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GamesGames reviewsApico review: bees all the way down

Apico review: bees all the way down

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Farming. Crafting. A remote land left to you by a distant relative. It’s all a bit too familiar, isn’t it? After Stardew Valley, farming sims became the new big thing and Minecraft had normalized crafting a few hundred years ago, it feels like. On the surface, Apico offers nothing new. But it’s not a soulless carbon copy of what sells, either.

Apico

The story in Apico is simple: you inherit a bee farm far away from civilization and decide to try it. After a small introduction, you are left to fend for yourself. You have your tools, a book of tutorials, and a goal of becoming the meanest beekeeper in the west.

The comparison with Stardew Valley is too apparent to ignore. The pixelated graphics, the relaxed vibe, and the farming routine are very familiar. But the word simulator in the description is more apt than I expected: the developers must be really into bees because there’s knowledge here, a real opportunity to learn as well as have fun. I know education and gaming are rarely a fun combination, but Apico manages to stay entertaining no matter what.

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Apico

Like every simulator that goes deeper than it could have, Apico takes time to learn, and the number of tutorials can feel a bit too much. A game like that takes much time to really get into, and if you’re unsure whether you have the willpower to delve into yet another simulator… trust your gut and don’t rush into it. The game is more extensive and substantial than it looks.

But if you’re into it and don’t suffer from melissophobia, Apico is pretty great. It’s deep, neat, and plays great on a Switch screen. Crafting is straightforward, the learning curve is long but pleasant, and the addiction factor is very high. It’s not Stardew Valley in the way that there are no relationships, no abundance of dialogs or lore. It’s very focused on bees, and that’s not a bad thing. It feels like an adventure in learning, something new yet familiar. 

Read also: Tinykin review: The platformer you didn’t know you were waiting for

Apico

Verdict

Apico is all about bees, bee puns, and bee lore. It’s yet another farming simulator that tries to teach and stay fun along the way. And it succeeds. 

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Presentation (design, style, speed and usability of the UI)
7
Sound (original cast, music, sound engineering)
7
Graphics (in the context of the platform)
7
Optimization [Switch] (how does it run, bugs, crashes, use of system features)
8
Gameplay and Controls
8
Price tag
8
Apico is all about bees, bee puns, and bee lore. It’s yet another farming simulator that tries to teach and stay fun along the way. And it succeeds. 

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Apico is all about bees, bee puns, and bee lore. It’s yet another farming simulator that tries to teach and stay fun along the way. And it succeeds. Apico review: bees all the way down