This is my first foray into a Story of Seasons game. I’ve played Stardew Valley before, which, as I was playing Story of Seasons felt very similar, so I did have some idea of what to do, but whereas I struggled to stick with Stardew Valley, I was finding myself enjoying and quite addicted to Story of Seasons. It’s an absolutely adorable game, all the characters are unique, cute and colourful, with everyone having a distinct and interesting personality to get to know. Each of the animals as well are just so lovable, with models that make me go ‘awww’ on the inside.
I’ve slowly transformed into a gamer that enjoys a casual, pick up and play game. Due to various real life stresses, I’ve been finding it harder and harder to get time to set aside for hours upon hours of gaming, so having a game that I can just grab and do some fairly basic tasks without having to keep in mind the overarching story, is perfect for me. Which is, conveniently, exactly what Story of Seasons is. I admit I probably didn’t quite play it “properly”, having missed out a little on the social aspect – more on that below – but I loved taking care of my farm. Planting crops, watering them every day, looking after my little animals, it was simple, fun and above all, it was relaxing. I felt genuinely proud when I started planting crops that gave me better money, clearing out all the boulders and tree stumps from my farm and raising little chickens. I did feel like I spread myself a little thin, because I’d always need to take a break and hit the hot spring half way through my chores, but it was still really enjoyable.
You’re probably reading this and thinking “Well, that’s all good, but I like my games to have some challenge to them”. While Story of Seasons definitely is on the easier side of the gaming spectrum, there is still things you need to think about in order to complete your chores and further improve yourself and your farm. I did take it quite easy, but there’s definitely things that you can do that would definitely give you pause for thought. Maximising your friendships with everyone, mining out the bottom level of the mine in order to create the most efficient tools and having a fully functioning farm that earns you enough to buy everything are all significant challenges should you want to go that way.
So, as I mentioned earlier, and I’m not sure if this was just me being a bit dim, but I found some aspects of Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town not very well explained. Most things are, but when it came to relationships with people, I was a little bit lost. It wasn’t until quite a bit into the game I realised that I could see how people viewed me – whether they liked me or not, and how much. It’s not necessarily the worst thing in the world, but I felt like I had missed a chunk of the game because I didn’t really realise it was there. I’d be fine with going to town and chatting to people I needed to, but you can also give gifts to people, and I only found that out by accident when I gave a shopkeeper an old can. Probably not the best gift to give a person, but he seemed to enjoy it either way…
Despite that, whether you’re a hardcore gamer or a more of a casual player, if you’re after a nice, relaxing experience that still has a modicum of challenge and a whole lot of character, you’d not go far wrong with Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town. It’s a game that you can pick up and play at any point and just do a few days worth of farming and not worry too much about having to do anything overly complex. Take care of your animals, tend to your crops, talk to the townsfolk. Nice and simple, and for me, that just sounds perfect.