Initially released for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance in 2003, “STORY OF SEASONS: Friends of Mineral Town” is a top-to-bottom remake that will give long-time fans the chance to return to the delightful world of Mineral Town while also introducing a new generation of farmers to the beloved classic.
The premise is simple: you decided to follow your late grandfather’s footsteps and become a farmer just like him. So you move to Mineral Town and get to work with revamping his long-abandoned farmhouse. While living in a peaceful environment, you can grow crops, take care of animals, build relationships with villagers and even find a soulmate along the way.
For the newcomers who are giving this farming simulator franchise a shot, FoMT is a great place to start since it provides a low-difficulty way to learn the franchise's mechanics. Each day, you, the farmer, rise with the sun at 6 a.m. and have an entire day to complete your tasks. This is one of my drawbacks to the game as time moves a little too fast to accomplish tasks. Stamina is also limited to you and it decreases every time you use tools like a fishing rod or a hammer. Maintaining your farm will seem like a daunting task from the beginning, but once you acquire better tools and expand your health bar you’ll have the chance to stay out much longer.
Despite those minor flaws, this is a very relaxing game and probably something we all need right now. College students still must limit their social circles and protect themselves from Covid-19. People haven’t physically seen their relatives in at least a year. People are losing businesses. Younger generations are finding it hard to focus on academics. With Covid-19 following the world into 2021, we all need some distraction in our lives to keep us from going crazy. And, just like how Animal Crossing: New Horizons has helped us cope with last year’s stressful lockdown, I think FoMT is just the right stress reliever to accomplish that, too.
The atmosphere of the FoMT is also wholesome, cute and cheerful. There is not a mean bone in its body as you get acquainted with the many colorful residents of Mineral Town. There are no antagonists wanting to harm you or your harvesting business. No enemies to defeat or friends to protect from evil. So, keep that in mind. The worst that can happen is if you’re missing a couple of crops or a farm animal. And depending on how big you make your farm, you can even ask for help from nature sprites, who can take part in errands on your behalf—such as animal care, harvesting and watering crops—though they need to learn how first.
Aside from the smooth 3D visuals and straightforward controls, the most noteworthy improvement is the long-awaited same-sex marriage option. For the first time in the franchise’s history, you can marry a spouse regardless of their gender. A minor change but it offers more choices for the players and it’s a very refreshing addition to an already favorite classic.
Overall, Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town is the ideal farming simulator experience. It can be tedious and too easy to earn cash, but you'll be spending a whole lot of hours discovering mines and improving your crops. To be frank, that’s a game worth having.