Harvest Moon: Seeds Of Memories Is Coming To PC

Farming simulators are no stranger to the PC, but our selection tends to favour combine harvesters over tender romance. Things change. The next Harvest Moon game, Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories [official site], has just been announced and it’s coming to PC. The above image and a single tweet is all we have so far – more will be shown at E3 – but it’s worth noting that a long-running and popular series is sowing its wild oats beyond its normal Nintendo home.

The Harvest Moon series are RPGs in which combat isn’t the central mechanic and instead you spend your time with the ways of country living: breeding chickens, growing crops, and romancing the man or woman you fancy from the local village. (I live in Somerset in the UK and yep, that sounds about right). The subject matter is less bold now than when the series started in 1996, but they’re still lovely, soothing games.

For all the loving romance in the game, the series has recently undergone an awkward divorce as original series’ developers Marvellous Entertainment split with North American publishers Natsume. That would be fine, but Natsume retained the name, allowing them to develop their own Harvest Moon games. That began with Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley and is continuing with this new game, Seeds of Memories. Marvellous meanwhile have continued the series themselves but without the name, releasing Story of Seasons for 3DS late last year. Harvest Moon players more expert than me will presumably have opinions about which is the Championship Manager and which is the Football Manager in this equation.

Here’s that tweet I mentioned:


Thanks, Kotaku UK.

34 Comments

  1. lefishy says:

    It’s important to note that this is not in fact the next game in the long running series. Natsume lost the rights to publish the Harvest Moon games but kept the name. The series continues in Story of Seasons. Natsume’s first attempt at a harvest moon without the original developers was mediocre but certainly not the worst game with the name attached to it.

    • lefishy says:

      Oh you said that. That’ll teach me for reading.

      • Alice O'Connor says:

        I’m endlessly impressed by people’s ability to object to something they haven’t read.

        • Artist says:

          Yeah, fancy drawback when you teach kids in school that they can have their own opinions but forget to teach about self-reflection. Years later they start to mentally pollute their environment with their unreflected, unfounded opinions. Welcome to the interwebz, hehe!

          • wu wei says:

            And when they’re older, they can make unfounded, unreflected comments about how “those damn kids” are ruining everything.

        • cafeoh says:

          Sounded like he was adding complimentary information (albeit redundant), not objecting to anything in particular

          • SaintAn says:

            The comment was also needed because some people won’t read the whole article which has that info buried near the bottom of a small wall of text many people will probably skip.

  2. Spacewalk says:

    Let the Rye One In.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      Might be a good idea for variation on this theme; Twin Peaks/League of Gentlemen-style shenanigans.

      • tintinmayo says:

        …with stealth mechanics. Drop a smoke pellet and plant those seeds while the enemy is distracted. Or Press Y to Plant Two Seeds at the Same Time while hanging from the ledge.

  3. Premium User Badge

    Harlander says:

    The gradient-fill-and-thick-outline of the subtitle reminds me of my early messing about with Flash back in the day.

    Oh, talk about the game? Sure, I enjoyed Harvest Moon on the SNES.

    • SomeDuder says:

      Planting your first few tiny fields and watching the various crops grow was so freaking satisfying. None of the sequels captured that feeling right, especially the 3D versions

  4. Wowbagger says:

    Is there a way to ignore the romance and just look after animals and plants? Or perhaps romance the plants?

    • wraithgr says:

      Seeing as the “romance” in harvest moon generally consists of giving your person of choice their favourite food/item every day until they like you, I would say that yes, you can completely ignore romance in the game for however long you want. All you’ll be missing out on is a few lines of generic dialogue, a couple of special events with more generic dialogue and eventually the spouse and offspring taking up some space in your home…

  5. Ross Angus says:

    I don’t know too much about Harvest Moon. It’s the game with indentured servitude, right?

  6. Museli says:

    Between this and Stardew Valley, it seems that good times are ahead for those of us looking for pleasant farmbuilding RPGs.

    • Philomelle says:

      You’re better off sticking to Stardew Valley. Natsume’s Harvest Moon is only Harvest Moon in name. The actual creators of the franchise broke away from them because they now have an in-house localization team, so Natsume threw a fit, refused to sell off the brand name and instead started developing their own games with the title.

      Their first attempt at making their own Harvest Moon game was a complete disaster and there is no reason to expect this one to be any better.

      • ninnyjams says:

        While I won’t defend the recent game because it’s just … not good, I will offer this: why should Natsume sell it off to them? They put their time and resources into the project same as the devs. The series wouldn’t exist without them. Just because the devs decide to go in on their own doesn’t mean Natsume is obligated to do something. They are totally in the right, here.

        … now back to my Story of Seasons

        • Philomelle says:

          Why would the series not exist without them? Natsume are the series’ American publisher, the only thing they contributed is the name “Harvest Moon”. They never spent a penny on the games’ actual development, while their localization of the series’ DS era hinges dangerously close to employing Google Translate.

          The extent of their “rightness” begins and ends with trying to bully Marvelous into sticking with them as the American publisher by dangling the brand name out of their reach. Which, frankly, isn’t all that valuable now that “Marvelous” and “XSEED” are themselves brand names that stand for “really good localization”.

  7. Press X to Gary Busey says:

    I have some fond memories relating to the first game. I was around 14, and my then-girlfriend played it all the time on my Super Nintendo. She passed away a few years ago :'(
    It’s probably still in the basement at my mother’s house but I’ll leave it there.

    I remember us getting through the first winter and there were some holidays, a marriage to the smith’s redhead daughter and getting a baby, plus some magical gnomes in the mysterious caves under the farm. It was a charming little game. I tried the sequel on Playstation but it was pretty tedious in that early 3D gameplay way and I remember most of the other thirty sequels also got pretty mediocre reviews when comparing them to the original, except the 2D one for GBA was good I think.

  8. Artist says:

    Another win for the pcmasterrace?

  9. Philomelle says:

    Regarding the quality of games after the Natsume/Marvelous divorce:

    Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley, developed by some mobile developer from Japan and published by Natsume, is hands down the worst game to ever bear the Harvest Moon name. It touted the ability to “transform and modify terrain”, which actually meant it made a very incompetent attempt to rip off Minecraft. You needed to hack through blocks for 20 minutes just to leave your farm.

    Story of Seasons, on the other hand, is considered to be the best Harvest Moon since the SNES original. It’s visually cleaner, farming is less tedious and there is more stuff to do. The localization is also much better – XSEED actually employ an editor who tries to make dialogue flow, plus there is no awkward old-fashioned censorship (Story of Seasons has a gay couple among its major NPCs, something Natsume would have cut out for sure).

    I imagine Seeds of Memories is just an attempt to milk the brand before everyone clues in what happened behind the scenes. I’ll be genuinely surprised if it turns out to be something worthwhile.

    • MMajor says:

      now if only we can get them to make the next Story of Seasons game for PC we would be set, heck I wish they would make it for anything other than the 3ds at this point.

    • vexis58 says:

      I feel like Marvelous broke away from Natsume partially because they’ve been doing a poor job with the series. I do English localization for a living, and have been pretty disappointed by the quality of the recent Harvest Moon games even before they split up. Constant typos, boring dialogue, even some places where the characters are speaking entirely the wrong language. Doesn’t feel like they were putting much effort into it.

      I got Story of Seasons recently and I’m really impressed by their localization job so far. They’ve really gone the extra mile to give each character a voice via text and actually make things fun to read. My husband and I have always been fans of Bokuj┼Ź Monogatari games, and will continue to be, regardless of what they’re called. I don’t have any faith that future “Harvest Moon” games will be anything other than an attempt to cash in on a well-known series name.

  10. Moraven says:

    Press Release:

    link to gamasutra.com

    “From the farm to the town, we wanted Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories to evoke the feeling of a classic Harvest Moon game with modern twists!” said Hiro Maekawa, President and CEO of Natsume Inc. “We’re also excited to finally bring the Harvest Moon series to the Nintendo Wii U, PC, and mobile platforms, where fans have definitely told us they want to see the series.”

    Go back to the roots of Harvest Moon in the latest installment of the series! Inspired by the old-school gameplay of the very first games, Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories will bring players a sense of nostalgia, along with exciting gameplay twists.

  11. vorador says:

    I personally prefer the RPG spinoff Rune Factory, but eh, i will take what i can get.

    • Timbrelaine says:

      Unfortunately the developer of all the Rune Factory games went bankrupt a while back, and nobody seems keen to continue the series. Maybe someone will think better of it.

  12. Old Rusty Dusty says:

    I grew up with Harvest Moon games and generally enjoy them, but most of the more recent entries in the series haven’t done much for me aside from some of the DS ones like Sunshine Islands that got really hardcore into being huge in terms of amount of content and stuff to unlock along with min/maxing potential profitability. The Rune Factory spin-offs were also fairly decent, mostly due to the graphical style and more final-fantasy type of world with more focus on combat.

    That said, I would really love for someone to reboot a Harvest-Moon esque game, but for adults. I want to see the Witcher 3 of HM games… a mature, gripping storyline with complex characters which have flaws, charms, and engaging dialogue. The closest I think the series came (Please hold while I pull out my finest rose-tinted nostalgia goggles) would be Harvest Moon 64, where you at the very least actually had a bar and characters like Karen who liked to drink, and probably too much. That was some badass shit when I was ten, and it’s a shame that every single further game in the series has deviated from realism.

    I say keep the farming aspect gamey, with complex economincs, but let’s have something that really fleshes out a more believable world with realistic characters that you can actually related to.

    • Timbrelaine says:

      Harvest Moo: Friends of Mineral Town also had a character that suffered from depression, and if you didn’t attempt to befriend him (you might not think about it, since he was a merchant) he would disappear for a long time in-game (a year?). Which made me feel awful, but mostly because I needed him to erect my enormous McMansion, starting with a huge hot tub.

  13. SaintAn says:

    I already have this modded in Skyrim, but a dragon killed my husband, dog, chicken and cows. :(