At a glance, True Swing Golf appears to offer an average gaming experience. With graphics that you would expect from a mobile phone game rather than a DS game, a general lack of charm in the presentation, and an extremely limited set of game options and modes, the player's initial impression may be one of disappointment.
You can't do much to customize your golfer, the equipment system is best summed up as "buy the most expensive gear you can", there are no licensed courses, four basic game modes (stroke, match, practice, championship), and you can't even save videos of your best holes.
Despite all of these shortcomings, the game is insanely fun. Mostly, it comes down to the controls, the courses, and the physics. The basic mechanics of making a shot are incredible. Line up your shot, get ready to swing, set your spin, decide whether you want to click L for a powered up shot, then guide the club head back and quickly up through the ball. Incredible, intuitive, and when you crush it just right, amazingly satisfying.
In spite of some very devious greens, the courses are wonderful. Unlike many golf video games, you really do need to think through your strategy, aiming for just the right spot and roll on the fairway to push the ball that extra 20 yards. And attempting mastery of some of the tougher holes gives this game a huge amount of replay value.
If this game had any kind of license attached to it, it'd be perfect. If you married the swing system and the other basics of this game to the Mario Golf franchise, it would likely be not just the best handheld golf game but the best golf video game ever made. Since Nintendo is the publisher of this game, it's a mystery they didn't wait and do just that.
So if spartan presentation with excellent mechanics is good enough for you, get this game without hesitation. Otherwise, wait and see if Mario Golf DS ever appears.