Author: Matt Callcott-Stevens - Matt first picked up a golf club in 1994 and has never stopped swinging. As a junior, he played competitively and eventually represented his school and Country at the 2007 World Schools Golf Challenge in Christchurch, New Zealand.
One business is doing their best to spice up the game and make it entertaining for all involved. Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers is the most entertaining approach I’ve found to navigating the links.
You’ll find that this card game evens the playing field and gives the lesser gifted golfers in your group a chance to win the odd round. I will provide my experience of playing this game, and detail how it works. By the end of this article you’ll be wondering why you hadn’t thought of it yourself.
Key Takeaways – Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers
- The title may be a little cheezy using “Fore”, but it’s actually a pretty fun game
- There are various card categories, some help, some hurt, and some effect the entire group
- It’s super easy to play and understand the rules
- A few variations exist that make it a little easier if one player is either dominating or struggling compared to the rest of the group
There are some other “brands” of the game. They aren’t exactly the same, but do offer a similar experience. I haven’t played all of these, but they could be worth checking out:
- Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers – this is the one I’m reviewing in this entire article
- Fore! Cards – very similar name (haha)
- Golf Sauce – winner for the coolest name imo
- Fore! Drinks – more of a drinking golf game (might have to give this one a try)
My Experience With Bad Cards For Good Golfers
I find the Bad Cards For Good Golfers game simple to play, and it evens the playing field, as you rely on the luck of the draw for a favorable lie. There are 107 cards in the deck, which are divided into five categories, designed to punish and assist you and your opponents.
The game is not for serious golfers playing for score, but it is a unique way to enjoy a day out with your group.
Is it Actually Fun?
In my experience, Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers rekindles your love and enjoyment for the game. Instead of fixating on your score, you turn your attention to having fun, and the strategy of the card game.
Granted, superior golfers and traditionalists will not approve of the tomfoolery that ensues. However, the average casual golfer should welcome the format change.
Bad Cards Good Golfers are separated into five categories: Sucks 4 U, Hell Yeah, Attack, Paty, and Hold On. The categories are designed to give you the upper hand over your opponents or set you back after a crisp approach shot.
Sucks 4 U
The Sucks 4 U category is designed to impact the cardholder negatively. For example, when I drew the ‘Personal Scramble’ card, I had to hit two balls and take the one in the worst lie. As if my luck on a golf course isn’t bad enough, I frequently draw this category.
Hell Yeah cards are a good omen for the holder, as they improve your lie or score. My personal favorite is ‘Where My Beaches At,’ which transforms a sand trap into the cup. Therefore, if you hit your par 3 tee shot into the bunker, you my friend have just carded an ace. Unfortunately, your club captain will argue it doesn’t warrant printing your name on the honors board.
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You’ll find that the attack category brings out the worst in the kindest individuals. The player who draws this card can use it against a competitor of their choosing. ‘The ‘Ol Switcharoo’ is a cheeky card that I constantly wish for, because it allows you to switch your tee shot with one in a more favorable position.
Billy Joel sums up the party category in Goodnight Saigon, with the lyrics “we would all go down together.” The card drawn impacts your entire group for the better or worse.
For example, the “Hit It And Quit It” card prevents everyone from taking a practice swing on that hole. Failure to comply leads to a one stroke penalty on each occasion.
You should look at the Hold On category as your power cards, as they extract you from sticky situations, and have the tendency to win you the game.
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The ‘S-hand Wedge’ has saved my playing partner countless times, as the chap cannot play bunker shots. This card allows you to throw your ball out of the bunker. Once you have used the card, you must return it to the dealer.
However, the aim is to hold these cards for as long as you can, because they can shave strokes off your total score. You’ll notice each card has a negative stroke value printed in the right hand corner. If you keep your card until the round has ended you can use the card to reduce your net total.
How Do You Play
Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers is easy to play because it centers around three simple steps, which I’ll detail below.
Step 1 – Everyone Receives A Hold On Card On The First Tee
Pick a responsible individual, who can protect the cards and remember to deal with each hole. You’ll see that the first order of business is to assign a ‘Hold Card,’ which you can use at any point in the round. However, if you keep it until the round ends, it helps lower your score.
Step 2 – Players Draw A Card Before Teeing Off
Next, every player in your group must receive a card before you tee off. Each card consists of a command for the holder to undertake during that hole. These cards may fit into any of the five categories that I covered above, but only one player is allowed to draw a party card.
Step 3 – Lowest Score Wins
Calculate the score of each player in your group to receive the gross total. Then, subtract the figure of the ‘Hold On’ card from the relevant golfer’s total. Like in normal golf, the player with the lowest score is declared the winner.
Step 4 – Disputes
Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers is a democratic game, and it relies on a group vote to solve disputes and rule interpretations. When one party feels aggrieved by a ruling, you can put it to a vote and the majority gets their way.
Game Variations of Bad Cards Fore Good Golfers
If one golfer in the group is dominating or hacking, you can manipulate the format to level out proceedings. The two variations you can play are ‘Redemption’ and ‘Dethrone,’…
When your buddy is having a rough day and they are slowing down play, I suggest switching to ‘Redemption’ mode. Find all the cards with an ‘R’ on the bottom right and discard the rest. Now, deal a card only to the impacted player, and let them operate from more favorable lies.
Contrary to ‘Redemption,’ the ‘Dethrone’ variation is designed to neutralize the domination of a single individual. Sift through your deck of cards and remove the ones labeled with a ‘D’ in the bottom right corner. Deal a card to the superior player and bring them down a notch, with poor ball lies, and no leniency.