Bee Simulator Review – Bee Happy

Publisher Bigben and developer Varsav Game Studios recently released their educational experience Bee Simulator and we’ve been buzzing around Honeypark with our little friend Beescuit the honey bee for days. Is the game worth its weight in honey or should you leave this one to the beekeepers?

Read on to find out

How much do we know about the life of bees? Did you know that honey was used on the battlefields of World War I to dress wounds? Did you know that bees are the only insects that produce food that is also eaten by humans? Did you know that bees have to visit roughly 4 million flowers to generate 1kg or 2.2 lbs of honey? That’s a whole bunch of flowers and a whole bunch of bees. These are just a few of the facts that can be found in Bee Simulator, a game created in conjunction with beekeepers to not only educate, but also entertain.

Early Bee-ginnings Beget Great Things

Gameplay centers on a young honey bee that is just bee-ginning his life. His job is to gather pollen and bring it back to the hive to prepare for the long winter months. It turns out that the hive is inside an old tree that isn’t very healthy, so this young bee will also have to be on the lookout for a replacement location for his family’s hive. He will have to fight his way past angry hornets, and mean wasps, and do his best to save his entire family, all the while bringing as much pollen back to his hive as he can possibly carry.

Gameplay centers on the flight of the bumblebee and it takes a little practice to get used to it. As you progress through the story, you are given tasks to complete that will aid you in gathering enough pollen to survive the winter, and eventually find a new home for your Queen and your hive. If one just wanted to rush through and complete the game, you could easily complete the story arc in a couple hours, but you’ll also be missing out on most of the fun. Scattered throughout Honeypark are different types of events for you to complete that will further tell the story of the park and further your understanding of the proud little bee.

The Many Happenings in Honeypark

There are 4 different types of events you’ll find within the park and they are fighting challenges, collection challenges, racing challenges, and dancing your way to Epic Flowers. Fights are a mix of a turn based system and quick time events that can get harder as you progress through the game. Collection challenges will have to zipping through the park looking for specific flowers based on their color and type that can be seen when you turn on your special bee-vision. Racing challenges will have to chasing a speedy little bee through rings while also picking up boosters and bonuses and avoiding wind gusts, or maybe using those gusts to your advantage.

One of the things we leaned about bees is that they can communicate through dance. They use dance to tell other bees how to navigate to another location. This is mimicked through gameplay that is a basic memory pattern game that will have your bee following the dance moves of another bee. The moves are just up, down, left, and right but when you have to remember 6 or more it can become a little challenging. Once you’ve completed a dance challenge, you’ll then know the location of an Epic Flower and it will be marked on your HUD accordingly.

Bee Library and Trophy Room

Collectibles in the game are another one of the educational tools the game uses to help educate players not only about bees, but also other insects and animals. You’ll earn Knowledge Points as you bring back pollen and complete challenges and these points can then be used to unlock trophies and information in the library and trophy rooms. There’s also a glossary from the menu where you can unlock more information. The developers put quite a bit of information into the game and didn’t just talk about bees.

The music for the game is very easy on the ears. The tempo will rise and fall depending on the gameplay at times, but most of the music is light, relaxing, and entertaining. The voice acting isn’t exactly the best, and it sounds like 7th graders did most of the voice work, but that does add to the educational aspect of the game if you have youngsters playing with you. The game does have split screen co-op if you want spend some family time in the game. We played the game on a PS4 Pro and the graphics for the game were pretty good. While the humans walking around the park weren’t exactly top notch, the spiders, insects and animals are. For a game that focuses on that aspect, they did a decent job with that.

Varsav Game Studios weren’t out to create a fast paced, high action thriller with Bee Simulator, and it shows. The game is exactly what it claims to be: a fun and educational game that can be enjoyed by children and adults, together or alone, all the while learning about the tiny little bee and other creatures.

8


Bee Simulator review code provided by publisher and reviewed on a PS4 Pro. For more information on scoring, please read What our review scores really mean.