Harvest Moon Vs. Animal Crossing [Debate]

Debate: Harvest Moon Vs Animal Crossing | Nintendo | Video Games | Gaming | DoublexJump.com

Harvest Moon and Animal Crossing are both wonderful franchises that we find relaxing with life simulation-like goals to improve our towns, relationships with others, and our protagonist’s life in general. Harvest Moon is my preferred franchise. While the main point is to work hard and improve a farm from a sad, desolate piece of land, you set your own other goals and live as you like.

Meanwhile, I’m a bigger fan of Animal Crossing. While you don’t have a farm to take care of, you can work on your house. Decorating it, expanding upon it, and even bettering the shops and museum in your village. Plus, you meet a plethora of animal characters, building relationships with them, and overall living life.

I feel as if the main difference between the franchises is that Animal Crossing focuses more on the house while Harvest Moon focuses on the farm. Bettering your farm allows you to raise whatever crops and adorable animals you want, selling the produce to earn money to invest further into your farm and the main village itself. Bettering your house in Animal Crossing allows you to… pay back your debts to a raccoon.

Bettering your house allows you to become an interior designer, duh. While the farming is cool and all, I like being able to collect various styles of furniture, objects, and other collectible items to fill my home with. I can mail items to villagers in my town and they can send me items back. It’s a win-win. Plus, there are new items in the shops every day and there are bugs and fish to collect to sell and put into a museum.

Hey, plenty of the Harvest Moon games allow you to better your house as well. It’s usually a requirement, actually, to build a bigger house if you want to get married and have children. Some games have the ability to change the wallpaper and flooring, to decorate your house as you see fit. It’s limited, of course, but when you’re busy getting rich off your farm, it’s something that takes a backseat. If you like collecting, try finding every item you can forage, growing every crop you can, and completing the little produce checklist.

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In Animal Crossing, I can get rich easily off of fishing. I can collect fish, bugs, paintings, and so much more. I get my fill, sure enough. And yeah, you can marry and have children in Harvest Moon, but it’s pretty slim pickings. While you don’t get married in Animal Crossing, there are over 300 villagers to meet, become friends, and collect their pictures. Trying to meet all the villagers and getting them all to move in your town adds a lot of replayability.

Don’t you have to kick out villagers from your town in order to get new ones to move in? What kind of neighbor are you to do that? Besides, over 300 villagers would be annoying to keep up with. The Harvest Moon games have fun casts to grow relationships with. If you want replayability, try shaping your farm differently during each play through. Harvest Moon games allow you to pass time more quickly than Animal Crossing as well. If you want to go to the next day in Harvest Moon, you just save and sleep in your bed. Animal Crossing makes you a slave to its real-time mechanics, especially when it comes to the shops.

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While some people kick their villagers out, I wait until the villagers move out on their own. And yes, the real-time can get a bit annoying, but most people just change the clock on the handheld or console. Plus, in New Leaf, they added ordinances where you can make your town an early bird or night owl allowing the shops and villagers to wake up and go to sleep either earlier or later, respectively. This was great for me since I typically play in the evening and was able to keep the shops open until well after I actually go to bed in real life. But I guess we’ll let everyone else decide.

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Which side are you on? Let us know in the comments below!

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Readers Comments (11)

  1. I haven’t played enough of Harvest Moon. I enjoyed the mobile version of Animal Crossing but eventually quit after someone pointed out that I was basically just paying the animals to be my friends. Aka they are all really needy and just expect things of you. Lol. I feel like I might get along better with Harvest Moon from what I’ve heard of it. Can drop by sometime in the next while after I’ve tried them both and give another opinion 😁 meanwhile, this was a fun post! Thanks for sharing with us!

  2. I’ve actually never played a Harvest Moon title. Is there one you would suggest starting with?

    • My first Harvest Moon game was Friends of Mineral Town for the GameBoy Advance (a little later More Friends of Mineral Town, the game where you’d be able to play as a girl, would be released). It was the perfect introduction to the series, as it is the simplest in terms of the story. Your main goal is to raise a successful farm from a desolate piece of land, making a profit from crops and livestock, and falling in love and having a family with one of the eligible bachelorettes/bachelors if you wish. There are also plenty of other NPCs to befriend in the game, with festivals and events to get closer to others but, honestly, if you want to be a hermit you totally can as well, haha. Both Friends of Mineral Town and More Friends of Mineral Town are available on the Wii U’s Virtual Console, if you are interested in those.
      Other games in the series tend to have more gimmicky goals, mainly having to restore towns or make two villages befriend each other, have more complicated crop growing mechanics, etc. Friends of Mineral Town was simple in its mechanics and, while the beginning could be slow, it was always immensely satisfying when I started making profit from my farm.
      Some of my other favorite Harvest Moon games Sunshine Islands for the DS and A New Beginning for the 3DS. Sunshine Islands involves finding special “sun stones” that raise different islands in the area to entice more people to live in the community. A New Beginning allows the player to customize the look of the village while reaching building goals to, again, entice people back to the village. If you’re interested in a Harvest Moon spin-off with fantasy elements (dungeons, exploration, other races aside from human), you may want to check out the Rune Factory series. I’ve only played Rune Factory 4, but I had a great time doing so!
      Let me know if you ever get the chance to play a Harvest Moon game! 🙂 I hope you like them if you do!

  3. Historically I have preferred Harvest Moon over Animal Crossing due to the ability to have a family. However, as farming sims get longer and the games are designed to continue infinitely, I find myself enjoying them less. I like having a somewhat quick, achievable goal within the game’s first year or two and being able to successfully fall in love during that time frame. It’s been some time since I really had fun playing one.
    I will say that Animal Crossing has an edge in the sense of humor. Those games are so quirky and funny!

    • I can understand that. Animal Crossing does have a lot of quirky characters, even though the dialogue can get stale the longer you play, lol.

    • Getting married and having a family was never one of my top priorities in the games, admittedly. I befriend everyone, but I much prefer to make a profit with my farmland (or reviving the village of the game, as some of the new-ish games make you do) as my main goal rather than seducing the NPCs. In all the Harvest Moon games I’ve played, I’ve gotten married… possibly twice? To me, I found that getting married made the NPCs boring. I was in the middle of Animal Parade for the Wii where I heard the kids grow past the toddler stage, and both the kid and the spouse can help out on the farm. I may go back to that one at some point. I do prefer the handheld games rather than the console Harvest Moon games, though, just from a graphics standpoint.

      • “Getting married made the NPCs boring.”
        Spot on. That’s probably my least favorite aspects of those games, that once you’re married they just become a generic “spouse” character that no longer reflects the unique person you formed a relationship with in the first place. I always wanted them to make marriage more interesting in the game, but even as the farming and marketing and whatnot get more and more complex, they never really develop the game’s social rules – they just make them take longer so that it takes 30 hours of gameplay to get married instead of 10 or 15.

        • Animal Parade made being married just a touch more interesting in that the child actually grows past the toddler stage with a personality dependent on your spouse. You can also give both your spouse and child chores on the farm to help you — it was definitely annoying to me in other games when my spouse just stayed in the house or even went to work and didn’t share a paycheck, haha! I would love for future Harvest Moon games to develop the friendships and married life further.

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