Ushi No Tane PHP-Update More DoraBoku Updates and Patch for Next Week's Portia Launch Happy Farm'n Friday! Picked up some garden center herbs last weekend to plant into the raised bed. I like to use basil in cooked meals during the summer. Mmmm tasty. Went with good 'ol normal Sweet Basil, as Mr.Fogu does not like anything that tastes like licorice such as Thai Basil or Cinnamon Basil. The snow peas went into the garden bed too, and they're doing okay for being close to where the tree rats like to dig in the dirt. Grrrr annoying squirrels...

New DoraBokuMono InfoThis week's edition of Famitsu Weekly includes some new information about Doraemon Bokujou Monogatari, currently scheduled to be released in Japan on June 13. The article confirms that ore mining will be in the game along with fishing and bug catching. There's events as well.Players can use Doraemon's gadgets to upgrade farm tools like the watering can and hoe. Getting along with the Sheezen Town residents will also unlock more of Doraemon's popular gadgets such as the Anywhere Door that transports you to other locations in the game, Translation Jelly to talk to the villagers in different languages, and the Keron Pass frog sticker that will conserve stamina. There's also farm-based gadgets like fertilizer that will increase the growth rate of crops.The world map was also revealed in the article, showing the location of the town in relation to the farm plot. There's forests, lakes, rivers, beaches, mountains, and an event plaza. Lots of places to explore!This week's article also includes an interview with members of the development staff: Kasumi Sugita and Shuhei Yamashita from Brownies, the game's planner and designer (respectively); producer Kouji Nakajima from Bandai Namco; and Hikaru Nakano from Marvelous, described as the Bokumono production director. Some take-aways from the interview are:Kouji grew up watching the Doraemon show, and now as an adult he wanted to create a game that conveys that series' wonderfulness. He also is a fan of the first Playstation 1 Bokujou Monogatari game.Kasumi explains that the game tells the story of a great tree planted long ago by a goddess (or so the legend goes).The watercolor-like graphics were to merge together the Bokumono and Doraemon series, with the sense of nature with Bokumono along with the sense of adventure with Doraemon.The main story is the mystery as to why Nobita and friends ended up in this world, with a underlying theme of family love. There's five times as much sub-story plot as the main story according to Kouji.Each shop in the town has a story to it, so players will need to get along with those who run the shops.While the underlying game is Bokumono, there is no romance or marriage.They had a tough time picking the Doraemon gadgets to put into the game because there's so many great ones to chose from. Some of the gadgets will be used in sub-stories.Besides Namco Bandai's DoraBokuMono game, another Bokujou Monogatari game is in development at Marvelous, though Hikaru did not specify what platform the game was being developed for.

Portia Switch PatchThe farming/workshop game My Time at Portia will be out next week for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and Playstation 4 for $29.99 (USD). Pathea Games revealed today that they plan to release an update patch for the Nintendo Switch edition that will speed up the game's load time when moving between areas. The efficiency update will be available as close to the 16th (next Tuesday) as possible.The XboX One achievement list and Playstation 4 trophy list have also been revealed.

Until next time!

- Cher
(The blueberry bushes are about ready to flower! Berries will be here soon!) Fri, 12 Apr 2019 21:20:27 +0000
DoraBokuMono Release Info, RF4S Broadcast, Portia Physical Delay, and FarmFolks Pre-Alpha Happy Farm'n Friday! I've a terrible problem with getting indoor-sprouted plants to get accustomed to outdoor living. In theory, gardeners are to take them outside for a few hours, bring them back inside, take them outside again for a longer time, then back inside, and so on until the plant can adjust to outdoor lighting conditions. The office work schedule makes this rather difficult to do for more than three days at a time, so inevitably I'll end up with plants with leaf burns because their chlorophyll can't absorb sunlight properly yet. This year the damage has killed three watermelon sprouts and almost killed off the Black Vernissage tomato plant; while it lost most of its leaves, it does have new growth on it. Whew, close call...Last weekend I started some lotus seeds that will be planted in a container and submerged into the fish pond. I do not know what color the flowers will be, as the package label of the gifted seeds simply says "lotus seeds" in Hanzi, so hopefully they'll be pretty!Now then, a bunch of farming stuff took place this week. Let's get started!
April Bokumono Mobile EventsThe responses from the game's feedback survey a while back resulted in last month's Hungry Animal event supplying two fields in which to grow animal food, rather than just a single field. That extra field did make it easier to feed other farmers' random hungry animal and earn in-game rewards.This month in the online Bokujou Monogatari for Mobage game platform, the events are:A strawberry shortcake Harvest event started on April 1st. During the Strawberry Fiesta events, players will harvest Strawberry Cream Puff flowers and Strawberry Cream Cake trees, while caring for Strawberry Roll Rabbits and Strawberry Cake Shiba Inu dogs on their farm plots. Awards are given at the end of the event for the amount of harvest points earned compared to all other players. During random special times, the number of points earned during harvest can be double or triple the normal amount, which can then award farmers with Friend Hearts to exchange with other social game users. These friendship hearts can then be exchanged for another group of prizes. There's also a third group of prizes based on the 10-person team that players join. This event is scheduled to end on the 9th.Starting on the 11th is a Big Crop Festival. During this event, players grow special crops on a dedicated event field. Harvesting these crops will increase a level bar. Once the bar is filled, then a three-card monty game triggers where players pick one of three random cards. As you pick the right card the pick-a-card chain continues until the wrong card is selected (a maximum of 5 hands are dealt), at which point players are awarded with in-game nuts. These nuts will award prizes based on the amount collected during the event. There will also be a large crop in the middle of the dedicated event field that increases its size (i.e., becoming a big crop) as players trigger the three-card mini game and earn their nuts.Finally on the 21st is the Bingo Event. Farmers will grow special bingo crop seeds and hope they get three of the same crop in a row or a full board of the same crop for a max bingo, which is worth more points. In-game prizes will be awarded based on the total number of bingo points collected during the event. Players can use their Sunshine Ability to increase the number of harvestable items on their friends' bingo cards, but bonus bingo points will only be awarded if the ability is used on an active three-in-a-row bingo. Typically it is best to wait until the board is full of the same crop to trigger a max bingo and then wait until a multiplier triggers to earn bingo points. This event often has time-based prizes that no longer become available for players to win once the availability time expires.
Doraemon Bokumono Release DateThis week Bandai Namco revealed that the Japan release of their Doraemon x Story of Seasons crossover game, Doraemon Bokujou Monogatari will be released on June 13 for Nintendo Switch, along with a new promo video for the game:The story begins with Nobita and Doraemon finding a mysterious seed, which they plant ('cuz who wouldn't want to plant strange seeds?!). The seed developed into a tree, but a sudden storm whisked them away up into the sky! When they awoke, they found themselves at the base of a large tree and discovered that Doraemon's secret tools (gadgets) were lost during the storm, meaning they can't return to their home world. The group meets a fellow named Lunch, who shows them a strange village called Season Town. They'll live and help the residents of Season Town while trying to figure out a way to return to their home world. Shizuka takes up work at a clinic, Suneo helps out at the village restaurant, Gian assists at the carpenter's, and Doraemon goes to help the mayor. Nobita volunteers to help Lunch with the desolate ranch outside of town. And with that, Nobita starts his farming adventure!Those who preorder the game will receive a downloadable Nobita Room furniture for the farm house, recreating the decor of Nobita's bedroom in the Doraemon series. There are also retailer specific preorder seed bundles available. For example, pre-orders at will receive a Four Seasons seeds of Cucumber, Paprika, Carrot, and Daikon Radish; preorders at Joshin will receive a code to download a Spring Season seeds of Turnip, Potato, Lettuce, and Strawberry; and orders at HMV will get a download code for a Flower seeds of Red Carnation, Hibiscus, Red Rose, and Hilton Daisy.
Rune Factory 4S Live EventA 2-hour live presentation took place on Thursday that promoted the upcoming release in Japan of Rune Factory 4S for Nintendo Switch. The event showed off the new Rune Factory 4 Special Memorial Box preorder, which includes a copy of the game, a digital download code for character swimsuits, a memorial book covering the whole series with character images, a love story 2-disc CD audio drama (one CD for the bachelors, and one CD for the bachelorettes), and a copy of the Switch game, all packaged together in a pretty collector's edition package for the price of 8800 Yen (about $78 USD). The price for the regular game is 4980 Yen (~$45 USD).The presenters covered the HD graphic upgrades for the Special edition, the new romance story mode, the added difficulty mode, and a new opening movie. They also played through a bit of the game. At the end of the stream the latest trailer for the game was revealed:At the end of the program they revealed that the save game data Rune Factory 4S will link to Rune Factory 5 when it is eventually released for Nintendo Switch in 2020.
Portia Physical Edition Delay in NAThe official Twitter @MyTimeAtPortia handle revealed this week that there has been an unfortunate delay in the North American physical retail console release of My Time at Portia. The digital version of the game will still be available on April 16th for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and Playstation 4, but the disc version won't be available until May 14. The European physical release is still scheduled for April 16.
Farm Folks Alpha ReleaseFor Kickstarter backers who opted for a backing tier that contained Alpha Access, Overgrown has released a preliminary alpha build of their game as promised. To access the alpha, players have to log into the Crytivo account that was registered for them by Overgrown, then download the 582 MB zip file and extract its contents to their PC.
Until next time!

- Cher
(The winter storms finally stopped in my playthrough of RF2. Collected two of the Palermo Shrine seasonal orbs!) Fri, 05 Apr 2019 21:11:50 +0000
New Bokumono Mobile Game, The Good Life Updates, and PAX East Happy Farm'n Friday! Oh boy how is it already almost April!? It feels like this year is going by faster than years past. I guess that means Christmas time will be here soon enough! Though I don't need to start designing this year's Christmas Light Extravaganza until June or so.Some more flowers popped up this week. Now it's the anemones' turn to show off their petals. They are typically different colors, but I guess this particular one prefers to bloom in red. Kind of like a little "Hey you, welcome to Fogu HQ!" to visitors on their way to the front door. There's a few more sprouting off to the side that are purple and white, and another that looks to be two colors, though it hasn't fully bloomed yet. Many of them were planted two years ago, and some were planted last fall, so it's been a surprise to see what colors are coming up.
Bokumono Goes Mobile (Again)This week, Marvelous revealed that the company has entered into a licensing agreement with the video game publishing and development section of Tencent for the development and distribution of a Bokujou Monogatari game for smartphones. Tencent already has its hands in League of Legends, owns the popular social app WeChat, runs their own PC social and gaming platform WeGame in China, and manages the official mobile phone app for Playerunknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG). So it's kind of a win for both companies; Marvelous gets to branch into new overseas markets, and Tencent gets to utilize the popular Bokumono franchise. What the game will be like, or what regions it will be available for download in, is unannounced at the moment, though the Bokumono series has appeared on other mobile/PC platforms before.There's the Bokujou Monogatari for Mobile game that is currently available on multitude of social game platforms in Japan (and outside of Japan if you register an account). It isn't a separate app though; it's more like a browser interface with the online game network's website. The game has been around since 2010 on the GREE and Mobage networks, and has branched into other non-console platforms. Marvelous promotes that the mobile game has had over 3 million players.Then there's the Minna de Bokujou Monogatari game on the MooG gaming platform, which launched in 2010 after the release of the mobile version for GREE and Mobage. This was basically a Bokumono version of Farmville for web browsers, where growing crops and other farm chores were done in real time. The game was played by assigning Harvest Sprites to complete tasks for you, kind of like hiring teams in Harvest Moon DS. The higher your level, the more sprites you could assign to take care of your animals, smash stones, water crops, and so on. You could even visit other players' island farms, whether in-game friends or just completely random farmers. This game was shut down in 2012. (You can see it in action in this Youtube video)We also received an experimental version of the GREE/Mobage mobile version in North America in 2011, called Harvest Moon: Pocket Ranch on the PlayPhone game network. It was in test phase for a few months, but was eventually discontinued.
Good Life Character UpdateAlso this week, SWERY and his team at White Owls sent an updated out about their murder mystery game in the English countryside, The Good Life. White Owls revealed two more residents that you can meet in the little town of Rainy Woods: Bruno Evans, a fan of mushrooms who transforms into a collie-like dog; and Rita Barret, who transforms into a scarf-wearing calico cat.Another feature revealed is the garden that the protagonist Naomi will have access to:The garden plots will be available at Naomi's house, allowing players to grow different plants and perhaps even add objects to the garden.
Farm'n at PAX EastThis weekend is PAX East in Boston, where game publisher and developers (both video and board games) show off their games to the east-coast folks. This gaming expo will include representations from our favorite farming genre including My Time at Portia (Ps4 edition), Farming Simulator, and Atomicrops. Sounds like a good time!

Until next time!

- Cher
(Sunny day, sweeping the clouds away!) Fri, 29 Mar 2019 21:17:04 +0000
My Time at Portia Console Release Reveal Happy Farm'n Friday! Last weekend I started acclimating the indoor seedlings to outdoor temperatures a little bit at a time. Though it was a bit windy on one of the days, resulting in some broken leaves on one of the red goji seedlings and a kinky stem on the other one. They're doing fine now that they're back inside, but they can't live in here forever! Go outside and play!Snow peas and broccoli rabe are sprouting, the berry canes have new leaves on them, the woodpecker is banging against the metal chimneys, daffodils are blooming, aaah springtime!
Portia Comes to ConsolesThe PC farming/construction game My Time at Portia will be released on Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, and Xbox One on April 16. The game will be available in a physical retail version and a digital download version. The digital version will award pre-orders with a Housewarming Gift Set containing a new clothing outfit for the game protagonist, 500 Gols (in-game currency), some consumable items, a Lion with Wings statue, and a Cuckoo Station Clock.You can read more about the upcoming console release on the Team17 website:My Time At Portia Coming to consoles April 16th 2019!The price for the game appear to depend on which console you're aiming for. The Nintendo Switch edition is listed as $24.99 USD on the North American eShop, while the PS4 and XBO versions are $29.99 USD on their respective digital stores.Portia is currently out on Steam, Good Old Games (GOG), and the Epic Game Store. I've a board-game friend who asked me a while ago if I had played it yet. Then he begain explaining how he started the game with the intention of just trying it out, and then lost track of time as he kept playing! I guess he liked it, though I haven't heard that he's played it since it was officially released on Steam back on January 15. Last I heard from him was that he was getting into playing Beat Saber.I've been waiting for the console version since my PC isn't powerful enough to run the Steam version, though it doesn't seem to be just my hardware setup that isn't powerful enough for the game's visuals. The screenshots on the Nintendo website and Switch eShop look less graphic-intense than the other console versions. The Switch version has flat, green grass while the Ps4/XBO versions have grass texture and depth: The Playstation 4 version looks just as pretty as the Xbox One version, guess it'll be the Ps4 edition for me! Though the XBox hasn't been used in a year or so... naaaah, I'll stick with Playstation.

Until next time!

- Cher
(The rotten flower bulbs that were planted in 2017 are sprouting this year. Guess they weren't so rotten after all!) Fri, 22 Mar 2019 20:25:41 +0000
Corn Warriors TV, Atomic Killer Crops, and Jan '13 NinDori Comic Happy Farm'n Friday! Winter appears to be completely squashed and defeated, as the springtime switch has triggered 60-degree weather and sunny skies. Huzzah! It's getting close to outdoor planting time! This week's seedling sprouts are broccoli rabe, which I got from a friend via a seed exchange. I gave her some watermelon seeds and sunflower seeds, and in exchange I got a baggie of broccoli rabe seeds. I expect it to be ready for harvest by June. It's taster than regular broccoli too.Though this weekend's pleasant weather means I'll probably be outside doing a lot of yard work. The leaf mulch can be pulled off the strawberry bed, the pink hydrangea needs to have more lime added to its pot, and so on.Spring also means sugar ants. The little buggers always pop up this time of year in search of water. Intern Reba gets annoyed when they sneak in through the cracks in the floor and make a bee-line towards her water dish. Can't really blame the ants though; they're just doing what their little programmed brains were designed to do.

Reality TV + FarmSimThere is a reality agriculture television series titled Corn Warriors, where five American farmers compete to produce the highest yield of per acre corn during their growing season. Viewers can watch the farmers deal with their field problems, soil microbes, and other corn-growing challenges as they compete with each other to be crowned the Corn Warrior.In the upcoming season (#3), the winner and Corn Warrior champion will have their farm mapped and inserted into the popular Farming Simulator game. If I was a big-field professional farmer, I think that'd be pretty swell!You can watch the show on Youtube:Corn Warriors - YoutubeFS19 was released on PC, Ps4, and XOne last November, and recently its first DLC based on farming equipment manufactured by Anderson was announced. The Anderson Group DLC will be available starting March 26.

Killer Crops Abound!Indie game developer Raw Fury has revealed the first official promo trailer for their shooter-plus-farming-simulator game, Atomicrops. In this game you inherit the last farm in a "post-apocalypse wasteland" where you grow crops to feed the folks living in local town. Your crop, and yourself, are under attack by mutated insects, which you must fight off with your weapon. Better seeds are available if you venture out into the ravaged wilderness, and you can even use the bug parts as crop fertilizer. The game also includes a marriage aspect, as your spouse will become an in-game helper as you battle the baddies to protect your fields.Wowzers! You can learn more about the game on the Atomicrops website:AtomicropsThe game is currently scheduled to be released Summer 2019 for PC and consoles.

NinDori ComicAnd here's the 4-col comic originally published in the Japanese Nintendo DREAM magazine back in January 13, featuring Hart and little Hina from Harvest Moon: A New Beginning.

Until next time!

- Cher
(Springtime also means spring cleaning. Those windows won't wash themselves! Though it'd be nice if they did...) Fri, 15 Mar 2019 22:10:20 +0000
Farm Folks Dev Update and 3oT Returns to JP Top-10 Happy Farm'n Friday! The first red goji sprout is doing quite well. The second red goji is a bit smaller, but it's coming along too. Black goji #1 is still really small but trying its best, though it looks quite different in comparison to the red goji. The plant is much smaller with more compact leaves.The wet-paper-towel trick did result in one additional black goji seed germinating, though it took six seeds before one finally sprouted. These guys are stubborn! Now I've the two red goji and two black goji that will eventually be planted in the desolate side yard.Also installed a new battery into my New 3DS last week. The console kept needing to be charged after about 90 minutes while I was playing Rune Factory 2. The batteries are still available to order on Nintendo's website, even though the console isn't manufactured anymore. Still haven't beat the game yet, but I did unlock the Palermo Shrine and found the fields that require specific crops to be planted. Right before some of the crops were to mature, an outdoor snowstorm occurred and destroyed a lot of the indoor field crops in the shrine. What the heck?! Now I'm waiting for the replanted seeds to mature while working on forging weapons and accessories. Gosh darn it...
Farm Folks UpdateOvergrown is still hard at work with building a playable demo for Kickstarter backers who opted for the funding tier that includes a playable alpha demo. The planned demo will contain the playable farm plot along with some crops, but no animals yet. For the rest of the island, there will be explorable mountains, forests, and beaches built into the release version of the game.The studio will also be sending some of its team members to Game Developers Conference (GDC) via an invitation by Epic Games, which takes place in San Francisco from March 18 to March 22. The pre-alpha demo is planned to be available to backers once they return to Australia from GDC.Overgrown has published a schedule for the game's development, with beta testing beginning in October and a planned final release for PC this December:Farm Folks Development RoadmapYou can learn more about Farm Folks on its post-Kickstarter preorder page or on Steam:Farm Folks | CrytivoFarm Folks | Steam Library
3oT Popularity BUMPSince the announcement of Doraemon Bokujou Monogatari and Rune Factory 5 in the February 13 Nintendo Direct, several Bokumono digital games have been for sale in the Nintendo JP 3DS eShop. The Japanese version of Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns has been holding onto the #2 slot for the weekly Top-10 3DS Game downloads since 3oT was discounted 53% off after the Nintendo Direct. The sale on Marvelous' Bokumono games ended on March 6.The #1 3DS Download in Japan for the past several weeks has been Tobidasu! Nyanko Great War (EN: The Battle Cats POP!), a tower-defense kitty themed adventure game that has been out for awhile.Stardew Valley is also hanging in on the Top-10 Switch Game downloads, last week dropping down to rank #9.

Until next time!

- Cher
(Time to play some PSVR fishing! So hyped!) Fri, 08 Mar 2019 23:49:26 +0000
March 19 BokuMobage Events and The Good Life Character Art Happy Farm'n Friday! It keeps snowing here in the Portland area, though it all melts away after a day. It's put a damper on doing any outdoor yard work in preparation for springtime, which begins this month on the 20th! Woo go away winter! The last frost date isn't until mid-April though. I'll have indoor crops until at least that date.

The watermelon sprouts have already been up-sized into bigger planting pots along with the red goji. The little black goji hasn't grown much larger in the past two weeks, and I've had a tough time getting a second one to sprout. These guys are rather stubborn! Now I'm trying the wet paper towel trick with another pair of black goji seeds, where you put seeds in a folded-up wet paper towel, place the paper towel in a sealable plastic bag, and then place the plastic bag under a heat/light source. It worked for another stubborn crop I've had a hard time germinating, so hoping it will work for black goji as well.

March BokuMobage EventsIt's a new month and a new schedule of community participation events in the online Bokujou Monogatari on Mobage game network. Last month's event themes were the Bean-Throwing Festival (Feb 1-9), a pajama themed Afternoon Nap Time (Feb 11-19), and a playful kitty Cat Room (Feb 21-27). This month we have:

A romantic pansy-love story Harvest Event started on the 1st. Players will harvest Heart Pansy flowers and Letter Pansy trees, while caring for Pansy Hamsters and Bouquet Hamsters on their farm plots. Awards are given at the end of the event for the amount of harvest points earned compared to all other players. During random special times, the number of points earned during harvest can be double or triple the normal amount, which can then award farmers with Friend Hearts to exchange with other social game users. These friendship hearts can then be exchanged for another group of prizes. There's also a third group of prizes based on the 10-person team that players join. This event is scheduled to end on the 9th.Starting on the 11th is the Bingo Event. Farmers will grow special bingo crop seeds and hope they get three of the same crop in a row or a full board of the same crop for a max bingo, which is worth more points. In-game prizes will be awarded based on the total number of bingo points collected during the event. Players can use their Sunshine Ability to increase the number of harvestable items on their friends' bingo cards, but bonus bingo points will only be awarded if the ability is used on an active three-in-a-row bingo. Typically it is best to wait until the board is full of the same crop to trigger a max bingo and then wait until a multiplier triggers to earn bingo points. This event often has time-based prizes that no longer become available for players to win once the availability time expires.Finally on the 21st is a Hungry Animal Festival. During this type of social competition each farmer will be assigned one of three random animals for a few hours. Each animal has a specific number of treats it wants before it will be full; the easiest is only 100 treats and the most difficult is 500 treats. If you don't feed the animal during their appearance time they'll go away and a new animal will appear in their place. Feed the animal to have it count towards unlocking in-game rewards such as feeding 5 low-level animals to earn a Goddess Coin for the Goddess Fountain (i.e., the in-game gotcha random item generator). Your in-game friends can also feed the animal that you're assigned, helping to complete the feeding task for everyone who participates. The food is obtained by growing event crops on an event-specific field, with normal crops being worth 1 treat and rare crops being worth 2 treats.

Mobage also published an in-game survey asking for feedback such as how players feel about the number of events per month and if there should be new or revived events that could take place. There's a lot of active players, so here's hoping they want to see new types of events too! I'm terrible at the Harvest Events since it is based on using the existing fields you have on your farm to harvest as many crops and animals as possible. Players have to spend real-life money to purchase additional fields if they want to have more than two default fields (one free field and one weekly rental field that costs Korobos [i.e., in-game Harvest Sprite money]).

The Good LifeWhite Owls sent out another development diary about their game set in the farming countryside town of Rainy Woods. This time they introduced us to two of the villagers and the animal forms they turn into:

The game developers are also hard at work designing the outdoor plants to evoke an atmosphere of rural England.

If you haven't heard of The Good Life before, you can read more about it on the game's original Kickstarter page. Can't wait to sheer wool off of sheep and mysteriously turn into a kitty cat!

The Good Life by White Owls Inc.

Until next time!

- Cher
(Mom's family is dragging me to the beach. Won't be any new 3oT guide pages this weekend, sorry...) Fri, 01 Mar 2019 18:14:31 +0000
RF4 DS vs Switch and Dec '12 4-col NinDori Comic Happy Farm'n Friday! The goji are growing nicely, except for #4, which still hasn't sprouted yet even after a replanting of seeds. No hurry though, as they won't be harvestable for two years or so. Also started two types of watermelon, four types of tomatoes, and zucchini last weekend. The watermelon are growing faster than I would prefer. Two of the seedlings are already starting on their second leaf growth. Probably should of waited a few more weeks to start those, heh.

I also started playing Rune Factory 2 again. The last time I played I remember having problem with a giant chameleon boss in the Messhina Valley, but it looks like I started using the Workshop to upgrade short swords and increasing Aria's character level. Last night I easily defeated that lizard! Now to stumble around some more until I find the next boss.

Rune Factory 4 Graphic UpgradeNintendo DREAM posted some images of the upgraded graphics being implemented into the Nintendo Switch version of Rune Factory 4, set to be released on July 25 in Japan with a North American release date to be announced in the future. They also posted some DS version versus Switch version comparison images:

NintenDori also posted some images of the revamped opening movie and the added Newly Married Scenario feature. There is also a new detail about the "hell" mode difficulty added to the game: choosing that difficulty level in your basement room will significantly increase the damage players received when hit by a monster, even more so than if a player had picked Hard mode. That might not be the only feature of "hell" mode, so keep an eye out of more details on that one.

You can scope out some more screen shots on the Nintendo DREAM website:

美麗に甦ったファンタジー世界を堪能『ルーンファクトリー4スペシャル』発売決定! 本作の魅力をご紹介 | Nintendo DREAM WEB

NintenDori ComicHere's the newly translated December 2012 4-column comic drawn by Igusa Matsuyama from Nintendo Dream magazine!

Until next time!

- Cher
(It lightly snowed again today, really unusual. Luckily it didn't stick around!) Fri, 22 Feb 2019 21:24:12 +0000
New RF4 (Woo!), RF5 (What?), Doraemon Bokumono (What What?!), and JP Discounts Happy Farm'n Friday! Earlier this week I came home from a long day at the office and went to give the red goji seedlings their little daily pep-talk and pats on the head, only to discover four of the six seedlings were missing from their seedling tray. Did they uprooted themselves and walked away?! What the heck? They were just simply gone!

The culprit was sitting on the heater vent a few feet away, who quickly took off once she realized that my vocal outbursts of "What the...?!" meant that those tasty green treats were NOT something she should of eaten. Yea, Intern Reba decided to go exploring while we were gone for the day, discovered the little innocent plants under the grow light, and then ate them. The two that did survive the massacre where outside of her kitty reach in the back of the seedling tray.

I guess it's not too bad; I did only want to grow two shrubs. She just picked out which two I was going to keep, and I had no say in the matter.

As for the black goji, so far only one of the six have sprouted. They seem to be slower to germinate than the red goji. Though now that there's space in the red goji seedling tray, thanks to Reba, the seedlings can be combined together in the same tray so the leftover tray can start on tomato germination.

Dangit, cat! Naturally, Mr.Fogu found the situation hilarious...

Rune Factory 4 AND 5!Wednesday the 13th was a Nintendo Direct presentation, where both North American and Japan videos revealed that Rune Factory 4 is being remastered for the Nintendo Switch. Rune Factory 4 Special is scheduled to be released in Japan on July 25, and sometime in 2019 for North America via XSeed Games.

The updated version of the 3DS game has a new "Newlywed Mode" selectable from the title screen where players can enjoy married life in a new scenario added into the Switch edition. Also included is a new "Hell" level of difficulty for battles, an upgrade to HD graphics, and a redesigned opening title movie. I'll play it this time, really! Just got to finish Rune Factory 2 first...

Marvelous' website in Japan is also open:

『ルーンファクトリー4スペシャル』| Nintendo SwitchRune Factory PR Official Twitter

Also revealed was that Rune Factory 5 has emerged and is in development, with a 2020 planned release in Japan. Yoshifumi Hashimoto revealed on his Hakama Studio Twitter account that the game is being worked on by his studio. The game, along with RF4 Special, have now been included as working titles on the Hakama website:


Doraemon Bokumono?!Also in the Wednesday Direct presentation, Nintendo of Japan revealed Doraemon: Nobita no Bokujou Monogatari for Nintendo Switch, set to be released sometime in 2019 in Japan.

The game is being released in Japan by Bandi Namco, with production by Marvelous and development by Brownies, the studio that split off from the restructuring of Brownie Brown into Nintendo's 1-Up Studio.

Located in Season Town, you play as Nobi Nobita as you build heart-warming bonds with the game characters along with Nobi's robot cat, Doraemon, and his friends Goda, Minamoto ("Shizuka-chan"), and Suneo. Doraemon's magical pocket gadgets will surely come into play at some point. From my perspective, the game looks a lot like the cute April 2015 alternative-farming game Popolocrois Bokujou Monogatari; even the shops and animal barns looks similar to PopoBoku.

Bandi Namco has already launched the official website for this Bokumono spin-off game:

ドラえもん のび太の牧場物語 | バンダイナムコエンターテインメント公式サイトOfficial Twitter for DoraeBokumono

There's no official word yet of the game being released outside of Japan, though I'm expecting it to be a Japan-only release. We'll see, I guess!

Japan eShop SalesUntil March 6, the Bokujou Monogatari games on the Nintendo eShop in Japan are all on sale:

Hajimari no Daichi (HM: A New Beginning) = 2000 Yen (66% off)Tsunagaru Shin Tenchi (Story of Seasons) = 2500 Yen (51% off)San-tsu no Sato no Saitetsuna Tomodachi (SoS: Trio of Towns) = 2500 Yen (53% off)Popolocrois Bokujou Monogatari = 2000 Yen (66% off)Futago No Mura+ (HM: Tale of Two Towns+) = 2500 Yen (41% off)

Until next time!

- Cher
(Looks like it's a good time to plant carrots outside, if I could grow carrots...) Fri, 15 Feb 2019 21:26:24 +0000
Fishing Star Review and Lunar New Year Farm'n Discounts Happy Farm'n Friday! The red Goji are coming along just fine. All six of the cells in the seed starting containers have little sprouts in them, though it will be a few weeks before they're large enough to move to bigger containers.

The black Goji seeds arrived last week and have been planted too. The first one popped up out of the soil yesterday. Soon it'll be time to start the tomatoes.

It doesn't look like spring season though. Last week it did snow on Monday, but it wasn't too bad. A lot of people stayed home anyway. This weekend has another bout of snow forecasted, but this time it goes on and on until next Friday! The snow here looks cute and fluffy, but underneath it hides an evil core of ice and misery, making for a very not-fun time trying to get anywhere. Only the main roads get plowed, and the heavy-traffic streets get plowed and showered with gravel. Everywhere else is a fend-for-yourself scenario.

I'm hoping it isn't as bad 2008, when we were home-bound and snowed in for a week!

Review: Fishing Star World TourLast week a new fishing game was released for Nintendo Switch in Japan, Europe, and North America regions. Fishing Star World Tour is published by Wright Flyer Studios (WFS) and costs $29.99 USD on the Nintendo eShop.

I was hoping it would be similar to Legend of the River King, but it isn't like the classic fishing series. There's no storyline in this game; players are just simply going from location to location, catching fish and completing the in-game Fish Book. There are over 180 fish (and non-fishy items) to catch in eight distinct lands, with each land having five fishing locations. There are also over 70 pieces of fishing gear divided between lures, rods, and reels. The rods and reels affect your fishing power (tackle strength, power, etc.), while the lures determine which fish you can catch. The game will indicate the fish that will bite when picking the lure from the game's tackle menu. You unlock new gear by completing the in-game missions.

Fishing is pretty easy. Just pick the fishing gear, the location, and then cast your line. After the bite, then just reel in the fish. The fish will try to break the line by increasing the tension bar, so you have to coordinate pressing and releasing the A button to ensure the fish doesn't break free. There's also a jumping circle that if you time it correctly, will reduce the fish's distance and bring the fish closer to being caught.

The Switch joy-cons can be detached to act as fishing controllers. The left joy-con becomes the reel and the right joy-con becomes the rod. To cast, you hold the right joy-con up and then swing it forward. And if you aren't holding on tight enough, the right joy-con will slip from your hand and go flying across the living room (oops). Then rotating your left hand while holding the left joy-con will reel in the line. This sounds all and well, but in my case the right joy-con became twisted and pointing in different directions, so rod pointing was off to the side, behind me, and so on. The game also can interact with the Nintendo Labo Toy-con Fishing Rod.

Unlocking all of the fishing ponds and catching the majority of the fish species took about 10 hours. There are some longer missions like "catch 700 fish" and "catch all fish with 4-star rank," but most of the missions are completed as you unlock each land. It's an OK game if you just want to sit back and catch some fish. It reminds me a little of the Nintendo DS eShop game Hooked on Bass Fishing or the 3DS StreetPass Ultimate Angler game.

Digital Farming Game SalesThere is a Lunar New Year Sale taking place on the Steam gaming platform, with several farming games discounted:

Harvest Moon: Light of Hope SE = $9.99 (50% off)Harvest Moon: Light of Hope SE + 4 DLCs = $19.99 (50% off)Harvest Life = $4.49 (70% off)Farming Simulator 19 = $31.49 (10% off)Farming Simulator 17 = $11.99 (40% off)Farming Simulator 15 = $11.99 (40% off)
Also on sale is Little Dragon's Cafe for $29.99 (50% off, regularly $49.99). Stardew Valley isn't on sale this time.

Until next time!

- Cher
(I don't like doing office work from home when snowed in. There's too many farming distractions...) Sat, 09 Feb 2019 00:16:58 +0000