Yvonne van Geloven
Story of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town has all the important elements accounted for. There’s farming with a wide range of different crops and seeds, you can take care of animals, there’s mining and fishing, you can craft items in Makers, there’s a huge town with many people to befriend or romance and it wouldn’t be called Pioneers if there wasn’t a lot to explore too. Plus, a nice little feature is added in the form of the Sprite Village and the various special areas you can visit there. Finally there is some online gameplay added into the mix, though I do feel that could have been fleshed out some more. Overall, a very complete package that will sometimes leave you wishing for more hours in the day, in real life and in the game. There’s so much to do, that Story of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town is not only a farming simulation game but also a management game. The only way to let the farm thrive and have time for all the other activities is to plan ahead and make use of your little factory of Makers and recipes for crafting as best you can. As I love a good farming simulation game and am in my element in management games, it’s not difficult for me to give Story of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town it’s rating. The game has the right rhythm of keeping you interested by adding more new things at the right time too. I know there are more good games in the genre available on Switch, but in my opinion, this one is ace!
Harvest Moon: One World isn’t part of the long standing series of games that went on under the name Story of Seasons in the West some years ago. Nevertheless, it focuses on the same game idea and audience. While I’m not sure it’s a good idea to seek competition with Story of Seasons by releasing in the same month, I did like my time in One World. Is it as good as as Story of Seasons games? No it’s not. In comparison the world feels empty and the characters a bit flat. The dating scene could use some sprucing up too. But judged on its own by this farming simulation fan I can honestly say I enjoyed it. The developers tried out some novel ideas, like the Expando-Farm. And not having to bother with scrolling through your pocket for the right tool: the game always does the right action at the right time. An excellent range of various crops and a new way to get your seeds. The farming itself really felt fresh to me. So even though I wonder if the price point isn’t a bit high and the opinions on the internet vary quite a bit on Harvest Moon: One World I must say it kept me playing for quite some hours. But I want to add, keeping my comments above in mind, the game should have been offered at a significant lower price point than the competition’s game.
With Atelier Ryza 2: Lost Legends & the Secret Fairy Gust and Koei Tecmo have delivered again. This new game can be played on its own, though you’ll have to learn a lot to master it all in a short time. For me, there’s never a dull moment in the game and I love the new additions like the Exploration Diary. You won’t be surprised that Atelier Ryza 2: Lost Legends & the Secret Fairy is the best of the best for me.
When I reviewed the mobile game on the iPad I wrote: “I can’t help but think that this game would be a wonderful game to add to the Switch library”. I got my wish, Evolution is a great board game turned into a video game. It will give you the choice of what platform to play on, depending on the money you want to spend and your eyesight!
The game might get repetitive after a while as there are no other sim elements included, though leveling up and the constant stream of new items does keep you interested. Keep in mind that Pretty Princess Party is primarily aimed at a younger audience, but if you are looking for cute and colorful laid back gameplay you might be interested as well. I’m pretty sure it will make a fine addition to many Christmas stockings!
This isn’t your average Visual Novel, no over the top romance with hot guys, but a more realistic approach to friendships and potential relationships in old age. Though in some of the chapters, realism is far away! Poignant, sad at times, and with some dollops of sarcastic humour Later Daters makes for a special game. A pity that it’s so short, even with the DLC added.
As I mentioned in the intro, I was looking for a Style Boutique-like game. Fashion Boutique does have a bit of store management included, but it lacks stock management. You don’t shop for clothes keeping an eye on fashion trends. In this game, you make the clothes yourself by doing mini-games. That can get repetitive but luckily once a pattern is mastered, you don’t have to do the mini-game for that particular item anymore. The game has wide variety of things to unlock and expand, and works hard to keep the gamer entertained. It’s visually not as pleasing however, and feels a bit empty and rough around the edges. In the end I do like the game, keeping in mind its intended younger audience. You can easily fritter away the hours while working on your stock and keeping your customers happy. I do feel that the American price is fair, but the European price point is a bit high for my taste.
Love romantic stories? This is one with a twist. Not into overly romantic? This visual novel brings an interesting story to the table, so it may still be one to go for. Can you tell I’m loving this game? Aksys have a tendency of bringing us the best visual novels, and Café Enchanté is no exception.
It’s a pity the game is let down by the translation. It feels like they didn’t pay enough attention to that, giving it a good translation would make the game much more enjoyable. Which brings me to my conclusion: I’m a bit torn. If you like fashion and you are into the anime style, then I’d say this is a good game. Not a great one, for that it needs more spit and polish. If you want your fashion game more along the lines of Style Boutique, then maybe this isn’t the one for you. Still, SELFY COLLECTION is very much about making combinations with the 5,000 items you can collect and about making your own avatar amazing. Even though I’m more on the Style Boutique side, I like the dress up factor.
What influences my opinion is that this is, after all, a platformer at heart. The challenges got more difficult the farther I went in, to a point where I despaired of ever progressing. But, it doesn’t seem fair to reflect the fact that I’m awful at platforming gameplay in the final verdict. So I will say: if you like platformers and like a bit of food for thought, this is a great game. If you are bad at platforming, then you may have to find someone in your family to help you along in tight spots to enjoy the entire story.