Those who enjoyed breeding and raising their own fish in Last Day of Work’s Fish Tycoon will soon be able to swap their aquariums for green houses in the upcoming sister title Plant Tycoon, which is scheduled to launch in early September.
Gameplay in Plant Tycoon is similar to Fish Tycoon, except that you’ll now have to nurture plants from seeds in the ground through to maturity, watering them, spraying them if they get sick, pruning back their leaves, pollinating them to produce new seeds, and then finally selling off the plant in the adjacent nursery store to earn money to keep your business afloat and buy various upgrades.
These upgrades can include exotic seeds to introduce new strains of plant into the greenhouse, additional seed boxes to store them, tools such as better pruning shears that have less chance of damaging the plant, various sprays and plant food, and upgrades like a nice ornamental statue or latticed gate for the nursery to draw in more customers.
Plant lovers and sim game fans will certainly have something to sink their teeth into: there are more than 500 species of plant to discover in Plant Tycoon, either by purchasing exotic seeds, cross-pollinating two plants together, or giving one a squirt with a bottle of trusty Mutation Liquid. By clicking on a mature plant, you can see a plant’s heritage to help map out what characteristics its own offspring might have.
After enough selective breeding and experimentation, you’ll start to discover the extremely rare and sought after Magic Plants, which must be returned to the island of Isola. (Isola must be a magical island indeed. First it was magic fish in Fish Tycoon, now magic plants.) On top of that, you can even use a butterfly net to capture the various insects and creepy crawlies that visit the greenhouse from time to time to display in jars and add to your private bug collection – an optional diversion that you can choose to pursue or not at your leisure.
Like Fish Tycoon, Plant Tycoon takes place in real-time, which means that the plants will keep growing even when you’re not inside the game. If you play the game one evening and come back the next evening, you’ll find that your plants will have changed. Some might have matured and be ready for pollination; others may have produced seeds, and still others may have withered from lack of water or succumbed to insects. Like any good gardener, you’ll have to give your plants consistent love and attention if you want them to thrive.
If this idea makes you a bit nervous, don’t worry: you can adjust the game’s speed to fit your schedule and anticipate the times when you know you’ll have to leave your greenhouse unattended for longer periods of time. In the Game Speed setting you can set time to normal (where a plant takes about 50 minutes to mature), half speed, twice as fast, or stop time altogether. There are also three levels of difficulty.
Plant Tycoon is definitely a change of pace from getting to watch and interact with live animals, but the more docile and laid back trade of gardening has its own rich rewards, like the moment that your little green stem surprises you by erupting in beautiful colorful flowers for the first time.