What was going through Tiger Woods’ mind when he stood over that now-famous 2008 putt on the 18th green at Torrey Pines? Well, now you have a chance to experience the feeling for yourself. . . sort of.
As part of its upcoming “Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13” (due out March 27), EA Sports has included a new Legacy Mode, which allows gamers to re-create some of Tiger’s most famous and memorable on-course moments from throughout the years. You remember most of them – the 1997 Masters, the 2000 U.S. Open, the “Better than most” Players Championship.
But it doesn’t stop with his professional achievements.
In Legacy Mode, players will begin as a toddler Tiger, hitting balls and completing challenges in Tiger’s childhood backyard, which is recreated to perfection.
“It was neat to see that because it brings me back to my childhood,” Woods said exclusively to Golfweek last week at an EA Sports commercial shoot. “That’s where I learned how to play. I loved hitting balls up over the roof into these three different planters and my dog would go sit right next to them, so I never lost golf balls.”
Players grow up as Tiger learns to play golf with his father, begins winning USGA titles and eventually becomes the player he is today. There are even some “future acheivements” that Woods hopes will someday be a part of his legacy, for instance tying and eventually beating Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 major championships.
Other highlights of our exclusive interview with Tiger about his younger days that comprise the new Legacy Mode:
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“The Mike Douglas Show”
At age 2, Tiger famously appeared on the “Mike Douglas Show” to hit balls with his father, Earl.
“Honestly, all I remember about that show is the food,” Tiger said. “I remember I had never seen that much food in one room.”
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One of Earl Woods’ training techniques was the concept of Tiger Par, which instilled the confidence in Tiger that he could shoot under par at all ages.
“I couldn’t get to the green in two. Sometimes it would take me five shots to get to the green, so my par was seven – five shots and two putts,” Woods said. “I started gaining confidence because on my good days I could shoot 5, 6, 7 under par. As I got older, I was comfortable shooting under par. Some guys have a governor when they start to get a certain amount under par and they start pulling back. But I didn’t. I felt very comfortable going low.”
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1979 Drive, Putt and Pitch Competition
Tiger said he doesn’t remember his first win, but he does recall winning his first trophy, which came at age 3 at a local Drive, Putt and Pitch Competition.
“I finished second and got a trophy that was seriously as big as me,” he said. “I thought that was the coolest thing in the world.”
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Tiger Legacy Mode video from EA Sports