Western View: Can’t Farm Enough? Here’s your App

DanWestern View

If you don’t get enough farming from your day job, you can farm on your phone now, with farming games that have become amazingly popular.  You could even make some decent wages with that game, if you’re good at it.  I’m not talking about the Facebook game FarmVille – we’re way beyond that now.  There are at least a dozen more games, in various levels of complexity, that allow anyone to experience the trials and tribulations of farming. 


These games have become so popular that they know have their own E-league.  Giants Software, maker of the app ‘Farming Simulator’, announced that they are creating The Farming Simulator League and will host tournament games in Europe cities this year.  This doesn’t sound like a big deal till you hear the grand prize:  100,000 Euros, or about $115,000, and about the same amount in other prizes.  And that’s just the start.

According to USA Today, Competitive video game playing, or esports, is bigger than pro football.  Esports drew 258 million unique viewers globally last year. In contrast, the National Football League had about 204 million unique viewers in 2016.  

Just like “real” sports, esports players make money off of investors, branding, advertising and media deals, and raked in $1.5 billion in revenue last year. The new industry is expected to hit 299 million viewers this year and top $2 billion in revenue by 2021.

The video games that make up Esports have typically been war games like Call of Duty or League of Legends.  Like traditional sports, the games nest suited for E-leagues are highly competitive matches between players. 

The Farming League will be “a full-fledged esports league” with ten tournaments across Europe. A spokesperson for Giants Software says they have lots of enthusiasts in the company who can’t wait to show the world that farming can be fun and competitive at the same time.

So break out your phones when you’re tired of real farming.  Or if you see your child playing Farming Simulator, don’t be so quick to think of it as a waste of time.  He just might make big bucks playing that game.  

I’m Len Wilcox and that’s the Western View from AgNet West and Citrus Industry Magazine.  Visit us on the web at

Western View: Can’t Farm Enough? Here’s your App

About the Author

Len Wilcox

Len Wilcox is a retired scientist who also ran a newspaper and has written for agricultural publications since the 1980s. He was a regular contributor to California Farmer Magazine. His commentary “The Western View” is a regular feature on Farm City Newsday and AgNet West.