Whether it's to get away from hustle and bustle of city life or to retire quietly, a lot of people dream of one day owning a farm. Ever wanted to just settle down with the love of your life, and spend your days just watching crops grow? Farm life, however, can take a lot of money, time, resources, and more. Instead of owning an actual farm, why not experience it virtually? In this list are my top 4 recommendations for farm games to play whenever you just want to relax.
4. Potion Permit
Release Date: September 22, 2022
Developed by: MassHive Media
Published by: PQube
Potion Permit will come out on September 22, 2022, on PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch. While this game is not yet actually out, a demo is already available for interested people to try out. Disclaimer though, this is not a farming game in the ways that the rest of the games in this list are farming games. The player does not have a large plot of land that they will develop and plant crops in to cultivate. Instead, it shows the lifestyle of living off of the land.
In Potion permit, you play as a fledgling chemist, sent to a distant town to cure the mayor's daughter. You become the town's resident chemist, making potions, salves, and other medicines that the townsfolk might need. In a way, this game is half potion making and half material gathering. Your materials come in all forms, ranging from plants to mushrooms to ore. The player can even fish in the various bodies of water found in and around the town. It is this lifestyle of foraging and living from the bounty of the land that makes it similar enough to a normal farming game to be a part of this list.
Also, did I mention that you are able to start a relationship with any of the town's bachelors and bachelorettes?
3. Rune Factory 5
Release Date: May 20, 2021
Developed by: Hakama Inc.
Published by: XSEED Games
Rune Factory 5 is a farming game with action role-playing game elements. It is available on the Nintendo Switch and on PC. Rune Factory 5 is the franchise's latest game, a good nine years after the last one. In previous games, the game was played from a top-down perspective. Rune Factory 5, however, has a third-person perspective. While this is not new in farming games, it is a huge change for the franchise. The player takes control of an amnesiac-turned-ranger. After nearly dying to save one of the town's people, they end up living in the town, both as thanks and to help them recover their memory. Little does he know of the many dangers he will experience during his stay.
The game plays just like other farming games, in that the player has plots of land where they must cultivate crops and sell them for money. There are, however, two things that I think set Rune Factory 5 apart from other farming games with a similar theme and branding. First of all, there is an importance placed on hunting down monsters. Whenever the player roams the areas around town, they will encounter monsters that threaten to knock the player out. These monsters drop valuable items and level the player's stats up. Simply farming is not enough to thrive in Rune Factory 5. The player has to go out and fight so that they can get experience and the materials needed to upgrade their equipment.
The second feature that sets this apart is its soil condition system. While in other games, the player has some control over their soil, this game has the player manage soil conditions in a realistic manner. Soil health goes down if the soil is used continuously. This forces the player to juggle farm plots and help the soil recover so that they can continue producing crops.
By the way, did you know that this game has various beautiful and handsome people that you can enter a relationship with and marry?
2. STORY OF SEASONS: Friends of Mineral Town
Release Date: October 17, 2019
Developed by: Bullets Co., Ltd., Marvelous
Published by: XSEED Games, Marvelous
STORY OF SEASONS: Friends of Mineral town is a farming simulation game for Xbox, Playstation, Nintendo Switch, and PC. This game is a remake of the 2003 game Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town for the Gameboy Advance. The game follows the life of a normal kid from the city. During a trip to the countryside,they get separated from his family, and are found by an old man. The old man helps them reunite with their family and even offered to let them stay on the farm. A few years later, the kid discovers that they inherited the farm from the old man. This remake is different in that unlike the original game, where you only play as a male, you can decide whether to play as a male or female.
The Harvest Moon line of games is the blueprint from which most, if not all, farming games take their inspiration. In this game, the player is given a plot of land on which they can plant crops on to sell. They are also given various tools to clear their farm from debris. The player can own animals that give them products to sell as well. There's also a fishing mechanic in the game for those times when you don't have to, or cannot, harvest anything. This can be considered a farming game in its most simple form, allowing the player freedom to do what they want to do.
Just like the other games in this list, you can improve your relationship with the townsfolk by giving them gifts. Who knows, maybe you can even marry one of them.
1. Stardew Valley
Release Date: Feb 26. 2016
Developed by: Concerned Ape
Published by: Chucklefish
Stardew Valley is a farming game available on PC, Playstation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and mobile phones. In it, the player takes control of a blue-collar office worker. Tired of the repetitive nature of his job and city life, they move to the farm their grandfather left for them. There, they start their life anew, building the farm from the ground up, and discovering secrets about their grandfather that they didn't know about.
This game has everything the previous games on this list have. It has general farming that is present in all of them. The player can also take care of animals that give them milk, eggs, and other products. They can fish as well in the various rivers, lakes, and oceans that they can access. They can even fight monsters in the various caves and dungeons available for exploration. All of these features combine together to create one of the most memorable recent farming games in the market. This game also has multiplayer, should the player feel like they need a helping hand in the farm.
What sets this apart from the other games on this list, however, is the very much active modding community. Anything in the game is moddable, from the available clothing to the available crops. Modders have also changed up what the characters look like, with some mods giving the game an even more anime-like feel. There are also bigger mods that add new sections to the already large map that Stardew Valley has, drastically changing its gameplay loop. While playing unmodded Stardew Valley is fun in its own right, nothing beats a modded playthrough.
You're probably tired of hearing this, but did you know that in this game, you can improve your relationship with the various bachelors and bachelorettes? You can even get married to them if you play your cards right.
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