You may not have played any of the Farming Simulator video games, but you’ve probably heard the name. Over the last eight years each of the annual releases from Giant Software has steadily grown in popularity, and it’s now one of the most popular franchises out there. So new kids on the block Masterbrain Bytes are genuinely taking on a giant task as they attempt to crowdfund Cattle and Crops, their own entry into the farm management genre.
And the German developer is certainly off to a flying start. Cattle and Crops reached its €75,000 ($84,000) goal within two days and doesn’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down. This feat becomes even more impressive once you take into account the eagerly awaited Farming Simulator 17 is going to be released in only a few weeks, while Cattle and Crops won’t be finished until next year. So what’s the secret of its success?
Well for one, the Kickstarter campaign is one of the most professional I’ve seen – it’s even available in nine languages. The visuals look great, and are encouragingly all from genuine gameplay footage. Die-hard farming enthusiasts will love how comprehensive it already seems, with a large range of sponsors and brands already on board. Cattle and Crops also promises to cater towards casual fans as well, while players of all levels will be able to enjoy a variety of game modes including campaign, sandbox and multiplayer. There’s even free DLC planned.
Of course that’s all well and good but it doesn’t fully explain the runaway success. Taking a look at the location of backers sheds some further light on the situation. Of the 2,000 current backers almost two-thirds are from Germany. Farming sims are popular throughout Europe, (even in the UK it was only The Witcher 3 that kept Farming Simulator 15 off the top of the charts), but the Germans really love these games.
Thanks to the German support, Cattle and Crops is all but guaranteed to be a big success. The big question now is whether Masterbrain Bytes can garner a similar reaction from the rest of the world. The stretch goals for Cattle and Crops extend up to €350,000 ($392,420) but at the moment that seems almost conservative. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the final total raised is closer to $1 million.
(Ed: we’ve added the promising Cattle and Crops to our Kickstarter curator page, check out it and the other titles we’ve selected at http://kickstarter.com/cliqist.)