Kirkbrae’s Mike Hamilton Set for World Cup of Design for PGA Tour 2K21

Rhode Island Stroke Play Champion, and Kirkbrae Club Champion Mike Hamilton has found his winter hobby – designing golf courses on the video game PGA Tour 2K21. 

Mike Hamilton at the RI Amateur PHOTO: Joe Calabro

In fact, he is set enter into The World Cup of Design for the game, and its sister game The Golf Club, starting this weekend.

“So, my undergrad degree was in landscape architecture. I interned with architects in college at URI before doing some freelance work. Obviously, it’s a tough industry to get into. Since that game got so popular, there are so many people that design their own courses, that’s where this tournament came from,” Hamilton told GolfNewsRI on Friday.

The World Cup features the top 32 course designers in the world split up into three pools, A, B and C.  

“I was lucky enough to qualify. It’s literally set up like the World Cup of Soccer, your course is judged against other peoples designs. I create one course and it goes up against someone else’s course and go from there,” said Hamilton.

Hamilton is in Pool C, which some are calling “The Group of Death.” 

Mike Hamilton is in Pool C.

Designers have to build an 18-hole course from scratch, and it can not be a real course. They have from now until March 31 to finish the course.

The designers then post pictures of the progress and a story on the course, before it gets judged over the spring.

The World Cup begins on Saturday, January 2 with the draw show. 

Hamilton figures that the World Champion won’t be determined until about May.

The Process 

Hamilton currently has five Rhode Island courses on PGA Tour 2K21, including Wannamoisett, Kirkbrae, Lincoln, Rhode Island Country Club, and Newport Country Club. 

Lincoln Country Club PHOTO: Mike Hamilton/Twitter

All of the courses look exactly like they do in real life, not a piece of grass or a body of water out of place. 

“The real courses like Kirkbrae, Newport etc.. they are actually not too bad. You use Google Maps and a program Lidar, which provides satellite imagery. We basically trace the satellite and then there is a terrain program that we use to get the landscape. After that, it’s really all just detail, so it’s not that bad actually. It takes a few hours,” said Hamilton.

He adds, “As far as the detail, it depends on the course. Like, Newport was easier than Kirkbrae because there are not as many trees.”

Kirkbrae Country Club PHOTO: Mike Hamilton/Twitter

Next Courses 

As for which course you will be able to find next?

‘The goal is to get as many local courses on there as I can. Metacomet will probably be up by the end of this weekend. I”m really looking forward to releasing Metacomet.”

Hamilton says that Alpine, Point Judith, Warwick and Triggs are all in the list to be published on the game.


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