[Top 15] Best Farming Games (Ranked Fun to Most Fun)

Fun horses on a farm
Farm everything from horses, slimes and even irradiated anthropomorphized flowers in these great farming games!

To the average gamer, farming games sound like simulated chores. And to a certain extent, that’s true. Farming games and games with farming mechanics are chores-adjacent. But there is a clear difference between cleaning your room and harvesting a crop with your brand new bronze scythe. I know that I for one, never got a dopamine hit from picking socks up off the floor.

It only takes one game to hook you. Soon you’ll see how farming games can activate the organizational and aesthetic-minded parts of your brain. And all of that, while doling out compounding progress to satisfy that little voice in your head that just wants the numbers to go up.

It should also be noted that not all farming games are created equal. They aren’t all lazy river trudges where you watch beetroots slowly sprout.

So it’s time for you to grab your hoe, mount your tractor and answer that letter from your grandpa. Just what kind of farmer are you? Trust me, there are choices!

15. Immortal Life

Windows (Early Access)

This is the farming plot in Immortal Life

Looking out over your patch in Immortal Life

As an avowed indie snob, Immortal Life really excites me. Farming games and life sims can sometimes become so mechanic focused and customizable that there isn’t a lot of attention paid to setting and story.

Immortal Life sidesteps these problems entirely with a gorgeous painterly aesthetic and a rich story rooted in Chinese folklore. It is a wonderfully unique game with a few large caveats, hence the low placement on this list.

While the set dressing is breathtaking, there are more than a few rough edges to challenge your immersion. The English translation is hit and miss, the UI isn’t overly polished, the character models are quite plain and, according to recent reviews, it is unplayable on the Steam Deck.

That said, Immortal Life is still in early access and it’s entirely possible that all of these issues will be patched out before the game is content complete (although, at the time of publication, translation issues were not included in the development roadmap to the release of version 1.0).

14. Littlewood - 2019

Switch, Windows, Linux, Mac

Littlewood's town square and trees are pictured

Trees and crops growing all over the town in Littlewood

In an attempt to keep this list from becoming filled with Harvest Moon clones, some of the featured games are not solely farming-focused. Littlewood is one of those games.

In Littlewood, you are the JRPG trope of the chosen one saving the world from a cataclysmic disaster. That is, except that the fight happened before the game started and you can’t remember anything. Now, your job is to rebuild the town you may or may not have destroyed while fighting the Dark Wizard. You do that by exploring, talking to townspeople, growing crops and building houses.

Littlewood is a delightfully cute, simple and engaging life sim, à la Animal Crossing. It is perfectly suited to mobile and Switch because of its simple mechanics and controls. And, like Animal Crossing, it is combat-free which lets you relax and build up the town at your own pace.

13. Forager - 2019

Switch, Android, Xbox One, Playstation 4, iOS, Windows, Linux, Mac

Forges and other crafting stations in Forager

Why have one furnace when you can have 10?

This is another stylish indie game where farming is part of the experience but not necessarily central to it. The thrust of Forager’s gameplay is expansion. You start on a tiny island which you transform into a massive world filled with monsters, gold, resources and all the other goodies that make games exciting.

You start out with one tool: a pickaxe. You use that pickaxe to smash, chop and harvest everything you can see. To begin your voyage of rapid gentrification you must manage resources, hunger and eventually money. Over the course of a playthrough, you will fish, craft, trap and smash everything in sight. And in doing so, you will gain experience and money to upgrade your tools, health, combat skills and even your crafting abilities themselves.

Forager is one of those games that feels so simple when you start and slowly reveals itself to be an epically huge and varied world. Don’t let its simple pixel art and controls deceive you! There is a decent chunk of game to be mined here (pun intentional) and farming is just one of the tools at your disposal.

12. Ooblets - 2022

Switch, Xbox One, Windows

Farming rows and rows of Ooblets sprouts

Neat little rows of Ooblet sprouts getting their daily watering

Ooblets almost defies description. But, as this list would be borderline useless without it, I will endeavor to defy its defiance and chronicle its contents as best I can.

At first blush, Ooblets is a life sim. You land on an isolated island populated with twee cartoon locals. Their environment and lifestyle is completely out of step with the world you left. But that’s actually the familiar part.

While you develop your land and meet the locals, you keep hearing about an indigenous Animalia endemic to the island of Oob. Your life on the island will feel a little like Animal Crossing except with more dancing, farming and exploring. That is, in addition to mainstay Animal Crossing activities like scavenging and fishing (hilariously referred to as “sea dangling”).

The animals, called Ooblets, are small, pokemon-like creatures who you bribe with gifts. Then you dance-battle them to win a seed and grow a copy of the creature you battled. I told you it wasn’t easy to describe!

Additionally, the whole thing is wrapped in a silly aesthetic that reminded me a lot of Donut County. I can’t wait to find some time to dive back in and get all my gleaming Ooblets!

11. Minecraft - 2011

Every conceivable platform released after 2011. Seriously, check if you can play this on your smart fridge or your car. It’s possible!

A small carrot farm in Minecraft

A great example of a small, self-watering farm in Minecraft

Including Minecraft in any serious list of games to check out in 2022 verges on redundancy. That said, if you somehow haven’t played this voxel-based, survival adventure, it’s worth another look for the farming alone.

Personally, I had barely touched the farming mechanics in my first half a dozen playthroughs. When I got to the point where I started taking crafting and enchanting more seriously, however, I gave farming another look.

Between planning and laying out optimized fields that are protected from mobs and invaders, and looking up glitchy, factory-style farm builds on YouTube; Minecraft revealed to me a depth of complexity and allowance for creativity unheard of in the cultivational arts genre of games.

Give Minecraft a first shot, another shot or one last shot on just about any platform that exists.

10. Rune Factory 4 Special - 2019

Switch, 3DS, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Windows

Watering plants in the Rune Factory 4 Special's farm

Tending to some flowers in Rune Factory 4 Special’s garden

Rune Factory is a bizarre series. Tracing its lineage back to the original Harvest Moon, it feels like a game that fell out of a parallel universe where traditional JRPGs never gained popularity.

The original Rune Factory was born out of a question the developers of Harvest Moon asked themselves after celebrating the series’ 10th anniversary: “what if we put the swords back in our farming RPG?”

Getting into the lineage of Rune Factory and how it intersects with Harvest Moon in-depth would take a lot more room than this list will allow. But, suffice it to say that Rune Factory 4 Special (RF4S) is a treat. Maybe more of an oatmeal raisin cookie than a double chocolate fudge, but still a treat nonetheless.

You can farm, upgrade and fight and the setting is undeniably a JRPG fantasy village. But there is one very big drawback to be considered. RF4S is not a modern game by any reasonable standard. The original release debuted on the 3DS in 2012. It lacks polish and some quality of life features and just doesn’t compare well mechanically or looks-wise to a lot of the other entries on this list. That said, it is a true classic of the genre and worth checking out if you think you can appreciate the sweetness, acidity and tannins in a vintage 3DS port. Didn’t think you’d see wine tasting jokes in a list of farming games? Think again!

9. No Place Like Home - 2020


Crops and animals in No Place Like Home

Surveying our animals and crops in No Place Like Home

It’s conceivable that there would be a list of the top 15 farming games that did not include one absolute left-field, downright silly from top-to-bottom, entry. But I won’t have it! No Place Like Home (NPLH) must be recognized.

While it doesn’t have the pedigree of a Rune Factory or the mechanical depth of a Minecraft, NPLH makes up for this with a satirical premise set in the freaking post apocalypse!

The setting is reminiscent of the Pixar movie WALL-E, where humanity has abandoned a trash-filled earth for paradise in space. You are one of the few left behind and must use your trusty vacuum to clear your garbage-strewn land.

The feel of the game is a bit of Harvest Moon mixed with a dash of Escape from New York. What’s not to like? The only drawback in NPLH is that it’s a bit content-light so it might be worth waiting for a sale.

8. Atomicrops - 2019

Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Windows, Mac

Fighting and farming in Atomicrops

Things can get hectic quickly in Atomicrops

The second hit in the one-two punch combo of post apocalyptic farming games that this list inexplicably contains is Atomicrops. But, its irradiated and trash-filled landscape is where the similarities between it and No Place Like Home end.

You farm in Atomicrops, just not vegetation that looks particularly appetizing. The game abandons the coziness and relaxed speed of standard farming fare. It stretches the very definition of what a farming game can be. Atomicrops fuses a smart and furious combination of arcade-paced bullet hell with roguelite elements. In all honesty, it has more in common with Counter-Strike than it does with Farming Simulator.

But that’s also what makes it so distinctive. In what other game do you spend the daytime planting anthropomorphized flowers and trees and the night shooting a machine gun at a spinning, spitting hellfire sun? I can just about guarantee you with 100 percent certainty that this experience can only be found in Atomicrops.

7. My Time At Portia - 2019

Switch, Android, Playstation 4, iOS, Mac, Windows

Your farmstead and factory in My Time At Portia

An optimized My Time At Portia farmstead

In the latter half of this list, there are going to be a few games featured that I lost full weeks of my life to. My Time At Portia (MTAP) is a great example of that. The amount of stuff you can do and build in it is staggering.

You can feel the gentle nudging hand of the development team leading you from activity to activity while still not making anything feel compulsory. You can attend festivals or submit your artisan goods for judging or you can skip all of that and just explore the mines. Best of all, all of the tools in MTAP feel good to use. Chopping down trees with your new iron axe or crafting the last part of a mega build is a truly satisfying experience.

My only qualm with MTAP, and one thing that kept me from putting any more time into it, was the handful of bugs I encountered. Or rather, it was one very specific quest-breaking bug. I had to turn in a quest to a person who was stuck in a wall and unreachable. This may be an isolated experience, but it soured me on the game.

That said, the rest of my 50 hours were phenomenal and I feel comfortable recommending this innovative and worthwhile indie title. I’m equally optimistic about its sequel, My Time At Sandrock, which is in early access but receiving promising reviews.

6. Animal Crossing: New Horizons - 2020


Fishing in Animal Crossing

Fishing by the fruit trees is a peaceful time in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

I know for a fact that I am not the only person who impulse bought Animal Crossing: New Horizons (ACNH) in the early days of Covid. I’d never played an Animal Crossing game before but I knew that if there ever was a time to play an AC game, it was now.

And I’m so happy I did. While I know the game has received its share of criticism from diehard series fans, I absolutely adored my time with ACNH.

Whether I was beautifying my island with purely aesthetic roads and patterns, organizing my orchard or collecting shooting star shards, ACNH was a magical experience when I really needed one. There’s something so wholesome and comforting about the gentle tone, anthropomorphic inhabitants and the slow and steady accumulation of cruft.

Seriously, at one point in my ACNH playtime, after I had long run out of storage in my house, I started lining the beaches (on all 3 sides of my island) with duplicate crafting recipes and tchotchkes I couldn’t bear to part with. It is with great shame that I must admit that I am an Animal Crossing hoarder.

But that’s also a great endorsement of the game. I kept so much stuff I would likely never use because each purely decorative item and each rare crafting recipe felt like a treasure. Surely even if I didn’t need it, maybe one of my friends would?

5. Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town - 2019

Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Windows

The farming field in Friends of Mineral Town

Checking in on crops in Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town

It’s a little hard to imagine a list of the top farming games that doesn’t feature at least one title from the Story of Seasons line. While recent releases are often hit or miss, Friends of Mineral Town (FoMT) is a wonderful remaster of a classic entry in the series that carries the Harvest Moon (HM) torch.

If you weren’t aware, and you honestly don’t need to be, long story short is that HM games were called Story of Seasons (SoS) in Japan. When the team that published SoS games in America split off from the original Japanese developers, they kept the name Harvest Moon. Naturally, they began making their own farming life series and called them, you guessed it, Harvest Moon. So, for a long time, the farming games that the original HM developers made could not use that name in the West and North American sales of those games suffered accordingly.

But in 2022, the name Harvest Moon has been thoroughly devalued and only really carries clout as a reference point for more modern games. It’s a name to be mentioned with reverence while only really referring to the original 1996 Super Nintendo release.

Thankfully, FoMT is a great representation of the Harvest Moon lineage in its purest form and a faithful update to a quintessential GBA game.

4. Dinkum

Windows (Early Access)

A well manicured farming patch in Dinkum

Giving the veg a bloody good sprinkle in Dinkum

This might be the easiest game in this entire list to summarize because you can do it in three words. Australian. Animal. Crossing.

That may be a bit of an oversimplification. It isn’t just an Animal Crossing clone made by an Australian dev team and set in the outback. It just shares a lot of common elements with the famous talking-animal life sim.

You have relationship levels with villagers that you attract to live on your island by doing favors for them that usually involve delivering them their favorite items. One of the big differences that stuck out to me, besides the fantastic Australian-isms that pepper the games’ dialogue, is that exploring the areas outside of camp feels a lot more thrilling than it ever did in ACNH.

In Animal Crossing, you’re rarely ever in any real danger. But if you wander into the wrong part of the outback, a crocodile or giant bird will attack you until you either escape or faint. Just like real life!

It’s cute. It’s fun. It’s cozy. It’s fair dinkum.

3. Kynseed

Windows (Early Access)

The town pub in Kynseed

A novel part of Kynseed is the chance to run a shop and sell your produce

Kynseed is an RPG life sim made by one of the developers behind Fable. I’ll let you pick your jaw up off the floor before I continue. If you’re anything like me, this game snuck past you when it released in (checks store page) 2018!?! Seriously?

While it is technically in development, Kynseed is not a half-baked release. Not only that, it is replete with the same kind of memorable NPC interactions that made the Fable series so charming.

It has cheeky villagers, tons of things to do and you can run your own shop!

It is a bit of a kitchen sink game, however, but it manages to implement them all well enough that they form a cohesive package. And a big part of the appeal of this game is the fact that there has been so much care put into the mechanics. Some games have one-button crafting or fishing but in Kynseed everything is far more kinetic and bespoke. It’s a game that punches well above the weight of the small indie team that brought it to life.

2. Slime Rancher - 2017

Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Windows, Mac, Linux

The home pod in Slime Rancher

Slime Rancher’s Slime Ranch

Now that this list has taken a quick dip into games that favor traditional farming mechanics, it’s time for one more bonkers one.

In Slime Rancher, you are tasked with cultivating crops and slimes. The twist is that, depending on which slimes you grow and what you feed them, they will produce more slimes or absorb and eat each other to make new (and sometimes chaotically bad) variants. And once your slimes are fed their favorite food they leave behind a plort. This is undoubtedly a cute way to say its poop. Luckily, plorts (or poops) sell for the same currency used to buy upgrades and the prices favor the harder to produce excretions. It’s a sort of stool-based stock exchange that devalues each varietal depending on how much of them you sell.

Slime Rancher is silly, cute and has a very consistent tone. While it may not lend itself to extremely long playthroughs (due to the lack of customization that typically drives long plays), it is such a fun ride while it lasts. And to top it off, it has the best vacuum gun in any game I’ve had the good fortune to play.

1. Stardew Valley - 2016

Switch, Android, Playstation 4, Mac, Xbox One, iOS, Windows, Linux, Playstation Vita

The farmstead in Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley looks simple but has nearly unlimited permutations for layout

It seems inevitable that every list of farming games will end with Stardew. I did my best to avoid it but it really is that good. While some games nod to the legacy of Harvest Moon or take the concept of “farming as gameplay” into new and wild territory, Stardew Valley (SV) improved the traditional farming RPG in nearly every conceivable way.

It may not be everyone’s cup of tea but SV must be acknowledged as the most successful love letter to Harvest Moon ever. Each character in the game has an interesting arc and their own unique personality. There are goals you cannot accomplish in one full in-game year because there is just so much to do. On top of that, the skill progression nears perfection. SV is one of those games where each upgrade absolutely changes the way you interact with the game exponentially. When you get a new axe, not only does it take less stamina to chop down a tree, it also means there are new trees you can cut down. New trees means new wood which means new crafting options.

The interconnectedness of the systems attests to the obsession that ConcernedApe (Eric Barone’s nom de plume and the name of his solo studio) brought to SV. I don’t like to call games perfect but this is the game that converts a lot of players to farming game obsessives. In fact, I am one of those players. Before SV, I didn’t think I would ever play a farming game. Now I’ve made a list of the 15 best farming games and this is the most fun one I can recommend. Maybe not a shocking end, but an accurate one. Hoe on my friends!

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A veteran of the 360 wars, James is a mentally chill games journalist. His tagged skills include persuasion, game reviewing, indie snobbery and being a dad.
Gamer Since: 1990
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Marvel Snap
Top 3 Favorite Games:Stardew Valley Bachelor Ratings (All Stardew Bachelors Ranked Worst To Best), The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, Just Cause 3

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