You goal is to run your own farm, but your dad is less than enthused about your life choice. To give you a feel for farm life he contacts his brother Frank to guide you in managing a farm the right way. At the onset of the game you are shown to your farm and the little run-down house that you'll now live in.
The farm is at the Crossroads, a little area where taking the path one way or the other will take you to a place that is vastly different than the other option. You'll visit these towns to purchase supplies that you'll use on your farm such as crop seeds and animals.
Your main farm area is separated into a northern half, where your farm house is, and a larger southern half. Your farm house cannot move from its location. The house does have a horse stall attached to it where you can care for a horse separate from the animal barns.
When you first start out on the farm you'll find that parts of it are already set up for you:
- There are a few crop soil fields ready for you to use. Each of field can be plowed into two individual plots to grow crops in.
- You'll find a livestock barn and an poultry barn, but there's no animals to be found. You'll have to purchase those on your own.
The rest of the farm is cluttered with trees, boulders, and various other items that you'll want to clean up. You'll be given a set of tools you can use to clear up the debris, although they will work better once you work on upgrading the tools' strength.
The clothesline in front of your house indicates the size of your family. You'll see one shirt hanging from the line when you're single, two shirts once you're married, and three shirts after you've had your only child. You'll also find a mailbox where you'll receive letters from the shopkeepers when their inventory updates, messages from your parents, and even well wishes on your birthday.
Each of the outdoor areas have a Fun Time Work Bench (Spring 16 or later) you can use to modify the Farm Circles. Next to the bench will be a Watering Source to fill up your watering can. Throughout the time on your farm you'll find wild itims, such as Moondrop Flower and Mint, that grow around the outskirts of each farm area.
The Shipping Box
You'll be making money for your farm by placing items in the shipping box outside of your farm house front door. No need to sell things to the merchants in town, to a trade depot, or to call anyone from a farm union; just press the A Button on your Nintendo 3DS when standing in front of the box to open it up, then select the items from your bag that you want to sell. Someone will come by at 17:00 to pick them up. When you wake up in the morning you'll be given your paycheck for the products you've sold.
Since there are three towns in the local area, you have three places you can ship to. Each town is marked with its logo on the top of the shipping box, and all products you place in the box will go to that town. The towns don't pay you more for shipping specific products, but you will be required to sell to specific towns as you work through Daryl's Farming Tips. To change the town you are going to ship to, press the A Button when in front of the box to Change the Destination. Starting the next day, the products you ship will go to that town.
The shipping box isn't a one-way suck-up-your-crops type of box. If you happen to put something into the shipping box that you wanted to keep, you can take it back out as long as the shipper hasn't arrived yet. Just select the Remove from Box option to take back anything you may have unintentionally put into the box.
The Main Farm Area
The shipping box and farm house are located in the main farm area, which leads to the Crossroads that contains the pathways to each of the towns. The farm areas are designed in a grid pattern. You can only place barns, fields, and Farm Circles in the grid areas. Your farm house, shipping box, watering source, and Fun Time Work Bench cannot be moved.
Your main farm area has two places where you can place Farm Circles, one by your farm house and one south of the shipping box. There's paths here that lead you to the other farm areas.
The West Farm Area
This area unlocks after you have completed your dad's Farming Tips #1. There's a lot of space here to place Farm Circles, but when you first unlock this area it will be full of wild-grown trees and rocks. You'll need to clear it out before you can use the Fun Time Work Bench to place Farm Circles.
There is also a water area where you can go fishing. You don't have to stand on the dock to use your fishing rod; you can cast your line at any space along the water's edge. There are no unique fish here, normal or King sized, that can't be caught in other water areas.
The East Farm Area
After you complete Daryl's Farming Tips #2, you'll gain access to the south of your main farm area and east of the west farm area. There are two sections to this area. Growing crops in the higher or lower area won't impact their growth rate, as they don't act as terraces. They're just simply divided into two areas.
The Underground Cellar
The last of Daryl and Frank's Farming Tips will unlock the underground area once they're completed. You can reach this place by going through a cellar door that appears in the northeast area of your main farm area. The underground is made up of three individual areas with 42 crop field spaces in each one. You cannot swap out the fields (no water paddies) or add Farm Circles to these areas.
The underground acts like a greenhouse, allowing you to grow crops in a protected area away from the outdoor environment. You can control the growing season in each of the three areas by placing a Sun Stone at the Sun Alter on the north side of each underground room. These Sun Stones can be purchased from the 99 G and Up store in Tsuyukusa for 1500 G each (or 1050 G in Seedling mode), one for each of the four seasons. The stones don't get used up when you place them in the stone holders.
Any field crop you can grow in the season you set the room for will produce until you remove the plant, you harvest enough times that the plant is out of strength to produce crops, or you swap the Sun Stone to a different season. Trees also grow in this area and will produce fruit if you've set the room to be the season they produce fruit in. Trees will also remain in place when you swap the stone to a new season, since the same is true if you were planting them outside.
You'll find a water source in each of the rooms to fill up the watering can. Outside rain will not reach the interior of the underground crop cellars, so you will need to remember to water your crops.
The first cellar area also contains a mining node in the northwest corner. The other two rooms do not have mining nodes.
Note: In the English version of the game the Suns Stones are a little mixed up at the Sun Alters. The cellar comes with three Spring Suns, but when swapping to the other suns one of the option is the same Sun Stone you already have set in the alter, which mixes up the options available when changing stones. You may need to swap a stone out a few times, using different options, before you get to the stone you want to actually appear.