As always, full disclosure, the fine folks over at Focus Home Interactive tossed me a review copy of this one and I would like to both be honest about that and thank them for it. Good people over there that are always friendly and I hope this is just the first of many chances to work with them.
I am also a huge fan of the Farming Simulator games, Picked up Farming Simulator 15 randomly on sale for like 8 bucks years ago and fell in love with what I thought would be a boring game, then I bought 17 and that love continued. I never got the chance to buy 17 tho, so when they gave me this edition I was excited to get started. In fact, day 1 of playing I unlocked the trophy for 10 hours on one farm.
That is what this game is at its core, a Farming Simulator nothing more and nothing less. There is nothing else going on here. There are basically three ways to start your farm on the map of your choice, you can be a new farmer, get some basic equipment and a field and this is where I recommend you start. The middle difficulty so to speak will give you a little less stuff some money and the third gives you money and nothing else. You will need to buy everything from scratch and it is sink or swim. It is clearly for the more advanced players. Tho before this, the tutorials are a great idea if you have never played the series. They do an excellent job of showing you the ropes.
After making this choice, I will assume you took my advice, you will need to start harvesting your starter crops, plowing fields, planting new cops and deciding exactly what you want to do on this farm of yours. Are you going to grow some crops, raise animals, chop down trees? The choice is yours and honestly, in Farming Simulator 19 for me, this felt like it was true like never before. I quickly started harvesting wheat to feed my chickens and sunflowers for some profits. I used this to start chopping down some trees while I waited for things to grow.
What started as a trickle of money coming in from two fields became a small creek from 4 fields as I took out some loans and doubled in size and quickly paid those loans off. All this, however, means nothing if the game isn’t fun or looks and sounds bad.
In the sound and looks category Farming Simulator won’t be winning any aways, it isn’t a AAA title after all. It is, however, the best the series has ever looked or sounded, and it is also the best one you will find on the console market. The joy of driving any of these hundreds of machines around is unmatched by anything else in the simulator console market, and even without all the DLC from the season pass, there are so many machines to do so many jobs I doubt I will ever use them all. The options feel limitless.
That isn’t to say the game is flawless. The physics in the world have always been sketchy at best. The number of times I have launched my tractor or truck through the air like Eddie Gordo from Tekken or got a trailer stuck somewhere is a number I never bothered to count, luckily for me the store the machines revert to is close to my farm and rarely causes me any issues. It can also be a pain to line up the bucket or trailers or drop trees in stuff, something that after hundreds of hours into the series I have never mastered and have just accepted I never will.
To close this out tho, the new animals like horses and that you now buy plots of land not just fields is a nice touch but giving this game a number score is a bit rough. If you don’t like this kind of game this one won’t change that, its more farming. If you do enjoy it, this is the best of the best 9/10 must buy. That is honestly the best thing I can tell you on this one, it is worth it for those that enjoy the series or games like it, but if you don’t this isn’t likely to change that. Happy farming my friends, and may the gaming gods bring you glory.