Steven R. January 27, 2019
Farming Simulator is about to get a lot more serious.
On the The game’s publisher announced on the series’ official website its plans to expand into the realm of esports with the Farming Simulator League. Consisting of a 10-tournament circuit, the FSL will pit teams against one another in events across Europe with 250,000 euros in prizes on the line.
While this news might catch some by surprise, it’s not an altogether unexpected development.
Despite being regarded as a more casual game by many, Farming Simulator is incredibly popular in some parts of Europe. Last year, GIANTS held a number of competitive events at farming and gaming expos with positive results. Expanding alongside the broader growth of esports makes sense according to the company CEO Christian Ammann.
"Competitive farming is something people enjoy for years now, but it hasn’t been done in esports so far,” Ammann said in a statement. “We have lots of eSports enthusiasts in our company who can’t wait to show the world that farming can indeed be fun and competitive at the same time."
Though the normal Farming Simulator experience involves juggling a number of duties, the competitive scene’s focus is much narrower. During last year’s Farming Simulator Championship events, three-player teams raced to bale hay, and load it onto a trailer as quickly as possible. Per the release, the Farming Simulator League will go in a different direction than these previous events, but odds are it will be a similarly streamlined format.
It is unclear when exactly the inaugural FSL season will begin. According to the Esports Observer, there will be events held at Gamescom in Germany and Paris Games Week. No major esports organizations are currently confirmed to participate in the league, but a number of notable sponsors including Intel and Logitech have already thrown their support behind the FSL.