174 of 184 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Harvest Moon 3D: A New Beginning - Nintendo 3DS (Video Game)
This game was officially released today, but I was fortunate enough to get my pre-order copy 4 days early and I've been playing it pretty much non-stop since then. I cannot say enough good things about it.
It's not as "pretty" visually as Tale of Two Towns (that game had a lot of texture!), and the 3D is terrible (when is it not?), but A New Beginning makes up for any lack of "prettiness" with its awesome gameplay. (And, don't get me wrong, it isn't a BAD looking game by any means!)
Everything I thought "Gee, I wish I could ________" from the last game was added into this game. For example, instead of pushing A to pick up an item while foraging and then pressing Y to put it in your bag, you simply press A and your character puts the item into their bag automatically--completely streamlining the process! They've also added the option to buy recipes to cook from, rather than trial-and-error experimentation (which, I don't know about you, but that led to countless "fail" dishes on my end!).
But even with all the little things to make the gameplay easier, Natsume's added just enough new challenges to keep things interesting. In addition to your stamina bar, you now have a "health" bar. And the stamina bar decreases much more quickly than in Tale of Two Towns. In ToTT I saved my cooking for the monthly cook-offs, but in A New Beginning I've found that I actually have to EAT food at some point during the day if I'm going to get all of my chores done! :O Eating the food actually MEANS something in this game!
Sleep also has more significance in A New Beginning. You can no longer keep your character awake all hours of the night and still wake up refreshed at 6am the next morning. If you stay up late and/or work your character too hard, you'll find yourself sleeping in the next morning. It puts new meaning to the old adage, "Early to bed, early to rise."
And, of course, the new customization feature is awesome. It's a bit limited (don't be expecting Saints Row or Skyrim levels of character creation here!), but the fact that you can choose your own look at all is pretty amazing for a Harvest moon game. There's 3 face types, 4 skin colors, about 8(?) hairstyles, and 2 starting outfits to choose from.
You're given a lot more freedom when it comes to customizing your farm (and later the town itself). This allows you to prioritize your activities more efficiently and play the game how you want. That level of freedom helps to really suck you in.
As Dunhill (one of the NPCs) says, "This is your life. Find something you want to do with it and do it."
I'm going to be playing this one for a long time to come.
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Showing 1-10 of 18 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 6, 2012 11:22:14 AM PST
One little thing. You said "Natsume's added just enough new challenges to keep things interesting". ANB was made by the Marvelous company. Not Natsume :] Natsume only releases the english version in U.S. and Canada.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 6, 2012 1:15:04 PM PST
Ah, yes! I see. Marvelous AQL. Thank you so much for the correction. I definitely want to give credit where credit is due. :) (Though now I feel like a foolish self-centered American lol).
I also wanted to mention that the bag in this game is much, much better. Not only can you hold more items (though I did have to buy the "bigger bag" upgrade after things really took off), but the bag is no longer divided into sections like it was in ToTT. Instead of having a set amount of slots for fish, insects, and produce; you can now shove things into your bag willy-nilly. At one point I had my bag stuffed to the gills with just insects! I loved that.
Posted on Nov 6, 2012 5:15:15 PM PST
Have you ever played Harvest Moon: Back to Nature? That's my favorite in the series, and I was hoping that this new one would kind of get the game back to its roots. A Grand Bazaar, Island of Happiness, and Harvest Moon DS were all lacking, in my opinion. I never made it to Two Towns because I was afraid it would be just as bad.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 7, 2012 12:43:11 AM PST
I have indeed. Back to Nature was actually the first one I played. I also own Save the Homeland.
Back to Nature was pretty hardcore. lol. I had a bit of a meltdown as a teen when I blew all my money on pineapple crops and then lost EVERYTHING in a bad storm. I had just married my in-game wife and she was pregnant and I was like "AHHHHHH!" The game got too "real." O_o I kid. But it was pretty unforgiving. (But that's part of what made it challenging, am I right?)
I was disappointed that I wasn't able to get married in Save the Homeland, so I was very happy that was a feature in Tale of Two Towns. Personally, I loved that game. To me, it had everything I liked about Back to Nature and Save the Homeland and took out everything I didn't like. It worked really well for me.
If you could share what you mean by going "back to its roots," I'd be happy to share my thoughts with you. I'm sure there are some things I won't be able to cover just because it's still so soon after the release and I've got miles and miles to go yet (what an exciting prospect!!), but I've gotten far enough along to get a good feel of things. :)
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 7, 2012 3:44:06 PM PST
Nice review! I'm jealous of you because I'm from the UK and there's no release date for Europe yet. I've finished ToTT recently, and I'm now playing Animal parade on the Wii. I like both of them, and would snap up A New Beginning in a heart beat given the chance. Do you know if the 3DS is region locked, cause if it isn't I'd be tempted to import the U.S version.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 7, 2012 3:55:05 PM PST
Oh, my goodness. You have every right to be jealous. I'd be sending myself envious glares from overseas too if I were in the UK. lol. (And, to be honest, a lot of the music I like comes out overseas first before coming out here, so I can totally empathize).
Unfortunately, I don't know if the 3DS is region locked, but it seems like something you could find out online if you did enough searching. Or maybe someone will show up on here who knows the answer!
I hope A New Beginning comes out where you are soon. If you liked ToTT, I think you'll really like this one too. :)
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 7, 2012 9:16:32 PM PST
Yes, the 3DS is region locked, unfortunately. Really stupid.
Posted on Nov 8, 2012 8:21:44 AM PST
Thank you for the awesome review! I was saving to actually buy up a 3DS until this came out and I actually heard it was good. Now that I know it is I have some shopping to do! :D
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 9, 2012 7:25:06 PM PST
I guess I just tend to like the older games better? They were simpler, but they worked. I played Save the Homeland, but I didn't really like it. It just had a totally different feel to me, and it played awkwardly (in my opinion). All the DS versions up until now have not appealed to me. I tried playing HM DS, HM Cute, Grand Bazaar, and Island of Happiness, but I didn't like any of them. I also didn't care for Magical Melody or A Wonderful Life. I'm sort of hoping that this new one embodies the spirit of the old games, if you know what I mean.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 9, 2012 7:29:12 PM PST
Thank you very much!
I actually bought my 3DS in order to play Tale of Two Towns. lol. (I got the DS version, but I knew that the 3DS would come in handy...). I totally get buying a new console just to play an awesome HM game. ;)