Home News Festival Tycoon review – The coach is here! @VGR

Festival Tycoon review – The coach is here! @VGR


The game has been tested on a version early access after its publication on 09/27/2021. The developers believe that this early release is playable and can be offered to the public. The contents do not however reflect the final version of the product, our rating should therefore be considered as a preview note.

Festival Tycoon review

In the long list of jobs dreamed of by darlings during primary school, we often find firefighters, airplane pilots, astronauts or – now – youtubers. That’s good, between the Flight Simulator, the Kerbal Space Program and other Youtubers Life, everyone can find their account. And for the other children who don’t have the same tastes as everyone else (we don’t judge), there are small indie simulators (very often German, but that may not be the case here, let’s leave the benefit doubt). This is how anyone who has ever hoped to become a festival organizer can satisfy a passion (which we will not judge, I said), with Festival Tycoon.

Woodstock Simulator

Festival Tycoon review

Taking the form of basic simulation game titles from the 90s and 2000s (a place of entertainment + “tycoon”), this creation of Johannes Gabler (oh hey, an Austrian) puts you in the shoes of a creator of musical events, in the purest tradition of the said Tycoons. Aesthetically, the title is not going to turn you around. We find ourselves on a minimalist management game, with large pixels, or more generally low poly everywhere. If the whole thing is rather colorful, and we can see it as a tribute to the games of the 90s, we can however get tired just as quickly of a certain repetitiveness in these 3D models in false isometric view. Clearly, we are closer to a mobile game than a PC title, at least in its aesthetics.

Some groups have requests to respect, such as going through another entrance so as not to cross paths with the plebs

Festival Tycoon review

But the good news is that in construction mode, the title is still very complete. You can of course manage the whole concert space, choosing and placing stages or locations to manage the flow of the crowd, but there will also be the whole catering aspect and, in the case of multi-day festivals, rest, with camping spaces, toilets and other amenities or places related to entertainment. It’s up to you to define locations for bars with or without alcohol, trash cans, a bumper car to wait on or, Germanic game requires, a whole pack of assets on the Oktoberfest. Unsurprisingly, your task as a manager will also have to go through the recruitment and management of employees for housekeeping or security. And finally, you will necessarily have to go through the signing and planning of the groups that will come to perform on stage, making sure to respect all the diva’s requests: go through another entrance so as not to cross paths with the plebs, have a fully equipped caravan for to rest, not to be scheduled before 1 p.m. otherwise the 10 hours of sleep are not guaranteed, or even to have a reputation higher than a certain number. Because it’s very nice, we may be paid, we have an image to respect, we The Suit Retain Theory. There is also a huge part of the gameplay dedicated to finding sponsors for your festival. As for the groups, it will be necessary to take care to meet certain parameters to be able to associate with the biggest brands, these obviously giving you more budget. Then, you will have to assign your partners to the different locations (on stage, on billboards, on the toilet door, etc.) to increase their penetration rate and make them happy.

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Hey party!

Festival Tycoon review

To perfect your career as a festival manager, you will have several game options. Eobviously, a sandbox mode which gives you the possibility to choose the difficulty, the resources of your society, but also the biome, which will be linked to a festival size or a duration. Then, a career mode, more original, since it will really be a question of making your company prosper through a season of festivals, by always finding more groups to play and sponsors to sign. The game takes place in two phases, a first of construction and planning, with the usual prerequisites: to increase the quality of the place by adding more flowers, especially around the garbage cans and toilets, to make sure that all the public be happy, etc. A second, where you open the doors of the event and all you have to do is check that everything is going as planned, managing the unexpected with your staff on site: security, cleaners, but also a team of rescuers during a little too violent pogos or fights between drunk guys. The ultimate goal is that everyone is happy with the place and the music, to earn money thanks to your sponsors and your receipts, and thus be able to continue in this beautiful profession. Even if, said like that, one could think that the game is the ultimate simulator, it is not free from defects. The difference between sandbox and quarry is not so straightforward; the construction mode, although complete, tires quite quickly, the fault also of a camera which is not always well controlled and the days are often very long for not much (in other words, it is quite empty and we are bored). Finally, the AI ​​is not always autonomous and you will often see your employees camping in a corner of the map because you had the clumsiness of not assigning them to a task which is logically the only one to do.

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International Festival of Acousmatic Art and Supporting Arts Tycoon

Festival Tycoon review

On the fun side of the game, a group and sponsor editor allows you to mod the game to add your own names and thus make it all the more realistic. Basically, a 40th group and a 12th sponsor are present in the game, all having a certain quality, popularity, or, for musical groups, a type of music which will therefore not be suitable for all audiences and all festivals. Moreover, the game relies heavily on the music: you have several musical themes of all kinds that rotate in the menus, very pleasant, and all the “fake groups” to program have a “show” (a single IRL track of 2 -3 minutes, but which represents the concert they will play on stage). There again, unfortunately, we feel the small independent title which cannot do everything and which has therefore chosen to loop the riffs very often to our greatest regret.

Festival Tycoon review

The game is still in early access and gets a few updates from time to time, the last one having added, at the end of January, a group coordinator who will manage the reception and the good health of the groups invited on stage. We will also note in very good point the affiliation to the Steam Workshop, allowing to recover new sponsors, groups or assets for the greatest happiness of the fans. But for now, the whole thing is pretty empty. In any case, for fans of music and management, it’s a fairly rare and therefore interesting alternative to Idle games on mobiles. Personally, it made me think, with a slightly different angle, of the very good Rock Manager from 2001 (published by TF1 Multimédia, that’s how old it is).

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