YEE HAA ya’ll, in this review I got the opportunity to play Farm Simulator 2019 platinum edition and from first glance, I knew I was in a hayride of a time.
The opening scene of a man with his best doggo driving to the farm barn to retrieve the tractor for a hard day’s work, actually got me stoked to play the game, to say the least. The menu screen gives first times the option of a Tutorial and yes many of us say to heck with the tutorial, but I got comfy and ran through them 1 task at a time, from learning to cultivate to seeding, fertilizing, harvesting and a great deal more, it really made me think the depth to the game was more than I initially thought.
Now fully farm ready I jumped into a career and was very relieved…I mean very surprised to find there were “difficulty” settings to help the first-timer and the seasoned farmhand, you have the option of starting from scratch, which is starting with NOTHING, NADA, ZILCH, and some start-up capital, or start as farm manager which is some land and some equipment to get you started, this of course was right up my alley.
So my 1st day started and I awoke to a bright sun and open land, I knew what I had to do, I hopped on my tractor fired up the engine and loaded my cultivator….this is when my OCD had a heart attack…. Slowly ploughing the land and MISSING THAT ONE FU…. *Ahem* that one spot and having to redo my lines, once I conquered this task I felt good and then loaded my planter….having little too NO idea I loaded the 1st crop seed and set out on my now clean lines….only to have my OCD incur a 2nd heart attack. Now having my crops planted and the wait for the next part I had the chance to investigate the in-game menu’s and I learned that the game has a “stock” system which is all the mills/stations/etc. which are buying which crop/product and at what price, this gives you the opportunity to really make a clean profit by holding onto your produce as we will now call it, and selling it when the item(s) are in high demand.
After much look into my pitiful balance screen which outlines all expenses and all income, it details animals and crops, machines and buildings, which helps you see what area is benefitting you and which are taking more resources than bringing in, I looked into another menu which was very interesting, this was the contracts screen where other farmers are paying for a specific farming process, such as $2567 to cultivate my land or $6845 to harvest and deliver to a select destination, this allows the player to generate income whilst waiting for their own produce to be ready. By the time ide gone over the relevant screens my crops had become overridden with weeds….and no NOT the “special crop” kind the crop-killing kind!!! Armed with the knowledge of what to do…thank you tutorials… I was prepped and ready only to discover….I did not have the required equipment to do so, so I find the button which brings up the “buy menu” which is VERY well detailed and broken down into categories of buildings or vehicles or vehicle attachments and even trailers for transport, I found myself…. A little short on funds, now on your finance screen there is an option to make a loan of $5000 every time you press the button….but this leads to some serious repercussions…..like debt…. Ok so not SO serious but it will require you to pay interest on the loan until it’s fully paid back….which can eat into profits or savings quite quickly.
So I took the lesser road and allowed the weeds to grow….this greatly reduces the output of the field and less produce is harvested. So I soiled away….no wait that sounds more like fertilizing…..err I Toiled away and generated enough funds for my new weeder, yay, now fully equipped for the next run I began the process at this point was my 3rd run on this specific field, this field would now require lime, and of course, a new piece of equipment to distribute it over the field. My funds dwindling as each new machine arrived and between jumping between my harvesters and my tractors things got abit…..chaotic. BUT have no fear the game gives you an option when inside a machine to hire a worker who will complete the task that the machine with current equipment attached is assigned to, I shed tears of joy at this point, now with 1 worker plowing and another planting, I again had the time to investigate another avenue. Animals, yes folks, chickens, cows, horses, sheeps…sheep? Those Woolly things that give me the heebee jeebees, so I decided to dip my toe in and buy a giant chicken farm with 200 chickens…… seemed simple enough, just had to feed them wheat and let nature take care of the rest. Suddenly a cardboard box popped up on the side and I was so excited, enjoy the small victories in life people, I grabbed the box and systematically started to fill up my shed space until I had the means to transport the boxes to a buying location….bought myself a little pick-up truck or Bakkie to our local ouens, and loaded box after box until I was full up and I checked my stock screen to see who would give the best price and set out, only to shatter my dreams, not knowing that you kinda have to wait until the box was FULL of eggs…instead of 50 boxes containing 1 egg.
I’ll draw my personal vendetta with this game to a close and give you what you actually came for. The game its self is visually appealing and there is a great sense of calm as you play, a great game to play after a 10 game loss streak, the in-game radio offers some really complimenting music from rock to pop and my personal favorite electro, which I kept playing all the time, the fields are yours, to the fullest extent that you can buy a plow and expand your fields, sell them, cultivate them or scrap them to make way for an animal pen, a bigger silo or a farmhouse.
And there wasn’t only 1 kind of farming either, you could tackle agricultural, livestock or even forestry each with its own requirements, be it food or the appropriate equipment, livestock to have different needs, chickens need food and their food bowl cleaned from time to time, horses need to be trained which increases their worth. So the player is given options and is not bound by 1 they can have multiple and spread their wings far and wide and really enjoy the multitude the game has to offer.
The options menu gives you control over a vast array of options like volumes and the norm but also some options also allows you to speed up time, switch off certain problematic aspects of the game like the need to weed the fields and stop crop destruction, and yes for those of you reading this, I, in fact, did drive over my field look back and want to jump out my window, this allows the player to enjoy an even simpler experience where you just want to farm and make money without too much hassle.
There is a wide variety of branded vehicles to choose from and there is a piece of equipment to suit your need, you can buy a very basic cultivator which covers only a small area, to a highly sophisticated one that basically plows the whole planet in 1 go, which is nice as you can start and finish a process quickly and minimize time wastage and maximize profits sooner, there is also a feature which allows you to lease a piece of equipment instead of buying it, this allows you to use it for its intended purpose without it costing too much or if you just need a quick trailer rental to take produce to a destination.
Some of the equipment can be customized, with colors or bigger/smaller wheels, a bigger engine or even special attachment arms for wider dispersal, this has a small price tag to it but getting the right equipment for the job can save you more in the long run. The weather too has an impact on your farm, like that you can’t harvest during the rain which can be both beneficial and more so aggravating as your harvest and cultivation period gets delayed until it stops.
Above all the main features there are some well-placed details like the miscellaneous section where you can buy a high-pressure hose to keep your machinery clean, you can buy decorative items like sheds and more which adds those final touches to really make your farm a farm, and my favorite and it was worth every penny….bought a dog house WHICH CAME WITH A DOGGO!!! That was the clinching factor for me, me and my doggo lovingly named “Sprrriitz”, tended to our farm with love, care, and tennis balls.
The Multiplayer option is also quite entertaining, I mean what’s better than farm shenanigans with your buds? Draw crop circles, have tractor races and harvesting competitions! Bring your friends and really turn a profit, as many hands make light work, I Think we the EAX team should take a swing at this….I can’t promise much farming will be done but I can guarantee with undying certainty that there will be countless laughs and mistakes……I personally will see to that (insert evil grin meme here).
The game starts off a bit slow but as you buy more and expand the game becomes busier and busier as you try to manage all your fields, animals and equipment, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and will continue to play it. And once I’m a master of my craft ill start from scratch and switch on some of those options and test myself…….so never….but I digress, the game is visually stunning and the ever-present sense of peace and tranquillity really allowed me to get into it without much struggle and I would recommend it ONLY to those with patience…..as this game is all about taking your time and going through the full harvest cycle to reap the best quantity of crops you can. To my loving wife whom I made watch me play, to get an outsider’s opinion, thank you, your ideas and planning really helped me get the best management out of my farm…and your constant laughter at my failed planter lines never ceased to fill me with unbridled rage and torment. But you complimented the game’s beauty and simplicity, the diversity and the freedom to make the choices that you want to make.
Would I recommend the game? Yes, would I say it’s for everyone? No, can I honestly say I enjoyed it? Without a doubt and lastly, does it have re-playability? Undoubtedly. There are many ways to improve and change, there is great satisfaction at starting from nothing and then being full-fledged with the biggest and best of everything, seeing the success of your hard work coming to light, and I loved the great sense of accomplishment after a full cycle and then getting that big pay-off. Based on a lot of factors I’m happy to award Farm Simulator 2019… a strong 8/10 stars.
Now if ya’ll excuse me, I gots ta harvest ma taters….. AMANDA fetch me ma boots….its harvest time.
Review content supplied by Apex Interactive