Picked up Harvest Moon: Animal Parade!

Today the game I ordered a few days back finally arrived! Harvest Moon: Animal Parade! Now I'm sure some if you know this already, but I'm a huge Harvest Moon and Rune Factory fan, but normally I end up buying the games spread out. Although I like the games and all, a lot of the games, especially the DS ones, seem like the same old thing with only a few minor improvements which really aren't worth getting. I mean yeah they're still fun games, but I never really saw a reason to buy each game that came out each year when I'm still having fun playing the old one. Well with that being said, I finally decided to pick up the newest Wii title Animal Parade.

Back when I first heard about Animal Parade I really thought that it was just one of them spin off games that wouldn't be worth my time, but then I found out what it really was. Unlike what the title may lead you to believe, AP is actually a sort of improved version of the Tree of Tranquility game released on the Wii a few years back. The game features the same two main Male and Female characters, it features a lot of the same gameplay, and it even features all of the same towns people; however there are some MAJOR differences and overall improvements that made me want this game! (Well the improvements on top of what was in ToT that is!)

- At the start of the game there are actually four different characters you can pick from which is something I've never seen in a HM game before. Most of the time you're stuck with either a male or female main character (based on which version of the game you bought), but this time there's actually two of each for you to chose from!

- You can customize your house and move furni around! I'm a huge Animal Crossing fan, and this is one feature I always wished Harvest Moon would use more often.

- The world is HUGE! Most Harvest Moon games, and heck even Rune Factory, feature a small town with a few buildings, a few outside areas, and a few "dungeon" like areas (or caves/forests) for you to explore. Animal Parade has all of that plus MUCH MUCH more! It actually takes awhile for you to walk to where you want to go, and there's a LOT of places to explore.

- Clothes and accessories! You can customize how your character looks (as well as their kids once they have them)!

- The family/kid system has also been improved. You can now have up to two kids, and both kids can grow up into teens and actually HELP do chores. They also have to attend school apparently. (Really it's nice to see that the kids are no longer zombies who just sit in the house all day and never do a single thing!)
- Lots and LOTS of animals! From wild dogs, cats, and pigs, to more exotic animals, this game has them all and you can have ANY of them as your pet. The standard animal system is there (cows, horses, chickens, etc), but it's really nice to see that you can actually take in stray animals of ANY KIND, and make them your pet (instead of being stuck with a dog that never changes). You can also teach them tricks lol

- There are a LOT of events, more so than I have ever seen in a HM game. Basically the town has gone to heck and everything has gone wrong, so it is now up to you to make the best farm you possibly can so you can return the town to normal! Yep there's a lot of problems to be solved, and a lot of farm work to be done.

- An actual story! Although the Rune Factory games have pretty good stories, most standard HM games really don't have too much of one. Well, it seems that Animal Parade has changed that as well. The story is a huge long story which actually effects the world that you live in, and it is actually pretty well told.

- You can go into mines, and well, mine. Different materials can be used to create different things, and the overall set up actually uses a pretty advance system. Once again, it reminds me a LOT of Rune Factory.
- You can take on part time jobs outside of farming, and you can play mini games as well!

- All of the other standard Harvest Moon features are still in this game as well. The farming system is VERY deep (there are many different types of crops to grow, and there's many different ways for you to treat the land as well), there's a pretty deep cooking system, fishing is still there, you can craft/upgrade different/better tools, you can expand your house and farm, and the livestock system is pretty deep as well.

- And one of my favorite improvements is the fact that there is now a NIGHT theme for every season in the game. Instead of hearing owls hoot, the music slows down to a nice peaceful tune that makes you want to stay outdoors just to listen to it.

In other words, this game is everything I liked about Harvest Moon, it has a lot of the features I liked about Rune Factory, it's got the exploration I like in most RPGs, and it's also got a touch of Animal Crossing thrown in as well. Despite the misleading title that makes it seem like a spin off focused on animals, this game is actually the biggest Harvest Moon game out there. Although I've only played a few in game days, I've already seen a great deal of content, and I'm not even 1% into this monster of a game.
If I ever get around to finishing it... Maybe I'll do a full review lol

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