Links is the name of a series of golf simulation computer games, first developed by Access Software, and then later by Microsoft Game Studios after Microsoft acquired Access Software. The line of golf games was a flagship brand for Access, and was continued from 1990 to 2003. Several versions of the game and expansion packs (containing new courses and golfers mainly) were created for the Mac and PC over the years. A version for the Xbox named Links 2004 was released in November 2003. In 1991, Links won Computer Gaming World's 1991 Action Game of the Year award.
Many members of the development team now work for TruGolf, a golf simulator company based out of Centerville, Utah.
Note: Microsoft Golf 1.0-3.0 are just Access' Links 386 redesigned to run natively under Microsoft Windows. Golf 1998 Edition and 1999 Editions were produced by Friendly Software. After Access Software was acquired by Microsoft in 1999, Microsoft produced Golf 2001, which was based on Links, and then discontinued the Golf series to continue with the Links series.
Computer Gaming World in 1996 ranked the 1990 version of Links fifth on the magazine's list of the most innovative computer games, stating that the game "may have inspired more 'business machine upgrades' than any other game". In 1996 Next Generation ranked it 69th on their "Top 100 Games of All Time", contending that "many prefer EA's PGA series, but Links takes the title by a hair's breadth. With real life courses, and enough stats, sliders, and options to choke a horse, Links re-creates everything but the swing (which is still accomplished with a 'three click' power bar)."
During 1999, Links 2001 sold 104,225 copies and earned $4.6 million in the United States, after its release in October 2000. Its totals in the country rose to 240,000 copies and $8.2 million by August 2006, which made it the 84th-best-selling computer game released between January 2000 and August 2006 in the region. Combined sales of all Links games released in the 2000s reached 720,000 copies in the United States by August 2006.
In the United States, Links Championship Edition sold over 100,000 copies by August 2006.
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