Find Your Zen With Desert Golfing

Desert Golfing

If you’re looking for something to do while sitting around with family as you all process the remainder of the Thanksgiving meal still working its way through your digestive tract, I’ve got something for you that will take very little effort but still provides hours of entertainment.

It’s Desert Golfing, a simple game for iOS and Android (it’s also available on Amazon’s app store). I first heard about it via the Isometric podcast’s Steve Lubitz, who’s been going on for months about the merits of the minimalist golf simulator.

All you do is hit a tiny golf ball from a starting point on the left side of the screen to a hole somewhere between the middle and the far right by aiming your stroke with a swipe similar to that used to launch fowl in Angry Birds. Between you and your goal are dunes and drops in the sand, and if you overshoot, the ball goes back to the starting position.

There’s a running tally of your strokes, but because there’s a seemingly endless number of holes, there’s no need to focus on getting that number down besides you pressuring yourself to do so. That’s the compulsion you’ll have for the first few dozen holes you play, but once you get into the higher numbers you realize that it’s better to just get into the flow of it and find creative solutions (like bouncing off of angled sand banks).

The game is $2 on all platforms, and you never have to look at an ad as you play (or pay for additional levels, and there are hundreds built-in). It’s a fun game to play with a friend if you’re stuck at home, on a plane, or on a long road trip, as each turn only takes about 30 seconds and there’s no downside to playing with someone of a lower skill level.