Like many not-yet-released videogames, I'm a little worried that Astro Ranch won't be as good as the game in my head right now. Anytime a developer says they were influenced by great games like Animal Crossing and Harvest Moon, as the Tag Games guys do in this interview with the cleverly-named iPwn Games, I get overly excited. A deep simulation game with a casual skin? It sounds just too good to be true.
But who knows -- maybe the upcoming Astro Ranch will be worth the excitement. Paul Farley certainly makes it sound good: they say they've been pushing the 3D system to new heights, and that they're aiming to provide a deep enough game to appeal to players with a lot of time on their hands, as well as a fun game that casual players can pick up and then put down after about 10 minutes.
They're aiming for connectivity as well -- the game is based on a '50s-style space ranch, and players will supposedly be able to visit each others' ranches, send messages back and forth and even compete and trade with each other. They even claim to be able to connect iPhone players to farmers playing on the DS, but we'll believe that one when we see it.
Unfortunately, the screenshots don't impress all that much, but just like the iPhone itself, it seems this game's got a lot of potential. Sounds like they're aiming for a release on the iPhone, DS, and the N-Gage (people are still making games for the N-Gage?) later this year. We'll keep an eye out for it.