News Article

Natsume Announces Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley for a 2014 Release on 3DS

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Moving into a three-dimensional setting

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.

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User Comments (69)

Turnip

#1

Turnip said:

Yes. Yes. Yes.

This is going to be really interesting. I can't wait to see what Natsume has in store.

Dragonxflame323

#2

Dragonxflame323 said:

Wait so, a new Harvest Moon has already been announced, when the last one hasn't even come over yet, and it being localized under a different name and publisher besides? That is bizarre, but I'll take it. :P

Tops

#4

Tops said:

Wow, Harvest Moon is literally competing with its former self :o

Hy8ogen

#5

Hy8ogen said:

Cannot compute. Why is a franchise competing with itself? What? Most importantly, WHY IS THIS NOT ON THE F***** WII U?!

Yorumi

#11

Yorumi said:

Don't get me wrong I'm excited about this but I'm confused with the press release here. Wasn't a new beginning in 3d? And it was customizable, although I guess technically not "fully customizable." And for that matter they've had console releases that were in 3d. Can't wait for e3, excited, just confused.

ModestFan93

#12

ModestFan93 said:

@Yorumi A New Beginning was the very first true 3DS title for the Harvest Moon series. Lost Valley is sorta a continuation on the title. ^_^

Exciting news OMG can't wait for E3 now!! It's very odd that XSeed games and Natsume are both fighting to release the game.

Turnip

#14

Turnip said:

I can see some major brand confusion happening when these two games are released.

AVahne

#15

AVahne said:

I'm so confused....
Anyway, I'm guessing the 3D part they're talking about means that the game will have a 3rd person view like the home console Rune Factory games instead of the usual top-down perspective.

MajinSoul

#16

MajinSoul said:

I love Harvest Moon on GC and I hope there will be a new Harvest Moon on WiiU some day

Yorumi

#17

Yorumi said:

@ModestFan93 well yeah I get that it's just weird they're celebrating this so much. It'd be kind of like nintendo saying mario kart 8 is the first time it's been in 3d. We'd all be scratching our heads saying "um what?" Can't wait for it either way, I love sim games and love heavy customization.

Corleonis88

#19

Corleonis88 said:

I´m confused. Isn´t harvest moon in 3d and customizable after a new beginning? and if natsume is still localizing games then why aren´t they doing connect to a new world, and lastly... why not on wii u :(

Edit: Ok, digging into the Natsume facebook page I got a little to think about.
Natsume is not localizing but developing and publishing this game. They are making their own "Harvest Moon", and story of seasons will be the classic japanese Harvest moon.

Doobie

#21

Doobie said:

I'm not sure which one to get now. I was looking forward to the localization of Connect to a New Land but now this new new one The Lost Valley sounds intriguing.

ikki5

#22

ikki5 said:

So... Natsume is going to develop their own game entirely now?

@Ryno Natsume doesn't own the Rune Factory IP. That belonged to neverland which is not bankrupt. The dev team for Rune factory however, were hired by Marvelous.

HeroOfCybertron

#24

HeroOfCybertron said:

Wait I don't understand are there two Harvest Moon games coming out or is the one published by Xseed just a clone?

ikki5

#25

ikki5 said:

@HeroOfCybertron Xseed is part of Marvelous so if there is going to be a clone, it'll be Natsume doing the clone. But I doubt they can just do that so they are going to have to develop their own game. It'll be the first harvest moon game they actually develop.

lunarkitty

#26

lunarkitty said:

Wait, what ? Another one already ? The other one isn't even out yet.. @_@ Getting just slightly confusing.

Phantom_R

#27

Phantom_R said:

I don't feel like there's ever not been yet another Harvest Moon game on the horizon.

ikki5

#28

ikki5 said:

@lunarkitty I have a feeling this is Natsume annoyed that it never got the rights to localize the last one so they are going to try and develop a new game to try and steal it away from Xseed.

Personally, I have my doubts of Natsume. Their speed is horribly slow, their spelling is garbage (don't believe me? look at how they spelled their own name on Harvest moon 64) and they don't really give much information except for their rare announcements. But I may be wrong

crzysortagamer

#29

crzysortagamer said:

Hopefully this gets away form the New Beginning and Connect to a New Land style. NB was ok, but there was just way too much work withtoo little reward. I hope Natsume has been paying attention to all the goods and bads of previous HM games.

HeroOfCybertron

#30

HeroOfCybertron said:

I'm still a little confused, so there's Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley published by Natsume and Story of Seasons which is a Harvest Moon game but can't be called Harvest Moon because it's being published or localized by Xseed correct?

crzysortagamer

#33

crzysortagamer said:

@HeroOfCybertron basically natsume never made the games, they only published them in the US. They were not allowed to publish the last game from Japan because the original developers of Bokujō Monogatari (the real name of what we call the original harvest moon franchise) gave the localization to xseed to bring Bokujō Monogatari to the US. Natsume only has the rights to the name "Harvest Moon" so because the made no money of the last Bokujō Monogatari, they are making a new game under their protected name.

Morphbug

#34

Morphbug said:

@HeroOfCybertron you see, harvest moon as a series is owned by Natsume, but up until now it was made up completely of translations of games in the Bokumono series owned by Marvelous.

This is their first attempt at making a completely new and original Harvest Moon, and it will compete with Story of Seasons, which is the newest Bokumono game made by Marvelous.

Yorumi

#35

Yorumi said:

Man CoD can eat it the real battlefield is in the farm sim genre. Break out your pitchforks(literally) we're going to war over best farm sim.

CanisWolfred

#37

CanisWolfred said:

Guess I gotta pay attention to reviews to see which to get.

Or I'll get both. Depends on when the release.

WarioMan

#40

WarioMan said:

I might get this if the reviews say it's okay when it releases. I've played Tale of Two Towns and a New Beginning. I liked Tale of Two Towns, but I was extremely disappointed with New Beginning, So Natsume will have to do a good job if they wanna get me to buy this.

crzysortagamer

#42

crzysortagamer said:

Am I the only one that thinks HM games loose a lot of potential focus on gameplay when they make it 3d (rather that birds eye view)? The 3d ones just seem a little empty on respective platforms

Nintendo_Ninja

#44

Nintendo_Ninja said:

If I get one of the 2 games, this will be the one. It sounds much more appealing. Next one needs a Wii U release though.

ecco6t9

#45

ecco6t9 said:

I am interested in this, it sounds like it could be more or less a soft reset to the Pre-PS2/GC era games. (I count the GBA in the pre era).

Two potentially solid games this year does sound good.

ikki5

#47

ikki5 said:

@Nintendo_Ninja I'd wait for the reviews. It may sound more appealing but you are looking at a company that has never developed one of these before. Also, Natsume is know for being kind of lazy especially when it comes to spelling.

Morphbug

#48

Morphbug said:

@CanisWolfred an October release date for Lost Valley leaked several months ago so it may be real. While Story of Seasons has a release window of just "next winter"

Obito_Tennyson

#49

Obito_Tennyson said:

They couldn't wait until E3 for this announcement? That would have created a lot of hype! I guess that they wanted to get the info out of the way so that we wouldn't be distracted by Metroid Prime 4 or F-Zero U.

SphericalCrusher

#51

SphericalCrusher said:

That is awesome news! Looking forward to this! Been a fan of Harvest Moon since SNES so let's see what this is about!

Pixel-Perfect

#53

Pixel-Perfect said:

They release too many games in this series... sometimes I humor the idea of picking one up, but I have no idea where to begin...

ikki5

#55

ikki5 said:

@SphericalCrusher whats funny is.... this is not going to be the same Harvest Moon series that you loved on the SNES. It is a completely new series technically.

Morphbug

#58

Morphbug said:

@Donjwolf Bokumono != Harvest Moon anymore.

the xseed one is Story of Seasons (Bokumono in Japan), the Natsume one is Harvest Moon.

It is a HM not developed by Marvelous, but it is a HM because Natsume is publishing it and Natsume owns the name.

Klinny

#59

Klinny said:

Woah, what is going on here? XD

I am interested in both titles. I'm a huge fan of XSeed so Story of Seasons is really appealing to me. However, I'm also a fan of 3D Harvest Moon and I like that Natsume is interested in creating a game that gets back to the things that old fans enjoyed while also bringing in new elements, such as the field customization.

Oh, who am I kidding, I'll probably get both >.> Though I'm worried that this "feud" will diminish the quality of the games. And confuse people.

Jenraux

#60

Jenraux said:

Just a little explanation here so people know what's going on:

Harvest Moon is a series developed by Marvelous, however the Harvest Moon NAME is a western name used by Natsume for Marvelous's RANCH STORY games, the HM games we're familiar with.

Story of Seasons is a Marvelous game published by XSEED, they can't call it Harvest Moon because Natsume own that name.

The Lost Valley is a game DEVELOPED & PUBLISHED by Natsume, and they're using the HM name for it, but it is NOT a HM game as we know it.

Story of Seasons will likely be the new name for HM in the coming years, unless Marvelous and Natsume get back together. But with Natsume releasing a whole new series using the same name, it looks unlikely.

Zombie_Barioth

#62

Zombie_Barioth said:

@Jenraux
Yep, if there were any chance of that its shot now, releasing their own home-grown "Harvest Moon" is be a huge "screw you" to Marvelous. Or it could also mean there wasn't any chance to begin with, so upsetting Marvelous isn't a concern for them.

Gotta wonder why Marvelous didn't just use the name Ranch Story since its the intended name of the series to begin with. Searching for it even brings up Harvest Moon.

SphericalCrusher

#63

SphericalCrusher said:

@ikki5 I am quite aware of the changes.. ;) I did say i have been a fan of the series since then, so I have played almost every one. It's definitely evolved. Lol

Starwolf_UK

#64

Starwolf_UK said:

I'm not sure what the better analogy is this situation: Wonder Boy (which Hudson released as Adventure Island and made their own sequels) or Robotech (an 80s anime localisation that glued 3 unrelated shows together to fit with US syndication needs of 5*13 episodes and so had plot edits, the original shows would not use the Robotech branding if they got localised).

Still I wonder if the market can handle this many games and what the consequences could be. Worst case scenario is Natsume put out something terrible and nobody buys Story of Seasons killing the franchise in the west.

Jakeman

#65

Jakeman said:

Probably won't get released in Australia or Europe. Nintendo just does not care about us other 3DS gamers anymore.
We have already missed out on Chibi-Robo's Photo Finder, Rune Factory 4 and Disney Magical World (and those are just the games [that I know of] that I thought would have been released just this year).

Lobster

#66

Lobster said:

I wonder if this will be any good? I guess I'll have to wait for the reviews to find out.

Meanwhile I KNOW Story of Seasons will be good. :P

HandheldGuru97

#67

HandheldGuru97 said:

Seems like a really seedy way to get back at Marvelous for ditching them...I'll keep an eye on both games for now...but I will be buying Story of Seasons full price launch to support the real Harvest Moon, maybe this one later on and cheaper (if its good!)

Windy

#68

Windy said:

Wow did X-Seed get Snookered? Anyhow I will more than likely pick the version which has the best online Co-op farming. I mean really where else is there to go with Harvest Moon than take it online? My money is on XSeed with online play. Natsume has shown over and over and over and over......'its not willing to take Harvest to a full co-op play format. Since XSeed is basically given that opportunity and had to drop the harvest moon name from the title maybe they are more free to do what they want too.

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