Slime Rancher - Ranch guide and overview for new slime wranglers
Slime Rancher just might be one of the cutest games in Early Access, if not on Steam entirely. There's something to be said about the relaxation power of collecting, feeding, and protecting your own personal smiley slime horde.
Slime Rancher is a fairly simple game in its current version, but there's still a lot new ranchers need to know as they try to make the most of their time in Far, Far Range. It's entirely too easy to get excited and throw a bunch of slimes on your ranch, only to find a Tarr slaughter situation on your hands.
There are two primary ways you can keep slimes:
- Let them run free range around your ranch
- Put them in a Corral
Allowing your slimes to run free range means you don't have to deal too much with overcrowding in a single Corral, but it's not as easy to feed them all and collect their Plorts.
You have to keep your slimes separated based on what you want, or else you risk having your ranch overrun by Tarr. And you can do this by using the most basic of plots on your ranch: the Corral, which costs 250 Newbucks.
You can add a Corral (or another type of plot) by interacting with one of the many plot stands around your ranch.
You start with one Corral you can toss slimes into, but beware! It's not as easy as shoving your slimes into a Corral and leaving them there. Some can fly or bounce their way to freedom, not to mention breaches due to overcrowding.
There are several Corral upgrades costing varying amounts of Newbucks, the game's currency. They're all useful, but some are more useful than others for the average rancher.
Higher Walls (350 Newbucks)
These walls double the height of the Corral to make it more difficult for slimes to escape.
A must-have for any Corral, as Largos and Tabby Slimes will have more trouble escaping and slimes stacking atop one another and it's needed to make the Air Net upgrade worth it.
Air Net (425 Newbucks)
Anyone who wants to raise Phosphor Slimes or Largos outside of the Grotto has to have not only an Air Net on a Corral, but also a Solar Shield.
The Air Net covers the top of the Corral to prevent breakouts, but can only withstand a certain number of hits before dissipating for a short time. It only does so much to prevent slime breakouts caused by overcrowding, but is profoundly useful for Phosphor raisers.
Solar Shield (425 Newbucks)
The second upgrade you need to raise Phosphors. Phosphor Slimes and Largos can only survive at night, and the only way you can block out the sunlight on your ranch outside of the Grotto is via the Solar Shield.
A Corral with all upgrades except the Music Box.
Auto Feeder (500 Newbucks)
This nifty little device feeds you corralled slimes at regular intervals to make them pop out those Plorts and to keep them happy.
You have to manually add the foods you want to feed your slimes to the Auto Feeder by shooting the food into it. It will only feed slimes in that Corral, but it's a great timesaver! Easy constant storage for needed food types.
Plort Collector (500 Newbucks)
The ultimate convenience! No longer do you have to manually suck up your slimes' Plorts. At least, not in that Corrall.
The Plort Collector will suck up Plorts for you, so you don't have to thrust yourself into a Corral full of Boom slimes or suck up all your slimes with their Plorts, then spit the slimes back out again.
This one's the ultimate convenience upgrade, but it's not necessary to make money early.
Music Box (350 Newbucks)
If you don't want to spend too much time feeding your slimes or are having to stretch one type of food across two types, the Music Box may be just the upgrade you need to keep your slimes happy.
The Music Box soothes your slimes so they take longer to get irate. It's useful in general, but it's especially useful for Boom Slime ranchers.
Other ranch plots
Corrals aren't the only way to use the plots on your ranch. There are a number of other plots you can put down to make your ranching life easier.
Garden (250 Newbucks)
You can grow fruits and vegetables using a Garden, which is great if you don't want to have to run around the entirety of the map every time you need to restock on particular fruits and vegetables.
You can shoot one fruit of vegetable into the depository on the plot to have it start growing that food. Beware free range slimes eating your crops!
The Garden has several upgrades:
- Sprinkler (500 Newbucks) - Waters your crops and makes them grow twice as quickly.
- Nutrient Soil (350 Newbucks) - Uses higher quality soil, making your crops always give the maximum amount.
- Scareslime (425 Newbucks) - Keeps roaming slimes off your crops. This isn't necessary if you don't have free range slimes and it will scare slimes in nearby Corrals -- use with caution and plan your ranch accordingly.
Sure, you can throw unwanted stuff into the ocean -- but isn't it more fun to burn it?
The Incinerator is a good investment if you have trouble keeping your Largos away from other slimes' Plorts. Just grab the Tarr and shove them in the Incinerator to deal with them quickly and easily. Also good if you just want to be able to get rid of stuff (slimes included) easily while working around your ranch.
You like Tabby Slimes, right? A Coop is probably a good investment.
This set up is not recommended.
The Coop allows you to raise chickens right on your ranch so you don't have to go searching for them. Try to avoid having more than a dozen to a Coop and remember you need at least one Roostro to get to chicken breeding.
The Coop has a few upgrades:
- Higher Walls (350 Newbucks) - Doubles the height of the Coop just a with a Corral. Keeps the chickens in and the slimes out (mostly).
- Spring Grass (425 Newbucks) - Attracts bugs for your chickens to eat, in turn making them lay eggs at double the rate.
- Vitamizer (500 Newbucks) - Helps your Chickadoos mature into Hens and Roostros faster.
Pond (450 Newbucks)
You want to raise Puddle Slimes, right? Of course you do, they're basically free Newbucks. It's time to give them some water to live in.
Puddle Slimes can't survive on land and their Plorts disappear if they touch ground. The Pond is the only way to keep them on your ranch and it is well-worth the effort.
You can refill the Pond's water by going to one of the many small geysers out in the wild and sucking up the water.
Silo (450 Newbucks)
Simple storage for a simple life! Just shoot an item in and it will store it.
The Silo can be upgraded to provide additional storage slots. It starts with one and can be upgraded to four. Great for storing particular types of Plorts on days they aren't worth much.
- Slot Upgrade 1 - 500 Newbucks
- Slot Upgrade 2 - 575 Newbucks
- Slot Upgrade 3 - 650 Newbucks
So you raise slimes on your ranch, what else can you do there? Not much but sell Plorts, set up structures, and upgrade your abilities -- wait, those are Slime Rancher's primary progression. That's not a "not much".
These facilities are easy enough to find around your ranch.
This structure is easy to find and may be your first go-to if you want to suck up slimes and their food efficiently.
The Vackpack Upgrades structure lets you upgrade your Vacpack above and beyond its initial abilities, letting you upgrade your health, energy, pack capacity, and jumping abilities via a jetpack.
The primary upgrades are listed below, but they certainly aren't the extent! Each upgrade sans Pulse Wave has multiple tiers.
- Dash Boots - Halves energy consumption when sprinting
- Heart Module - Increases your health by increments of 50
- Jetpack - Gives you a jetpack for temporary flying, can be upgraded for less energy consumption
- Power Core - Increases your energy by increments of 50
- Pulse Wave - Lets you push slimes away if they're crowding you
- Tank Booster - Increases your Vacpack capacity by increments of 10
Whenever I start a new game, I tend to get the Tank Booster right away to increase my carrying capacity. But some ranchers may find investing in the Jetpack or Garden, Coop, or Silo structures to be more beneficial.
This building lets you trade items with NPCs each day. Some trades are worth it and some aren't -- it really depends on what you have and what you need.
You can shoot the requested items into the Range Exchange and once you've fulfilled the request, the traded items will pop out of the machine.
Your best friend -- aside from your cuddly little slimes.
The Plort Market lets you sell your collected Plorts to make those much-needed Newbucks to upgrade your Vacpack and improve your ranch.
Each Plort has a different default Newbucks value, and that value changes per day based on how many of a Plort type you've sold recently. The default Plort values are as follows:
- Pink Plort - 7 Newbucks
- Rock Plort - 15 Newbucks
- Phosphor Plort - 15 Newbucks
- Tabby Plort - 15 Newbucks
- Boom Plort - 30 Newbucks
- Honey Plort - 30 Newbucks
- Puddle Plort - 30 Newbucks
- Golden Plort - 200 Newbucks
These values will change on Day 2 and continue to fluctuate as you progress.
Your house doesn't have much use, but you do get mail and you can sleep in it to make time just fly by. Pretty useful if you ask me.
There are two ranch expansions at the time of writing.
The Grotto is a dark and gloomy place.. just perfect for Phosphor Slimes!
There are 5 plots in the Grotto and no pesky sunlight to stop your Phosphors from living it up. You can unlock it on the Western side of your primary ranch with 1500 Newbucks.
The Overgrowth is the most obvious ranch expansion and it's the one that will benefit most slimes, with lots of growing fruits and vegetables. It has four plots to make use of and can be unlocked on the Eastern side of the ranch near the entrance for 1500 Newbucks.
These are just the basics of the ranch in Slime Rancher, but there's a lot more to see! A handful of slimes can be found around every corner of Far, Far Range and raising them to rake in those Newbucks is a real task. Knowing what you can do with the ranch is just one part of the game, but it's home sweet home.