It’s been a long couple of weeks, so I was in the mood for something light and enjoyable. Fortunately, Plantera 2: Golden Acorn delivers just that. If you like the idea of a standard grow and harvest title with a healthy side-dose of chaos, then Plantera 2 might just be for you.
Plantera 2: Golden Acorn does just what you’d expect it to do. You develop a garden, using funds gained by selling items you’ve grown on trees, harvested from shrubs, harvested from general propagation, and have collected from the various critters that abound in the brightly colored sprite world of the game. As you grow different items, Mellows, blue sprite critters, wander in and basically form a labor force that does your harvesting and selling for you.
With the money you gain, you purchase more animals that produce items that your adorable legions of Mellows will also sell on your behalf, but just as your garden attracted the Mellows, the presence of these farmed animals will attract equally adorable predators. You can scare off these predators by either a whap over the head with a mallet or by setting up defenses such as fences or bees.
You can also use your coins to purchase more decorative items, which is actually a good investment because the amount of money you earn while not playing the game depends on your decoration score. You also get the opportunity to use special items to catch fish or bugs that the Mellows can’t acquire for you, and you’ll gain access to these special items as you level-up. The big oak in the middle of your garden serves as a barometer for where you are in the leveling process as its size varies directly with your progress, with the tree eventually becoming so large that you can’t see all of it on your screen. The tree sheds the golden acorns that give the title its name, which you can use as currency to purchase upgrades and grow your tree. Once you reach a certain level, a door will open in the tree, leading to a sort of store in which you can spend golden acorns to purchase more specialized upgrades.
You continue purchasing upgrades both to your garden size and decorative objects in your quest to maximize the revenue your garden can produce, and that’s really the game.
Plantera 2 isn’t going to require a tremendous amount of skill or even brain power, but that’s not its goal. Developer VaragtP clearly designed the game to be a relaxing, mindless clicker, and it achieves everything the developers appear to have wanted it to do. There are about forty achievements, and I believe it maxes out at level 100, which will require some time investment. However, given the sheer enjoyment of watching your garden evolve from a peaceful tiny farm into an industrial powerhouse of chaos, making that time investment is hardly arduous.
The Mellows are adorable in their tiny hats ranging from Santa hats to Viking horned helms, and the bright, fun graphics give Plantera 2 an almost overwhelming aura of cuteness. The soundtrack increases the adorableness overload as it tends toward the upbeat and happy. Though the title can become visually overwhelming, in this case, that’s a perk rather than a flaw.
The gameplay itself is intuitive and easy, relying on clicks and automation to drive the leveling process, and the game design deliberately renders mistakes impossible. Sure, you can choose better items in order to maximize efficiency, but there’s no way to play yourself into a corner. Your choices merely determine whether you finish the achievements in a shorter or longer period of time.
Plantera 2 leans into the cuteness as both an aesthetic and a gameplay goal, and though it is perhaps not nearly as long as other games in this genre, the one you get more than earns the $4.99 price tag it has on Steam.
If you’re looking for a cute title to while away an afternoon, Plantera 2: Golden Acorn is a pretty good choice with its easy gameplay and family-friendly vibe.
- I ran out of levels before I ran out of garden upgrades.
- There is a God Mode, but y’all, it doesn’t add a whole lot to it. Plantera 2 isn’t really going to be a title that you replay so much as you return to it in order to turn your brain off for a few hours.
- Did I mention the cuteness? Because the Mellows are adorable.
- After you clock the predators on their teeny heads with your pop-up-mallet, they get the cutest horrified looks on their faces.
- The unicorns are adorable. Yes, there are unicorns.
- If you have an addictive personality, you might want to take care to start Plantera 2 when you don’t have anything else requiring your attention.