2K has scored a massive win, signing Tiger Woods to an exclusive deal and acquiring PGA Tour 2K1 developer HB Studios.
Woods will return to the realm of golf games for the first time since 2013, when he last graced the cover of EA’s Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14. 2K will have exclusive rights for his name and likeness to appear in the PGA Tour 2K franchise, or any other golf games 2K may publish. Further, Woods will consult on the series as its Executive Director. 2K will contribute to his TGR foundation, “which provides award-winning STEM curricula and college-access programs to offer underserved students the tools needed to thrive in school and beyond.”
“In golf, there is no bigger icon than Tiger Woods,” said 2K President, David Ismailer. “Like the rest of the world, we were saddened to hear of his recent accident, and we wish him a full and smooth recovery. We have been eager to announce our partnership with Tiger, whose legendary career has transcended the sport.”
“I am looking forward to making my return to the video game landscape, and with 2K and HB Studios, I’ve found the right partners to make it happen,” said Woods. “I’m honored to take part in this opportunity and look forward to sharing my expertise and insights as we build the future of golf video games together.”
The PGA Tour 2K franchise will soon rest entirely in 2K’s hands, as the studio has announced plans to acquire developer HB Studios. The Canadian developer released The Golf Club in 2015, following the cancellation of EA’s series. They were brought in by 2K for last year’s PGA Tour 2K21, taking their highly authentic golf simulation to a more accessible level. Following positive reviews and over 2 million copies sold, 2K is making the partnership even more official.
“The team’s love and knowledge of golf is immediately evident in our games. We’re thrilled to officially become part of the 2K family and continue development of the PGA Tour 2K franchise,” said HB Studios President and Studio Head, James Seaboyer. “Our work with 2K on PGA Tour 2K21 brought our capabilities and aspirations to the next level, and we can’t wait to show the world what we’re planning for the future.”
Woods suffered extensive injuries in a car accident February 23, including “open fractures to his tibia and fibula,” but is said to be recovering well according to his friend and fellow pro golfer Rory McIlroy. McIlroy replaced Woods as the cover athlete for EA’s rebooted golf franchise in 2015.