Review by ShockStyles

"If only real farming was this fun!"

First glance: "A farming sim? Sounds boring." WRONG. Harvest Moon is like the Sims, except fun. Farming may seem like a boring thing to do in a game, but it's addicting after playing for a while, and being able to say you're the richest man in town is always a plus.

Story
At the beginning of the game, you're given a bit of a background story. Your grandfather croaks and leaves you his beat down, hell-hole of a farm in his will. It's not worth a dime in its current condition, so you might as well fix it up. Doesn't sound like much, but what the game lacks in a given story, it makes up for by letting you make the story yourself, and I enjoy that.

Gameplay
The gameplay is tedious, but once you get your daily chores done, it starts getting fun. Farming doesn't have to be all bad in this game. There's always other activities to do like fishing (takes some sort of skill or dumb luck to be good at), mining during the winter, and lots of crap to collect. The controls are simple, making it easier to do everything. With just a single tap of the A or B button, you can cut down grass, give a weed to the mailman, or even sickle your cow.

Sound
The game only consists of 7 background songs, one for each season, one for the festivals, and one for walking around in the mountain, each repetitive in it's own way. This is the only department Harvest Moon sincerely seems to lack in. This can be easily solved by muting your TV and playing some real music.

Graphics
When I first bought this game, I wondered how good a farming game could really be in the graphics area, but I was surprised. The graphics are pretty good for the time, and are easy on the eyes. The animal designs look anatomically correct, as do the characters, although they lack mouths everywhere, except when your character drinks/eats something, or down at the bottom next to the dialogue.

Replayability/Multiplayer
The replay value of this game is infinite. The game literally never ends and is completely engrossing. Sometimes I really do have trouble setting down my controller. It's also a fun game to play with a friend on the phone, using it to check up on each other's progress and competing for the best storyline.

Flaws
* Some chores are just too repetitive
* The music could very easily drive you insane
* "Dude, Where's My Mouth?" - an instant classic

Pros
* Great with friends
* There's so many typos, it's hilarious
* Makes farming interesting
* Fun after the chores are done

Rent or Buy?
Buy. This game is great, and definitely worth the five dollars you'd pay for it these days.

Overall
A great sim game, though a bit repetitive. It's still fun to play when you're bored.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 11/26/07

Game Release: Harvest Moon 64 (US, 11/30/99)


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