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Slime Rancher 2 Review (PS5) | Oozing With Charm

84
Story
7
Gameplay
8
Visuals
9
Audio
9
Value for Money
9
Price:
$ 29
Clear Time:
10 Hours
Slime Rancher 2 offers a cutesy and wholesome ranching experience with plenty of hidden complexities among its smiling, cuddly blobs. It's easy to get lost in the daily life of a slime rancher, whether you're cross-breeding livestock or exploring a stunning new island. While it lacks a few features that would make for a seamless experience, there's no denying that this is a worthy sequel to the wholesome masterpiece of the original Slime Rancher.

Slime Rancher 2 is indie developer Monomi Park’s follow-up to their 2017 indie hit of the same name, now available on PlayStation 5! Read our review to see what it did well, what it didn't do well, and if it's worth buying.

Slime Rancher 2 Review Overview

What is Slime Rancher 2?

Slime Rancher 2 is a charming adventure simulator that invites players to care for and breed slimes on the stunning shores of Rainbow Island. Continuing the escapades of Beatrix LeBeau, this sequel builds upon the 2017 original with a delightful array of new slimes, an upgraded ranch, and an expansive map teeming with secrets. From vibrant landscapes to intriguing mysteries, there's a whole island of slime-covered wonders awaiting discovery in the latest adventures of Bea in Slime Rancher 2!

Slime Rancher 2 features:
 ⚫︎ 18 slimes to discover and breed
 ⚫︎ Massive new map to explore
 ⚫︎ Charming and wholesome aesthetics
 ⚫︎ Limitless customization potential
 ⚫︎ Enhanced hub world with more room for ranching

For more gameplay details, read everything we know about Slime Rancher 2's gameplay and story.

PSN IconPSN $29.99

Slime Rancher 2 Pros & Cons

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Pros Cons
Checkmark Surprisingly Complex
Checkmark Fun, Casual Gameplay
Checkmark So Much Customization!
Checkmark Sorely Needs a Minimap
Checkmark Somehow Needs More Slimes

Slime Rancher 2 Overall Score - 84/100

Slime Rancher 2 is a cutesy and wholesome ranching experience hiding more than its fair share of complexities among the smiling legions of cuddly blobs. You can easily get lost in the day-to-day of a slime rancher, from the cross-breeding of your livestock to the exploration of your stunning new island. It’s missing a few features that would’ve made it a seamless experience, but there’s no denying that this is a worthy sequel to the wholesome masterpiece that was the original Slime Rancher.

Slime Rancher 2 Story - 7/10

Slime Rancher 2 might not follow a traditional story structure, but its narrative charm lies in the spontaneity of your adventure and the spectacle of your new locale. The environmental storytelling of Rainbow Island, coupled with nods to characters and events from the first game, creates an entertaining mix of old and new that ultimately paints a well-enough picture to be entertaining.

Slime Rancher 2 Gameplay - 8/10

Slime Rancher 2's casual ranching gameplay might not appeal to everyone initially, but its slime-breeding and farming mechanics offer surprising depth. The drive to optimize feels akin to traditional factory games like Factorio, but here, it's slimes and corrals instead of iron ingots and robot arms. My only nitpick is that it’s too similar to the first game, but why fix what isn’t broken?

Slime Rancher 2 Visuals - 9/10

One of the original Slime Rancher’s greatest appeals is its wholesome and cutesy aesthetic. While too much of that runs the risk of being visually boring, its sequel managed to double down and make it look even better. Both games run on the Unity engine, but Rainbow Island in the sequel provides the perfect setting for Slime Rancher to truly shine.

Slime Rancher 2 Audio - 9/10

Casual games aren't typically celebrated for their outstanding music, but some notable exceptions truly shine. Stardew Valley set a high bar, and now, Slime Rancher 2 is following suit. With its serene piano and strings accompanying your adventures in mixing and matching Slime breeds, the experience can only be described as delightful. While voice acting could add an extra layer of charm, it's more of a luxury than a necessity in a game already oozing with charm.

Slime Rancher 2 Value for Money - 9/10

Spending $30 on a casual game might seem steep, but Slime Rancher is more than just its adorable appearance and blobby mascots. It’s a farming simulator and exploration game, making it comparable in value to its peers. You definitely won't regret the investment, especially when you find yourself two hours deep into your next slime hunt, fully immersed in the splendor of Rainbow Island.

Slime Rancher 2 Review: Oozing With Charm

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I remember playing the first Slime Rancher and wondering if Monomi Park would ever create a sequel. I dismissed the idea, thinking there was no way to improve on an already perfect, albeit compact, game about ranching slimes. A few years later, I found myself proven correct that there wasn’t much left to improve, yet I am still thoroughly entranced by Slime Rancher 2. It's a curious situation to be in, so let me explain.

Slime Rancher 2 is technically a sequel, but if you’ve spent countless hours with the original Slime Rancher as I did, you might mistake it for an expansion. The mechanics and aesthetics are quite similar between the two games, but as I played, I found that Slime Rancher 2 innovated exactly where it needed to. The game kept what worked in the original intact, enhancing the experience without losing the charm that made the original so beloved. Free from the desire to innovate for innovation’s sake, Monomi Park simply made a better game.
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One of the standout features of Slime Rancher 2 compared to the original is its abundance of new slimes. While fans might notice the absence of Quantum and Tangle Slimes from the first game, this gap is more than filled by a plethora of new and imaginative slimes that fit their niche perfectly. The Tarr are still present, posing a minor threat just as before, but now all this slimy goodness is set against the vibrant backdrop of a new locale: Rainbow Island.

Rainbow Island is easily the biggest change from the original game with its more spacious vistas and appropriately colorful landscapes. Just like in the first game, there are many new areas and secrets to explore, although I find the ones here to be far more engaging. Your new ranch is no slouch either, offering way more space than the first game and much more style to boot. I always knew I liked greenhouses, but who knew a Conservatory could feel so cozy?
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Speaking of the Conservatory, Slime Rancher 2 offers a much larger range of customization options for your ranch than the first game did. Think Animal Crossing levels of furniture and decoration spam. You’ve got everything from small ferns to entire amusement park rides to set down in this massive greenhouse, so have at it! The gadgets and gizmos down in the fabrication area are also helpful, and the various ways you can expedite your expeditions are amazing.

In terms of core gameplay, Slime Rancher 2 doesn’t stray far from the original. You still gather and care for slimes, interbreed them using their "Plorts," and sell those Plorts for profit. The upgrades are nearly identical, and the main ranching concepts remain unchanged. Despite how this might sound, I'm not complaining. I'd be upset if they altered the original concept unnecessarily just for the sake of being different. In this case and in many others, there's no need to fix what isn’t broken.

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What feels a bit broken, or rather incomplete, is the game's story. Slime Rancher has never had a particularly imaginative narrative, as Beatrix's actions are driven by whimsy. There's no compelling reason to explore Rainbow Island beyond curiosity, and it doesn't make much sense for you to start with nothing if you're supposedly fresh from the ranch on the first island. While it's not immersion-breaking and the lack of a grand narrative contributes to the game's casual vibe, this is an area where Monomi Park could have made improvements in the sequel.

Speaking of broken elements, I'm not sure the game fully benefited from being ported to the PlayStation 5. While graphics and performance are fine, the controls are problematic. Given the design of your Vac-Pack, the gameplay resembles an FPS without guns or targets. Handling this large apparatus with twin-stick controls can be a chore, especially when slimes and blobs are flying around. It was manageable on PC, but less so with the PS5's analog sticks. Additionally, the haptic feedback barely registers, so there's not much advantage to this port beyond allowing console players to enjoy the game. That said, it's not a bad upside.

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Moving on to the game's aesthetics, the game's audio and visuals are as delightful and soothing as ever. The slimes remain irresistibly cute, and Rainbow Island introduces just enough change to keep things fresh without feeling unfamiliar.

If I had reviewed the original Slime Rancher, it would have scored similarly high, though this sequel edges out a bit more for having this much charm oozing out its pores.

Pros of Slime Rancher 2

Things Slime Rancher 2 Got Right
Checkmark Surprisingly Complex
Checkmark Fun, Casual Gameplay
Checkmark So Much Customization!

Surprisingly Complex

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Slime Rancher 2’s gameplay is about as complex as each of the various slimes’ chemical compositions, consisting of specific dietary restrictions for each slime, various slime behaviors, optimal slime breeding charts, optimal corral upgrade paths, efficient farming setups, and tactical exploration.

Maybe you didn’t expect such depth from a game filled with so many cutesy blobs of sentient goo, but even the factory sim enjoyers among you will find immense satisfaction in the slime rancher’s lifestyle on Rainbow Island.

Fun, Casual Gameplay

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Make no mistake, Slime Rancher 2 is a casual game. There's no real risk of permanent failure—the worst that could happen is getting sent home empty-handed after an adventure. Even if the Tarr start causing trouble on your ranch, a bit of tender loving care can quickly set things right.

Casual games often get a bad rap for being dull or lacking excitement, but Slime Rancher 2 breaks that mold. It perfectly balances the casual formula, keeping things interesting and engaging while maintaining a laid-back, stress-free experience.

So Much Customization!

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I love the chance to spruce up my farm or ranch, and Slime Rancher 2 offers plenty of opportunities. I’m particularly fond of the freehand decoration you can do in this game, which lets you set up pretty much anything anywhere within the conservatory. With a wide range of purchasable items—from small bushes to full-blown amusement park attractions—anyone with a flair for interior design can go buck wild.

Cons of Slime Rancher 2

Things That Slime Rancher 2 Can Improve
Checkmark Sorely Needs a Minimap
Checkmark Somehow Needs More Slimes

Sorely Needs a Minimap

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I often find myself getting lost in the beauty of Rainbow Island’s stunning landscapes and I mean that literally. This game has a map, but you need to pull it up and orient yourself accordingly every time you get lost in the twists and turns of Rainbow Island. A mini-map or a compass from the start would be a welcome addition. While there's no urgent need to rush home, the tedium of backtracking after a wrong turn can eventually wear you down.

Somehow Needs More Slimes

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This isn't really a downside, but rather a personal wish: I’d love to see more slimes. Not in terms of spawn rate, as this game has already increased that from the first, but in terms of variety. I crave more outlandish and extravagant slimes to enjoy in the late game. By then, it's less about ranching and more about decorating, and having a wider array of slimes would add to the fun.

Is Slime Rancher 2 Worth It?

It’s Worth a Golden Slime Twice Over

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Spending $30 on a casual game might seem steep, but Slime Rancher 2 offers more than just adorable mascots. It's a complex exploration and simulation game with ample room for experimentation and customization. While there are plenty of high-action, high-concept games available, especially for the PlayStation 5, Slime Rancher 2 matches their quality while maintaining a charming, laid-back vibe. If you're looking for a casual game to get lost in, this is the one.

Platform Price
PSN IconPSN $29.99

Slime Rancher 2 FAQ

What is The Endgame of Slime Rancher 2?

Slime Rancher 2 was designed to be played for as long as you like, although there will come a time when your Conservatory and knowledge of Rainbow Island will be far more expanded than when you started.

As new updates are added and new content is unlocked, a seamless continuation of your playthrough will commence, allowing you new things to build and new areas to explore.

Will Slime Rancher 2’s Early Access Save Data Carry Over to the Game’s Full Release?

Yes, your save files will carry over throughout Early Access and into Full Release.

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Slime Rancher 2 Product Information

Slime Rancher 2 Cover
Title SLIME RANCHER
Release Date June 8, 2024
Developer Monomi Park
Publisher Monomi Park
Supported Platforms PlayStation 5, PC (Steam), Xbox Series X|S
Genre Adventure, Simulation
Number of Players 1
ESRB Rating E 10+ (Everyone 10+)
Official Website Slime Rancher 2 Website

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