Two years ago, when Game Golf first emerged on the scene, I was really intrigued by what they offered. Clip a transmitter on your belt and tap the end of the club to it before every shot. Do this and when you get home, pull out your computer and you can pull up every shot you took during the round; how far each shot went and where it ended up. Seemed like a great idea; the only problem I had was working the belt-tapping into my pre-shot routine. I think I shot a 13 my first time out with the Game Golf unit.
The other drawback in this “we want it, and we want it now” world we live in was the waiting part – waiting until you got home to see how you did. Usually, by the time I get home, several other things that needed doing had crept into my brain on the trip back. Consequently, rounds would stack up and were just downloaded to create space that more often than not wouldn’t be used correctly.
Game Golf has recently upped their game and come up with Game Golf Live, which offers real-time analysis. As you’re playing, Game Golf Live shows distances to the pin and can be used as a rangefinder. The unit syncs via Bluetooth with your iOS or Android device so that you can view stats right from your phone or tablet while on the course. The mapping system has been significantly upgraded and now features Google Maps, Apple Maps and Bing Maps. This allows the unit to also be used as an effective rangefinder.
Game Golf Live comes with 18 unique tags that fit into the butt end of each club. That’s more than enough to tag every club in your bag. As with the original version just tap the tag to the receiver and hit your shot. After each shot, you’ll see a map of your shot on your smartphone and the remaining distance to the pin. You’ll also see comprehensive stats from your round, such as the average distance with each club, fairway accuracy, shot dispersion for each club and putting data.
While you’re on the course, the unit allows for real-time editing and shot tracking. It also serves as a navigation tool and helps to identify targets and guide you around the course.
Once you get home, you can download all of the information and get a menu and summary of rounds played and see your stats and review the round. Stats are available immediately on the cloud and, with the dashboard, you can share them or look for trends.
With Game Golf Live, you can share that drive you just hammered down the middle with friends, or show them your progress. You can also see how you stack up against other players with the same handicap or even PGA Tour players that use Game Golf Live such as Lee Westwood and Graeme McDowell. But for me, the best use of Game Golf Live is an improvement tool. I can set my goals and then use the Benchmarking and SMART Tips features to help achieve them. The updated version of Game Golf allows me to go in and add in strokes played and not recorded while on the course, rather than waiting until I can get home, or at least to a computer. This certainly enhances the accuracy.
One of the new features this year is Strokes Gained, which was incorporated into the PGA Tour’s stats last year. Strokes Gained is based on the average number of shots taken to get down from a certain distance and Game Golf uses this information to help pinpoint opportunities to improve your game.
The changes and upgrades with Game Golf Live have certainly made it a more valuable training and gaming tool. Being able to see shots in real-time is certainly a valuable asset and gamers will love the fact that they can amaze friends with real-time stats and those long drives. Of course no body shares the ones that veer off course or into the water.
The Game Golf system is fully USGA and R&A compatible for tournament and handicap play as long as you do not use the “Live” app during the round. For more information on this or any Game Golf product, visit the website at www.GameGolf.com.