Why Real Farmers Also Play Farming Simulator Games



Whether PC, PS4/PS5, or smartphone – the simulation enjoys great popularity. But does a bus driver also play Bus Simulator or does a farmer play the successful Farming Simulator? The answer is yes.


Although varieties are dependent, in August it is customary to get the ripe potatoes out of the ground. While modern machines are used in conventional agriculture, the situation is significantly different for private individuals. Ideally, there is an old tractor with an even older trailer that gets the potatoes out of the ground.


Farming Simulator 22 Sweepstakes

The next step is as old as the potato harvest itself. The precious tubers are collected by hand. For this purpose, there are usually many helpers on site, including Jürgen.


The work is physically demanding, but honestly, as he tells us, his hands diligently pick up one potato at a time. It is a small highlight, as he can switch off in this way. Jürgen usually sits in his office or drives back and forth in the car to check whether everything is working properly. Interestingly, his profession and collecting in the field are not so different. Because Jürgen runs an agricultural company and ensures that not only several hectares of land is cultivated, but also cows, pigs, or even some sheep are fed.


Even though he deals with such activities on a daily basis, it is a matter of course for him to help acquaintances from the village. Collecting potatoes by hand is, therefore, no problem. And while we are talking about all sorts of topics of agriculture, suddenly a small, almost inconspicuous statement falls: “this is not as simple as in Farming Simulator”.


Jürgen not only grows corn in real life but also digitally. Born in the 1960s, the company actively plays the popular farming simulator of Giants Software and Astragon in its spare time.



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Different place, different time

Almost three weeks later we meet Jürgen again, this time on his farm. After a very exciting conversation on the potato field, Jürgen invited us to his place and promised a small tour and more insights into his virtual work. So we get into a jeep and drive for a few minutes, then stand between a meadow and a harvested field, where a few days ago there was still corn. Already at the age of 16, Jürgen was actively behind the wheel of a tractor. After many years of honest work, he continued his education and took over the farm almost 20 years ago. He has been actively playing Farming Simulator for almost five years.


Actually curious. It is always said that you should not take your work home with you. The leisure time should serve to be able to switch off. To relax. Somehow it does not fit into the picture that a farmer returns to a field after work. Although this is virtual, the virtual corn also requires many work steps, as in real life. Switching off should be different, right? This question raises further questions. Do bus drivers also play the bus simulator (to review the PS4 version)? Who actually plays the Job Simulator? Or the airport simulator?


Place to think

The fact that Jürgen himself is still behind the wheel of a real agricultural vehicle is now rare. He has to make sure that each of his employees receives his wages, he has to keep an eye on holiday planning, determine the right moment for the harvest, negotiate with wholesalers or keep an eye on the cow population. Unlike in the past, a task consists mainly of properly managing the farm. Therefore, it is a nice change to drive a tractor again in peace. And that’s much more relaxed virtually, as he reveals.


Especially if one of his employees is sick, he jumps in and harvests, for example, a field or stacks hay bales. In the back of your mind, however, it continues to rattle. The administration does not let him go and there is also the idea that these activities are urgently needed. The work is still fun even after all these years, he explains. But you can’t equate that with relaxation. When he plays Farming Simulator, on the other hand, it’s completely different. He does this voluntarily and can do whatever he wants. If he doesn’t feed the virtual cows for a week, that’s not a bad thing. In real life, of course, this attitude would be fatal.


But the work does not let him go completely even when gambling. It would be naïve to think that you can switch off completely with such clear parallels, Jürgen reveals to us as we drive to the grounds of the pigsty. Nevertheless, the virtual field is an extremely productive place. He often thinks about decisions he has to make the next day. It’s somehow easier, he tells us.