Friday Favorites: Harvest Moon Games

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

The Harvest Moon series — rather, Story of Seasons as it’s called now — was probably my first dip into the simulation video game genre. While I’ve definitely turned my attention more towards Stardew Valley than this series, plenty of Harvest Moon games still hold a special place in my heart.

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Animal Parade

I honestly haven’t played this game too much, as I prefer my Harvest Moon games on a handheld rather than a bigger console, but I did enjoy what I did play of it. The style of the game is cute and the cast of characters were great. My favorite part of this game? Your marriage and children actually have a bit of substance. Your spouse can help out on the farm or with other chores, and the children actually grow and have some personality.

Island of Happiness/Sunshine Islands

While technically two games, I feel like Sunshine Islands was developed to right all the issues that Island of Happiness had. These games have my favorite cast of characters, and Island of Happiness would have been on this list alone had its controls not been the horrendous touch-screen things. Sunshine Islands wasn’t too bad either, but the plot of raising all the islands was a bit annoying.

Harvest Moon 3D: A New Beginning

This installment in the series deserves a place on this list due to how much time I sunk into it. It was addicting trying to revive the whole town while also being given free reign as to how the town was designed. Being able to move buildings wherever you want, both for the town and the farm, was a great mechanic. This game also had a good online mode as well — it was simple and enabled players to help each other with quality animal products and gifts.

Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town

While Friends of Mineral Town was my first foray into the Harvest Moon series, I enjoyed the female version of the game. This game was just fun in its simplistic way. The only goal was to create a thriving farm and, if you wished, to make friends with the rest of the townsfolk. It was the perfect, no-stress, chill game.

What are your favorite Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons games? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Reunion in Mineral Town

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

If you follow us on Twitter or Tumblr, fairly recently, I made little posts just celebrating my excitement at the fact that there will be remakes of a couple of my favorite games from the Harvest Moon series.

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I’ve been playing Stardew Valley recently, mostly because it reminds me of the simpler, older Harvest Moon games from when I was younger. While some of the more recent Harvest Moon games aren’t too bad, I do feel that some of them are somewhat gimmicky and have moved away from the charming gameplay that was just, “Build up your farm however you want, make friends, maybe get married and have a kid,” that the original games had.

My first Harvest Moon experience was Friends of Mineral Town for the Gameboy Advance and the idea of designing my own farm and taking care of the ranch animals was addictive and satisfying. I became more hooked on the series when More Friends of Mineral Town became a thing because, hey, I was able to play as a girl. Now, there are reports of a remake of Friends/More Friends of Mineral Town for the Switch coming out later this fall!

Rather, the fall date is for Japan, but it has been confirmed that the game will come out in North America as well. I am very excited and I’m hoping that maybe Rachel would like this one better than Light of Hope.

The only concern I have for it is that I’ve become accustomed to Stardew Valley’s lack of regard for gender when it comes to marriage. I don’t marry in these kind of games often at all, but the freedom is nice. Hopefully this is one of the updated mechanics that I’m sure this remake will have!

Have you played Friends/More Friends of Mineral Town? What do you think of this remake news? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Flashback Friday: Harvest Moon

Double Jump Kris Mii Hey everyone, Kris here!

This month’s Flashback Friday celebrates the Harvest Moon franchise, a series that dates back twenty years. It is now known as Story of Seasons rather than Harvest Moon due to copyrights and publishers and such, but it’s still Harvest Moon to me. It’s a simulation game that revolves around reviving a dying farm, and is definitely more entertaining than it sounds!

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Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town, released in North America on the GameBoy Advance on November 17, 2003, was my first introduction to Harvest Moon. A good friend of mine gave it to me for my birthday or Christmas one year and he attempted to explain it to me as I had never heard of the thing before. He quickly assured me that, although it was all about farming and maybe getting married, it was an addicting game. I thanked him, always happy to get new video games, and didn’t remember it for a little while until I eventually tried it out.

Since then, I generally do my best to collect the Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons games. They are addicting little buggers, even better since the games started to allow players to play as girls, and prove to be great at giving me a challenge. I focus more on raising amazing livestock and having a fantastic farm full of crops, but there is also the fun aspect of befriending and wooing other villagers.

In all the Harvest Moon games, I’ve only gotten married once and that was in the original Friends of Mineral Town. I had married Ellie — I believe the reason was because she was the first to get to a red heart, so I thought, “Eh, what the heck?” Although I’ve always done my best to remember the other villagers’ birthdays and talk to them every day, the marriage and children option wasn’t something that I favored in the series. It was a fun perk, but not a necessity for me to enjoy the game. I’ve gotten close to being married in the other games, many times with more than one option to marry at that, but it wasn’t something that I cared to do.

Perhaps on my next go-round with the games, I’ll opt to figure out what the fuss is all about regarding marriage and the children…

How about you? Do you enjoy the Harvest Moon and Story of Seasons games?