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Pool Cleaning Simulator Review

Pool Cleaning Simulator Review

Pool Cleaning Simulator is a (gasp) pool cleaning simulator game developed by both Rubens Games and FreeMind Games and published by PlayWay S.A. Before we begin, this should be said: the game is heavily inspired by PowerWash Simulator, it just has other equipment apart from the trusty pressure washer. I’ve actually checked this game out before its release and, to be honest, it was an… interesting experience. I have not touched this game since writing that, so let’s see what has changed since its Early Access release.

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Ah yes, a totally normal task of picking up PIRANHAS.

Before every job, you’ll be at home where you can store your equipment, stock your truck with whatever you might need, order anything you don’t have, pick out your work outfit, and even feed and pet your cat and dog. It’s a nice place… but a little redundant. There’s storage for a lot of equipment, but that same equipment can be stored in the truck as well. Even if you somehow manage to lose an item or run out of something, you can just order more rather easily by buying it from the store. The only real purpose of your home is to buy items and change outfits. The delivered items all come in individual boxes, by the way, and need to be unpacked at a specific table. It works fine overall, but there’s not much to it.

But enough about that. Let’s talk about what you’ll be doing when on the clock. You’ll be cleaning surfaces, checking the pH balance and chlorine, making sure the water is the right temperature, and doing some bonus tasks for your client, like solving puzzles or collecting rubber ducks. There are only a few maps, and you do have to return to some that have new messes, but there’s quite a bit of variety, and it goes into places that I didn’t expect, like swimming in aquariums amongst the fishes and driving alligators out of water parks. That being said, quite a few of the side tasks are just hunting for collectables, and some of them can be really deviously hidden. Still, it’s worth doing for the extra rewards and the achievement.

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You have to organise all this before you can actually begin cleaning, no matter what the game tells you.

As for the maps themselves, they’re nice once they’re cleaned up, but again there are only so many. I feel disappointed, however, as in my preview the game featured water physics, but it looks like most of it was scrapped. I liked it, but it was probably the best to ensure the game runs at a stable frame rate.

Onto your equipment. You have a variety of tools to use, from sponges and power washers to ducky thermometers and even scuba gear. Each job requires certain tools to be in your truck, and you can leave without having the necessary equipment, so it’s best to check the list before you take the job. Some items are kind of awkward to use or will slow down your movement speed, while others have to be used slowly or else you need to do a second pass over. It’s all fine, but I think playing way too many action games made me impatient because it feels like objectives take forever to complete. Also, you can only have so many tools in your belt, so you frequently need to go back to the track to switch items. It can get tedious and a little frustrating cleaning, and that’s part of the job, but I have special grief for cleaning messes.

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Oh what the duck.

Some dirt is flat-out invisible, and you need cleaner vision to see it, even after you’ve gone over it with a sponge. You have a cleaner vision, which highlights any filth that requires wiping down, but it’s not helpful enough then there is only one pixel left or in a place that I couldn’t reach through normal means. There are also some surfaces that aren't generous enough to clean the rest for you, so it’s more extra work for you, and sometimes it feels too generous and cleans it before you’re done.

There are some genuine issues I ran into, though. The game does not do stairs very well. You just jitter up them, and at times, you can get stuck on them. It’s sort of headache-inducing. When you don't need to swim, and there isn’t an invisible wall, you will just sink to the bottom of the water as if it wasn’t there. There’s not even a need for air. It’s very jarring, and I cannot tell you how many times I’ve slipped and ended up in the pool. I also ran into a few glitches and some trash I needed to throw away did fall out of the map. Luckily, the game does detect this and respawns it. I also found some visual glitches, and playing with a controller feels really bad. Still, it ran pretty well with only a few hiccups, and at least I didn’t crash.

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Some times you're cleaning up a murder scene, the next you could be doing something as cool as this.

To be honest, I just lost interest while playing Pool Cleaning Simulator. I watched Summer Games Fest while cleaning a giant rubber duck, and nothing of value was lost. For a game about cleaning, it made the actual cleaning the most boring part. It at least tries to be interesting and it does work when you’re thrown into something a little insane. You can do some cool things, and there are some really out-there scenarios (like the super murder level), but overall, I can’t recommend this game unless you’re looking for another game like PowerWash Simulator. It’s okay but I’d rather play something else.

5.00/10 5

Pool Cleaning Simulator (Reviewed on Windows)

The game is average, with an even mix of positives and negatives.

Pool Cleaning Simulator tries to be interesting, and it does work at times, but at the end of the day, it’s more like doing chores than playing a game.

This game was supplied by the publisher or relevant PR company for the purposes of review
Dylan Pamintuan

Dylan Pamintuan

Staff Writer

An Australian-born guy whose trying to show everyone why games are awesome.

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