Slime Rancher is an indie open world first person life simulation video game developed and published by Monomi Park. The game was released on Steam as an Early Access game on January 14, 2016 and was officially released on July 31, 2017 (Xbox), and on August 1, 2017 (Steam).
Slime Rancher is a tale of Beatrix LeBeau , a plucky young rancher who sets out for a life a thousand light years away from Earth on the 'Far, Far Range' where she tries her hand at making a living wrangling slimes. With a can-do attitude, plenty of grit, and her trusty vacpack, Beatrix attempts to claim, amass a fortune, and avoid the continual peril that looms from rolling, jiggling avalanche of slimes around every corner!
The game is played in an open world and from a first-person perspective. The player controls a character named Beatrix LeBeau, a rancher who moves to a planet far from Earth to live the life of a "slime rancher", which consists of constructing her ranch and exploring the environment, in order to collect, raise, feed and breed slimes, gelatinous living organisms of various sizes and characteristics.
The game's main economical aspect revolves around feeding slimes the appropriate food items so that they produce "plorts", which can then be sold in exchange for Newbucks, the currency required to purchase upgrades to the rancher's equipment or farm buildings. The player moves the character around a variety of environments, and can collect slimes, food items and plorts by sucking them up with their vacuum tool (called a "VacPack", a portmanteau of vacuum and backpack). They can only store a limited number of items and item types at a time and must go back to their ranch to unload their collected items before being able to collect more. The player must buy and upgrade various enclosures to house their collected slimes.
Different types of slimes can be combined by feeding a slime a plort from another species, making them noticeably larger and able to produce multiple plorts. However, if a slime combines more than three traits by eating two different plorts, it becomes an aggressive malevolent black slime called "Tarr", which devours all other slimes around it. The player can pump fresh water from ponds and springs to splash and disintegrate the tarrs.
There are different kinds of slimes in the game, which all differ from small bits like simple ears and tails, to the ability to teleport or grab a chicken via a vine that emerges from the ground. Docile and less harmful slimes include: Pink, Phosphor, Tabby, Quantum, Honey, Puddle, Hunter, Tangle, Dervish, and Saber. Directly and indirectly harmful slimes are: Rock, Fire, Boom, Mosaic, Crystal, and Rad. And finally, the rarer or special types of slimes: Lucky, Glitch, Quicksilver, Twinkle And Gold.
The Early Access version of the Slime Rancher received "generally positive" reviews. Heather Alexandra from Kotaku noticed some bugs, but gave the game positive review saying that “I’m not usually a fan of games as catharsis but when return to my bright and goofy farm at the end of the day? I can't help but smile as wide as my slimy little friends.” Phillip Grobler from LevelSkip enjoyed playing Slime Rancher giving the game a score of 4.3 out of 5 stars saying that “this game is very fun already and I will recommend anyone to go and check it out”. Steve Neilsen from Games Mojo awarded it 4.4 out of 5 stars stating that "Slime Rancher is fun and addictive game, with a fun premise and cute creatures. The cartoon style graphics look amazing, and gameplay is clever and full of cute."
The full release of the game got a score of 81/100 on Metacritic, with reviewers saying it was colorful and bittersweet and had the ability to keep you hooked for hours. Reviewers also said it was relaxing and cathartic, but quite repetitive, and successfully taps into the addictive nature of farming simulators, but it doesn't quite reach the heights of its subgenre.
By May 2017, the game had sold over 800,000 copies.
Golden Joystick Awards
In the 2017 Golden Joystick Awards, Slime Rancher was nominated for Best Indie Game and Best Xbox Game, and Nick Popovich was nominated for the Breakthrough Award.
Game of the year 2017
In August 2017, Slime Rancher was nominated for Gameinformer's Game of the Year award for Best Simulation Game, where it won.
|“||Slime Rancher combines a number of fun activities and integrates them all into one satisfying loop. Catching and effectively managing by crossbreeding them and upgrading corrals creates a great sense of progression. The more you dig into Slime Rancher, the more you can experiment with and optimize your own playstyle, making for a sim that's not only cute, but deep.||”|
For more detailed information, see Game Versions.