Aqua Culture Land was released in early access June 7th on Steam. A Fish Farmer Simulator. Is the life of a Fish Farmer as interesting as an agricultural farmer (e.g. Farming Simulator)? Let’s have a look!
As the main menu pops up with fitting, slightly appealing music, I’m drawn to it but also confused. The background picture shows fish jumping in the sea and land, implying there are various areas you can grow fish in.
Since the “Continue” option is for an already existing game, which I don’t have, the only option to play is “Free Mode”. So hopefully, the “Continue” button is a placeholder for a Story Mode in the future…
So going right to “Free Mode”, I’m starting off on a big patch of land with trees. So this is it, the Aqua Culture Land…
Yes, looks a bit like Stardew Valley. Just because of this, I instantly like the game – for now. I’m waiting a couple of seconds for a Tutorial to come up. No tutorial.
What on earth am I supposed to do now. Well – grow fish duh – so… it’s learning by doing.
I follow all the menu items from top to bottom. First I dig out a pond, mark a square area and the worker on the map is digging it out. Then, I need to select the water. There are 3 different kinds of water with different qualities. The better ones cost more.
Then I set up an Aerator. Fish need oxygen and the Aerator is taking care of that. There are different kinds as well. Some need a power source (from generator, solar panels or windmill), others have a solar panel included.
Then it’s time for the fish. There are 12 different fish varieties. For now there is only the Tilapia unlocked. But that in 5 different kinds.
The long wait…
Now I plant the fish into the pond, buy a water purifier, lean back on my chair and think: “What now?”. I click a couple of menu buttons in the top left corner. Financial Report, Worker Management, Inbox and the Shop.
Hire more workers – check
Get orders for specific fish and weights – check
Sell the fish directly in the shop – check
But the fish take an awful long time to grow. So enthusiastically I hit the fast forward button but it doesn’t go as fast as I would like it to go. So I click on the fish pond which opens a details menu.
The goal is to have happy, healthy fish. The bars to the left – in my case – are mostly in the red. So ideally, they should all be in the green area, where the black arrow points up.
Well, not much I can do at the moment since I don’t have the money yet. So let’s focus on the area to the right, where I can see all the fish in the pond, their status and weight. Still very small…. hmmm… guess fish need time to grow after all.
The interesting option here is the “Automate Store Fish”. You can automatically take the fish out of the pond when they reach a certain size. Level 2, 3, 4 – all of which are not explained here. So I pick “Level 2” and wait…
First Fish ready for Market
With the “Automate Store Fish” activated, soon a box marked with “Tilapia” and the weight is standing next to the pool.
I open the market window and see my box of fish at the bottom left.
Great! I hit the box, sell the fish for 2’200 dollars.
Going back to the empty pool… guess I have to buy more fish… rinse and repeat.
Keep in mind, this is and Early Access game. You never know, where Early Access games go and in what direction they develop…
Aqua Culture Land gives you what the title says. Unfortunately Aqua Culture seems not to be very exciting. After all… it’s fish, clams and mussles so the game already limits itself with the content.
Of course you have different kinds of fish and mussles that need different kinds of conditions to grow and be healthy. But in the end, it’s all the same.
No cool tractors, tools, land to buy, and other things to do. You can’t even go into the house to simulate life around farming. Build a pool, build water quality equipment, place fish, wait, sell.
Hopefully they will introduce a Story / Campain that takes you to different areas of the world even to spice things up a bit. But in “Free Mode” it’s just bland like an unseasoned trout straight from the water pot…