February 21, 2008
November 10, 2009
An unofficial guide covering Harvest Moon: Sunshine Islands for Nintendo DS
Buy Sushine Islands at the official Natsume online store
(Shipping in USA only)
Harvest Moon: Sunshine Islands is the newest version of Harvest Moon for the Nintendo DS system. The game is based around the Sunshine Islands, a archipelago that faced a great disaster in the past. It is up to you to restore the islands.
S.I. uses the same graphics as Island of Happiness, but the game has a different scenario. You start out as a boy or girl farmer, who just moved to Ranch Island to start your new ranch life. Many of the villagers are already living on the island, but a small handful have to be unlocked as you restore the islands.
Your goal is to collect Sun Stones, which are used to bring the sunken islands up from the bottom of the ocean. There are a total of 100 Sun Stones that will restore 10 missing islands from the archipelago. Different islands have different features; the Mushroom Island grows wild mushrooms, the Volcano Island has the mine, and so on.
Changes from Island Of Happiness
One of the main changes from the previous version is the fact that stylus controls are not required. You can use the directional pad to move your character around, but the stylus controls are still in place if you prefer to use them.
The other major change is the inclusion of the farm degree to determine your progress. The farm degree in past versions has typically been a simple judgement of how well you are doing in your game; in HMDS Cute you could get new house wallpapers depending on your degree rank, and in IoH you could rename Sunny Island if you reached the rank of Ranch Duke. In Sunshine Islands, there is more than just the basic farm degree.
There are six categories (fishing, mining, cooking, crops, animals, and "others") that combine together to determine your overall farm degree. You can't see your point value per category, but features in the game unlock as you get higher points in each one. For example, you can't reach the bottom of the mine on Volcano Island until you have enough points in the mining category to earn the right to do so. Until you do, you are restricted to only reaching certain floors. If you only had 30 mining points then the furthest you can go is floor 10.
The addition of the category system adds more challenge to the game, as it requires players to actually do things in the category they want to advance in. If you want to catch large fish, then you'll have to do a lot of fishing to earn that right. If you want to unlock Yam seeds, then you have to ship a lot of crops. If you want to successfully cook a high-level recipe with your kitchen, then you need to practice cooking.
Another major change is the addition of random events that did not exist in IoH. The heart events have been cut back to just the basic 4 at purple, blue, green, and yellow heart colors, instead of the 96 different versions from Island of Happiness. In their place are about 30 random events, where you can watch little mini scenes of the villagers interacting with each other.
Some of the minor changes include:
- The sun/water point system for crops is still in place, but it is easier to grow crops. Sun points now count on cloudy days and you can only, at most, give your crops 2 water points per day (unless you modify that with yellow Wonderfuls, which also exist in SI).
- Besides the standard animals, you can have upgraded animals such as the Jersey Cow, Silkie Chicken, and Suffolk Sheep.
- You can choose between two different colors of pets when you are offered. There is a horse, dog, cat, and pig.
- The same marriage candidates exist plus a new one for each gender. Will is available for girl players, and Lily for boy players.
- You can befriend and hire wild animals to fetch you items.
- The greenhouse can have up to 3 season-specific sun stones, which gives your crops 3 sun points per day if grown indoors.
- There are more items to "collect", such as the 143 different fish species, over 220 cooking recipes, 40 mushroom types, 100 Sun Stones, and so on.
- The harvest sprites can be hired to "enchant", which includes simple tasks like watering crops, feeding animals, and so on. The sprites can also do more advance tasks like lowering the material necessary for Gannon's buildings, increasing affection with people, and increasing the amount of bites you get when fishing.
- Getting specific colored Wonderfuls in festivals is no longer based on the farm degree. The colors are based on the weather that occurs 2 days after the festival.
Harvest Moon: Sunshine Islands is © Marvelous Interactive and © Natsume. Harvest Moon character design is © Marucome. This is a fan-site and is not officially sponsored or employed by MMV/Natsume. Web site design © 2009 fogu.com