Welcome back to TOUR Tips! Today, we focus on the Forester clubs! Given the brand name and their color scheme, it’s no surprise that all Forester clubs use trees in some way to give them a unique edge. Many of them have the Tree Bonus ability, which provides a boost to all stats depending on how many trees are nearby. Not all courses are tree-heavy, however, so this brand is most useful in a second bag made specifically to tackle more densely forested holes. You may also notice that they all have an above-average spin stat. If you’re not using spin already, test it out with a Forester! Spin provides advantages like being able to stop quickly on the green or gain extra distance on the fairway. Here’s the club-by-club breakdown:
Outset (Driver): Though you may be initially put off when you notice Outset’s low control, but with its Chains into Wedges ability, Outset is a good choice for Par 4s. That way, you’re set up so that you can follow up with a great chip-in shot. At level 5, Outset unlocks its Tree Bonus ability, so any tee box near trees will give it a nice boost from the get-go. Pair it with Oakheart’s Shared Growth ability, which doubles the effects of Tree Bonus, and you’ve got one of the best drivers in the game.
Trailblazer (Iron): Once players start using Trailblazer, there’s a reason why they won’t let it go. With solid all-around stats, it’s a good iron in general, but its Tree Passing ability, which allows your balls to move through trees without slowing down, makes this club stand out even further. Forester clubs already push you to lean towards the rough where the trees are, and with Trailblazer, you don’t have to worry about maneuvering the ball around them. It also makes for a good recovery option if you’re belting risky drives with clubs like Rampart or Skyfury.
Homecoming (Putter): Did you know that Homecoming is one of the few clubs that has not one, not two, but three abilities? Its first, Off-Green Power, gives it a major all-around stat boost when hitting from anywhere but the green. It may seem silly to even use a putter in that kind of situation, but Homecoming performs best on the fringe or even the fairway. Its second ability, Terrain Resist 50%, proves that point even further, as it will ignore 50% of penalties when hitting from unfavorable ground types. Even if you’re on the green, its final ability, Adventure, gives Homecoming stat boosts when any of your shots hits a tree or lands in a hazard. This pairs well with Trailblazer, which passes through trees entirely, or putting after any chip-in from the sand.
Huntsman (Wood): You’ll obtain the Huntsman club early on in your career, and it maintains its solid status as a wood for a good portion of the game. Even when it’s not using its Tree Bonus ability, it has nice overall stats, and its high spin means it’s great for full blasts across the fairway that can stop quickly on the green if you max out your backspin.
Ironbark (Hybrid): Ironbark is a high-powered hybrid with lots of spin, making it a great generalist option if you’re not sure what else to choose. It fills a role similar to Huntsman, but Ironbark may arguably be better equipped for its Tree Bonus ability as a hybrid.
Edgewalker (Wood): Edgewalker is another early wood option along with Huntsman, but with key differences: it has higher power but lower control, and along with its Tree Bonus ability, it also has Boundary Bonus, giving it a stat boost depending on how much out bounds area is nearby (consider pairing it with Skyfury). Although unconventional, especially for a wood, Edgewalker should push you to dance around the edges of the course to make the most of its assets.
Oakheart (Wedge): If you’re building a Forester-heavy bag, be sure to include Oakheart. It also has Tree Bonus, but its later ability, Shared Growth, applies Tree Bonus to clubs it’s placed next to. This can make for some good cross-brand synergy, but if it’s placed next to a Forester club that already has Tree Bonus, Shared Growth will apply the boost twice. Oakheart is also best friends with Trailblazer and The Seeker, as Oakheart will give them a bonus if they’re utilizing their ability to move through trees.
The Seeker (Wedge): Given that it’s a legendary club that doesn’t unlock until you reach level 7, you probably have a while to wait before you encounter The Seeker; but, once you do, be sure to give it a go. Like Trailblazer, it can make your ball pass through trees; but, unlike Trailblazer, it applies to your entire bag! This no longer forces you to consider adding Trailblazer to your arsenal if you’re not confident winding the ball around the woods. In fact, The Seeker downright asks you to play in the trees, so other Forester clubs with the Tree Bonus ability synergize perfectly with it. At level 12, it also gains its Tree Sprinting ability, which makes the ball go 10% faster per tree it passes through. If you’re chipping in with a tree in your way, use the extra boost to your advantage!