Be the farmer: new content for popular computer game teaches precision and more sustainable farming methods
Release Date 02 December 2021
New downloadable content for Farming Simulator computer game developed by academics and industry experts, and funded by EIT Food
Budding farmers can learn precision and sustainable techniques by playing computer games, thanks to an ongoing partnership between the University of Reading and industry leaders.
New downloadable content (DLC) for the popular game Farming Simulator developed by GIANTS Software gives players an opportunity to learn about modern sustainable farming methods. With a focus on uses of modern technology, the combination of expertise has enabled players to experience more accurate applications of fertilisers reducing unwanted impacts of overuse.
John Deere, global leader in precision farming technologies, and GIANTS Software, developer of the most successful farming simulation game series, jointly developed the Precision Farming DLC in cooperation with the University of Reading, the University of Hohenheim in Germany, and Spanish agri-food cooperative Grupo AN. The project has been funded by EIT Food, supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, to improve society’s knowledge of modern farming.
The project led to the publication of a download link for the first DLC:
Dr Yiorgos Gadanakis, project leader at the University of Reading, said:
“The new downloadable content provides players with an immersive way to learn about precision farming and care has been paid to ensure that the applications in the game are as accurate as possible. The project has only come about because of the fantastic level of cooperation between all the partners, and the DLC far exceeds my expectations.”
Thomas Frey, Creative Director at GIANTS Software, said:
“We’re excited about the continuation of the project and the opportunity to take part in this important undertaking to emphasise the benefits of sustainable farming technologies.”
The partners are working on next Precision Farming DLC is based on the new Farming Simulator 22 video game and will be launched in November. Gamers can look forward to many new features and excitement is already growing for the launch. While the first version included the basics of precision farming such as soil sampling and variable rate applications along with economic benefits for the farmer, the new version focuses on advanced precision farming technologies. These allow sustainability to be increased further, with a lower environmental footprint. Camera technologies will be used to reduce the amounts of herbicides used, and the application of fertilisers will be made more accurate with the use of modern sensors
About EIT Food
Integrating Precision Farming into Computer Games is a project under the support of EIT Food. EIT Food is the world’s largest and most dynamic food innovation community. We accelerate innovation to build a future-fit food system that produces healthy and sustainable food for all.
Supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union, we invest in projects, organisations and individuals that share our goals for a healthy and sustainable food system. We unlock innovation potential in businesses and universities, and create and scale agrifood startups to bring new technologies and products to market. We equip entrepreneurs and professionals with the skills needed to transform the food system and put consumers at the heart of our work, helping build trust by reconnecting them to the origins of their food.
We are one of eight innovation communities established by the European Institute for Innovation & Technology (EIT), an independent EU body set up in 2008 to drive innovation and entrepreneurship across Europe.
About Integrating Precision Farming into Computer Games
The Integrating Precision Farming into Computer Games project will encourage agricultural stakeholders to adopt precision farming techniques and technologies.
Precision agriculture is a farming management concept based on observing, measuring and responding to spatial variability in crops. For instance, the nutrient content or drainage of soil may vary across a field, which means a crop will require different management depending on its position in the field. Using precision farming techniques and technologies enables farmers to manage this variability both within and between different fields.
Image credit: Female games fair visitor plays Farming Simulator by GIANTS Software at Gamescom by Marco Verch is licensed under CC BY 2.0