Dating Sim Review Simulation

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town – Review

Welcome (Back) to Mineral Town

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town may look familiar to some. It’s a remake of Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town for the Game Boy Advance, which itself is a remake of sorts of Harvest Moon: Back to Nature for the PlayStation 1. Then there’s Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town, which allows you to play from the female perspective instead of the male. Suffice to say, this isn’t the first time that many will be seeing this town or meeting these characters.

For those less familiar, Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town is the latest in a long series of casual farming simulators with a side of dating simulator thrown in. You can grow crops, take care of a number of animals, take part in town events, and even find an eligible bachelor or bachelorette to settle down with. It’s a peaceful retreat from the majority of games that feature combat, action, and stress-inducing time-constraints. Practically the only thing to worry about is managing a fairly generous amount of time and energy and deciding what to focus on first.

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town - Farming

Farming, Fishing, Foraging, and…

At its core, Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town is about making money or acquiring resources to unlock the next thing in line. A better watering can, a bigger house, or even better ways to win over the residents of the town. There are a lot of things to upgrade and unlock. Fortunately, there are many paths to profit.

In three of the four seasons, one of your primary money-makers will be farming. Till the ground, spread some seeds, and water them each day. After enough days pass, you will be able to harvest and ship off your crops. Each season has several different crops you can purchase and they will all grow differently and be able to sell for different amounts. There’s a management aspect here in trying to figure out which will be valuable, which might be used for purposes other than profit and how many you can manage to deal with per day. Maybe I’ll grow some yams for shipping, some flowers to boost my relationship with a certain townsperson, and some carrots to cook a recipe. You can also raise farm animals for eggs, milk, and wool. There’s plenty of variety in things to do on your farm itself, so you won’t find yourself bored. Outside of your farm, you can pick up some additional food and flowers by foraging while you make your way through the town, which is a nice way to get sidetracked.

After some time, you will unlock a fishing rod. This allows you to pull fish out of the sea, amongst other things. This can be quite profitable, but I do admit that I found it quite slow and tedious. It’s a fairly standard fishing mechanic for these types of games though – start fishing, wait until there’s a sound, and reel it in. Sometimes it succeeds, sometimes it doesn’t. Better fish can be found with better rods.

Mining is what many players will spend winter doing. Not only because they can’t grow crops, but also as a second mine opens only in winter. This is searching for ladders down and smashing boulders for materials. I found it to be quite relaxing at times, at least until I suddenly fall down a hole. Keeps things interesting. Unlike some games, there are no enemies to fight here but there are plenty of items to find, including some rather special ones. As you gain more resources, you will be able to go further and further into the mines for better rewards. It’s a satisfying loop of gaining more and going further.

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town - Brandon

Win Friends and Lovers

Profit is its own reward, but what good is it if you can’t splurge on your friends sometimes? That said, the cost of friendship is high in Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town.

You can win over one of twelve eligible characters and eventually get married to them. Six men and six women – your character can be either male or female and marry any of the candidates regardless of your choice which is a nice new feature for the series. You can make friends with the rest of the townfolk too.

To make friends and more, you need to increase your friendship points. This can be done by talking to them and giving them items they like. The items are sometimes hinted at, but quite often it’s a case of guessing and judging based on their reactions. There’s a lot of experimenting to do. It’s great if you love taking it slow and discovering things and this game has a lot for people who love discovering things. One aspect I liked was that you may unlock little rewards when you become friends with someone. A special item, a recipe, or something else. It made it feel worth the effort.

With the potential lovers, they will have a heart indicator showing. As this rises, new events can be unlocked which take you through a scene with the character. These sometimes even give you choices with a chance to increase or decrease your points based on your answer. These heart indicators can take a lot of time to go up – talking every day and giving them little gifts slowly pushes it up. It’s lucky that you’re selling all of those crops to fund your spending habits.

There are plenty of scenes outside of heart indicator events. Both events including yourself and those including rivals who would want to pair up with another character if you do not. On top of this, there are a lot of events throughout the year where the townspeople get together, either playing minigames or just talking.

I can’t say that any of the characters are particularly deep – they get quite limited lines and scenes after all. They are all likable though and distinct from each other. Two new characters have been added for the remake too for those of you who played the original. I was impressed at the number of events there are spread throughout the game.

Horse Racing

What Else Can I Do?

Aside from farming, flirting and friendship, there are a lot of things to discover in Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town. While I will try not to ruin the surprises too much, there are absolutely tons of hidden things to find both in the normal course of things and some which you may not think to find. Some of these will not be accessible until the late game, but some can be found right away.


I will tell you this and leave you to make your own decision on whether it is positive or negative – there are exploits in this game. The same ones which were in the original. Being a single-player game, this isn’t a negative to me. It is something I prefer to avoid personally, but the option to use them to speed ahead is there for those who want it.

Outside of exploits, I did come across the issue of getting stuck a few times. This was fairly rare – maybe once per season. I’d come through from one map to another at a bad time when other people were crossing through. I always got out eventually, but it could be an hour or two in-game before this happened.

Popuri and Rick


In the end, this is a relaxing gameplay loop of farming and increasing friendship with occasional breaks to participate in events or take a trip down the mines. It’s well-made overall and has some great characters in a charming setting that I enjoyed revisiting and I believe many will enjoy visiting for the first time.

Perhaps it could have gone further with the remake – it already added a small amount of content, so perhaps it could have looked at the more modern titles and include further additions there. Farm automation, more maker machines, or more events. Still, I’m happy with Mineral Town and it’s residents as they are.


“An interesting reboot of an old series. Shows its age in some ways, but it is a great way to revisit this franchise”.
Platforms: PC and Nintendo Switch

If you would like to read about Simulation games, you might be interested to read this review of Beyond Blue.

Many thanks to Marvellous Games for a Nintendo Switch review code for this title.

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