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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know Farmside is a casual farming simulation exclusively for Apple Arcade. After customizing the look of your character, players must build and maintain the work on your farm. Players will have to balance resources and the needs of their animals to be successful during play. There isn't any inappropriate or objectionable material in this single-player game.
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What’s It About?
FARMSIDE challenges you to build and maintain your dream farm. After you create a male or female protagonist, you'll learn about planting crops and growing orchards, collecting water to keep the grounds hydrated, harvesting your food, raising animals, and creating recipes based on what you've got on the farm. Part of your tasks involves completing orders for the townsfolk, as well. You can design and build out the farm any way you like, as well as fix up buildings, enlist the help of machinery, add decorations and other customizable elements to make the farm your very own. That includes adding fences, lights, and unlocking special designs for the outside of your buildings. As you might expect, it's key to keep an eye on resources needed to complete all the goals, such as wood and stone for buildings, or seedings and watering (and time) for growing veggies, and so on.
Is It Any Good?
Between its accessible controls, attractive design, and well-balanced gameplay, this is a recommended farming simulator for kids and kids at heart. Farmside might not offer anything brand new for diehard fans of the genre, but there's less between you and your time on the farm. Pacing is one of the game's strengths. It starts with a relatively small seaside farm, but after a few days, you'll likely outgrow the premises and move more inland to larger farms, with fewer cues on what to do and when to do it. Still, easy-to-follow and universal icons tell you the task at hand, what you may need, how much time to wait until said task is done, and so on. Once you get comfortable completing tasks, like buying and selling items, you'll begin to unlock more recipes, earn badges, and other goodies (as part of a Reputation Points progressive meter, of sorts), and start customizing your character or farm's look and yields.
Part of the fun is seeing all the things you can buy from Dunn's store, but the various currencies can be confusing (and makes more sense for a freemium game model). All items cost you either gold coins, green Nemo coins, or yellow stars -- all earned in-game for performing tasks. For example, a hammock costs 80 Nemo coins, a Party Palm Tree is 500 gold coins, and a recipe for a Crab Louie Salad is 100 stars. While there are several challenges to take on in order to advance in Farmside, the sim is relaxing and enjoyable to tap through. Speaking of which, the touchscreen mechanic works better than using a game controller (required for Apple TV and Mac). Farmside serves as a great introduction to farming sims, especially for younger and novice players. It's solid thanks to its easy-to-play mechanic, many customization options, and attractive cartoon graphics, but may not have the depth to hold more seasoned players for a long time.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the lack of diversity in the few characters you interact with in Farmside. Why are there only Caucasian males that you interact with? Is this ok, since you can choose what your character looks like?
Does Farmside make you more interested in where your food comes from? Would you be interested in finding out how farmers do their jobs?
- Platform: Apple Arcade
- Pricing structure: Paid (Part of the Apple Arcade service, for $4.99/month.)
- Available online?: Available online
- Publisher: The Label
- Release date: February 20, 2023
- Genre: Simulation
- Topics: Cars and Trucks, Cooking and Baking, Horses and Farm Animals, Science and Nature, Wild Animals
- ESRB rating: NR for No Descriptions
- Last updated: February 27, 2023
Our Editors Recommend
Highly polished building simulation offers depth, breadth.
Engaging sim emphasizes farming, community, acceptance.
Highly gratifying road building sim ideal for all ages.
For kids who love simulations
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