I feel like there is not enough 3D farming games for PC, games that ask you to gather resources to tend and cultivate your harvest then sell them to a market. Yes there is Animal Crossing, Harvest Moon and Recetear. However they seem to exist more in the 2D world on the DS then PC. I have poured endless hours in to games like Stardew Valley and Terarria, but nothing gets me going like the Minecraft agricultural and cooking mods and I am constantly looking for more things like that. Maybe this is just a small niche and of course I would be one to fall in to it.
After digging around through different Steam tags and Google I found something on my Steam wish list that I had overlooked. Slime Rancher had been sitting on my wish list for a while because I have been burned by many early access games before (looking at you Godus, you confused mess). After seeing screenshots of tiny carrots in a tiny field I was sold, clearly it doesn’t take much. Voila, my hunger for a 3D farming sim was quelled.
Because Slime Rancher is in early access still it does not feed you a lot of information, which just makes it more fun for me. I like the idea of being plopped in a world then being told ‘figure it out’, every discovery I make becomes that much more amazing. Slime Rancher has a very explorative world, what appears to be just rocks against a canyon face are actually inconspicuous stairs allowing players to crawl across them to other plateaus. Each time you capture a new slime you’re given a new page in your slimepedia which will divulge more information about that slime including its favorite snacks and what environment best suits it. You can use your vacpack to transport multiple little slimes, however once you start breeding them they become too large to fit in the vacpack and you must transport them one by one. I quickly learned that you cannot combine more than two different breeds of slimes, if you do you create a voracious little tar beast that will eat everything.
You will also encounter other slime farmers with your StarMail. They will send orders to your farms for resources and plorbs. Plorbs are essentially slime poo as it is produced after you feed the slimes and is used as currency. There is even an active plorb market, every day the value of a particular plorb will fluctuate. There is no other storage in the game to hold your extra resources other then the auto feeder and auto collector you can buy for your slime corrals. On days when a particular plorb is down you can leave them inside of your plorb collector until the value is raised again.
While exploring I came across something even larger than the slimes I had bred. I couldn’t transport it, it wasn’t hostile, but it sure could eat! I continued to feed this giant slime until I noticed it started to quiver, then blop! The glutinous slime exploded and I was rewarded with a key. Throughout the island there are locked doors; feeding these giant slimes will produce keys and teleport pads to make it faster to travel over the lands.
I’m excited to see what more there will be to come. Slime Rancher is still releasing updates during their early access phase and they are working on a big update to introduce Slime Science which will allow players to create tools and decorative objects. You can catch this game for $20 USD on Steam and for what it is right now, it is an Ok price. This game looks like it has a lot of love behind it, not just from the developers, but the community as well. I see more updates in the future, a great early access purchase and fun for all ages!