Galactic Harvester is available for PC on Steam Early Access.
I’m no stranger to mindless digital labour. There’s a certain charm to games like Farming Simulator and Viscera Cleanup Duty. Sitting back and doing some hard work just feels good. Galactic Harvester, despite being in early access, manages to capture that charm. While it still has a long way to go, the game is both relaxing and engaging.
Galactic Harvester is a top-down farming game. Players choose a planet to colonise, and then create crops to grow on said planet. Selling crops brings in money and settlers, allowing you to upgrade the facility. The map features hexagonal tiles for players to place crops on. Tilling, harvesting, and carrying your produce is the bulk of what you’ll be doing, while occasionally setting up your farm in the most optimal way.
As far as the game play goes, it’s really simple and easy to get into. While something like Farming Simulator is noted for its realism and complexity, Galactic Harvester makes it easy to grow out your crops and yield lots of money. Planting crops is intuitive, and while many things take time to do, the controls are well detailed. Driving around the small area feels satisfying too. There’s also a real sense of progression throughout the game. You can use research points to unlock missions. Once these missions are complete you gain access to a number of new farming equipment that helps in various ways. Everything is really simple and clearly laid out, which I really appreciate.
The game’s aesthetic does leave something to be desired. Even for an indie game, the graphical quality isn’t really all there. The environments especially look like they were created with very basic assets. The menus as well are also really indicative of its state as an early access game. I was however impressed with the quality of the music and sound effects. In a game like this, the sound is really important in regards to immersion. It’s very easy to create ear-grating noises but thankfully Galactic Harvester is quite pleasant to the ear.
The game right now is very bare-bones. You’re probably only looking at a couple of hours worth of content, and you’ll need to work pretty slowly. That being said, despite the graphical issues, I think Galactic Harvester could turn out to be a fun little farming game.