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Virtual becomes reality in Japanese farm game

Crops grown on screen become crops on a real farm

By Diego Flammini, Farms.com

Farming is slowly starting to make its way into the video game scene.

Games like Harvest Moon, Farmville and Farming Simulator 15 allow the players to go through all the motions of what it’s like to run a real farm.

From planting and harvesting crops to ranching livestock, the players are involved with the daily farming responsibilities.

Then, at some point, it just ends and there’s nothing else for the player to do – until now.

A Japanese startup company called Telefarm has developed a virtual game that has real-life rewards.

The game is called “Enkaku Bokujo”, which translates to “Remote Farm”. It’s an online simulator that lets players rent out a plot of virtual land at a cost of about $4.50 US per square meter, per month and an additional $4.50 US per packet of seeds.

What happens next is pretty cool.

As the player plants, waters and maintains the crops on their virtual farm, somewhere on an actual farm, a farmer is mimicking the actions.

In other words, when a player waters their virtual sweet potatoes, a real farmer waters real sweet potatoes. There are a variety of crops available for the players including soybeans and watermelons.

The real-life farmers will mimic almost all the tasks the player does on their virtual farms with the exception of purposely destroying or abandoning the crops.

When players finish planting and it’s time to harvest and they’ve been successful in growing their crops, the actual crops they planted and grew on their virtual farm will be delivered to their door for them to enjoy.

Just to clarify, if they successfully plant and harvest two watermelons, then two actual, edible watermelons will be delivered to them to eat. Any spare or leftover crops can be sold to other players in the game’s real-life vegetable market.

                                    Watermelon

Join the conversation and tell us your thoughts on this new Japanese farming game. Would this be something you would play if it becomes available in North America? Could it be used as a tool to introduce the next generation of farmers while still piquing their interests with video games?


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My name is Michael Wendling. I am a 6th generation farmer in East Central Illinois. We grow white & yellow corn for Frito Lay, and we also grow soybeans. The family farm was established in 1879.