Finally coming out of early access last week with its 1.0 update is Slime Rancher. I sat down with it for a long while over the last week, and I really liked it! If you’re here for the more nitty-gritty, keep reading. But if you’re just here for a solid game rec, you’re all good.
Starting Out & Basics
You start out as Beatrix, a new slime rancher coming out of a year of space travel. You’re equipped with a vacuum device, and you’re given a farm for raising slimes. Your farm comes with eight open plots to place enclosures, gardens, and coops. Gardens and coops are both for producing food to feed slimes. Enclosures are to keep slimes in, and starting out, you can collect pink slimes to put in enclosures.
Slimes will produce plorts when fed. Collect the plorts and sell them at the slime market next to your house to earn newbucks, the game’s currency. The slime market’s sell prices for plorts changes regularly, and rarer plorts will be worth more: for instance, golden plorts, made by golden slimes, routinely sell for hundreds of newbucks.
Slime Rancher’s core is very simple. Raise slimes, feed them, get plorts, sell plorts. All you need to do to keep the game going is to keep feeding your farm. Slime Rancher also offers a host of other things to do: after you’ve fully automated your farm, you can spend time exploring the world of the game. There are caverns to spelunk, and feeding gordo slimes (slimes that have grown so big that they are unable to move) will unlock more areas, allowing you to collect more varieties of slime.
Once you’ve collected a fair amount of different slimes, you can feed plorts to slimes. Feeding them one type of different plort will create a slime cross-breed, which produces plorts from each parent breed. To accomodate different types of slimes, enclosures can be upgraded to fit their needs.
Dangers & Expansions
Feeding a slime more than one type of plort results in a creation that eats other slimes: the Tarr. They’re ravenous, colorful masses that are weak to water and pose a danger to your thriving ranch. In addition, the game offers more areas for your farm, for exploring to find more slimes, and a science component that allows you to build machines to mine for additional components. To be honest I haven’t gotten into the lab component of the game much, but plan to since it offers a lot of options for my ranch.
There are player upgrades as well: one of which is a jet pack that allows you to explore areas that otherwise can’t be reached by jumping. The standard health, stamina, and inventory upgrades apply as well.
Slime Rancher is a refreshingly wholesome game. After a rough month for many of us, myself especially, it was nice to sit down with a mindless game that doesn’t require a lot of emotional energy. The slimes are just slimes, and its simple yet deep gameplay makes it just peaceful enough to binge after a long day.
Cover image via CGMagazine.