Ever played solitaire? Ever played golf? Each game seems to have its own legions of devotees who can think of spare little else when they’ve got a hankering to scratch the nagging itch that accompanies their gaming addiction. If you count yourself in either camp (or both camps), then Fairway Solitaire might just be the game that serves as your undoing.
Consider this your fair warning.
Fairway Solitaire by Big Fish Games is, as you may have guessed from the introduction/warning (if not the name itself), primarily a game of solitaire that has a golfing twist to it.
For the uninitiated, traditional solitaire is a solo card game in which you match cards one higher or one lower in order from Ace to King (Ace-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-Jack-Queen-King). Golf is a violent game that was invented by the Scottish for those times when they wanted to club something mercilessly and repeatedly, but there were no other Scotsmen around.
Fairway Solitaire blends the two traditions and meets them somewhere in the middle. There are six courses to a level and each course has between three to six holes; each hole is different, providing varying degrees of challenge to the player. To up the thrill factor, the game also includes typical golfing hazards like rough grass, water, and sand traps. A meddlesome gopher and three witty commentators (one of whom is Scottish!) critique and wisecrack throughout the game. Admittedly, this commentary can be a little distracting, but it is also exceptionally funny.
Make no mistake: Fairway Solitaire is addicting — but in a thoroughly enjoyable way. I’m not selling off any heirlooms to sustain my lifestyle while succumbing to the urge to fill the occasional spare minute — or hour — with just one more round of Fairway Solitaire. I’m not robbing any convenience stores or depriving friends and family of attention while I’m off impressing virtual gophers and commentators. I’ll say this much, though: In the past 36 or so hours since I’ve gotten my hands on Fairway Solitaire, I’ve spent well over 10 hours playing it. It’s more of a devil on my shoulder than a monkey on my back, but its addition to my gaming arsenal has pushed all else to the side for the foreseeable future. I both curse and commend the assignment to write this review for bringing Fairway Solitaire to my attention in the first place.
At the time of this writing, Fairway Solitaire is only available for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. It’s usually 69p in the UK and 99 cents in the US, but starting today (Friday, October 26th), you can go to the Fairway Solitaire giveaway site to get it for free! You have no commitment or requirement to get the code, and this promotion is open to the general public. Whether you pay nothing or you dig deep into your pocket for the spare change to cover its usual price, Fairway Solitaire will give you more fun than its weight in cost — that’s a personal guarantee.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to go match cards and club things!