I am once again reminding you that Farming Simulator is a surprisingly good sport

It’s that time of year again: Farming Simulator esports. I wrote about the Farming Simulator League finals last yearjust in case anyone didn’t know there was a real esport where players competitively harvest wheat and haul bales at breakneck speeds in hopes of winning a prize pool of €100,000.

And once again I’m asking you to watch FSL because it’s genuinely so much fun! The fourth season of the Farming Simulator League kicked off last week as teams battle it out to become the fastest virtual farmers and make it to the finals. Here are some recent highlights:

It really feels like a sport, the way they play it. There is a pick and ban phase where teams select their heroes (farming gear) and skills (farming buffs) and then two teams of three players battle it out to harvest, bale, and deliver as much wheat as possible to a barn. (with a bonus for delivering grain to a silo as well). There’s plenty of drama along the way as players race to claim equipment before their opponents can and jump off their tractors and harvesters to race on foot to grab powerups. These little farmers are always in a hurry!

One of my favorite parts of the sport is that the two teams compete on separate maps but can still affect the other team’s progress. If one team uses the bridge that leads to the barn, that same bridge goes up on the other team’s map for a few seconds, forcing them to use another path or try to jump the bridge before it goes up too high. If you didn’t think watching a tractor cross a bridge could make your heart jump in your throat, and if you’ve never watched in awe as someone hurl a few bales of wheat out of a top barn window, then you’ve never watched agricultural esports before.

You can find out more about the Farming Simulator League (which uses Farming Simulator 19, by the way, not the newest Farming Simulator 22) on official site (opens in new tab)and check the schedule of upcoming online tournaments here (opens in new tab). Watch one! You will not be disappointed. You might even decide you want to assemble a team and compete alone.

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