Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley
expanding farming fun
I'm looking forward to natsume giving the series their own go. they've handled the game for more than 17 years and i think that entitles them to a chance from the fans to show what they are capable of. they know the series in and out. being the publisher, they've seen the feedback... for better or worse and should know what to improve on. im definitely giving HM: the lost valley AND story of seasons a go. the only downside here is having two games in the same vein to play, any fan of the genre should view that as a positive.
my biggest concern regarding this title is it is the largest game natsume will have ever developed internally. judging from what we've seen, i do believe they've built a solid foundation of "harvest moon" to grow from.
while i believe the game will be good, you do have to ask yourself if they have the resources to expand on what we've seen thus far, to create a deeper game experience... or something that may wind up a bit shallow or short in delivery.
either way, im excited to see the results. this is a great kickstart to rejuvenating the genre and IP. natsume has been good with fan service and delivering, the low price and adorb push dog is the cherry on top.
I'd rather wait for SoS.
Honestly, I have no interest in The Lost Valley. Not only did they add a Minecraft edge that can be boring, time-consuming, and exasperating to deal with, but they're also just trying to keep a big audience within their clutches when they don't really deserve it anymore. Let's be honest: It might be good. But it might also be a boring disaster. And why bother with that 50/50 chance when there's a 100% guarantee that Story of Seasons, the real HM title now under XSeed, will be everything we've always enjoyed? Sorry, but I'm not sorry: I'll be passing on The Lost Valley and waiting for SoS. At least that way I'll know my money is going toward a better, more guaranteed investment.
Taking a Good Game in a Bad Direction
As a fan of Harvest Moon since the originals, I can not say I like the look of this installment in the series. The one trailer available basically makes your farm a minecraft-style sandbox where you can customize the elevation of the ground, different materials you can place, and making it more of a large open area you can explore. It takes away from the traditional farming mechanisms that Harvest Moon is built on. Growing crops and raising livestock will become the least of your interests with all of these features implemented. And with the few shots taken from the town, it didnt look too promising either. There was again, a lot of open land, and elevated terrain. It didnt look like a small town, but rather more of a house or two and thats about it. When I mentioned the game had elements from Minecraft, I wasnt just referring to the sandbox feel of the game, but it appears as if you will have to craft your own tools. As a completely different approach, interaction with NPCs seems to be boosted a lot and play a much larger role than past games. If one thing is for sure, this game will definitely feel like a fresh new start, but I would have preferred it with only the basic farming mechanics we are all fond of already and I dont feel taking the series in this direction is what fans would want to see in Harvest Moon. Since I havent actually seen any real gameplay yet, I will be fair and give it a 7/10. I still would recommend some of the past games in the series though other than this.
I admit this might actually be a good game, the storyline at least sounds like a neat idea. I'm just not that big a fan of minecraft...at all. But with the low price and the plushie I might give it a try. At least to tied me over until "Story of Seasons" comes out. lol. heck maybe my husband would like to build the valley while I take care of the storyline. Hmm..
Call Me a Skeptic
Alright, I was a bit shocked that Marvelous AQL decided they would be localizing Harvest Moon games in house through XSEED, and I was wondering what is Natsume going to do now? Harvest Moon was their bread winner. Well turns out this didn't stop them from making their own version of Harvest Moon. And I will be honest it looks ok. Not great or good just ok. Which worries me because the people at Natsume bragged this game would be like Harvest Moon Back to Nature or 64, but this game really doesn't give me that feel at all. It honestly feels like some Minecraft farming iOS game that is being brought to the 3DS. What I also didn't like is that Natsume never did try to clear up confusion on the whole "What is the real Harvest Moon." I have met too many people who thought Natsume has been the ones making the games all these years, and they find it hard to believe me when I say this is just a spin off of the main Harvest Moon series (Farm Story in Japan). So I somewhat feel their marketing for this game was a bit unorthodox, but they have to get this game to sell some how, and honestly I won't be surprised if this game sells better than the actual Harvest Moon game due to the name. However I still plan to buy this game, but like I said I am skeptical. I have grown to enjoy a lot of Marvelous AQL's work with the Harvest Moon series, so to see an entirely new game with the same name is going to take some getting use to. I just hope this game can prove me wrong and be more than just an ok 3DS game that more so belongs on iOS.
It might be ok
I know some people are turn off by the minecraft-like elements, but I see it as a change. I don't know if it will be a good or bad change. As long as it's not the whole building idea from A New Beginning, I'm fine with it. With what I've seen of tthe game so far it might be an interesting, but needed change. Natsume does have to step up it'ss game. All in all, I do say I am looking forward to this game a little more than Story of Seasons and I do plan on getting both.
I am a true fan of the harvest moon franchise and have a good number of their games. I do agree that they usually produce pretty good games. I think if you are interested in purchasing this game I would do your research first. It really does just look like minecraft with harvest moon buildings. The way the characters look is also a disappointment. Its kinda hard to think about who you want to marry when they all look like they are five years old. I would just look into this one before you purchase it. I am no where near as confident in it as I have been in their other games.
I have Doubts
ICK!!!! I am NOT a fan of Minecraft in fact I hate it. All they are doing is making a Minecraft game and calling it Harvest Moon just because you own the title does not mean you get to be lazy and slap it on what ever and expect the HM fans to be happy. The character designs is lazy and flat out ugly and the world layout graphics are knocked back down to gba or ds standards at best. Natsume you are messing up a childhood favorite of mine I have played every Harvest Moon that has ever released. Why NATSUME WHHHHY? I may buy this game but they have to give me more then just what they show on the preview vids I am warning you Natsume you have one shot to do HM solo.... On another note I will be buying the REAL Harvest Moon (now called Story of Seasons) in DEC
Cannot Be That Bad
I do not think this game will be that bad, honestly. I am going to go in with an open mind for this game and Story of Seasons. They both look fun to play and are both different in their own ways. I'd suggest the games I've posted below to pass the time. :)
New and (hopefully) exciting
With Marvelous making the Harvest Moon series for so long, Harvest Moon has become a series with some predictability. For the most part, if you liked the last Harvest Moon game, you'll probably like the next one. But with Natsume giving it a go for the first time, it's unclear whether it will be a hit or a disaster. At first, I thought it was going to be the latter. the graphics certainly are taking a different route than Story of Seasons, and they've made far fewer marriage candidates for this game. But besides those two points, there is more Natsume is doing differently that I think has a real chance to improve upon the series. The moving blocks of dirt around (minecraft-style) seems odd for a HM game, but the fact that planting on higher or lower blocks could change the crop you plant on that square is definitely interesting. Although the graphics are suffering, the 3D sprites have a lot to be desired, the marriage candidates feel non-existent, and the customization of the main character sounds weak, it sounds like they're definitely improving the main focus of Harvest Moon: Farming. Both crops and animals have gotten an upgrade in the way they're handled. More crops, more varieties of the same crop type, exploring options while farming to see how the results, and the fact that animals have traits are all positives that I think will give this game plenty of gameplay hours.