Review by aicalo7

"Another solid title for the genre."

If you have ever played any game from the Harvest Moon series, you should have enjoyed the addictive simulation gameplay and the quirkiness of the whole package. Harvest Moon 3 GBC (HM3) is either a great addition to your Harvest Moon collection or your start into the genre for the GameBoy Color.

Compared to other GBC titles, HM3 has great graphics and animations. Characters, buildings, livestock, and even your plants have surprising detail (although they’re not realistic) that really pop out as you play the game. There is a different animation for every tool and for every strength level of the tool, which will be explained later. Every plant actually looks like what it’s supposed to, a rarity sometimes on handheld consoles. Colors vary by season, and add a nice change of scenery to the game.

The sound is quite good by GameBoy standards; there are effects for every action and the music changes for the various buildings. Not the best sound there is, but okay nonetheless.

How much you will enjoy the game depends on your patience and gaming preference. If you only play action titles with instant results, then consider a different title. HM3 requires a good amount of patience and repetition, much like the Monster Rancher series. Despite this, the game still gives the gamer a degree of challenge and accomplishment when you finally breed your first calf or make a huge profit from one season’s work.

Some say that it’s the little things that make a game what it is, and that holds true for this title. For example, you can play as the boy or the girl at the beginning of the game, and that holds different challenges and tasks for each. As the boy, you can level up your tools as you use them more and finish tasks more efficiently, such as breaking rocks or chopping wood. The girl can tend to the animals or work on the field, creating flexibility for your time schedule. Either way, you must take care of the livestock and farm every day (game time, that is) in order to succeed in the game, which requires remember what you need to do and scheduling your time effectively.

The biggest challenge is time scheduling, which could make or ruin your farming career. The game time runs like a 24-hour clock, with your character waking up at six every morning. From then on, you must decide when to take care of the animals or to harvest the crops. If it rains or snows hard, you must stay inside for the entire day, giving you depressed animals or missed deadlines from part time jobs.

All of these features give HM3 the challenge you wouldn’t expect at first glance. For some gamers, this game could get boring as time passes, but HM3 gives you something to do for a few hours or possibly a rewarding career… as a farmer.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 05/02/02, Updated 05/02/02

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