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> Hajimari no Daichi: I'm getting bored., My experience playing the game. Japanese version.
Big Daisy May
post Oct 17 2012, 12:40 AM
Post #1

Group: Members
Joined: 14-August 10

Hey all, it's been awhile since I posted, but I've been meaning to give a quick opinion about the coming game for awhile now, and never quite knew whether I should go ahead with it. I realize it's probably going to come off as negative to some, but I'm only giving my thoughts on it, and you don't have to pay any attention to it if you don't like it. Hopefully people will understand that it's only my opinion, and not my dictating to you what you should think of the game, nor am I slamming the game as a whole and trying to troll anyone into defending it. There's no need - I love the game.

I'm on year 3, Winter, currently.
Please keep in mind that I only have time to play it for a few hours before bedtime, so I get my time in when I feel up to it. I was a lot more excited about it when I started playing back in May, but since things have started to....lag....I've become less and less interested.

To start with the positive, there are so many awesome things about this game that set it apart from all that came before, I can't possibly touch on them all. I'm so used to the game play by now, I probably wouldn't even remember all of them to tell you.

The fact that you can customize the crud out of the place is excellent (even though parts don't always fit as neatly as you might like them to. If you're an organization freak, you might become frustrated pretty quickly with how the game limits the way you can lay pathways, for instance.).

The fact that you can easily interact with your pets in a more active way is a super plus for me. I never did get the hang of how you were supposed to get that dog to do anything in HoLV, though it's not quite as easy to get them to help you with your other animals as it was in Twin Towns. It is taking me FOREVER to get my pets to like me enough to decide to help me with the animals. It's a bit of a hassle to have to take them out, one at a time, to some remote pasture to play fetch with them, especially after a busy day of every kind of chore you have to get accomplished. Then again, I have 3 cats and a dog, so I may possibly just have too many pets. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/lalaexdee.gif)

Something I don't like is the moving of animals in and outside of the barn. I don't bother with it anymore. By now I've got 5 chickens, 2 cows, a yak, a horse, a llama, 2 alpacas, and 2 or 3 kinds of sheep. There is a handbell which attracts the animals to you, but they only come up to you. You get a little heart each time you use it and the animal manages to reach you, but that's the extent of it. If you want them to go outside (or inside for that matter) you need to push their butts out, and you often end up slipping and going out with them, which can be a frustrating waste of time when you've got 5 or more to move back and forth this way. Perhaps later on there's another way, or maybe your pets will be able to take care of this for you, but like I said, I'm in year 3, and it's still the same old same old. The routine of it is getting boring. The chickens don't mind staying in their little hen house, which is pretty convenient, but the yak and my Jersey cow don't appreciate being inside too much at all, and their stress levels are constantly a little high. Another annoying thing about the barns is that lots of soiled straw appears for you to clean up. That takes up a LOT of energy. You have to be really careful to make sure you go to bed before a certain time of night in order to wake up with enough energy to even be able to complete your chores with your animals. Brushing them sucks the life out of you, for instance, and you will find yourself having to run to the restaurant (whenever you get it) to restore your energy pretty soon.

As for gardening, I LOVE the tiered area. There's a spring you can uncover which will water several patches of crops for you. All it takes is doing it once a day, and you're set! A gardener's dream! I love that you can plant rice and renkon. The trees take time, and some of mine won't bear fruit. I get the feeling adding fertilizer might have been key there, but it's either too late now, or I just haven't tried to add any to the existing trees yet. Not sure if that's possible, but I'll let you know if I try it.

There's some weird festival where you are expected to show off your little...I don't know how they're going to translate it. It's like a stone patio you're supposed to decorate with flowers, benches, stone statues, whatever makes it pretty to show off to your neighbors. You'll be badgered to participate every season, and if you do and it's not good enough, trust me, the neighbors will let you know. So much for good old fashioned tatemae, huh? ;)

Did I mention that if you expect to be able to fully take advantage of this game (especially if you're playing in Japanese and are not plenty fluent - and then even if you are), you will NEED to get the guidebook? There are very specific things you need to do to get things to happen in this game, and I have found that had I not made the investment in the ultimate guide book, I would never have gotten to where I am now.

Milestones become complicated, too. You'll get a set of requirements you will need to be able to unlock the next phase of neighbors and items for purchase. They're simple enough at first (ie: ship out 10 jars of honey, etc.), but soon enough the bar starts getting raised to higher levels, where they force you to enter the intermediate level cooking contest and win. I still haven't managed to win one, and I've been pretty diligent about collecting and storing up my crop yields, milk, wool, etc. I made some pretty nice recipes with high quality ingredients, but....whatever, I guess. It'll come when it comes.

Don't even get my started on how difficult it can be to woo certain people you want to marry. I'm going through a drama right now where I chose that foppish red headed hair dresser (yeah, I'm playing as the girl) to court. I've been "seeing" the guy (bringing him his favorite dishes, chatting with him and meeting him here and there day after day) for nearly 2 years now, met all of the requirements stated in the guide book, and he just laughs at me and tells me I must be joking when I propose. What a turd! I don't think I've ever seen a HM character play so hard to get! I'm so disgusted by this little twerp that I've changed, and am going with the wild haired guy in yukata (helk, it may be kimono for all I know, but to go tromping around in town in?...I don't know...Call it whatever you want), who lives in the old style house. The problem is, you may not manage to get him until you're well into your second year, so you'll be playing for awhile before he shows up.

Again - I've been playing this at my own pace, and some of you may speed ahead of the point I'm at due to not overlooking certain things as I had. I'm only giving my personal account of my own experience playing it.

This more traditional styled gent is MUCH friendlier. He's obsessed with fishing, too, which can become tiresome to talk about, but makes for a nice date. I don't know how long I'm going to have to court this guy before he comes around, but his favorite food is something I won't be able to start growing until Spring or Summer, so...It'll be awhile yet. If you want him, start saving up your eels and potatoes from the get-go! He loves una-don. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/lalaexdee.gif)

What else......

The fishing traps are fantastic. You can set 3 of them up at any one time and catch more at once that way. Nice! They refill pretty quickly, but they break after a few catches, so you'll have to make sure you have several stocked so you can replace them.

Oh...Rocks are another annoying problem with this game. You know how when you chop down trees, you get the nice timber all chopped into the right sizes for building things?...You've definitely got that going for you in this game, and trees pop up for you to chop all the time, but when it comes to rocks, you'll either have to buy the prepared stones that you need, or make sure you take time out of your day to pound them - and they take plenty of energy, so make sure you have snacks handy, or put your restaurant close by the entrance of your ranch space so you can run to it to fuel up.

Oh! Another convenient thing that I forgot is that you can carry a LOT in your rucksack. You can store a lot too, before upgrading, which is helpful.

The mine in this game isn't as involved is it has been in past games. You go into a single cavern and pound on three places to get your various jewels, rocks and other items (like recipes!...eh?). That's pretty nice.

Oh yeah, the last thing I'll mention that I remember off the top of my head is the travel agency. It's pretty fun, but very pricy, to fly off to this place or that to collect exotic goods. At some point you'll need coconuts, so make sure that when you find them, you save them for later. Ice, too.

This brings us to my present state of limbo.
When things stop happening between milestones in the game, it can become monotonous. Each day becomes a drag because you can feel like you're making no progress. For instance, in my case, I can't advance until I meet a certain festival qualification. I haven't been able to meet it for two seasons now, so all that time has been spent just idling away, doing my daily chores and trying to get friendly with the yukata guy. I feel stuck, and it's made me take a break for awhile. Taking a break is the kiss of death as far as game play for me goes, as I rarely go back after that. I never finished Twin Towns for that same reason, but in that case I just got bored being a gopher on a timer). The music doesn't help. To me, it's the most uninspired and generic background music I've yet heard in a Harvest Moon game. We're used to much better from past games. Obviously it's a very subjective thing, but I hate it. All four seasons.

One last thing - there is going to be a LOT to read in this game. There are fairly lengthy paragraphs of tips to read, not to mention dialogue. I was reading them at first, but have taken to skipping them now for the most part. For all I know, that may be what's holding me back, but I don't really think it has much to do with it.

So there it is.
I imagine this is probably coming too late, as the English version is....what, about to be released? Has it been yet? I haven't checked, since I don't have access to it anyway. It's just one person's take on the game. It's such a wonderful improvement on the entire Harvest Moon system, but I get the feeling more and more that it's not meant to be a race. The game seems to want you to just kick back and relax, enjoying the slow pace from day to day. I usually like that, but when I go days without making any progress at all, it becomes annoying and starts to feel pointless. So, just take my 2 cents for what it's worth. I'm not telling you how to feel about the game, and if I've somehow offended someone, well, I hope you'll understand that it was not my intention. I hope everyone will just be able to accept my review as-is, and be cool with reading my opinion, based strictly on my own personal experience playing. I know everyone else's will each be different, too, and there's nothing wrong with that. In fact, I hope it comes more easily and a little more enjoyable to you than it has for me so far!...Just stay away from that flighty fop. He's an ego case to begin with, cute though he may be. ;)
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post Oct 17 2012, 10:37 AM
Post #2

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Joined: 22-April 10

>_> your on yeah 3!? what?! for rwal!?
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post Oct 31 2012, 05:02 AM
Post #3

The World Traveller
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Joined: 14-June 09

Question. Did you give Allen a ring first? And have you seen his last three heart events? If you've done both you should be able to marry him.

I don't know if this was changed in the Japanese version, but if you use the 'place' option and put all of your rocks down at once, you can smash them all for the same amount of energy it would take to smash just one rock.

The festival you were supposed to win at wasn't the Cooking Festival, but the Crop Festival. If you have a high-ranking crop, you should be good to go. That's actually where I'm at on Town Renovation Plan #4. I don't have a high-ranking crop because I haven't been playing long enough make one, but if I can't get one before Winter, I'm going to ask someone to trade me one.

That said, I'm the type that loves going at my own pace - which is usually speedy and power gaming in the eyes of some. I'm in the first week of my first fall and I'm already dreading the fact that the game is forcing me to participate in three gardening shows before I can advance. I've knocked out 3/4 of the plot in just over two months. Having a lull of two and a half is going to be miserable, though at least it'll give me time to hoard to Town Renovation Plan #5.

Right now I'm looking forward to having all of the villagers and being able to relax and enjoy the routine of daily life, but until I reach that point, I'd prefer as few lulls in plot advancement as possible.

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