The popular Farming Simulator series from Giants Software and Focus Home Interactive returns with a brand new graphics and physics engine. It’s a game that I have avoided due to reservations I had about the game being ‘boring’ or ‘tedious’. Farming Simulator 15 can be played across hundreds of acres of land offered by the new Nordic environment, and a renovated North American environment. It’s essentially a simulation of all the things a farmer can do ranging from sewing seeds in a field to collecting eggs from chickens all the way to taking care of livestock (cows, chicken and sheep) and maintaining a farm including taking products to market and hiring farm hands to help complete work. With over 140 authentic vehicles and farming tools, including the new activity: woodcutting, there’s plenty to keep you occupied and in multiplayer mode, you can grow your farm online with other players and or friends to boost your productivity!
Gameplay is similar to that of most games using the analogue stick to move when controlling the farmer and the triggers to move once in a vehicle. The general gameplay is quite smooth with most of the equipment linking up smoothly with only the press of a few buttons. When in control of the farmer movements can be a bit jerky at times but it really doesn’t make that much difference seeing as not an awful lot of time is spent as the farmer depending on which path you decide to take your farming in. I tried out several of the different routes available and never really struggle or noticed many errors in the gameplay. On the odd occasion certain parts of the gameplay would seem a little strange to me like something that could be so much better had they just added little tweaks. One such instance was when delivering Grain to sell it. The trailer would tip to empty it and the grain would fall out but then disappear once it hit the floor rather than land in the hole which was put into the game beneath for it to fall into. These kind of things happened rarely though and are hardly noticeable to someone less pedantic than myself. The on real positive of this game in my opinion is that it was genuinely lots of fun to play and the gameplay aided that a lot with ease of movement around the map and a sort of ‘fast travelling’ system in which the user can switch between each vehicle owned by their farm. this can be extremely useful as the maps are very large in size and certain items need to be sold at specific venues which can be far to reach.
The sounds in this game I felt at times were just very generic noises and in my opinion added very little value to the game. However this is not such a bad thing with basic engine noises for the vehicles and looped animal noises this game really does just rely on its gameplay to entice the user into the world of the game. After all this is not one of those games where cinematic cut scenes and surround sound audio are necessarily needed. While the sounds isn’t going to wow you it fulfills its duties and while being pretty basic never really seems out-of-place and does aid in the overall enjoyment of the game. However, this combined with the XB1 snap an app feature meant that most of the time I was listening to a youtube playlist or something similar, as the sound isn’t vital to the enjoyment of the game or indeed for progression in the game.
Graphically Farming Simulator 15 isn’t amazing. However, when playing I really didn’t mind that. I mean there were a few little things that did bother me as i have mentioned before. But on a whole I really felt this game graphically had what it needed. From growing crops to withered ones it was always clear what was going on regarding the livestock or crops and everything main to the game did just seem to work perfectly. all the farming equipment moved just as it should do and it was clear what jobs this equipment was doing. So overall again, like sound in this game, graphics aren’t phenomenal but they don’t take away from the enjoyment of the game. It has the bare essentials to satisfy a consumer and really lets the gameplay and tasks at hand speak for themselves when it comes to the value of this game.
Overall Farming Simulator 15 isn’t really the kind of game i could find myself spending day after day on. But once i had picked it up, it really did grab my attention and made me want to succeed in the farming world i had created. Before I knew it, i had spent many hours on the game and I was absolutely intent on finding the best ways for my crops and livestock to be developed. Despite my initial reservations, Farming Simulator 15 is not boring or tedious, it’s a fantastic amount of fun and definitely worth adding to your collection.
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