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Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons/Stardew Valley/Etc Speed Farming Thread

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
Speed Farming games. You know, those games that let you live out your wildest fantasy of running away to live in a small cottage somewhere and run a fairly small farm by yourself and yet somehow become the richest person in town within the year. There's a lot of these coming down the pipeline, it would seem:


Story of Seasons Pioneers of Olive Town is coming March 23, 2021, notable features include: Just straight up giving you Stardew Valley levels of freedom when it comes to designing your farm, an actual mine again, character customization, and gay marriage (in North America, the Japanese version sticks to the Gal Pals Ceremony).


Rune Factory 5 is coming May 2021 (in Japan). Notable features: Anime, Intense Real Time JRPG Combat Action, the first numbered Rune Factory game to have something that resembles a budget


Stardew Valley 1.5 is coming at some point with an unknown number of new features and content. Concerned Ape indicated that his might be the last update to the game, at least for now.


My Time at Sandrock is a sequel to My Time at Portia entering steam early access next March, and I guess it's not technically a Speed Farming Game, but it is in that "Cutesy anime-esque life sim where your character moves to a new town and takes up residence there doing a specific job that no one else seems to do yet for some reason most of the town seems built around it" genre so. Portia was kind of a mess, but maybe this will turn out better and maybe they'll hire a decent localizer.
 

Ludendorkk

(he/him)
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
Hey is the Friends of Mineral Town remake good? I never really played the original and really enjoyed Stardew Valley (not that I expect it to be that good). It was on sale recently (might still be on sale?) - should I pick it up?
 

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
Hey is the Friends of Mineral Town remake good? I never really played the original and really enjoyed Stardew Valley (not that I expect it to be that good). It was on sale recently (might still be on sale?) - should I pick it up?

i enjoyed it, it's from the era that stardew valley heavily draws inspiration from, if that helps any. it's a lot easier on the eyes in motion than it is in screenshots.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
i enjoyed it, it's from the era that stardew valley heavily draws inspiration from, if that helps any. it's a lot easier on the eyes in motion than it is in screenshots.

Good enough of a recommendation for me. Thanks!

EDIT: grabbed it with 45 minutes to spare before the sale ended lol. Glad I saw this thread and you replied when you did!
 
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Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
I couldn't figure out My Time at Portia...

it has a lot of solid ideas for this type of game, and i think the setting is really neat conceptually, but the writing isn't there and the progression is whack and the character design lean a little too dead-eyed and holy cow is the default time speed too fast
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
I've been greatly enjoying Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town when my wife has been using the TV. I never played the GBA original - I'm not sure if it's different for the remake, but two questions:

1. Does the game go on forever, or does it end after three years or whatever? I assume it'll let me keep playing...
2. How long do I have before the potential love interests start to get married off and become inaccessible to me? I'm in mid-summer year 1, and I'm still building up the farm, and don't have access to a lot of stuff yet for gifts (just got a kitchen).

The summer music is kind of grating, but I do think the game is cute looking. It's too damn windy in the summer though, I've lost like four days to it, although thankfully the game doesn't punish you by pissing off your animals or ripping up your crops.

EDIT: oh, also, third question - there are hearts next to some of the male characters, too - does that mean I can marry them too (my character is a dude)?
 
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Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
I've been greatly enjoying Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town when my wife has been using the TV. I never played the GBA original - I'm not sure if it's different for the remake, but two questions:

1. Does the game go on forever, or does it end after three years or whatever? I assume it'll let me keep playing...

2. How long do I have before the potential love interests start to get married off and become inaccessible to me? I'm in mid-summer year 1, and I'm still building up the farm, and don't have access to a lot of stuff yet for gifts (just got a kitchen).

The summer music is kind of grating, but I do think the game is cute looking. It's too damn windy in the summer though, I've lost like four days to it, although thankfully the game doesn't punish you by pissing off your animals or ripping up your crops.

EDIT: oh, also, third question - there are hearts next to some of the male characters, too - does that mean I can marry them too (my character is a dude)?

The game goes on forever, there are even some events that can only happen 50+ years into the game.

None of the love interests get married in the remake - apparently Japanese audiences didn't like the rival system because they felt like they were breaking couples up so the developers removed it. The first two rival events for each couple is still present, but their relationships don't go any further than that.

Real talk: You should manually save before you go to bed each night of summer and winter, go to bed, check the weather forecast, and reload if there's a typhoon or blizzard. They happen just waaaaaaay too often.

Yes, you can get gay married.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
The game goes on forever, there are even some events that can only happen 50+ years into the game.

Holy shit

None of the love interests get married in the remake - apparently Japanese audiences didn't like the rival system because they felt like they were breaking couples up so the developers removed it. The first two rival events for each couple is still present, but their relationships don't go any further than that.

You know, I'm fine with that. No pressure to rush cooking a bunch of cakes or whatever to shove down people's throats.

Real talk: You should manually save before you go to bed each night of summer and winter, go to bed, check the weather forecast, and reload if there's a typhoon or blizzard. They happen just waaaaaaay too often.

Ooh, I didn't even know you could do that - will do! Thanks for the protip, I hate losing days and potentially missing out on more crops/animal products and such.

Yes, you can get gay married.

Nice! Honestly a bit surprised. This opens things up nicely...

EDIT: Okay, "Our relationship is now one of two women entwined in romance" makes me want to reroll my character as a woman and marry Jennifer. That rules hahah
 
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Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
I have gotten fully sucked into this so hard that I've kind of stopped playing Cold Steel IV. I didn't take care of my horse very well, and the guy came and took him back lol. I assume he'll give me another shot in year 2 at keeping a horse? I guess I wasn't paying attention much and didn't realize I was being graded on how well I took care of it.

Leveling up the fishing rod takes forever. Do you get exp for it if you just cast it a bunch of times, or do you have to actually catch fish to get exp?

The music is actually quite good in the game, particularly the autumn tracks. Only the summer ones grate a bit, and it's not like they're awful or anything.

I hate when I forget to watch TV on Tuesdays and miss out on a recipe. I need to befriend more people because I bet they give out more recipes, too.
 

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
I have gotten fully sucked into this so hard that I've kind of stopped playing Cold Steel IV. I didn't take care of my horse very well, and the guy came and took him back lol. I assume he'll give me another shot in year 2 at keeping a horse? I guess I wasn't paying attention much and didn't realize I was being graded on how well I took care of it.

Leveling up the fishing rod takes forever. Do you get exp for it if you just cast it a bunch of times, or do you have to actually catch fish to get exp?

The music is actually quite good in the game, particularly the autumn tracks. Only the summer ones grate a bit, and it's not like they're awful or anything.

I hate when I forget to watch TV on Tuesdays and miss out on a recipe. I need to befriend more people because I bet they give out more recipes, too.

you get a full grown horse in year 3 if you lose it in year 1, apparently. but yes you were supposed to be brushing it every day, kind of wish the game told you about it.

you get experience for each use of a tool, you get more if it's a "valid" use of said tool, but with the fishing rod it's just easier to sit indoors and cast it over and over and over than actually fishing.

also a cool hint make sure you're throwing offerings in the pond by the hot spring on the daily.

anyway new pioneers of olive town trailer (in japanese)

stardew valley really ate their whole lunch
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
Yeah, things have... progressed since my last post lol.

Currently in winter of year 4, got a new horse and have won several races with it, gotten to floor 255 of both mines and have the warp stone, maxed out the hearts for all the girls except Popuri and all the men except Cliff and Brandon (I hope Cliff comes back, but I haven't seen him so I might be boned there). I've decided I'm going to try to marry the Harvest Goddess, which according to the FAQs I've looked up, I should be able to do - I've been breeding animals and still have a while to go as I only have six heart sheep and angora rabbits, and I don't even have a fruit calf yet.

Currently working on finding and uncursing the cursed tools - I have about half of them. Having an absolute blast, have put about 70 hours into the game. I still prefer Stardew Valley for many reasons, but the Friends of Mineral Town remake is very, very good.

And Olive Town looks pretty good, too - I'm glad they're taking lessons from Stardew Valley, it can only make the mainline games better imo.
 

Pajaro Pete

(He/Himbo)
yeah, cliff is gone if you didn't befriend him enough in year one to get him a job at the winery.

i'm also trying to get the cursed tools but boy i wish they were guaranteed to spawn because having to save scum is obnoxious.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
yeah, cliff is gone if you didn't befriend him enough in year one to get him a job at the winery.

i'm also trying to get the cursed tools but boy i wish they were guaranteed to spawn because having to save scum is obnoxious.

Damn. That sucks.

If you don't like save scumming, don't go for the Harvest Goddess lol. Took me hours to get through the mines.

I've uncursed all the tools and mined up the mythic ore I need, so now all I'll have to do is keep breeding animals to get better products from them (as well as win the various events for them, though I do have a chicken laying platinum eggs, so that's one down, whenever it lays an X egg).
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
yeah, cliff is gone if you didn't befriend him enough in year one to get him a job at the winery.

He can come back in the remake - I just got him in the Fall of my 5th year. Apparently he can come back anytime after year 2 if you walk to the north part of town from your farm at 6 PM or later on the 29th of any month (besides winter, iirc?).

I'll probably be wrapping this up soon. I won't be going for the Harvest Goddess for marriage, because the X items broke me - you have a 1 in 255 chance of them appearing from platinum producing animals, of which I have like five animals that do so, and I've gotten ONE Milk X in five years. Plus my alpaca that just won the Fluffy Festival went from large wool to platinum wool, so I'd have to carefully time and breed an alpaca over, win the Fluffy Festival again, and hope it produces a gold wool rather than go right to platinum. And that's after years of doing the same for rabbits and sheep as well, all of whom have to be funneled one per year through the Fluffy Festival to get the ability to make the platinum and X products. Plus the same for coffee, strawberry, and fruit cows. All of which I'd do if I didn't have to rely on RNG to get those X products, but that broke me.

I've gotten over 90 hours out of this game and had a good time, but I think I'm going to play through year 6, hopefully win the last power berry from the pet frisbee competition, and by then hopefully be married and have had a kid (probably with Karen, I guess) and call it done. Easily worth the $35 I paid for it, and it's gotten me interested in Olive Town. Maybe I'll play Rune Factory 4 one of these days, too...
 
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Sprite

(He/Him/His)
I wish there were more games that riffed off the first Harvest Moon games, which had really short days and gave the games a rhythm I enjoyed a lot more than the leisurely pace of modern farmlikes. The closest thing I can think of is Recettear, and that was 13 years ago.

I get that the leisurely hang-out style is why most people like these games, but Animal Crossing more than scratches that itch for me. I want frantic life sims! I should probably just try and make one myself one of these days.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
I wish there were more games that riffed off the first Harvest Moon games, which had really short days and gave the games a rhythm I enjoyed a lot more than the leisurely pace of modern farmlikes. The closest thing I can think of is Recettear, and that was 13 years ago.

I never played Recettear, but you may want to look into the Friends of Mineral Town remake (assuming you didn't play the crap out of the GBA original, of course). It is "simpler" to me than Stardew Valley, and while I think Stardew Valley is a better game, the FoMT remake really felt like I was playing a "classic" Harvest Moon, if that makes sense.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
So at about 115 hours according to my Switch, I think I'm done with Friends of Mineral Town. Ended up marrying Karen, and she's pregnant now, but I don't really have anything else to look forward to right now, as I just hit year 7, have won every festival at least once, have all the power berries, and 2.5 million gold. The only thing left to do as far as I'm aware is save up 10 million to buy the villa, but that sounds dull, if I'm honest. I might pick it up later to do that, but I'd probably start a new game first. Great game, enjoyed it way more than I thought I would.

I also picked up Rune Factory 4 Special, because even though I'm done with FoMT, I wanted more farming lol. I've never really played a Rune Factory game before - there's a lot going on here. It seems every little action you can do can level up. I'm not quite sure how to cook yet, despite having scheduled a cooking festival as the 'prince' (which feels like I'm the town mayor or something like in Animal Crossing). I have a chemistry set, but that seems to be for medicines and the like.

The combat is fine, but it can be hard to tell when an enemy will hit you or not. I probably just need to get used to it. The farming is weird - I've found some farm plots outside the one next to my bedroom, but have no idea why you'd want to use it - it'd take forever to get there every day to water it and such. Given how many mechanics and systems this game has, though, there will probably be a reason to eventually. I wish there was a reload button somewhere, so in case I die (which I've done carelessly twice already) I could just reload from my last save rather than take the penalty - as is I just shut the game down and reboot it to reload my save, which is annoying. I guess I got too used to savescumming in FoMT lol.

Still, I'm enjoying myself and will probably put a ton of time into RF4.
 

Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
Welp, I've put about 11 hours into Doraemon Story of Seasons, and I love it. I know absolutely nothing about the anime or manga or whatever - I'd barely heard of it prior to buying the game - and that's fine because it's a charming game from top to bottom. It's absolutely gorgeous - look up screenshots or video to see what I mean, it has a nice sorta of watercolor painterly look thing going on, and it looks good in motion, too.

Character design-wise, there's no gross underdressed children or half naked women, and since there's no romance/marriage since you play as like a twelve year old, I have yet to see anything even remotely sexual or creepy (as far as I can tell, the main character seems to have a crush on his friend Sue, but it seems very chaste, as it should be).

Storywise it's an isekai, which having googled the term after Pajaro Pete used it in the game deals thread, for those of you who don't know (which probably was only me lol having not watched anime since Pokemon in the 90s) just means all the characters are transported to another world (or in this case, time). Everybody takes up jobs, with the main character becoming a farmer obviously, and your goal is to get all of Doraemon's "gadgets" back, which in the game function as tools to, say, warp around the world (with the Anywhere Door being the first gadget I got back). The story is unobtrusive save for a long winded tutorial that I believe you can skip most of if you want - it took me like 40 minutes before I could actually play the freaking game. But once you start playing the story (so far) fades to the back and you are free to farm.

Time passes slowly in the game - one real time second equals one minute of in game time - but you can "nap" at any time, which advances time forward to whenever you select, similar to the "wait" option in Skyrim or something. The nice part is, this replenishes some stamina, so if you want to cut down more trees or mine more or whatever, this works pretty well.

Farming is pretty straightforward, though the crops grow (or, more accurately, get bigger or bloom) as soon as you water them, which is nice because you can see exactly how each crop advances rather than wait until the next morning to see if you can pick crops or whatever. The animation that plays when crops are harvestable is great, too. You can also fish, mine, catch bugs, and forage for stuff all over town.

You can have chickens, cows, and sheep, as well as some pets - petwise I have a dog, cat, and beluga whale (!) that you can become friends with. I'm not sure what the cat does, though I'm not very friendly with it yet - apparently the dog can find stuff buried sometimes, and when you give the beluga whale fish, it gives you gifts, usually better quality fish than you fed it.

There are town events and you can become closer to the townsfolk, though as I said, you can't romance them. You can level up your tools, stamina, etc, just like you'd do in any other Story of Seasons games. Unlike the Friends of Mineral Town remake, though, you can heavily customize your house - you can make it bigger as usual, but there are like a dozen different sets of themed furniture that you can buy/craft from the carpenter, which you then manually place wherever you want in your home. It's pretty neat, though not quite Animal Crossing level of customization.

In any case as of this post, it's $25 - though so far I think Friends of Mineral Town is probably the better game, Doraemon Story of Seasons is absolutely charming and who knows, I could end up liking it better than FoMT eventually. It's quite a good game, and you don't have to like (or even be aware of) the anime to enjoy it.
 
Character design-wise, there's no gross underdressed children or half naked women

Something that complicates English language discussions of "anime" is that most of what people think of as "anime" in the pejorative sense is 99.9% of the time what's called "late night anime" (深夜アニメ) in Japan. It's a super niche thing that basically no one watches and (while I think some of it is good) there are basically no standards because it's on TV at 1am and then goes on to sell like 4-5 digits worth of physical media. In my experience, if you meet someone in Japan and they say they "like anime," they almost definitely mean Disney or Ghibli or Doraemon or whatever, and they might even be kind of embarrassed and want to clarify that they don't mean "late night anime." The borderline case is stuff from Jump like Naruto or whatever that does get incredibly popular but also has significant elements of creepiness in its tropes, but it's still generally not as out there as the most recent "I Can't Believe I'm Dating My Little Sister" show or whatever.

In English it all kind of gets rolled up together, but Doraemon is not "anime (=late night anime)" in that sense, it's just a cartoon.

(To be clear, I don't mean this as a critique, just as an explanation of what Doraemon is in context of Japanese animation.)

Anyway, I'm glad you're enjoying the game!
 
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Kazin

did i do all of that?
(he/him)
Why are seemingly all anime video games late night anime then, ugh (I know, I know... Gamers.)
 
Why are seemingly all anime video games late night anime then, ugh (I know, I know... Gamers.)

That and, it's a lot more rare for games that adapt things like Doraemon to leave Japan, or at least Asia. (Haven't looked it up, but probably they're more common to reach other Asian countries.) You slap Doraemon on something in Japan, it sells a ton of copies regardless of quality. Do that in non-Asian English speaking countries and . . . you get a lot of people asking, "What's Doraemon? Do I need to watch the show first?"

 
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