Farming, Magic, and More – take a look my review of this magical game.
Wylde Flowers is an absolutely enchanting game with an incredible story line. In it, you play as Tara, a city girl who has just moved to Fairhaven to help her ailing grandmother with the farm. Unfortunately, the farm is in disrepair since grandpa passed away, so it’s up to you to restore it to its former glory. You’ll learn the basics of running a farm from Grandma Hazel, and the townsfolk will help you learn more advanced concepts. They’ll also prove to be a wonderful community to get to know.
Of course, farming isn’t the only new thing Tara will learn. As it turns out, Grandma is a well-respected witch in the local coven, and Tara’s also a witch. She’ll learn to cast magic spells and craft potions to help with things like growing crops or restoring her energy, and more! All while building relationships with the townspeople, possibly finding love, and solving the mysteries of the island.
Wylde Flowers is pretty straightforward as far as game-play goes. You run a farm that needs to be repaired. You’ll utilize Parker, the town woodworker, and Natalia, the town blacksmith, quite a bit in order to fix up the farm. Otto, the local fisherman, will give you a lesson on fishing, and eventually you’ll be able to buy livestock from Marty, who is also new to the town.
The crops and flowers you’ll be able to grow are seasonal, until you build the greenhouse. You’ll then be able to use the crops in recipes you can cook in your kitchen, many of which will help you in becoming friends with the townsfolk. Unfortunately, the space you’ll have to grow crops and flowers is limited. The greenhouse only has 5 plots, while the first outdoor garden you have access to can potentially hold around 11 plots. It will depend on your creativity in how things fit together. It’s almost like playing Tetris, with more unusable spots. When you finally open the large garden, you can fit about 27 plots there.
It’s certainly no Stardew Valley in farm size, but it didn’t pose any problems for me. Crops grow within a few days, and when you control the seasons (more on that later), it’s easy to just grow everything you want per season.
The magic system is a fun addition to a farm sim (though I’d say farming is the secondary bit to this game, while the story is the main thing). You’ll learn spells to make it rain, create thunderstorms, freeze time, reverse time, grow crops faster, make crops yield more per harvest, and much more.
I think my favorite part of the magic system is being able to ride a broomstick as a way to fast travel. While the playable map is fairly small, it’s still a great mechanic to get to unlock. Even better is the incorporation of magic into it. What’s not fun about getting to ride a broomstick across town?
My one complaint with this system is the ability to occupy your cat familiar, Cleocatra. While it’s a fun mechanic, and does play a part in the story, it’s not as useful as I’d hoped. It’s used once in the story, and that’s the only time it’s necessary to even be a cat. It’s also a pain if you don’t know how to do it, like me. When you become the cat, there’s no way to cancel the spell, unless you go to sleep. So, use it wisely, if you do choose to use it more often.
The townspeople of Fairhaven are possibly my second favorite thing about Wylde Flowers. The cast is wildly diverse. From Kim, who is of Japanese descent and identifies as nonbinary and isn’t sure how to navigate beginning a relationship, to Amira who’s super flirty from the start. There’s even Cameron, the local leader of the League of the Conscious Mind center (*cough* can you say cult *cough*) with his sketchy past and charming personality.
Each character you’ll encounter in Wylde Flowers has their very own personality and rich back stories. Even better is each one is fully voice acted. And I don’t mean one guy and one woman change their voices to act out each character. Everyone has their own unique voice actor to capture the personality of the character. It’s hard not to feel the charm and beauty in individuality with this cast. You even have the chance to date and marry one of seven romanceable characters. So, take your time to get to know everyone, and see who you’d like to date, or just build meaningful friendships with everyone. The choice is yours!
I won’t go into detail about the story line, because it’s what Wylde Flowers is all about and I want all of you to experience the joy of progressing through it, but this is my favorite thing about the game. It seems so simple at first. Tara arrives in Fairhaven to take over and restore the family farm as Grandma Hazel is no longer able to take care of it. Then, Tara discovers Hazel, and herself, are witches. Tara is welcomed into the local coven, and is tasked with discovering the secret identities of each coven member after she’s gained their trust.
After that, Tara spends her time restoring the farm, exploring the mines, raising crops and livestock, and delving into her magical studies. However, she’s also working to solve the problems and mysteries that the small island town faces. And all of this while building relationships with the townsfolk, or even dating.
You and the coven are in charge of turning the seasons, which means you can progress as fast or as slow as you wish to, within reason anyway. You won’t get the opportunity (or appropriate spells) to change the seasons unless you progress the story, but when you reach that point, it’s all on you to initiate the change. So, take your time helping out the town with the bulletin board requests, exploring the mine, fishing, farming, and talking to everyone.
The downside is that you only get to experience one Spring, one Summer, one Fall, one Winter, then what I’ve deemed the Eternal Spring. You’ll change seasons one last time to Spring, and that’s it. You can play indefinitely after you finish the story line, but you better stock up on seasonal finds each season.
I LOVED Wylde Flowers and will absolutely be replaying it again and dating everyone I can. Even despite some of the minor irks like the cat transformation and the Eternal Spring. I can’t recommend this game enough. It’s perfect for cozy gamers, is absolutely beautiful, and a whole lot of fun. And any game that gives me the name “Cattleclysm” as a preset option to name my cow with is great in my eyes!
Check out another farm sim review we’ve done for Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town!