- System: PC, Xbox Series X
- Publisher: Skybound Games
- Developer: Serenity Forge
- Release Date: April 21, 2023
- Rating: E10+ Everyone 10+
- Genre: Adventure, Farming, Simulation
- Players: 1
- Official Website: https://store.steampowered.com/app/1867520/Homestead_Arcana/
As gamers, we’ve played quite our share of farming simulators. Aside from the literal Farming Simulator titles, we’ve played plenty of games that allow players to take to the fields and grow crops and build up small farms. Homestead Arcana is probably the most intriguing concept for a farming simulator title. Rather than just till the lands and drop seeds around, you are a young witch who grows out the land via magic and spells! While you won’t be flinging around spells like in Hogwarts Legacy, Homestead Arcana seems to be geared for those who just want a different approach on the simulation genre. Are you going to read up how to best brew your next crop or is Homestead Arcana a spell you leave in the forgotten dusty tomes? We find out in our review of Homestead Arcana for the PC!
Welcome to the Miasma Filled World
The opening sequence of Homestead Arcana does a pretty good job explaining what the situation is. Sometime ago a strange miasma-like fog enveloped the world and humanity retreated to the mountains as the miasma only continued to devour the land and make it inhospitable. A small village has decided to see if there is a way to live in the world of the miasma and you’re the witch that has been tasked with doing so. Alongside your talking cat Huckleberry—who really is a treat—your goal is to farm the land and explore to see if there is a way to win against the miasma threat. Homestead Arcana does a nice job of initially giving you the drive to want to become a powerful witch farmer, two words we never thought would go together, but that is equally where Homestead Arcana fails a bit…more on that later though. For now, let’s dive into the gameplay and what Homestead Arcana does right.
Move Aside Tills and Plows, Our Powers Got This
Rather than farm in the traditional sense, Homestead Arcana allows you to use the power of spells and potions to help create crops, reuse the lands and grow salvageable items. We never grew tired of using various magic to watch a seed grow into a massive corn stalk or plant and reap our work, plus as you gain more powerful spells you can clear lands quickly and gain even better harvests. Yet, planting is only one half of Homestead Arcana as there is another aspect, exploring the miasma and the world around you.
As you’ll quickly discover, the miasma is no joke. This purple fog-like entity is thick and filled with danger but luckily you’re a witch with tools to survive and you’ll need those for a successful adventure. The exploration early on is very small but you’ll be given more room to move about as you progress in Homestead Arcana.
The Staples of a Simulation Are All Here
Homestead Arcana is a simulation game and that means you won’t get far if you just run around doing nothing productive. You need food and rest to survive and that means crafting meals, looking for edible food and building up a nice shelter that starts as a simple tent. Homestead Arcana does just enough to feel like a traditional simulation game which is what we definitely wanted! We think there could have been additional elements like drinking water but we won’t be overly picky.
A Too Relaxed Spell
We’ve talked a lot about Homestead Arcana and what it does right but we can’t put off the flaws that will possibly change your mind about buying this unique title. The first major issue with Homestead Arcana is the overall progression, we didn’t doubt farming in a miasma filled world would take some time but it feels like Homestead Arcana takes a bit to really get going. In the early few hours we learned a lot about how to survive the miasma, what dangers awaited us and how to best grow a prosperous field but it felt kind of boring initially. That being said, when we were given more freedom in moving about and doing our own thing, Homestead Arcana opened up and was a lot more fun.
The other gripe we had while investing our time in Homestead Arcana was we lacked drive to really want to save the world with our powers/farm. Yes, watching our lands grow and finding more ways to survive this harsh land was interesting but it never drove us to really care about the world and the plight of those within. You’re really only going to play Homestead Arcana for the sim aspect and probably take to the narrative with very little care.
Homestead Arcana probably won’t appeal to a huge audience as it is a simulation game and that always has a niche fanbase. That being said for the low price of $19.99, Homestead Arcana is a pretty solid adventure experience. We do wish there was a bit more meat here to chew on but we enjoyed our short time with Homestead Arcana and think many will find a lot of fun in this simple adventure/farming simulation title!
Are you interested in Homestead Arcana? You should comment below to let us know! Keep stuck to our wizard/witch hive here at Honey’s Anime for more otaku greatness and all your gaming review needs!