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TGC2019 is a game I love playing, beautifully recreated real life courses are complimented by a myriad of courses from the minds of course designers some of which are visually stunning. The gameplay itself is very reflective of real life golf and is without doubt the best golf game ever created.
HOWEVER like most games it can be as frustrating as hell, particularly the putting so I have put together this game guide for those struggling at the game. I start of with some strategies to employ generally in the game and finish up with my way of dealing with the putting.
Golf Bag
I will start off with the clubs you can put in your golf bag. Starting the game use Beginner Clubs, they are so forgiving your swing can be very off but you shouldn’t end up in huge trouble. You should aspire to using Pro clubs if playing regularly, there is great satisfaction from playing a round well with them, as for Master clubs they are for the absolute addicts. You can carry 14 including a putter. Experiment with club selections. I like to carry as many wedges as I can PW, GW, SW, LW as these are the scoring clubs. I then carry all the irons down to a 5 iron and then the 5 and 3 hybrids, a 3 wood and Driver. I find they cover nearly all yardages. You will come across the odd tough yardage but you cannot cover everything. My Google Docs Spreadsheet ( See copy at the bottom ) shows the carry and roll yardages for every club in my bag for Pro clubs, the rollout on Beginner clubs will not far off these.

Line and Tempo
You need to be hitting straight through the line every single time. If you don’t the Pro clubs will greatly expose your deficiencies. When you get on to the 1st tee I click the Left Stick down and practice swing until you get both the straight line and the tempo correctly. It can often take 20 or more swings to do this so be patient. During a round if you lose your swing stop and do this.
Always zoom in to see where the ball is going. Remember the circle is only a guide to where the ball is going to land. The wind has a major effect as well as the camber of the ground. I like to use the fade and draw shots and driving to try and keep the ball straight in crosswinds. There is a bigger margin for error when using the draw and fade. If you are just adjusting for the wind you might find you are aiming at the right hand rough because of a right to left wind and with the camber of the ground going left and the effect of the wind and the camber could well put you in the left hand rough even with a good shot. You can be better off to aim down the right half of the fairway and hit a fade ( left to right shot ) and have the ball travelling fairly straight. Headwinds and tailwinds need to be considered when judging whether you are going to carry hazards or be short of them.
Iron Play
The carry and roll yardages are vital to hitting the ball close. Wind and elevation plays a huge part in iron play. Firstly elevation. For every 3 foot uphill add a yard on to the distance. For every 3 foot downhill I take off about half a yard. Next the wind. If there is a headwind multiply the strength by 1.5 times and add this to the yardage. It’s a maths calculation, simply calculate for wind and elevation and come up with the yardage to the flag. Then add or subtract loft based on what you want to hit using LT. For longer clubs don’t bother adding or subtracting loft, it makes no difference, for shorter clubs it really does. The main thing to notice when adding or subtracting yardage is the line to hit the ball straight shrinks considerably, thus making the shot more difficult to hit straight. Sideways winds also need to be considered. I take 1.5 times the speed and adjust my aim by clicking on the left / right direction pad that number of times. So a 10mph left to right wind and I will click the left direction 15 times. Once again you should consider hitting draws or fades into certain pins. If there is a tight left pin it might be better to aim right and hit a little draw moving right to left in towards the flag.
You also need to zoom in on the flag to see if you are shooting into an upslope which will make the ball stop or a downslope where it might shoot on. You also need to look out for any shelf on a green. Quite often you will see a pin on a shelf where if you miss it right by 5 yards you could be facing an 80 foot, you simply cannot make that mistake, you must err on the other side. Just like real golf you need to try and limit the room for err on tougher holes.
One further factor to consider when playing iron shots, and this also applies to punch, flop and chip shots is the stance and lie of the ball. You should always LT before you take a shot to see what kind of a stance you have. The ball will move in the direction of the slope and that also applies to uphill which will go shorter and downhill will which go further. If you are in the rough you should pay attention to the % that you are going to get out of the shot. The carry will usually be the average. So a shot from the rough with 70%-80% will probably carry 75% of the normal yardage.
Punch Shots
These can be useful if you need to keep the ball low under branches for example but I rarely use them and don't like using them to hit to the green as I find I can get closer with other types of shots.
Pitch Shots
From 45-90 yards you will be hitting punch shots. With these if the wind is into you it is only one times the yardage as compared to normal iron play, behind you its only about a half. Reading the green before you hit the shot is vital on punch shots as the slope can make a correctly hit shot end up far from the pin. Make sure you know the rollout on each club.
Flop Shots
20-45 yards these are the business. Straightforward enough to play but note the narrowing of the cone as you adjust the yardages. Wind seems to have little or no effect on flop shots. Also the % lie in the rough does not seem to apply to these shots and the generally ( but not always ) end up going the proper distances. Be careful hitting to severe upslopes or you can spin the ball right back to your feet, you might be better employing a chip.
Under 20 yards these are the easiest to perform. Know the run out yardages. On chips a fully lofted LW Pro club with a full perfect swing will go 8 yards and stop on a flat green. Some like to use flop shots for yardages under 20 yards but they necessitate shorter 50-80% swings which are much harder to execute so I prefer to chip when I can. For chips under 8ft you are going to have to make partial swings. No easy way to learn these, just practice.
The bane of our lives and without doubt putting is the most difficult part of this game. Whether you are using Beginner / Pro or Master clubs putting is the same, it just difficult and the part of the game that most struggle with.
Firstly distance. I went to course designer and built a massive completely flat green and practiced putting from different yardages on the flat green. In my head I count ONE, TWO, THREE and so on and each number equates to 10 feet on a green. There is no easy way to do this, you need to figure out your tempo. Never go over SEVEN as there is complete inconsistency after that and you are quite possible to hit it 100 foot instead of 75. What I recommend before you start a round press the Y button ( course details ). In here top right and you can go to the practice putting green on the course. Practice to different pins, put Mulligans on if you want to practice a putt over and over maybe to get a feel for distance. Often overlooked is the importance of keeping straight line on your putting. It has a major effect if not straight so make sure you concentrate on this.
Uphill putts, one inch equals one foot of putt. So an uphill 5in 10 foot putt I would probably be hitting as if it was 17/18 ft on the basis that even if I miss I won’t be far past and the harder you hit the putt the less break you need to play. On downhill putts I triple the number of inches to get the yards I need to hit. On a 30ft putt with 10” down I’m hitting that as if it’s a 10 foot putt. On downhill putts always err on hitting it too easy as the result of hitting it too hard can often mean a disaster.
The big difficulty in putting is assessing sidehill breaks. Some just move the aim point where they think but I have always found that difficult to judge. I have a formula which will hopefully help in this complex area, I “count the beads”. What does this mean? Between you and the ball will be a number of grids. On reading the grids on the greens each grid is 3ft x 3ft. What I do is go through each grid starting by zooming in on the hole and counting backwards. I assess the speed at which each bead is running through the grid sideways on a scale of 1 to 7. I add up the reading I get for each full grid and add in a % for partial grids and I multiply my answer by 1.5. That is number of clicks right or left that I make on the direction pad. So take an example of a 5 grid putt. Grid one is going left to right at speed 2, grid two at speed 2, grid three at speed 3, grid four at speed 2 and grid five at speed 1, that’s a total speed of 10 x 1.5 = 15. I move the marker 15 clicks to the left and hit the ball at the speed required for the distance. This is for a flat putt, add extra for downhill, reduce for uphill. Err on the faster side, so if it could be 3 or 4 speed go with the 4. Just like real golf if a putt is on the high side it might fall in, if its on the low side it definitely won’t ! If it is uphill the putt will take less break, if its downhill it will take more break. So in this example if that was a 3 inch uphill out I would only be clicking maybe 10 times, downhill and I would be clicking 20 times. I like to do is position the marker at the actual hole distance and then click left or right depending on the calculations I have made for sidehill break.

So there it is, hopefully these tips can help you with your game. TGC2019 is a game you have to be patient with, if you rush your shots you will make mistakes so take your time and enjoy it. I leave you with my yardages for carry and rollout for my set of Pro Clubs

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