E3 2007: Hands-on Harvest Moon Rune Factory

E3 Disclaimer: AMN’s E3 previews are designed to inform you of what each game at E3 plays like, and what we think of what’s shown. These previews are not reviews, and we reserve final judgment of each game until it is finished and released. These previews offer an honest opinion of what a publisher chose to demo at E3. So without further ado, read on.

What’s Hot
In the timeline of the Harvest Moon lore, it is easiest to say it is in the past. When in truth, Rune Factory exists concurrently on another planet in the Harvest Moon universe. What makes Rune Factory seem like it is in the past is the archaic style of the environment and items.

The story starts with a shipwrecked boy who comes to a town where there are monsters which emerge from mysterious gates around town. The village looks to the boy to save them from these monsters.

Although Rune Factory has a definite Harvest Moon feel, it deviates from the expected with its RPG aspects such as dungeons, weapon inventories, forging items, building accessories and a more in depth storyline.

What’s Not
We liked everything about Rune Factory. The only thing that might be refreshing in this game, which is sure to have sequels, would be to have it on more platforms in addition to the DS. Although Natsume did a fabulous job of making the inventories easily accessible and clear to read, the complexity and expansiveness of this evolution of Harvest Moon into an RPG would easily fill a large screen.

Despite the dungeons and dragons, Harvest Moon Rune Factory is still keeping its family friendly approach. For instance, In the dungeon, even though you encounter and fight dragons, you capture it instead of killing it. Not only will you bring the dragon home, you become friends with him, which will eventually allow him to help out around the house with you.

Click Here to Watch Our Hands-on Video Below

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We look forward to seeing the Harvest Moon for the DS released by Natsume on August 14, 2007.