Aah, camping. The great woodland pastime where people tear themselves from the busy city life to retreat back into nature. Instead of throwing up a tarp in the woods, however, we have campsites that provide a safe spot to pitch a tent as well as many of the comforts from home. It may not be as rustic as it used to be, but hey, the air's fresh, right?
Youda Camper is a slow-paced simulation game along the lines of Sim City or Build-a-lot. You're put in charge of creating and running a camp site, from where to put the toilets to how many spaces for tents to allocate. Keep campers happy by building amenities and learn from their complaints to construct a campsite that rakes in the cash day after day.
You begin with nothing more than a small patch of land, a blank canvas for your soon-to-be empire. A full-featured menu at the bottom of the screen gives you access to dozens of things to build, ranging from several sizes of tents to hedges, park land, fireplaces and parking lots. Each has a specific role to play in keeping customers satisfied with their experience. The game walks you through the first few steps of building sites, assigning campers, and constructing the extras that keep campers happy.
When campers check in, they announce how long their stay will be. New buildings and additional land to construct on is unlocked when you serve a certain number of people. Time progresses quietly, but the screen darkens when its night, so you know when half a day has passed. Don't expect to see the "campers served" number jump very often, as Youda Camper is a very slow-paced and relaxed game. Your persistent managing skills is what will keep everyone happy and the cash rolling is.
As you continue expanding and hosting more campers you'll unlock a ton of extra buildings that can help increase your revenue. In fact, your campsite could look more like a small city than a place to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Bingo parlor, anyone? Advertising also plays a role in bringing in business. Once you serve 75 campers you can choose what to advertise and which media outlets to broadcast your message. Then just kick back and watch the cars roll in.
Analysis: Simple, slow, but nicely paced, Youda Camper isn't your normal sim game experience. In fact, the difficulty level is quite low, as rarely will you be challenged by customer complains or money restrictions. Or maybe I'm just really, really good at managing a campsite? There is something extraordinarily satisfying about the streamlined simplicity of this game, however.
One interesting thing to note is the lack of music in Youda Camper. No soundtrack, only the occasional bird chirping and the hum of machinery when you build something new. This really pushes the relaxed atmosphere of the game, which is one of the niceties that separates it from the simulation game crowd and makes it worth playing.
A sim game of a different kind, Youda Camper is the camping vacation from hectic simulations. Kick back, build a few tent sites, and breathe in the fresh air.