Lately, the tubes of You have been exploding with videos of Slime Rancher, an early access game about ranching slimes. Now, before we get into what this game is, I’d like to address a problem I have seen with games that take YouTube by storm. Let’s talk about Five Nights at Freddys. Before Youtube, this would have been a game people bought on Steam, played for a few hours, and then never touched again. It’s challenging, but, in my opinion, far too random to be worth an extended play. The same could be said for Shower with Your Dad Simulator or I am Bread. These type of games seem to exist primarily because of the reactions they elicit in people, which other people find entertaining. More of a prop to use in your own entertaining than entertainment itself. I’m not saying that no one can enjoy these games without an audience, different people have different tastes and surely someone enjoys trying to get bread into a toaster.
But is Slime Rancher just flash in the pan streambait? Let’s watch:
So first off, the biggest difference between Slime Rancher and those other games I mentioned is that I want to play the shit out of this game. I mean sure, I might play Five Nights at Freddys if it was a free flash game but pay for it? Absolutely not. (Not to mention the multiple sequels that exist for some reason). Slime Rancher doesn’t need the overblown reactions of Markiplier or Pewdiepie to be entertaining, it’s a free roaming farm simulator with a unique alien twist and it seems like the kind of game I could sink a solid week into (which, given my attention span, is very good for a game, especially one that’s only $20).
Another interesting point is that it is still in early access. Now, normally I am wary of early access, because some developers use it as an excuse to sell us an incomplete game that they assure us will be great when it’s done, only to either never finish it or put out something disappointing.
However, this game looks good even in the state it’s in. I still may wait for it to be fully developed (mostly because I am poor. CLICK ON ADS). The primary mechanic is, well, ranching slimes. You suck up slimes of various types, feed them appropriate food, and then harvest the “plorts” that come out of them, which are sold to your investors back home for fluctuating prices.
But it’s not all collecting slime-poop, there are different types of Slime with different abilities and dietary requirements, that typically produce more valuable waste. You can also combine the different types by feeding them the plort of a different variety. On the basic level, this is great because one piece of food will then yield two plorts, one for each of the types in the amalgamation. It also makes feeding them easier. For example, “Tabby Slimes” the adorable cat-like slimes, only eat meat, whereas pink slimes eat everything. In order to avoid having to collect and breed chickens, you could simply breed the two types together to produce big pink cat slimes that can eat anything (and produce two plorts).
There is “combat” of a sort. Tar monsters will try and eat your slimes and spiny rock slimes will bash into you, even if you are simply harvesting plorts from their pens, but it’s not super challenging. Most of the difficulty comes from maximizing the production of plorts and managing the happiness of your slimes.
If anything, the game may be a little too easy for the hardcore gamers but I would definitely recommend it for casual players, especially fans of the Harvest Moon series or simulator – type games. Ultimately, we will have to see how the game turns out when it’s done, but it certainly looks promising.