|a game by
|Playstation 2 (2003)
|6/10, based on 1 review
|6.2/10 - 9 votes
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|Anime Games, Simulator Games, Manga Games, Games Like Rune Factory, Games Like Farmville
Not the first iteration of farming simulator games that would become popular shortly after its release Shepherd’s Crossing, was released originally for the Playstation 2 console in 2003. Published by Japanese developer Success the title might seem familiar to other titles of the genre, and it is, but it still strives to provide a different focus than its counterparts.
Being one of the first titles of its genre to stray away from the foundations set by the Story of Season, or Harvest Moon franchise, Shepherd’s Crossing naturally felt and played like a different game. Of course, there might be multiple similarities, but those can be attributed to the fact that ultimately they share the same genre.
Build Your Journey
In Shepherd’s Crossing you play as a young man that has been enticed by the offer of a place to call your own in a small village that sits atop of a high mountain. Much like reality, nothing in life is free, so the condition upon which you will be given the land is that you commit yourself to develop and grow it, by farming. And here is where the farming simulation begins, as a way to gain the trust and truly become a citizen of that community you need to grow livestock, gather material, sell meat and other activities to become one of Shepherd's Crossing’s habitants.
Unlike other Farming Simulator titles there isn’t any currency that regulates the market, and by being an older title there aren’t any micro transactions as well. Instead the game functions on an exchange system. Essentially you are given grass, and then have to farm and trade your way all the way to sheeps, which are the game’s most prized possession.
The last piece of the game revolves around hunting, and with it comes the only “currency” of the game, which is the “Hunting Points”. Those points are used to upgrade and evolve your farm, skills and some cosmetic enhancements for your farm.
Small Town Life
Shepherd’s Crossing tells a very calm, compelling and charming story. It is by no means a masterpiece in storytelling, but it does its job building the ambience in which the game takes place. The best parts of the title might rely on the charming NPC’s, especially the mallard that, albeit always drunk, has vast knowledge to help you throughout your journey.
Finally, while the controls can feel unnatural at first the gameplay is fairly simple, and surprisingly detailed. Sadly, the game feels very small locked within the confines of your own farm, this trait - unlike other games of the genre - makes the title feel slightly compressed in comparison.
Shepherd’s Crossing is one of the first farming simulators that strays away from a very tried and true formula, in doing so it develops its own characteristics and feels unique. There are a lot of good things in the game, interesting barter mechanics, and charming characters, but that is not enough to bring the game alive, and to provide a fully developed world in which to immerse yourself.
For fans of the genre, or the Harvest Moon, Terraria, Plantera or any of the farming simulations game, you can enjoy an original title that helped lay the foundations of the genre you know today. Be warned that this is originally a Playstation 2 title so graphics might not be up to the standards of new players, and that while a fun game, there are better options nowadays.
- Charming Characters
- Unique Concepts
- Simple Controls
- Confined Within The Farm Walls
- Didn’t Age Very Well
- Graphics Can Dissuade New Players
- Ordinary Storyf