Have you ever wanted to know what it feels like to drive a tracker? Or wanted to run a farm with your friends? Have you ever wanted to own a dog and chase chickens with it but your mom never let you? Then Farming Simulator 19 is for you! The latest release in the line of Farming Simulator franchise, while the addition of horses might be one of the biggest selling points, this title houses lots to do and see!
The graphics for this game are wonderful. The first time I was truly amazed by this game was when I had to step away and when I got back, it was night time. I felt back at home on my grandparents’ farm seeing the beautiful dark countryside. The detailing on the tractors are also better than I could have hoped for. I love going into first person mode when driving, not only because it reduces the engine noises, but also because of how cozy and life-like the inside of the tractors always look. One issue I did run into is the tractor tires. I wasn’t sure at first, but the speed and movement of the tractor and tires don’t match up or seem normal to me. This can be really off-putting at times and break some of the enticing immersion of the farm life.
For gameplay, I found it slow and boring; but honestly, that’s not bad. I’ve played a lot of fast-paced and focus driven games in my time, but playing a simple game like this was a weird change of pace. I found myself mainly driving from one place to another, or trying to figure out how something worked. While a lot of the game is explained to you in tutorials, it still has a small learning curve when it comes to certain elements. Bailing and selling hay and straw was one of the challenges, and took a good hour or so to complete the first time around. The pace of the game is pretty slow, like real farming, so plan on playing this game for a good long while. You can change the pacing of the game, but a lot of downtime could be wasted in doing so. I can imagine getting a good 100 hours or more of gameplay out of Farming Simulator 19. Whether it is farming, animal care, or doing contract work for nearby farmers; this game has a lot to offer.
There was a farm simulator I played long ago in my youth, but it was much more of a farm management game. Farming Simulator 19 goes much more for the simulation part, as the name implies. This would have been great if I had gone in with this in mind; instead of my childhood memories of a farm management game. It took about an hour to adjust and realize I was running a real farm and managing fields. I love how educational the game is, but hate how much the game doesn’t teach you about itself. It took another hour or so for me to figure out the basics of the game, only to later find the info tab on the pause menu. I also didn’t realize the pause menu is the same as the map menu; the GUI at the top of the screen wasn’t very clear to me at first.
As I mentioned in the opening, this is the first installment that contains horses. The horses are ridable and come in a few styles, but don’t serve many purposes past this. It can be nice to ride your horse instead of your truck, but a truck requires less feed and care. Horses also come with a price tag, both in purchasing land space for your horse, but also in purchasing the horse. This makes purchasing a new tractor more useful than purchasing a horse.
Overall, I’m not sure I can say I would recommend Farming Simulator 19 to a friend. It’s a great game, but I’m not really sure who would love to sit down and enjoy a long day of playing. I think this game would be nice to play if I was sick and wanted to play games but wasn’t well enough to play an action game. I might recommend it to some of my family who still lives in the country. I wasn’t able to get the multiplayer to work, but I think that is mainly due to a lack of friends playing it. I would imagine having your friends helping out on the farm would aid in making it all that much more enjoyable.