Best Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons Games
Image: Nintendo Life

Updated with Harvest Moon: The Winds of Anthos.

Remember: This ranking is based on each game's User Rating in our database and is subject to real-time change even now. If you haven't rated the ones you've played, you can do so even now and potentially change the order of the games below. Enjoy!

The king of the harvest, and the longest-running farming sim series going, Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons has been a Nintendo stable since its 1996 debut on the SNES. And even if Stardew Valley (which was inspired by this very series) may have taken the crop coronet in recent years, the series remains ever-popular for its charm, its cosy vibes, and its addictive farming gameplay.

Known as Bokujō Monogatari in Japan, this lovely farming series sees budding young farmers build up a farm from scratch, raising animals, growing crops, and making sweet with the locals. You can fall in love, marry, have children, and take part in festivals.

Of course, if you're a series fan, you know about the "schism" of 2014 when Marvelous parted ways with publisher Natsume, which causes a bit of a headache. Natsume's Harvest Moon series is not Bokujō Monogatari, but Marvelous' Story of Seasons is.

For the purposes of this list, we're looking at both Harvest Moon and Story of Seasons — they both come from the same place, essentially. So, ahead of Story of Seasons: A Wonderful Life, a remake of a GameCube favourite, we've asked you lovely people to rank every single Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons game. We've included a number of spin-offs which include the Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons name, and we've only included games that were released on Nintendo systems and got an English release.

Remember, this list isn't set in stone. If you haven't grabbed your hoe and tilled the Harvest Moon ranking fields yet, then you still can. Click on the star next to the ones you want to vote for and give it a score out of ten, and you could change everything.

With that, let's have a look at all of the Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons games, as ranked by you...

38. Harvest Moon: Mad Dash (Switch)

Making a farming sim into a fun, relaxing puzzle game could work, but for Harvest Moon: Mad Dash, Natsume apparently forgot about the fun part. The colour-matching game is painfully easy, and the fact that getting resources while avoiding lava and other dangerous obstacles means that this one is only good for some weed killer.

37. Puzzle de Harvest Moon (DS)

If there's a common theme among less-beloved Harvest Moon games, it's that they all go in a completely different directions. Puzzle de Harvest Moon, while an interesting mix of a puzzle game, strategy, and farming sim, completely misses the ball. It fumbles right out of the gate with its tutorial, and unless you have friends, you have to cope with the terrible AI rivals. This is one crop that doesn't meet the standards of the rest of the franchise.

36. Harvest Moon: Frantic Farming (DS)

Harvest Moon: Frantic Farming is one of the better puzzle games in the Harvest Moon series, but even so, it falls short of other games for its lack of charm and innovation. It's also incredibly short, meaning once you're done playing through every puzzle the game has to offer, that's it. Natsume has the potential to create a great Harvest Moon puzzle game, but it's still far off with Frantic Farming.

35. Harvest Moon: One World (Switch)

If you're looking for the next Stardew Valley, Harvest Moon: One World doesn't even come close. This game is a poor imitation of what the series once was, and it feels more like a rushed mobile release than a full-fledged Switch game. These games have always been about chores, but this one feels like a chore to play. In our opinion, your money is better spent on something that respects you as a fan of the genre, and there are plenty of other games in this very series that will deliver on that.

34. Harvest Moon: Light of Hope Special Edition (Switch)

Despite being inspired by the original Harvest Moon, Light of Hope falls short of its namesake. Rather than standing as a beacon of light in the genre, it pales in comparison to Stardew Valley — which was released on the Switch just the year before this game came out. Even within the Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons franchise, it's a step back, simplifying many of the mechanics and shedding a lot of the charm in the process. You can do much better nowadays.

33. Harvest Moon: My Little Shop (WiiWare)

Harvest Moon: My Little Shop on WiiWare was really good at what it did. Unfortunately, what it did was bring the tedium of working in the food service industry right into your home. Charming looks and an interesting time system couldn’t save a shallow experience that feels more work than play.

32. Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley (3DS)

The Lost Valley aims to reboot and reintroduce the series to a younger generation. Incorporating new elements such as fulfilling villagers' requests and the ability to alter the terrain, The Lost Valley has its aim set high but completely misses the mark. Most of the new features, while good on paper, are implemented poorly and add to the detriment of what could have been such a great game. It's a bold move for Natsume to develop a game that strays away from the series' conventions and tries new things, but the overall experience is lacking the polish and charm that the Harvest Moon name has come to represent.

31. Harvest Moon: Skytree Village (3DS)

When Harvest Moon: Skytree Village opens up, it shows some promise. However, it falls short of its sky-high ambitions due to some clumsy tutorials and a lack of actual things to do in the village. While the tile-based editing makes things a lot easier, Skytree Village's fields are empty, and with a short campaign that you can finish in under a year of in-game time, it leaves us longing for more in the post-game. This entry is a step in the right direction for Nastume's take on the genre, but we're still a ways off the cream of the crop.

30. Doraemon: Story of Seasons (Switch)

Doraemon: Story of Seasons is an enchanting, relaxing romp through a world that is so much simpler than ours. With gorgeous visuals and a never-ending list of things to do, it’s unlikely that you’ll get bored while playing it. While its slow pace might turn off some, it’s incredibly welcome to play a game where the fate of the world isn’t at stake, and you can instead just sit down and decide what plants you might want to grow for the upcoming year.

29. Doraemon Story of Seasons: Friends of the Great Kingdom (Switch)

Even though Doraemon Story of Seasons: Friends of the Great Kingdom doesn't offer much to separate itself from the first game, there's no denying it is a wholesome bundle of farming fun that still manages to carve out its own identity compared to other life and farming sims. Outside of the cutscenes which drag on and then some, it never feels too repetitive — an issue a considerable number of farming sims face thanks to the crop-based tasks associated with the genre — and outside of navigation issues with the map, it's welcoming to both new players of the genre and still feels relatively fresh to those who are incredibly familiar with the Story of Seasons franchise. If you go into this game expecting a decent Doraemon farming sim, you won't be disappointed.