Games that attempt to do something different pique my interest. Admittedly, these types of games are more often a miss than a hit, but experimentation is how we expand our horizons.
So when I first heard that there was a game called Bee Simulator where you get to see the world through the eyes of a bee, I immediately took an interest and requested a review copy from the publisher. There was a decent chance that it would turn out to be a major bus. To my surprise, it’s actually a fairly decent game with lots of potential as a learning aid for kids.
You play as one of nature’s most important pollinators as you set up a home with the rest of your colony in one of Central Park’s trees. However, your life is turned upside down one day when humans decide to cut down your tree, thrusting the fate of your colony into your tiny mandibles.
The game thrusts you into the role of pollen collector early on in the story mode, which is told through animations and scripted dialogue. At first, the game only expects you to learn the basic mechanics. Eventually, the tasks become timed events, and you’ll race the clock to collect enough pollen for your hive.
There are other events as well, which are color-coded throughout the open-world environment. There are races, a “dancing” mini-game to communicate with other bees, and even fights. These are decent diversions, but they ultimately do more to distract from than enhance the story.
That’s actually one of the main issues that I have with the game. The way that they set up these side missions is that it makes everything feel too much like a video game. That is to say, it feels like you are going from one event to another rather than naturally doing what bees do on their own.
It would have been preferable, I think, to have a seamless story mode without all of the various distractions that take you out of your element. It would have allowed you to actually live life as a bee rather than play a video game character who happens to be a bee.
In addition, Bee Simulator allows you to take the side missions and play them as a multiplayer game mode, assuming you can find a friend willing to give the game a chance. Unfortunately, the multiplayer just does not translate as well as the single-player experience.
Bee Simulator may not be the bee’s knees, but it is an excellent tool to teach young kids about nature. Aside from providing interesting facts about bees, the game also has a number of other animals that you will run into throughout your adventure.
Game Freaks 365 received a free review copy for the purposes of this review.