I’m a big fan of growing things. If you listen to our podcast or you know me personally you know I have a backyard garden where my wife and I grow a lot of things. It’s been a dream of our to one day own a small farm. I love growing things, being outside, watching the cycle of life through the plants that we take care of. Farming Simulator gives you that feeling; the feeling of watching things grow; of knowing that you’re responsible for acres of crops and herd animals can be quite daunting. I’ve been playing a few of the farming simulator games off and on
Farming Simulator is exactly what it sounds like. In the game you live the life of a farmer. Every day you’ll be out plowing your fields, cultivating the ground to get it ready for sowing, sowing the seeds, fertilizing them and harvesting them when they’re ready to be sold. You manage the day to do life of a farmer managing a growing agricultural empire. The day to day tasks are left up to you to decide so you make as little or as much money as you like.
The way you go about things on your farm is also completely up to you. Do you want to be a hands on guy, taking on all aspects of your farm? You can do that. Do you prefer crops over animals? Fine, grow all the fields of corn, wheat, and canola you can. Do you prefer animals over crops? You can do that too. If you like to manage the farm and leave the tasks to helpers that can be done as well. Simply get them started and set them on their way. You can go back and forth between your fields telling workers what needs to be done. When you have a large operation with multiple fields and you’ve gotten a process and a plan down you’ll find it all moving and working together like a beautiful symphony or an intricately made watch. Seeing tractors moving in sync to efficiently grow your crops is a beautiful thing.
I found early on I like to keep my farm small only working the two or three fields you start with and relying on helpers to keep most of the tasks going. Then I go out and work for other farmers. It’s really easy after only a couple hours of work to amass close to $100,000 in a day. I used that to build up, pay off the loan I started with and acquire all the equipment I knew I was going to need. That way when I really started to expand my farm I was ready to go without much fuss. Working the fields of the other farmer’s also helps bring the prices of fields down. There aren’t many fields available at the start for you to purchase so you’re going to have a lot of work ahead of you to expand. Working for these other farmers helps them to get to know you and in turn as you do more work for them the price of the fields they would sell you goes down. The experience is so open ended and it allows you to do what you want when you want.
For anyone that finds the game daunting there are a number of tutorials available to help get you started. They’ll teach you all the basics from plowing, fertilizing, and sowing your crops to buying and raising animals. There will still be a lot to learn on your own, but these tutorials are available at any time so if you find yourself a little lost as to how to do something checking these tutorials will help put you back on the right track.
The game also builds on an authentic farming experience. When you’re doing the day to day work on your farm it’s nice to know that the equipment you’re using could be used in real life. The developers have worked in more than 200 different pieces of equipment from real world manufactures like Massey Ferguson, Challenger, and CASE. The tractors, harvesters, plows, and combines you use in the game can be found in farms all over the world. While it’s not the prettiest game, there is a very nice level of detail and authenticity in all the things you’re seeing on the screen. Plants wiggle around as you move, the different stages of growth look real. It’s really nice to be driving along the roads in the game and seeing the fields of wheat and sunflowers sprawling out around you.
Here’s the thing about Farming Simulator and games like it. You’ve really got to be into the subject material to get the most out of them. This is a deep, deep simulator that early on you can get lost in, but as you get going, get a flow and start to expand things sort of fall into place. It’s a great time management game and a wonderful game to relax with at the end of the day. I’ve spent an hour of real time harvesting wheat and enjoyed every minute of it. It’s relaxing to me. If you like that kind of thing you’ll love farming simulator. If you think that sounds tedious you’re probably not going to get much enjoyment out of driving a tractor up and down a cornfield for more than an hour at a time. It’s a game built on repetition and finding your favorite way to grow that field of wheat or take care of that pen of pigs.
Review copy of the game provided by Focus Home Interactive
Own many fields, grown many crops, bought many animals.
Total Play Time: 22 hours