- Open sandbox environment
- Plenty of options to expand your farm
- Casual play with no pressure on the player
- Too many mouse clicks required for basic functions
- Can be daunting, requires some patience
Want to know what it takes to end up with a virtual steak on your plate? Now you have the chance to grow some corn and butcher some cows in Farming Giant. The joys and woes of a Somerset farmer is yours to experience, from keeping your crops well cultivated to having enough cows and chickens to feed the lands. Feeding the five thousand is not an easy task, Jesus had it easy but as a mere mortal you have to do this the hard way.
Before beginning your quest for husbandry domination, it’s worth noting that starting with the tutorial first is highly recommended. The process required to get your farm up and running is not as straight forward as one might expect. Buying land is the first step by using the selection tool, then draw out your field for crops, buy a main building and a garage to house all your tractors and combine ‘arvesterrrrs. Next build a road from all your buildings to the main road, this will allow you to transport animals to nearby cities and to get your plows and cultivators onto the field. There are many mouse clicks required to get to this point, which may seem daunting at first. That is not to say the user interface is poor, but queuing up tasks and selecting the right buildings which in turn house the machinery you need requires a bit of knowledge and mouse clicking. Perhaps the whole process can be refined from eight mouse clicks to say four just to plow a field, without having to jump through too many hoops.
The entire game is a sandbox environment and there are no competing farms against you. The map of Europe contains famous cities such as Paris and Lion, although I get the feeling that is supposed to be Lyon. The place names are of no consequence as such, but merely gives you the opportunity to sell and trade your cultivated products in cities and markets. There are many achievements to accomplish such as selling 150,000 litres of peach juice on the market, or 500,000 kg of rabbit fur. That’s a lot of bunny coats for those cold winter nights.
The depth of the game becomes apparent when you can add extensions to your vehicles and expand your enterprise to become a farming kingpin. Orders can be taken and having enough finances to stay afloat is no easy task. Upgrades to buildings expand your product range, but this in turns puts on more demands for certain resources such as manure. The number of options available to you for purchase is plenty enough to keep one occupied. Graphs for each product type shows the demand, perhaps Berlin want more pigs and one can never have enough bacon. If your farm nosedives, you can take out bank loans to stay afloat, but running into large debts is not a good idea. When you completely run out of money and your workers cannot be paid, it’s game over Wurzel.
The music deserves a mention, simply because it is slightly surreal having electric guitars from circa Bon Jovi while planting crops and killing sheep. If you like a good country tune akin to Taylor Swift (sans the angelic voice and prancing) then this is included also. Overall, Farming Giant is a gentle stroll down Devon, spade in hand while chugging along in a tractor and plenty of hours can be spent just seeing what the possibilities might be in Campaign or Scenario mode. In comparison, a game such as Civilization is more conquest driven and very much a charging cavalry than a stroll in the countryside. If you suffer from heart palpitations or massive anxiety attacks, then Farming Giant is definitely for you.
I got a brand new combine ‘arvester but I’m not giving you the key. You will have to click your way to that yourself! Farming Giant is out now on PC.