Next week, the highly anticipated fantasy action-RPG The Witcher 3 comes out on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Windows PC. Few games will release alongside it, with most publishers having the good sense to get out of Witcher 3's way. But one game dares to stand up to the Witcher 3's tyranny. One game has the following, the clout, and the unique selling proposition to take it on: Farming Simulator 15.
With Farming Simulator 15 looming over the gaming landscape like the moon about to blot out the sun, publisher Focus Home Interactive has released a new trailer and details about the game's killer arsenal of licensed farming machinery. In all honesty, I'm quite pumped for Farming Simulator 15. Read on for the trailer and our in-depth preview with exclusive multiplayer details!
Swiss developer Giants Software's Farming Simulator series has long held a cult following on PCs. Last year's game made it to Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and even Windows Phone and Windows 8 (YES!). The console and mobile versions certainly have their fans, but until now they have lacked one essential feature of the PC games: online multiplayer.
Thankfully the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of Farming Simulator 15 will finally include cooperative online farming. Players can team up and drive tractors, harvesters, and other agricultural machines to their hearts' content. Seeing as how Faming Simulator is a slow-paced game, the ability to socialize with a friend while working on tasks together should make for a fun and relaxing experience. Sort of like Minecraft but without the survival aspects.
How will multiplayer work? Many of the game's activities can be performed more quickly in a team setting. For example, a player driving a tractor with trailer-container can follower another player who drives a combine harvester and pick up the freshly harvested crops straight away, saving both players time. That's teamwork, baby!
We're proud to have first word that the Xbox One version of Farming Simulator 15 will support up to six players simultaneously. Who wants to join my farming team?
Real farming equipment
Don't think Farmville when you think Farming Simulator – this game offers a much more comprehensive and interactive farming experience. The game's primary activity is crop production, and that means driving tractors. If you grew up fascinated by tractors and other huge agricultural vehicles, you'd be impressed by how realistically they've been recreated in Farming Simulator 15. They even acquire dirt and mud as you're driving around.
The game features over 100 vehicles to work in and get dirty. These come from the 40 largest manufacturers of said equipment, including New Holland, Ponsse, Case IH, Deutz-Fahr, Lamborghini, Same, Horsch, Grimme, Amazone and many more. Hey, I recognized one of those brands!
Virtual farmers will put some of those vehicles to use in this year's new activity: woodcutting. If the nearby forest encroaches too much on your farming real estate, just chop it down. Tree harvesters, chainsaws, chippers, and trailers will help you acquire wood that can then be sold at market. Other farming activities include raising livestock (cows, sheep, and chickens), economy management, and sales – the same stuff that real life farmers do.
Get ready to farm
Farming Simulator 15 includes several ways to play. You can farm within a new open world, building the biggest and best farm you can imagine. Or visit specific maps such as America and the Nordic map to see how farming conditions differ across the world. Missions will pop up as you play, challenging you to complete specific goals within a set time to earn rewards. You know, relaxing farm game-y stuff.
Historically, the Farming Simulator games have been fairly low budget compared to AAA titles. After all, the market for farming games isn't quite as large as shooting and military games. We can expect the Xbox One game to look and run a little better than last year's Xbox 360 entry, but don't think it will amaze anyone on a technical level. This series is all about the farming experience, the relaxing setting, and especially the tractors and machinery. I don't know about you guys, but I'm eager to hop online with a friend and drive some tractors.
Farming Simulator 15 will dig up onto Xbox One and 360 and PlayStation 3 and 4 on Tuesday, May 19. The Windows version is already available.