I have been a Harvest Moon fan since I was a young girl. Something about farming and romancing interesting NPCs has always intrigued me. I shared my thoughts on Harvest Moon: Light of Hope not too long ago, and now it is time to dive into Harvest Moon: One World. I think it is easy to crap on a big-name franchise; however, this game has some redeeming qualities that I feel many reviewers neglect. The Harvest Moon franchise is adapting in ways I could not anticipate, and I am excited to share with all of you.
In Harvest Moon: One World, players explore various biomes, ranging from a harsh desert to raging tundra. The ultimate goal is to save the Harvest Goddess with the help of Harvest Sprites and Wisps. This is done via farming, ranching, and overall being a good neighbor. Helping those in need, growing rare crops, and mining are all essential to this rescue mission. In the end, this seems like an easy feat, but there are some hiccups along the way.
One of the biggest complaints I have about Harvest Moon: One World is I am given too much freedom. There are literally hundreds of crops to find throughout the four seasons. I have been stuck trying to find white eggplant seeds for a year, and quite frankly, it is getting annoying. Another gripe I have is the crops do not always grow into what their seed says it will. I have been trying to grow watermelons for ages, and they always turn into cannonballs or mellow yellows. For a game that is supposed to be relaxing, there is too much variability for me.
I must also admit, I was slightly frustrated with how quickly I finished the main storyline. Now, I think this issue is more on me, this is a game rated E for everyone, and it could be that now that I am an adult, these types of games are merely easier for me to finish. Therefore, I would love to share some pros about Harvest Moon: One World with my complaints out of the way.
While one of my biggest complaints was having too much freedom, I also love the open-world setting. The fast travel makes it easy to have crops growing throughout the lands and allows players to have a diverse and fruitful harvest. I also like the added challenge of having my stamina reduce in extreme temperatures. This makes me plan when I leave the house and makes earning the special weather cloaks even more imperative. The addition of new animals like the Blacknose Sheep and Araucana Chickens are also welcomed, they are adorable, and I would do anything for my new little buddies. Overall, I think Harvest Moon: One World has more redeeming qualities than I initially gave it credit for, and I adore this game.
In conclusion, while Harvest Moon: One World may not be like Another Wonderful Life or Animal Parade, I think we need to give credit where credit is due. Natsume is trying something new with the open-world format, and I respect that. Sure, trying to collect many seeds can be challenging, but so was finding music notes in Magical Melody. If players can get past some of the hiccups mentioned previously, I think they are in for a real treat with this game.