E3 10 : A look at Natsume's Harvest Moon DS: Grand Bazaar


Before E3 ended, I managed to swing by Natsume's booth to check out their upcoming games. With sequels to both Harvest Moon, and its fantasy based spin-off, Rune Factory, as well as several new titles -- including the fantastic remake of Lufia 2, retitled Lufia: Curse of the Sinstrals -- I was really looking forward to seeing what they had to offer.

I was actually a little surprised that their line-up consisted almost entirely of DS titles, but I certainly wasn't disappointed by what I saw. I was even surprised to find out that they had a few iPad titles in the works, one of which I'll touch on later, but first we'll take a look at Harvest Moon DS: Grand Bazaar.

As you no doubt imagined after hearing that title, the game features some new mechanics centered around a weekly bazaar. Unlike previous entries into the series, you no longer make goods by shipping off. Rather, you're given the opportunity to sell your goods at the bazaar on a weekly basis.

Almost like Tom Nook's shop in Nintendo's Animal Crossing, you're faced with a quota, which when met, will allow the bazaar to grow in size. Naturally, being that it's a bazaar, you're not the only shop. You'll also have the opportunity to take your earnings and make purchases such as live stock, cooking supplies, furniture for storage, and more. The idea is to basically learn how to appropriately budget your earnings.

There are some other new features such as a windmill which allows you to create items, such as fermenting fertilizer, beer, wine and tea, or to craft items like broaches and diamond rings which can then be used as a gift, to affect your status, or sold for money. Like past games however, you still have the choice of playing as either gender and choosing from five potential partners.

I'm kind of excited about this game, but I know Harvest Moon is one of those series where you really need to invest some time. On the other hand, I know my wife will probably love this game -- she actually took issue with the art being a bit too cute, and prefers the more mature art from Innocent Life, but I think she'll be able to look past that. Harvest Moon DS: Grand Bazaar should hit stores towards the end of this year.

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Tim Sheehy
Tim SheehyContributor   gamer profile

Tim is the former Editor-in-Chief of Japanator, a content media specialist by day, and pro-blogger by night. His posts can be found scattered throughout the Modern Method network. Also, he writes... more + disclosures



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