes, if you’re aiming for the highest scores this should keep most busy for a while with hundreds of courses spanning 5 worlds. Pick it up for free and it may entertain for a day or so, but I wouldn’t recommend paying to hit these unpolished fairways.

Mark Abukoff

I sometimes enjoy mobile golf games. I don’t even really mind if they’re challenging. And while this is certainly one of the more imaginative mobile golf games I’ve played, that is just about all that I liked about it. I didn’t have any control problem really. I noticed how the zoom worked almost immediately and it worked fine for me. And I can even live without seeing the entire course, as that accentuates the unexpected. But really I don’t see any point in counting strokes if (in some places, and increasing in difficulty) it’s going to be so hard to get past obstacles.

Again, I don’t mind obstacles, but you need to be able to get past them in order to enjoy the game. I think this game has potential (as evidenced by the portals that come up occasionally to help move you through. That’s a great feature!), and if it were free or even ad-supported, I’d probably recommend it. Because of the originality and potential. But I’d have trouble recommending it to anyone but a hardcore mobile golf fan as a paid game.

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Mike Lisagor

Dinkigolf is another no-frills physics-based golf game. No choice of clubs, no options, no weather factors. You have to replay every hole since you cannot see what dangers are ahead, and then you might need several shots to get out of a trap. There is nothing really wrong with the game, but this could have come out 10 years ago and I would have written a similar review. Flappy Golf and Super Stickman are probably better choices.

Max Williams

I got off to a bad start with this - trying to pinch-zoom out so I could see the whole of the level at once, I found that I couldn't, and just accidentally fired off my ball instead in a random direction. It didn't get much better than that to be fair. Many sections of this old-school drag and fire golf game will have you just trying, again and again, to do the same thing, bouncing back to where you started after each attempt.

When I got to hole 8 or so and found the hole on top of a steep hill, I had probably 10 shots, each rolling back down to where I started or going down the other side before I finally got it in the hole. I kind of rage-quit at that point. Someone might enjoy this, but it feels very badly designed and just not really fun at all, to me.

Oksana Ryan

I found this game very annoying to play at first. Aiming was difficult because the controls were sensitive and, even though there were arrows to follow, once the first couple of rounds were played, I couldn’t see the entire hole to be played, only as far as the next stroke took me. Several shots annoyingly slid back countless times, at which point I would exit the game and go back later.

There were the usual trick shots, bunkers, water pools, walls, fans and wormholes to navigate and once you look beyond the difficulty in aiming it’s a colourful and often challenging game, and although there’s nothing new to be found, it’s not the worst golfing game I’ve played but certainly not the best either.

Michael Purdy

This is a simple game with rather plain graphics. You flick the ball across a creatively built course with pools of water and multiple branching paths. I found it extremely frustrating to control. I could not find any way to pan the camera to look at the course before you swing. And since it thinks any touch is a swing, it becomes a mindless, blind mess trying to get to the goal, which killed my enthusiasm to play it.

Adam Rowe

Last week my group tried out Golf with Your Friends via Game Pass on Xbox. I realized two things quickly: It was a ton of fun and I was terrible at it! So when I downloaded Dinkigolf I jokingly told them that they would see a new and improved golfer after I finished playing through this game.

My first impression of Dinkigolf wasn’t great. The inability to see the entire course at the beginning of a level leads to tons of restarts. It also makes the occasional good shot feel more like luck than skill since you had no idea what you were aiming at in the first place. The aiming is also a bit finicky and very sensitive. The other minor frustration is that I would have loved the restart button to be on the main screen since I end up restarting often to try and earn medals.

All that to say, it has still been fun. Pulling off a tricky shot by landing the ball in between two fire pits or sand traps feels good. And the more you play the better sense you get for the controls. With a few tweaks (please let me zoom out to see the whole course!) it could be a really great little golf game. Until then, I’m headed back to the links in Golf with Your Friends. Hopefully, I can come in second to last this time!

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Stephen Gregson-Wood
Stephen Gregson-Wood
Stephen brings both a love of games and a very formal-sounding journalism qualification to the Pocket Gamer team.