My Magically Okay Ranch
"I'm not sure what Booster was up to getting me to play this game, but pin the tail on the papercraft donkey and call me surprised!"
Believe me when I say I wasn't expecting to play this game for longer than 10 minutes. I came into this with extraordinarily low expectations for my own personal enjoyment, so color me surprised when I genuinely wanted to play a little more.
My Fantastic Ranch is a casual ranch-building sim all about unicorns and dragons. Build the usual ranch-y things like barns, stables, and employment offices, and start attracting students of the mystical unnamed kingdom.
This game is the epitome of family-friendly, complete with a childlike misspelling of the word "enroll."
The game gives you two options of difficulty: crystalline capitalism and state-owned ranch. The latter is the sandbox mode that comes free of the story, challenges, and gem limitations.
I never really found myself strapped for cash on the normal difficulty, though. Weekly expenditures were so minute I had half a-mind to dig into the budget for seconds.
Oh yea. I can hear you groaning after that pun.
Speaking of time, the game will run you about 2 hours for the main story. Feritella, your cute fairy narrator, will guide you through ten reputation levels and leave you be to create your ranch after that. It's easy and straight-forward, perfect for the moms who tell their kids "We have Animal Crossing at home."
In case you haven't noticed, the art style of the game is pretty unique! There are multiple types of dragons and unicorns, including some rare ones, for you to enjoy in all of their paper-craft-esque glory.
You can't have a functioning ranch without activities either. There are a few arenas to train your magical creatures in. Watch your feathered wind dragon practice acrobatics or the cosmic unicorn pushing a large ball around in circus practice.
Everything pops in My Fantastic Ranch and if anything kept my 20-something self occupied for 3 hours, it was that.
There's not a whole lot else to say. Progression tracking is excellent, I guess? The game gives you weekly reports. Income, spending, what activities you did that week, it's all there. Looking at graphs is an underrated amusement, wouldn't you agree?
It's a game that accomplishes the goals it wants to achieve. It's not a diamond; there's nothing that makes it stand out for better or worse. It's a ranch sim for all ages and honestly it's an excellent introduction to management games.
The biggest learning takeaway is utilizing space and money, though the game gives you plenty of both. Heck, I found myself restructuring the ranch a couple times to optimize traveling time (not that it really mattered).
My only gripe is that the day counter sometimes shows the incorrect day.
My Fantastic Ranch is definitely not a bad game. It's just not something I can recommend to people who are already dominating landscapes and outworld ecosystems in games like Cities: Skylines or Factorio.
As far as streamability goes... eeehhh. If you're a certifiable internet clown or have a cozy personality you could make it work. I can't guarantee a long stream and you might feel bored quickly, reaching deep into a jar labelled "INTRUSIVE THOUGHTS: DO NOT OPEN" for entertainment. You do you, but I'd pass on slotting this into your schedule.