A Good Gardener Is A Lovely Wartime Grow ‘Em Up

Planting seeds in a ruined home, returning each day to water them, chase off hungry birds, pluck weeds, and watch your plants grow is delightful in A Good Gardener [official site], a newly-released garden ’em up from the duo behind the lovely Little Party. When the weather’s right, it’s nice to sit back in a chair and simply enjoy your garden. You might almost forget it’s not your garden, but one you’re forced to grow as a prisoner during a fictional war.

I’m trying to grow a pleasing garden, and enjoy seeing it sprout. Dry spells, when water runs low, are stressful. When I finally triumph and raise a plant to its full glory, and my garden looks glorious, I am very pleased. Then people sweep in after I’ve left to harvest them. I’m disappointed every morning when I return to find bare soil in place of my pride and joy. But they’re not mine, and I’m not here by choice.

Over the days and weeks, a visiting official lets on more of what’s happening in the world around you, why you’re locked away, and who you were before. I haven’t finished A Good Gardener yet but suspect it’s not a game to marathon, more something pleasant to return to when you want to potter and plant.

A Good Garden is out on Itch for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It’ll run you about £4.

Do also check out Little Party – I’m tickled pink that it took me just as long to write about that as it took creators Ian Endsley and Carter Lodwick to finish another game.

3 Comments

  1. alw says:

    That top picture – is he growing spears and a battleaxe in the bottom right? :O

  2. treat says:

    When did Wes Anderson jump into the game business?

  3. Masculine Teacup says:

    Bunk review.

    “I haven’t finished A Good Gardener yet…”

    It takes less than a half hour at the most to get the point. Afterwards, it just keeps repeating the ending every two days and it doesn’t appear that there is any additional spectacles to observe.

    As for the prisoner of war aspect, it’s weak. I went 40 days without planting, just picking up the little seed boxes with no penalties. When I planted everything at once, the story simply progressed as normal. I wouldn’t really consider this a game, but a visual novel, since really, there isn’t any way to fail.