There isn’t going to be a lot of golf on television in the near future. In fact, there isn’t going to be a lot of sport of any kind on television in the near future. We’re facing a challenging situation, and we all have to go through it together. If a summer without sport is what we have to endure to make sure we all survive this in one piece, it’s a small price to pay in the long term. 

golf video games

In the short term, though, what are you supposed to do now there's no golf to watch on TV? You probably can't go to bars or restaurants, and with the production of television shows and movies also in the process of being suspended, there isn't much you can do on that front either. That means it's time to either familiarize yourself or re-familiarize yourself with video games. Fortunately for us and for you, there are some fantastic golf games out there to enjoy – it's all just a case of knowing which one to play. 

Rather than pointing you toward one singular golf video game, we’ll give you a few to choose from – and we’ll try to account for all tastes in the process. Here’s our take on the five best golf video games of all time. 

Rush Live Golf

We know that for some of you, part of the thrill of watching golf is placing a bet on the outcome. You can’t do that at the moment, but you can do the next best thing. If you take a look around a few online slots websites, you should find a online slots called Rush Live Golf by Inspired Gaming. Even if online slots aren’t your thing, bear with us on this. This doesn’t work in the same way as all those games that rely on you spinning reels and waiting to see what happens. Rush Live Golf might exist on online slots websites, but it isn’t an online slots game. 

The best way to describe Rush Live Golf is to call it a game of virtual golf where you don't control the players. Instead, you watch them play the same way you would if they were on television and bet on which of the virtual players is going to win. The thrill isn't exactly the same, and all of the contestants are computer-generated, but it will still tick that ‘sports betting' box if that's what you miss about the sport the most during its time away. 

Dangerous Golf

What would happen if you took the game of golf indoors? Actually, that’s not too hard to work out. Valuable indoor objects would get broken, and you’d be asked to leave very quickly. You’d probably also find yourself left with a large repair bill to pay, and the police might even get involved. Thanks to the game Dangerous Golf by Team17, you don’t have to run that risk. You can simulate the experience in a virtual world instead. 

This game, which was released in 2016 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC, isn't really a golf simulator. You're still playing golf, but you're doing it inside palaces, china shops, bathrooms, and other unlikely places. You also get additional points for smashing as many items in the room on the way to the hole as possible. It's not the most authentic golf game you'll ever play, but it's one of the most fun. 

Rory McIlroy’s PGA Tour

A year before Team17 gave the world Dangerous Golf, sports game specialists EA Sports gave us Rory McIlroy PGA Tour. It was the first entry in the ‘PGA Tour’ series in years not to feature Tiger Woods in the title or on the cover, and it was also the last one (to date) that’s ever been made. We’re not sure why – McIlroy is a world-famous golfer, and the game was very good. 

Built around the Frostbite engine that was used to create Battlefield, this game still looks fantastic even though it's five years old – and it plays smoothly, too. There's a slight drawback in that you only get eight (real world) course on the disc, but you also get some ‘fun' fantasy courses including one set at the Grand Canyon if you can cope with taking a step back from the more serious side of the game for a moment. Your only difficulty with playing this game might be finding it – EA no longer offers it for download, so you'll have to find a physical copy from somewhere. 

Everybody’s Golf VR

Just playing virtual golf on a TV or monitor screen won't be enough for some people. Golf just isn't the same without the feeling of standing out in a field or walking between holes. If that's important to you, you'll want to take a step up from just playing golf with a controller in your hands. You'll want something a little more like Everybody's Golf VR, which was released for the PlayStation 4 in 2019. 

The Everybody's Golf series was originally known as Hot Shots Golf and has been around in one form or another since the days of the very first PlayStation console in the mid-1990s. This is more of the same thing but converted into gloriously-realized virtual reality. You'll need a bit more specialist equipment – including a headset – if you want to play it, but if you're missing playing golf on a real course, this might just be the next best thing. 

The Golf Club 2019

This is the one. This is the best golf game of all time, and that’s not just our opinion. It wasn’t quite the finished article when it was first released in 2018, but subsequent patches have taken it above and beyond the rest of the field when it comes to looks, authenticity, and range of options. There have been previous incarnations of The Golf Club, but the addition of an official PGA license has allowed this one to stand on a pedestal high above its predecessors. If you want something with the look and feel of playing golf for real, this is the one. 

As well as being a great game, The Golf Club also has an incredible course creator package. That means that when you've played everything else, you can build a new course from scratch to any design you like and play with it to your heart's content. In theory, that means you should never get bored. Hopefully, golf will be back on television in a few months' time. In the meantime, this should be enough to keep you occupied.