Forum Designers' Tour

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JRuckles

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« Reply #30 on: January 25, 2016, 02:12:57 AM »
I've received enough feedback on Nook Hill (4th course in this tour) that I feel I should warn anyone playing Nook Hill to please play the dry creek as a hazard by taking an unplayable lie (and rehit from your previous spot if the drop isn't good).  If I could've marked the entire dry creek as a water hazard I would've.  If you do attempt to hit out of the creek and not take an unplayable, there is no guarantee that you will eventually get out.  Hopefully players keep this in mind.    -Jared

ErixonStone

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« Reply #31 on: January 26, 2016, 01:04:35 PM »
Forum Designers’ Tour #2

New South Flower Golf & CC by Mrooola

My Score: 64 (-8)

New South Flower features wide, flat fairways and soft, receptive greens.  Putting can be tricky on some of the greens, but with flat fairways and soft greens, accurate players should be able to find lots of birdie opportunities.

The course is set in the Harvest theme which provides a very nice palette of colorful trees and bushes, and the designer uses them well in some spots.  Throughout most of the course, however, the natural terrain, trees, bushes and plants provide the only visuals.  The designer does not add much in the way of rocks or global plants, so the course has a very municipal feel to it.  The fairways are often very wavy and the edges don’t appear smooth when viewed at golfer-level.  This detracts from the feel of a public course where fairways are typically straight-edged.

The land is sculpted well and appears natural with the exception of a very few areas, and the various ponds and lakes appear like they existed prior to the course.  The designer didn’t add any planting or rock work to the banks of the ponds and lakes, giving them a natural feel.  Bunkers are sculpted well, but do not often add much to the course.  They’re there and they get in the way sometimes, but that’s just about it.

Overall, despite its lack of pizzazz, New South Flower is a nice beginner level course that makes for a fun casual round for intermediate players. 


Jack’s Bay Golf Club by Antiparosjez

My Score: 67 (-5)

Jack’s Bay is a fantasy-style course featuring relatively flat fairways, manageable greens, and lots of extreme elevation changes.  It isn’t uncommon to take 2 or 3 clubs longer or shorter than usual, and players need to take extra caution off the tee to find the right area, or to avoid the abundant hazards.

The Bay is set in the Highlands theme, and the designer makes more than adequate usage of the native trees, bushes, plants and grasses.  The designer doesn’t add much in the way of rocks or global planting, but the Highlands theme generally looks great on its own, and this is no exception.  There are a few buildings sprinkled about the course, but, typical to Highlands courses, the sculpting of the bare terrain provides most of the visuals.  Here is where the designer of this course excels as the cliffs and canyons feel natural.  Often, canyons are created with huge, steep slopes, but at Jack’s Bay, you’ll find that the canyons and cliffs are built from several slopes combined to form larger ones.  Bunkers are sculpted nicely, often providing another dramatic element.

The course layout is mostly straightforward, especially on the front nine.  On the back, things get more interesting off the tee and players will need to think about their shots as more hazards come into play.  With the myriad elevation changes and various approach yardages, no two approaches feel the same.

Overall, with the fair and manageable greens, extreme elevation changes, and a nice layout, Jack’s Bay should be a fun casual round for skilled and intermediate players.  Beginners may find the back nine a little bit difficult as misses are heavily penalized.


The Little John East & South by Scampi00

My Score: 64 (-8)

The Little John is a 27-hole complex featuring 3 nine-hole courses.  For this Tour, the East and South courses have been included.  The Little John features wide undulating fairways and large, firm greens.  Finding a flat lie from the fairway is rare so stopping close to the hole is difficult, but the greens are relatively flat allowing players to occasionally sink long putts.

The Countryside theme presents a nice palette of greens and yellows, and the designer uses the native grasses, plants, bushes and trees well.  On a few occasions, a few stray bushes sit between the tee box and the fairway, and they detract from what is otherwise a very clean, professional-grade course.  The elevation changes are gradual and extremely well done, giving the course a very realistic appearance.  Bunkers are excellently sculpted and framed by a nice band of rough, even when the fingers of the bunkers protrude into the fairways.  The attention to detail on the many bunkers on the course is something not often seen, and these certainly stand out as a cut above.

The layout of the course is also well done.  There are some risk/reward type holes – including a par-4 with an island green that is reachable from the tee in favorable conditions – and some straightforward holes.  There are some doglegs to cut, and other times where a layup off the tee is the right play.  The greens are mostly accessible, but it takes a very good approach to get close considering the many sidehill lies and subtle elevation changes.

Overall, thanks to the generous fairways and gentle breaks in the greens, The Little John is a good challenge for intermediate players, even with the firm green conditions.  For a casual round with friends, The Little John is a must-play for players of all skill levels.


Marazion Golf Club by pyates

My Score: 72 (+1)

Marazion is a fantasy style course with lots of hills and sharp elevation changes.  Fairways are generally wide, but finding a flat lie is rare.  Greens are fairly receptive, but heavily sloped making putting a difficult challenge.

The Tropical theme provides a bland array of trees and bushes – really just different shapes and sizes of two types of trees.  Since the course setting is meant to be in England, half of the trees (the palm trees) don’t make sense on the course, leaving the designer with little choice but to embrace an open concept.  The designer does bring in some native grasses, some rocks, and some global plants to add more colors to the palette, but not enough to break up the constant wall of green.

Excellent work has been done to some of the out-of-play areas.  The retaining wall along the coast on the first hole, with the cart path on top of it looks fantastic, as do the house and castle on the island behind the 18th green.  The clubhouse area also looks superb.

The land could use a bit of sculpting work as there are many rolling hills throughout the course that don’t look natural, but also don’t look fantasy.  They’re caught in between, and they detract from the course.  Either they need to be smoothed out or they need to be sharpened and turned into rough with grasses or rocks.  There were also a couple of examples of blind tee shots.  One example was a mound a few yards from the tee box, and the other was a steep downhill par-3 where the golfer could see nothing buy sky beyond the edge of the tee box.

The course layout was interesting with lots of elevation changes and some decisions off the tee.  Approaches varied in length and elevation, so no two holes felt the same.  With the tricky greens and the undulating fairways, the course plays difficult.  In the high winds I experienced, this course is a stern test for all players.


The Golf Course at Blanca Plains by ErixonStone

My Score: 65 (-7)

The fairways at Blanca Plains are of average width and players finding the fairway will find a flat lie most of the time.  Greens are firm which means some creative shot making is required to get close, but they are also mostly flat and players can occasionally sink putts from anywhere. 

The Delta Theme offers a high-contrast palette of white and dark green, but not much else.  The designer does enhance the look of the course using rocks and global plants, but in several instances, the planting is either too large in scale, obstructs the view from the tee, or both. 

The layout of the course is mostly straightforward, but there are a few instances where driver might not be the best club off the tee.  The golfer will have some options on those holes and must weigh the benefit of getting 30-40 yards closer or having a much better angle to the pin.  As the course name suggests, there aren’t a whole lot of elevation changes.

Sculpting of the course is a mixed bag.  Bunkers are well done, but lack drama in most instances.  The in-play elevations are fairly well done, but more attention is needed in the out-of-play areas to give the course a more natural look. 

Overall, the course plays well enough, and the small, flat greens keep wayward shots close to the hole.  That, combined with the slowness of the putting surface, means chipping is an easy task, making this more of an intermediate level course.
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

pyates

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« Reply #32 on: January 27, 2016, 07:45:25 AM »
Thanks for the thoughtful reviews. Can't argue with your review on my course. It isn't my favourite tbh but is something a little different :). Enjoyed reading the others too, from what I know/remember of those courses it seemed accurate :)
Full Courses:
Sandy Foot Links (TGCTLive Olympic Entry)
Royal Brumby
Tye Dunes II
Tye Dunes
Marazion Golf Club
University Links (TGCT 2015 Open Championship)

Mrooola

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« Reply #33 on: January 27, 2016, 07:57:19 PM »
Can't argue with you. The review is spot on for my course. All courses I've done so far is about something in the designer.

New South Flower was all about learning the basics. The Copse was about elevation and so on. Soon I'll create my masterpiece :)



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New South Flower Golf & CC
The Copse @ Malkie Coast
Aij Kee Ahh Hideaway 9 Hole
Demon Host GC
Carolina Low GC
Cul de Sac GC
Unfinished Sympathy GG
Little Bird Trails
Silent Ivy Hotel, Nattavaara, SE

ErixonStone

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« Reply #34 on: January 30, 2016, 09:20:56 PM »
Forum Designers’ Tour #3

Glen Abbey GC (White Tees) by BoomBoom

My Score: 59 (-14)

Glen Abbey GC is a beautiful RCR – real course rendition – of the famous Jack Nicklaus course located on Oakville, Ontario, Canada.  The course features narrow fairways closely lined by trees, but players can find a flat lie most of the time.  Most of the approaches are with short irons and the greens are soft with gentle slopes, so there are many birdie opportunities.  The Par-5s are all reachable in two, except in unfavorable conditions providing additional scoring opportunities.

The Rustic theme offers a nice selection of trees shapes, but doesn’t offer much variation in color.  The designer compensates for this with a very nice selection of grasses and global plants that add just enough color to highlight the course without detracting from the golf itself.  Sculpting throughout the course is top notch – creeks, ponds, and natural terrain all look excellent and bunkers are well sculpted even though the designer is bound by the presentation of the real course.

With the (easily) reachable Par-5s, the soft and gently sloped greens, and the frequency of approaches from inside 150 yards, the White Tees edition is fit for a casual round among friends.  For stiffer competition, a more difficult edition is recommended.  No matter which version suits your game the best, Glen Abbey is a must-play for everyone.


Mayan Ring of Sacrifice Thursday by gerardfraser

My Score: 64 (-8)

The Ring is a realistic-ish course that runs through some Mayan ruins and the design is more about the scenery than it is about the course.  The course itself features wide, flat fairways, and soft, gently-sloped greens.  The layout is straightforward and most approaches are short to accessible pin placements.  There isn’t a whole lot of variety to the holes.

The course is designed in the Delta theme which doesn’t have the broadest palette – a high-contrast deep green set of trees against stark white natural terrain.  The designer breaks this up a bit by swapping the textures – a brighter green for rough, and a light, brownish color for fairways and greens – and this really helps improve the look of the course.

In out of play areas is where the course design excels, featuring a Mayan pyramid temple, tall Stonehenge-like ruins, and lots of other little additions just off the fairways.  As you play your round, it’s easy to lose focus on the course itself in favor of taking in the out-of-the-ordinary scenery.

Sculpting of the course could use some work around the edges of fairways and greens.  Several fairways have steep run-offs and on one hole, I found the left-center of the generous fairway and my ball rolled into the rough on the right side.  Bunker work also needs improvement.  A few of the bunkers were nicely sculpted and presented.  Others were oddly sculpted where the sand didn’t appear to line up with the depression created for the bunker, and some others were not sculpted at all.

With the generous, flat fairways and soft, gentle greens, and accessible pins, Mayan Ring of Sacrifice Thursday is perfect for a fun casual round among friends of all abilities.


Mahogany Rustic National by set my path

My Score: 66 (-6)

Mahogany Rustic features quite a lot of bunkers that line the fairways emphasizing accuracy off the tee.  The fairways themselves are generous in spots and tight in others, offering a number of options off the tee.  Sometimes the safe play is the better play, and other times, earning a shorter approach is worth the risk.

The Rustic theme combines the good-looking natural terrain of the Highlands theme with a broad array of tree shapes.  The trees tend to be very large, and the designer has done an excellent job by moving them farther out from the fairways than what is normally seen, instead using bunkers to flank the fairways.  To further enhance the look, the designer has used everything available – from grasses to native plants and trees to global plants – to give the course a broad palette of colors.

Sculpting on the course is excellent as the terrain appears natural and smooth even though the ground is far from flat.  Of particular note is the quality of the many bunkers on the course.  Time has been taken to carefully craft each one adding drama and intimidation to the course.

Greens at Mahogany Rustic are firm, but not overly fast – checking in at 159 FT max putter distance – and have mostly gentle slopes.  The firmness makes it difficult to get close, but the medium speed and mostly gentle slopes allow players to occasionally sink long putts and prevent players from facing many long comeback putts.

The course plays to an intermediate difficulty and will provide a slight challenge to skilled players because of its tight landing areas and firm greens, but the gentle slopes and slower green speed offer some relief to the golfer. 


Nook Hill Saturday by JRuckles

My Score: 64 (-7)

Nook Hill is a parkland course that features several shared fairways and strategically placed trees and rough areas.  This gives the player lots of options off the tee and makes for an interesting round. 

The Harvest theme offers an excellent palette of colorful trees and bushes, and the designer does a nice job bringing them close to the playing area.  The default textures have a yellowish hue to them and offer an autumn feel which complements the course’s overall municipal-course-in-the-fall appearance.

The layout is mostly interesting with the parkland routing options with the exception of a few holes where players are forced to club down to prevent rolling through the fairway.  On the last few holes of the back nine, the designer got away from the parkland feel with lots of options in favor of the forced-club-down tactic.  This choice is exaggerated on Hole #17 where even a 6-Iron was too much club, leaving me a 150+ yard approach from the rough to a difficult (more on this later), elevated green.  Again, on 18, the player is forced to club down (I hit 3I off the tee) on a very long par-5.  For these holes, I would have liked to been given the option to cut off some of the dog-leg or to find a narrow landing area with a longer club.

Greens at Nook Hill are extremely soft and receptive, and extremely S-L-O-W at 112 FT maximum putter distance.  That means getting close is easy, even on mid-iron approaches.  The greens do get more difficult as you progress through the course.  The front nine features very gentle slopes and birdies are plentiful.  The back nine has a few tricky greens where landing in the right area is key. 

And then there is the 17th green which is in a class all by itself.  The postage-stamp green is surrounded by fairway, and while the area near the cup is flat, there are steep slopes behind, to the right, and in front of the pin.  Any shot that misses to these areas is sent rolling off the front of the green, leaving the player with an extremely difficult 14-yard pitch back up the slope.  Any error here and the ball rolls back to your feet.  If you get the ball to stop, you will undoubtedly face a tricky downhill putt that threatens to roll off the green.  With the forced short-iron off the tee to a narrow landing area and then this green complex, I hated this entire hole.  18 of these would cause players to rage-quit, but this hole was enough to tarnish what was otherwise an enjoyable round.

With the exception of 17, the course’s soft, slow greens and short approaches make this an excellent course for novices, and a fun course for the casual round for intermediate players.


Three Rivers GC by UrsusArctos

My Score: 63 (-9)

Three Rivers features wide fairways and soft greens that provide a number of scoring opportunities throughout the round.  The layout is straightforward with not a lot of options off the tee, but approaches do vary in length, and there are few shots where the green is level with the landing area. 

The Countryside theme provides a nice palette of greens, yellows and tans as part of its natural terrain and the trees and bushes contrast nicely.  The designer brings the natural terrain close to the playing areas, but doesn’t do much else to enhance the look.  There are some examples of rock work sprinkled throughout the course – including one large flat rock that protrudes onto the fringe of the 6th green.

Sculpting on the course needs some work, however, as the transitions from terrain to water do not feel natural.  There are lots of mounds along the banks of the water hazards that could benefit from some smoothing.  The terrain in these areas should probably be lowered closer to the water level as well.  Bunkers also need some work, as most of them look like they were just painted onto the terrain instead of cutting into the terrain. 

The course plays fairly throughout, and players need to consider the many elevation changes.  Landing areas from the tee are generous and the greens are soft, so the changes don’t really challenge the golfer as much as they could.

The 576 yard Par-5 18th hole features a tee shot that forces the player to club way down.  Driver isn’t enough to carry the water hazard in all but the strongest of tailwinds, but the river is so wide that the next best option is 6I or 7I off the tee.  On the second shot, players are faced with the exact same shot as the tee shot.  This time, 3W isn’t enough to clear the hazard (it’s actually not even close).  From where I was – about 20 yards short of the first hazard – a 3I got me as close to the second hazard as I could get.  From there, I had 194 yards to the pin on my 3rd shot.  This hole felt like the designer was forcing the player to do something out of the ordinary.  This hole would play better if it was a par-4 and my second shot was presented off the tee.

Overall, Three Rivers offers a fair challenge for beginners, and should make for a relaxing casual round with friends.  Skilled players will likely find the course too easy.
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

JRuckles

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« Reply #35 on: January 30, 2016, 10:03:16 PM »
I feel your pain on 17 at Nook Hill.  If I could do it again - I'd reconsider the entire hole.  I was in a weird mood when I designed that hole, and I wanted something super quirky and memorable, but the green was too much.  Great thorough reviews on all these courses.

ErixonStone

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« Reply #36 on: January 30, 2016, 11:11:24 PM »
Forum Designers' Tour #4 has been published, featuring the full courses included in the 3-Hole Showcase #4.

Forum Designers' Tour #4
The Emerald Course at Eggar Hill (Thursday) by ErixonStone
Demon Host GC (Friday) by Mrooola
Nusantara by coruler2
Rheindelta GC by UrsusArctos
Tye Dunes (Club Championship) by pyates
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

pyates

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« Reply #37 on: January 30, 2016, 11:33:41 PM »
Nice one. Cheers for doing these
Full Courses:
Sandy Foot Links (TGCTLive Olympic Entry)
Royal Brumby
Tye Dunes II
Tye Dunes
Marazion Golf Club
University Links (TGCT 2015 Open Championship)

ErixonStone

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« Reply #38 on: February 06, 2016, 07:02:19 PM »
Forum Designers' Tour #4 has been published, featuring the full courses included in the 3-Hole Showcase #4.

Forum Designers' Tour #4
The Emerald Course at Eggar Hill (Thursday) by ErixonStone
Demon Host GC (Friday) by Mrooola
Nusantara by coruler2
Rheindelta GC by UrsusArctos
Tye Dunes (Club Championship) by pyates

So far, this has been my favorite group of courses.  I think I'll get reviews published tonight.

HB_KeithC, if you see this, can you move this thread to all platforms --> tours?

Edit: fixed Keith's username
« Last Edit: February 07, 2016, 12:00:23 AM by ErixonStone »
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

ErixonStone

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« Reply #39 on: February 07, 2016, 11:05:20 AM »
Forum Designers’ Tour #4

The Emerald Course at Eggar Hill (Thursday) by ErixonStone

My Score: 70 (-2)

Eggar Hill features a number of risk/reward drives where an accurate drive to a narrow landing area rewards the player with a short approach or the ability to reach greens in under regulation.  There are a variety of holes throughout the round – short, dog leg, straight, uphill, downhill which keeps the round interesting.  The course is designed to challenge the putter as the greens have lots of undulations, so getting close to the hole is extremely important.

Set in the Harvest theme, the Emerald Course has a nice, clean, manicured appearance.  The green, fairway and rough textures have been swapped for deeper tones that really work well with the reds, oranges and yellows of the Harvest theme trees.  There isn’t an overabundance of planting, especially near the greens which gives the course a simple appearance.  The sculpting of the terrain is usually very well done, except in a few noticeable areas.  Bunkers are very nicely sculpted and presented, often cut into raised mounds creating a dramatic look.

Eggar Hill’s layout has a few significant elevation changes – especially on holes 7 and 8.  The 376-yard 7th climbs over 70 feet from tee to green, and the 500-yard 8th descends back down to sea level.  To go along with the elevation changes, finding a flat lie is a rare occurrence as fairways tend to slope sideways.  Approaches to the greens vary in length and players will use every club in the bag throughout the round.

Greens are soft and slow, but have steep slopes near pin locations.  There’s nothing unfair here but if you miss the target by more than a few feet, you can expect to be sent way from the cup.  It also means that players will face many uphill putts on slow greens.  This makes putting a challenge and emphasizes the approach shots.  Finding the fairway and controlling the distance and direction of the approach is paramount as very few putts from outside ten feet will drop.

Overall, the tight landing areas, sloped fairways and challenging greens will test intermediate and skilled players, although the soft and slow greens provide some relief.  A wide range of scores is possible here, and wind has a big impact.


Demon Host GC (Friday) by Mrooola

My Score: 63 (-9)

Demon Host features wide fairways, but the landing areas are shrunk considerably by the presence of pot bunkers throughout the course.  The greens are firm and tricky – especially on the front nine – and flat lies in the fairway are rare, making birdies hard to come by.  As the round shifts over the back nine, the greens loosen up a little bit and making an occasional long putt is possible.

The desert them provides an all off-white palette, but the designer has imported lush grass textures for rough, fairways and greens, giving the course a nice, polished look.   A subtle amount of planting has been done using both the native plants and bushes and a smattering of global ones to add much needed color to the course, and there is some nice rock work as well.  Sculpting throughout the course is nicely done as most of the elevation changes feel natural.  Bunkers are nicely sculpted as well, but some near greens seem much too large – almost matching the size of the green.

The course layout is mostly straightforward, but because of the bunkers splitting many fairways, options off the tee are plentiful.  Approaches to the greens are of various lengths and cover several elevation changes.  This keeps the course fresh as no two holes play the same way.  The greens on the front nine were much more difficult than the ones on the back nine, which does make the course feel a little disjointed, but the entire track is a fun round.

Overall, the front nine will challenge players of any level because of the tricky greens, while the back eases up and is more suited for intermediate players.


Nusantara by coruler2

My Score: 69 (-3)

Nusantara features tight, narrow fairways that often requires players to play severe draws and fades in order to earn shorter approaches.  Greens are fairly receptive, but have lots of slope making putting a real challenge.  Managing the course is key to being in position for birdie.

The tropical theme offers really two types of trees, and many of the plants available are just smaller versions of the trees.  The designer brings in some global plants to sprinkle additional color throughout the course, and does a nice job adding some natural looking rocks.  Everything is done in small doses, and it adds to the course’s appearance without detracting from the in-the-jungle feel.  Elevation changes and sculpting are nicely done throughout the course and everything looks natural.  A little more could have been done to make the bunkers stand out, but they are still well-crafted.

Many of the holes require creative shot making to reach advantageous areas of the fairway.  If players cannot execute the shots, one must lay up and accept significantly longer approaches.  Approaches vary in length and feature a number of different elevation changes.  The greens are receptive enough, but players must be careful about where the approach winds up.  Putting from certain areas on the greens is an almost impossible task.  As always, coming to rest below the hole is advantageous, but doing so can be very difficult.

Overall, the undulating greens, narrow fairways and difficult hole routings make this a fair challenge for intermediate and skilled players.


Rheindelta GC by UrsosArctos

My Score: 63 (-9)

Rheindelta features a mixture of landing area sizes, but usually many options off the tee.  The wind generally dictates how a hole can be played, but there are some holes where there are still multiple options in any wind.  Greens are receptive and manageable from moderate distances. 

The Highlands theme offers a limited set of trees, bur a very nice set of bushes and natural plants to go with the excellent looking natural terrain.  The designer makes excellent use of all of them throughout the course, and adds some subtle, but still excellent rock work as well.  Sculpting throughout the course is also excellent.  There are many elevation changes, but they all appear natural, even the big drops and climbs.  There are several unplayable ditches and each one is expertly carved into the landscape.  Bunkers are expertly shaped as well, and add drama to the course.  They’re more than just there; they’re a focal point of the green complexes.

The course layout features many holes with multiple options off the tee which will set the player up with many different approaches, depending on how the golfer attacks the hole.  The holes tend to get longer as the round progresses, so you’ll find yourself with shorter approaches on the front than on the back.  Fairways don’t offer many flat lies, so misses are usually left-right rather than by distance.  Greens are receptive and manageable from moderate distance, so there are plenty of birdie opportunities.   

Overall, with the soft, manageable greens, the course plays to an intermediate difficulty.  Faster and firmer settings would catapult the course into expert difficulty, as the greens are tricky from outside 20 feet.  As is, though, this is a fair challenge for intermediate players and great for a fun, casual round among skilled players.


Tye Dunes (Club Championship) by pyates

My Score: 63 (-9)

The Club Championship version of Tye Dunes features a mixture of fairways – some extremely wide, and others narrow.  Some of the holes offer options from the tee, while others are straightforward.  The greens are somewhat receptive, but they are tricky. 

Tye Dunes is set in the Highlands theme, but the designer has swapped out the typical rough textures in favor of a brownish color, giving the course a unique appearance.  It still feels like a Highlands course when it comes to the shape of the terrain, but the textures give it an overseeded, winter-in-the-South look, and the out-of-play scenery suggests desert.  The result is a links-style desert feel with lush fairways, green bushes and plants, and some amazing cliff-side views.

One cannot play the course without noticing the spectacular sand dunes that give the course its name.  These are excellently done and add to the uniqueness of this course.  Sculpting in other areas is also excellent, as the terrain is rarely flat anywhere, and the mounds throughout the course – both in, and out of play – look natural.  Bunkers are also well sculpted and add to the desert feel of the course.

The layout of the course is mostly straightforward, but some holes do offer options off the tee.  Much of the time, the player has the option to hit a narrower landing zone further down the fairway.  This could be increasingly difficult in certain winds.  Finding a flat lie in the fairway is a rare occurrence, adding to the difficulty of approaches, which, in the Club Championship version are often with short irons.  There are many elevation changes, but they feel natural, offering just the right amount of challenge.  The greens are neither firm nor receptive, but rather in the middle, and are also middle-of-the-road when it comes to putting speed.  The greens slopes are tricky adding some challenge to the putting, but with pins in accessible areas and short approaches, there are plenty of scoring opportunities.

Overall, Tye Dunes (Club Championship) is a must play for intermediate players, and would be a great course for a fun, casual round with skilled friends.  For competition among skilled players, there are several Tour Edition versions featuring firm and fast greens and more difficult pins that offer up a stern challenge.
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

pyates

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« Reply #40 on: February 07, 2016, 06:30:40 PM »
Cheers for the review, enjoyed the read.  You had a pretty good score there too :)
Full Courses:
Sandy Foot Links (TGCTLive Olympic Entry)
Royal Brumby
Tye Dunes II
Tye Dunes
Marazion Golf Club
University Links (TGCT 2015 Open Championship)

ErixonStone

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« Reply #41 on: February 07, 2016, 09:22:20 PM »
epietila fired an 11-under on the club championship setup of Tye Dunes.  That version has a lot of accessible pins and shorter approaches, so most good players can get close on most holes.  I chose the club championship version so I could pay more attention to the course details.  I've played Tye Dunes before but was focused solely on the golf.

I finished the 5 courses at -32.  Not bad, considering my scores at Eggar Hill (-2) and Nusantara (-3).

This was my favorite of the tours.  I really enjoyed all the courses and they were all different - appearance, layout, and putting difficulty. 
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

ErixonStone

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« Reply #42 on: February 08, 2016, 01:58:58 PM »
Forum Designers' Tour #5 has been published, featuring the full courses included in the 3-Hole Showcase #5.

Forum Designers' Tour #5
Cooper's Canyon by DoGgzbollox
Remembrance Sunday GC (R2) by chrashbird
Pittsburgh Field Club (Tour) by pitt1976
Yang Lain GC by UrsusArctos
Red Rock National by nickweis
« Last Edit: February 08, 2016, 02:00:55 PM by ErixonStone »
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

ErixonStone

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« Reply #43 on: February 26, 2016, 02:12:35 AM »
Forum Designers' Tour #6 has been published, featuring the full courses included in the 3-Hole Showcase #6.

Forum Designers' Tour #6
Jayflower Golf Course by JRuckles
Scarpacci Hills Restoration by Scarpacci
Grey Raven G.C. by scampi00
Kahana GC Tour (Sun) by chrashbird
Viking Weald Golf Resort by Antiparosjez
La Siesta Lakes, Maroc by Hootbleet
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

ErixonStone

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« Reply #44 on: March 06, 2016, 12:34:34 AM »
Forum Designers’ Tour #5

Cooper’s Canyon by DoGgzBollox

My Score: 65 (-6)

Cooper’s Canyon features narrow, firm fairways and receptive manageable greens.  The fairways twist and turn through several canyons, and there are plenty of ways to get yourself into trouble.  The layout doesn’t offer a lot of options, but you better be careful off the tee as hazards surround the landing areas and many drives risk running through the fairway and into trouble.

The Desert theme provides a bland off-white canvas.  In certain areas, the designer does an excellent job of bringing in other colors.  The best example is the par-3 signature 7th hole featuring a dry creek full of planting, excellent sculpting and a beautiful pond behind the green.  However, other areas feel neglected as the fairways are bordered by barren, uninteresting rock.

The sculpting of the in-play areas is spectacular as well.  Cart paths are smooth and bunkers are both natural looking and dramatic.  Fairways offer few flat lies and have generally smooth undulations.  This gives the course a very neat appearance.  I didn’t care for the out-of-play sculpting and the narrow rock formations that line the fairways.  On wide angle views, the flat land outside the design plot looks very strange with the dramatic rock formations.

The greens were mostly flat and uninteresting.  There were a few cases where the green was tiered, but good putters (which I am not) will sink more than the occasional long putt.  The narrow and firm fairways make up for this and add some challenge to the tee. 

All things considered, this course sits in the moderate difficulty range.  Novice players will struggle with the narrow fairways while skilled players will take advantage of the receptive, flat greens.


Remembrance Sunday GC (R2) by chrashbird

My Score: 69 (-3)

Remembrance Sunday features extremely narrow fairways and long approaches to receptive, but undulating greens.  Hazards pinching the already-narrow fairways are abundant.  There are many dog-legs and cross fairways that require precision and strong decision making off the tee.  Fairways are dotted with small mounds that make finding a flat lie difficult.

The Highlands theme offers a nice looking natural terrain and an excellent array of colorful bushes.  In some areas, the designer has brought in additional colors by using global plants.  Sculpting of the natural terrain is very well done, but most of the bunkers are nearly flat.  They aren’t completely painted-onto-the-terrain flat, but more attention to the bunkers is needed to make them stand out.  The first few holes are mostly flat, and the rest of the front nine features some mounds, but mostly gradual elevation changes.  The designer was more adventurous on the back nine in terms of out-of-play sculpting, building mounds, cliffs, and rocky features.  All the holes were done nicely, but some felt as if they were part of another, related course.  One cannot discuss the course visuals without mentioning the Remembrance cross located behind the 11th green. 

Greens were generally nicely sized and interesting, with lots of undulations and breaks on just about every putt.  One area of concern is the number of pins placed in a depression in the green, and the number of greens where the front slopes sharply away from the player.  Several of the long approaches offer no good way to get close as balls landing well short of the pin hit a slope that kicks the ball to the back of the green.

Overall, Remembrance Sunday (R2) is a nice course.  The narrow, undulating fairways and the undulating greens make for a challenging round for skilled players.  Novice and even intermediate players will likely be frustrated, as missing the fairway is severely punished on most holes.


Pittsburgh Field Club (Tour) by pitt1976

My Score: 72 (E)

Pittsburgh Field Club is a real course recreation featuring narrower than average fairways, tightly line with trees.  The greens are fairly receptive, but fast, and are usually sectioned into tiers.  Fairways are gently sloped, so finding a flat lie is rare.  Pins are often tucked to the side of the green making fairway placement key to shooting well.

As with all RCRs, without being familiar with the real venue, it’s impossible to knock the designer for any design decisions.  PFC is build using the Rustic theme which provides a really nice looking natural terrain and set of trees, even if the trees are a little bit on the large side.  The designer uses very deep, lush, green grass for the rough and a brighter shade of green for the fairways which certainly gives the course a Northeastern appearance.

Sculpting work is well-done.  Bunkers look nice and present some drama to the course, and the natural terrain appears very realistic.  There isn’t a whole lot done visually, except present a very nice course.  Because of their close proximity, nearby fairways and greens provide most of the visual elements.  Still, this does look quite nice.

The layout is straightforward, and it behooves players to play as far down the fairway as possible.  Landing zones are fair, but placing your drive on the correct side of the fairway isn’t quite as easy.  Approaches to the greens vary in length, and the greens are well guarded by bunkers and sloping making each approach feel different from the others. 

Overall, Pittsburgh Field Club plays to an intermediate level.  Skilled players will likely find it a bit easy, but would make for a nice casual round.  Novice players may struggle with the length of some holes and the sidehill lies found on almost all the fairways.


Yang Lain GC by UrsusArctos

My Score: 69 (-3)

Yang Lain GC is a fantasy course set in the Tropical theme, using the snow-covered rough texture from the Winter theme.  The course features a number of risk/reward holes and some crazy greens.

The texture selection was certainly interesting, but the combination of bright green fairways and greens, and the tan mulch and brown pine straw misses the mark.  There aren’t any other visual elements brought in by the designer to add additional colors.  Although there are no glaring errors here, sculpting isn’t especially well done in the out-of-play areas.  Most of the mounding is too sharp to be realistic, but not sharp enough for a fantasy feel. 

The greens are soft and receptive, and putting speed is medium.  Slopes near the hole are mixed – some gentle, some trickier – so a well-played approach will be rewarded.

Overall, the course has some fun holes, so it should make for a nice casual round for intermediate and skilled players.  Novices might be frustrated by some of the holes.


Red Rock National by nickweis

My Score: 69 (-3)

Red Rock National plays firm and fast from tee to green.  While the layout is straightforward, finding the best angle to the pin by placing the drive in the right area of the fairway is important.  Drives that find the wrong side of the fairway will have a difficult time getting anywhere close to the pin.  Greens are firm and fast, but mildly sloped.  You’ll sink a few of the many long range putts you’ll have.

The Desert theme doesn’t offer a lot in terms of color palette – serving up a bland array of off-whites, tans and browns.  Swapping in the lush green rough, fairways and greens provides the much needed contrast.   Here is where Red Rock National excels, as the textures and lighting bring out the best of the Desert theme.  The designer adds some rocks, but they blend into the natural terrain.  There are few examples of nice planting around the course, so most of the visuals are provided by out-of-play sculpting.  The sculpting is excellent throughout the course, including the out-of-play areas.  Bunkers are expertly crafted as well, posing an intimidating threat.

Greens, while firm and fast, are somewhat forgiving.  The gentle slopes on most greens will allow players to sink a few long range putts – and there will be many.  Often, playing to a flat area of the green near the hole is a better idea than playing directly to the hole.  In some cases, there are slopes that will guide an approach towards the hole.  In others, you’ll have to accept a mid-range uphill birdie chance.

Overall, the firm and fast conditions suit skilled players and will provide a difficult, but fair, challenge to intermediate players. 
TGC2 Courses:
Transylvania Municipal Golf Park
Glacier Meadow Par 3 Nine
Acacia National
Bearded Pelican Golf Links

TGC1 Courses:
The Golf Club at Hylan Park
Crescentic Bay Golf Course
La Playa Vacia Golf Retreat
El Toro Golf Club

 

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