Orwell’s Animal Farm – Review
Follow Genre: Text-Based, Management
Developer: Nerial Limited
Publisher: The Dairymen Limited
Platform: PC (Steam)
Tested On: PC (Steam)

Orwell’s Animal Farm – Review

Site Score
Good: Great art
Bad: Repetitive
User Score
(3 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.3/10 (3 votes cast)

Between 1943 and 1944, George Orwell wrote the book Animal Farm. As a critical allegory about the Russian Revolution and Stalinism, Animal Farm faced issues being published until the end of WW2 and the alliance with Russia. Over the years, the novella has received several adaptations, from comics to plays, with the latest being this videogame.


Animal Farm’s story follows the story of a farm where the animals revolt against their human masters. After years of neglect at the hands of the alcoholic farmer Mr Jones, the great boar known as Old Major rallies the animals and teaches them a revolutionary song called “Beasts of England”, tasking them with enacting the revolution after his death.

Once the animals manage to chase away Mr. Jones and his wife, they rename the property Animal Farm and adopt the Seven Commandments of Animalism: a set of rules proclaiming all animals as equals and their opposition against humans. With the farm running smoothly through the cooperation of all animals, the pigs proclaim themselves as leaders and start managing the farm.

The game in general remains quite faithful to the book’s story, in some cases going too far. At times, despite or due to player choices, events taken out from the original text will carry out regardless of how much sense they may make, undermining any choice that has been taken till that point. Luckily these are not too common, although shoehorning them in may be questionable since the game does take certain liberties regardless.

There are also some characters that have been completely cut out from the game, such as several of the pigs and the puppies. This directly ties into the simplification of the dialogues in the game, which reduces the characterization of the different animals. For example, the dogs already are completely loyal to Napoleon and the hens are always whiny without much explanation. Said simplified dialogues are at times even reduced to a single line, which is often the case for the aforementioned hens.


Animal Farm’s graphics are made of a gorgeous hand-painted style, with a few very simple animations here and there. Most of the animals have unique and easily recognizable designs, with different expressions used to represent their mood throughout the game.

The farm itself also changes with the seasons, with golden wheat growing in summer and snow covering it in winter. There are also different smaller changes that occur depending on player actions, such as the supplies being stocked or the windmill erected.


The game’s sound is quite good, with a very well made soundtrack and even voice acted narration. That said, the animals only emit their corresponding sounds during conversations which, while understandable, is a sudden shift from the narrative voice-over.


Similarly to other Nerial games, Animal Farm belongs to the text-based management genre, with players being tasked with keeping the morale and resources of the farm in check. During gameplay, different random events may occur, benefitting or hindering the farm’s situation. Contrarily to games like the Reigns series, Animal Farm repeats its events a lot, at times triggering the same one several times in a row. The pool of events doesn’t appear large enough to last throughout a whole playthrough without repeating a few, which can quickly become annoying.

Progress throughout the game is divided into years, themselves divided into seasons. During the different seasons, different set events will always occur: In spring and summer crops are harvested, during autumn the land is ploughed, and last but least, winter is the time to plant for the following year. All of these set events require players to choose from different options, such as how much to plant and who will work the land.

Different animals have different sets of skills, though these mostly apply to how much they can harvest. Upon making an animal work, their health will decrease, requiring them to later rest or interact with other animals to recover. A few have special interactions, such as the horse, Boxer, being able to harvest in summer for free. With most events being limited to a single interaction, keeping all animals healthy can become finicky, especially in the later years.

As already mentioned, players also need to keep an eye out for the morale and supplies of the farm: the first is maintained by choosing options that increase “Animalism”, generally those that benefit the pigs’ ideas, and the latter through the harvests. Without food, animals will starve and without Animalism, they will be generally negative and more prompt to suffering defections.


Orwell’s Animal Farm is an interesting game with good ideas but a lacking execution. While not bad, it is still underwhelming, with not much variation despite requiring plenty of runs to see all endings. A playthrough can last between 30 minutes to an hour, without much difficulty for reaching the ending after understanding the mechanics. The game’s $/€ 8.99/ £7.99 price tag is mostly reasonable for the playtime it may offer, as repetitive as it may be. That said, waiting for a sale may perhaps be recommendable.

Personal Opinion

“Although I don’t dislike Orwell’s Animal Farm, it left me pretty cold; having played both main line Reigns games I expected more from Nerial. In comparison with the slew of different events with humor and charm those games provide, Animal Farm seems shallow. I wouldn’t say I don’t recommend it, but as someone who has read the source and played other games by the developer I did find it disappointing.”

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Rating: 8.3/10 (3 votes cast)
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Rating: -1 (from 1 vote)
Orwell's Animal Farm - Review, 8.3 out of 10 based on 3 ratings

No longer writing for the site, pursuing other things.

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