Harvest Moon Dev Makes Its Spiritual Successor

Harvest Moon Dev Makes Its Spiritual Successor

Ex-Lollipop Chainsaw developer created Project Happiness after seeing gaming's violent side at E3.

This trailer for Project Happiness - Harvest Moon developer Yasuhiro Wada's latest project - feels like a childhood story, and that's deliberate. Wada left his post as Chief Operations Officer at Grasshopper Manufacture to make this game because, he claims, he wanted to get back to his own rural childhood roots. He remembers those days with fondness, and hopes that the game they've influenced will be an antidote to modern gaming's homogeneity.

Project Happiness - a Nintendo 3DS and mobile platform game - is superficially a shopkeeping simulation, but Wada hopes that the story will draw players in. As the main character interacts with the townsfolk the player learns more about their personal narratives, and gets drawn into their problems. "Of course you are going to have a fun experience," Wada promises, "but in [Project Happiness], even after you put down the controller and have finished playing, you are going to remember this game."

"It's healthy to bring much variety to games," Wada said, adding that "if the only things you see are violent games, then it won't be any fun." This year's E3 really drove it home for Wada, with its emphasis on bloodshed and larger-than-life heroes. As he walked around the convention halls, all he saw was the same kind of game."It's a little sad," was his reaction.

Toybox Inc is a smaller scale studio than Wada's old firm, but that was one of the attractions of striking out on his own. His role at Grasshopper was getting to be too management-oriented, and he wanted to be creative. "Now I'm feeling refreshed," he says, as he works on his spiritual successor to Harvest Moon.

Project Happiness is due out in 2013.

Source: Gamasutra

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A nice, happy game with no violence, shooting, or RPG elements.

Its not going to sell.

Either that, or the community will yell CASUAL SHIT at first sight.

That looks fantastic. And I must confess I'm a sucker for those games. (Damn you, Kairosoft!) Hopefully it will have that addictive quality of Harvest Moon, too.

So its basically Receattear: An Item Shop's Tale?

Color me interested.

Oh look it's a trailer for Zynga's new game Happyville

shintakie10:
So its basically Receattear: An Item Shop's Tale?

Color me interested.

In all seriousness though, if this game is literally just Recettear, but with a deeper economic engine (Recettear's biggest flaw being that simplicity of it's market economics), then I am all for this. Though I wouldn't say no to more Harvest Moon either...

I've been a fan of the Harvest Moon games for years. My favorite remains Harvest Moon 64. The others I've played have gotten too cutesy, making it abundantly clear that they're targeted at kids and women. Not only that, but a general failing in my mind is that they are very much laced with Japanese gender roles. Being a feminist, that irks me from time-to-time.

But at their core, I love them. I love the idea of games where you get into a routine and manage on a small scale. I just wish that such games would get made more frequently, as they can provide a nice alternative to the violence-based games that dominate the market. The Sims is also good for this purpose, but the Harvest Moon games make me feel less like a controlling/sociopathic god and more like the character involved.

As for this game, I hope they make a version for the standard DS. Because 3D is a stupid gimmick that needs to die out. Again.

Looks good, very whimsical. As some have said, even if its just a Harvest Moon style take on Recettear then thats pretty awesome. Will be following this with great interest!

Nice.
There is a Harvest Moon-shaped hole in my gaming life at the moment, so this will do nicely.

I also like how he doesn´t diss all the violent games and just points out that diversity is a good thing.

saintdane05:
A nice, happy game with no violence, shooting, or RPG elements.

Its not going to sell.

Either that, or the community will yell CASUAL SHIT at first sight.

Harvest Moon did pretty well pretty consistently.
I see no reason why this game should not do the same.

Looks really really cute. I am very interested in it. Though it does have a real casual feel to some scenes (so many casual games that make you run a store). If it is something like Receattear then i am really interested

Looks interesting. I've been a fan of Harvest Moon for awhile now so I might pick it up. Though I would like to see this game allow you some influence over things other than your store.

a first day buy for me, I love these type games and always have since I was a kid

I love Harvest Moon and I'd buy this game just by the first impression. Still, I'd like to see more about it first.

Oh, looks interesting. Like Raceeter, but, ya know.. with less sexual innuendos. Infact, less snarky humour in general. And I like Harvest Moon, I suppose. So, I won't garauntee them my money, assuming they don't just release it on 3DS or Mobile, but I'll check it out.

i hope this turns out better than that not-really-playtested grand bazaar thing

Alright! Now we have games for shop keeping and farmers, We just need librarians, and bakers. Then we'll be set to have an entire Harvest Moon game online were a small community runs a communal town!

I want to marry the mayor's daughter! I wonder who will end up being my in-game wife IRL.

In other news,

Desworks:

I didn't really get the reference... and yet I laughed hardily and loud when I read it.

I'm actually intrigued by this. Harvest Moon 64 was my last love affair with that franchise (later games either took too long to finish a day or threw too many goals at you at once, imo) but this looks like it's going back to more simplistic roots. Raise a shop, then get involved with everyone's lives, just like it used to be - only with a farm. I really hope this turns out well and might very well end up being the tipping point to buy a 3DS.

Desworks:

shintakie10:
So its basically Receattear: An Item Shop's Tale?

Color me interested.

I had to stop myself from reflexively typing "Capitalism, ho!" as soon as I saw "a shopkeeping simulation" in the article.

Draconalis:
I didn't really get the reference... and yet I laughed hardily and loud when I read it.

Receive enlightenment.

Well that's interesting, but I hope for their sake that that's just a working title.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

Desworks:

shintakie10:
So its basically Receattear: An Item Shop's Tale?

Color me interested.

I had to stop myself from reflexively typing "Capitalism, ho!" as soon as I saw "a shopkeeping simulation" in the article.

Draconalis:
I didn't really get the reference... and yet I laughed hardily and loud when I read it.

Receive enlightenment.

Jesus fucking christ I haven't laughed so much in aaaaaaaaaaages. I've played Reccetear a bunch, enjoyed it sufficiently to give it positive reviews to everyone i meet... but that?

Fuck it, I'm gonna go play it right now. And I'm gonna be giggling my ass off the entire time.

Thank you very much for making any future time i spend playing that game 150% more awesome.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

Desworks:

shintakie10:
So its basically Receattear: An Item Shop's Tale?

Color me interested.

I had to stop myself from reflexively typing "Capitalism, ho!" as soon as I saw "a shopkeeping simulation" in the article.

Draconalis:
I didn't really get the reference... and yet I laughed hardily and loud when I read it.

Receive enlightenment.

Why on earth would you not indulge yourself in a Capitalism, ho!

This is relevant to my interest. I'll be keeping an eye on this in the future.

While I did have tons of fun with Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town(?) this game seems a wee bit too cuddly wuddly for my taste.

Reccetear was really lopsided when I played it.
One the one hand you have the pretty fun side of buying, selling and dealings within the town itself, and then you have the very mediocre dungeon crawler it's all built around.

I enjoyed myself but every time I had to slog through another dull ass level of the dungeon I would grimace. I would also say the mage fellow was way overpowered, but he was the only hero who was actually worth using so......eh.

OT: Looks great. I've missed Harvest Moon for a long time and anything that could fill it's spot would not go unappreciated from me.

saintdane05:
A nice, happy game with no violence, shooting, or RPG elements.

Its not going to sell.

Either that, or the community will yell CASUAL SHIT at first sight.

Harvest Moon and all of its clones, Rune Factory, Innocent Life, etc., are consistent sellers on all systems it's been on. A lot of people like to play games that are not violent every once in a while, you know as a break from all of the violence.

It may not do well as a Call of Duty, but that does not matter. Games like Harvest Moon have different metrics of success at play here.

I really like the concept, and I'm glad there's going to be more light-hearted games on the market. But ultimately I won't buy it, I'll buy the games that enter the market because of it. Reason? I fucking hate, HATE the way it looks. Petty I know, but it just screams iOS game whenever I look at it, and that ain't a good thing. Either way, I'll be keeping an eye on this, who knows maybe the sprites etc. are just alpha placeholders?

shintakie10:

Nalgas D. Lemur:

Desworks:

I had to stop myself from reflexively typing "Capitalism, ho!" as soon as I saw "a shopkeeping simulation" in the article.

Draconalis:
I didn't really get the reference... and yet I laughed hardily and loud when I read it.

Receive enlightenment.

Why on earth would you not indulge yourself in a Capitalism, ho!

God this game was so addicting...

I just couldn't stop... I was sad when the game ended, I was like 'MOAR!'

 

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