Cowboy Life Simulator Prologue is a pretty typical simulator game. If you haven’t played one of these before, most of them have the same look and feel. There’s a very familiar melange of jank coating every aspect of these sort of games. Usually there’s a very repetitive and tedious mechanic that has a zen like quality to it that attracts a certain crowd. For this game, it’s more of a crafting survival game.
Cowboy Life Simulator may have you thinking that you are going to live the exciting life of a cowboy but essentially you are just playing minecraft in the wild west. You will be chopping down trees, mining rocks, and planting and harvesting plants. You’ll also be building houses and furniture, because in this world cowboys are multi-talented individuals. You may occasionally have to shoot down some bandits but for the most part, the game seems to focus more heavily on farming and building than on being a cowpoke.
There is one noticeable improvement in this game over other games of this type. The scope of the game definitely feels larger. The game has a more heavy narrative focus with a series of quests, named characters to talk to, and places to explore. The quests are essentially fetch quests where you must go to a certain location, talk to a certain individual and or grab a certain item before returning.
It does add some dimension and volume to the game in small spades. However, and this may be improved once the full game is out, it does seem pointedly lacking in many regards. The faces of the characters are incredibly lifeless and soulless. I guess life sucks in the wild west. It’s not really detracting from the game play but it is quite noticeable in a humorous way.
The dialogue and pacing of the writing also feels pretty lackluster. It’s serviceable but it’s definitely no Red Dead Redemption 2 where you feel an attachment of sorts to the characters you run across or at the very least, have the characters feel more like real individuals.
The world itself is pretty large as well with plenty of areas to explore and people to interact with. The demo is pretty limited so you won’t be able to see the full scope of the game but it did seem like it would have quests that activate once you reach certain locations. That would definitely be a pleasant addition as you would have a nice change of pace from the tedium of mindlessly harvesting resources.
As for the survival and crafting elements of the game, they seemed pretty ok. There are a lot of mechanics in the game to engage with. Other than chopping down trees and mining rocks, you can grow your own vegetation. The mechanics are pretty simple as you just simply dig some arable land, plant a seed, fertilize it, and then water it. You can also raise farm animals and have them follow you around as companions. The mechanics are pretty simple but they make up for the lack of depth with quantity.
Overall, Cowboy Life Simulator Prologue is looking like a decent crafting survival game. I definitely didn’t feel like a cowboy but I am a sucker for any survival crafting game and this one is looking mediocre in a way I can get behind. It’s definitely not a genre changing experience but where there’s mindless harvesting of resources to be done, I’ll be there.