Natsume has been teasing multiple E3 reveals for titles on Nintendo systems, and has fired an early shot today with the announcement of Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley for 3DS, the newest entry in the series which will arrive — in North America at least — later this year.
For its part the publisher is keen to emphasize that this new entry will be a step forward for the franchise, moving into a three-dimensional environment. Below is an excerpt from the press release.
“Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley is truly evolving the franchise. Hardcore fans will love it, players who haven't played a Harvest Moon game in a while will want to try it out, and new players will be introduced to the unique and charming world that is Harvest Moon,” said Hiro Maekawa, President & CEO of Natsume. “But the incredibly exciting thing that really elevates the game is that while it does get back to what everyone loves about the early games, it also innovates in a way that no Harvest Moon game ever has.”
In Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley, players will experience the role-playing farm simulation in a three-dimensional setting for the first time. The game has a fully customizable world, and players can customize their field in any way they see fit: from a field full of tulips like you might see in Holland, to a valley filled with water like Venice, the choice is up to you. You've never played a Harvest Moon game quite like this!
That certainly sounds promising, and the title will make its first appearance at E3. This may be seen as a blow to XSeed, however, which is releasing Story of Seasons in North America — that's actually Harvest Moon: Connect to a New Land by another name, as Natsume holds the rights to the Harvest Moon brand in the West. Now, bizarrely, the localisation of the previous release in Japan will go up against a brand new entry, each through different publishers and names.
Publishing shenanigans aside, are you excited about a new Harvest Moon that promises to take the series forward? Let us know in the comments below.