Ever wondered what it'd be like if Pokemon's perpetually-childish heroes settled down to start a farm? Lucky for you, that's exactly the premise of Monster Harvest. Sowing its first seeds this week, Maple Powered Games' upcoming crop punctuates Stardew Valley's pastoral life sim with brutal fights between half-plant, half-animal hybrids called Planimals. Geddit?
Coming "soon" to Steam, Monster Harvest was announced during last night's Future Games Show - a quaint wee farming sim that'll have you turning carrots into carnivores.
Granted, Monster Harvest isn't the first game to root a monster-catching adventure in pastoral life (what's up, Ooblets?). But it is perhaps the most direct mash-up, rooting its aesthetics firmly in Stardew's small-town pixels. As ever, you've lucked into owning a small farm just outside of town, and are free to fill it with crops of all colours. Slam some magic goo on your harvest, however, and your plants will transform into feisty, fighty "Planimals".
These cuties can be used to fend off wild slimes and monsters, the deadliest of which can be found in the darkest dungeons of the land. Finding new seeds and slimes in town or in the wilds will help expand your roster of Planimals, as will choosing whether to plant in the wet, dry, or "dark" season, the latter of which sees a foul mutation spread through the world. Eventually, you'll even be able to grow a nice big not-Chocobo for riding.
For a reprieve from all that adventure, the town of Planimal Point offers the usual array of shops, community centers, and pleasant locals to mingle with between harvests. If Maple Powered Games are fully committed to echoing Stardew, I reckon you might even get a little flirty with the townsfolk. We'll likely find out more as Monster Harvest's unannounced release date approaches over the coming months.