As part of a larger interview with Siliconera, Rising Star gave us some brief insight into the state of the Harvest Moon series and where it stands in their portfolio of games. Although it isn’t surprising that Harvest Moon is RSG’s top-selling franchise, they revealed to us that the Rune Factory games are picking up steam, too.
I noticed Harvest Moon has its own section on the [RSG] website. Let’s talk about that a little. Are those the games from your catalogue that tend to do the best?
Yen Hau, product manager: The Harvest Moon games are our flagship titles, our most successful with the longest heritage, so it was clear to us that they deserved their own section on our website. With such a big audience and fan base it was important to us to give Harvest Moon fans another place to go to for information in addition to the fantastic fan sites out there.
Natsume are obviously very close to Marvelous and there’s some collaboration between the two when it comes to Harvest Moon development. Are you being approached for feedback and design suggestions, too?
Both Marvelous and Natsume have design teams responsible for the Harvest Moon series, whereas RSG are solely a publisher. We generally leave the design process alone and let them get on with it — you don’t need publisher interference when developing a game.
You’ve been publishing Harvest Moon titles in Europe for a while now. What kind of growth curve have you seen over the years?
The Harvest Moon titles are still our best selling games, but as with any game, sales usually follow the same path as market conditions. They are still phenomenally successful for us, but we have seen related series Rune Factory garner significantly good feedback and there are indications that this series is seen as the spiritual successor for the Harvest Moon franchise.
The series has a sizeable female audience, which is incredible, because it’s one of such few franchises that do. Do you have any idea of the gender divide?
We’ve always known that there is a higher female audience for the Harvest Moon games, but it’s very difficult to have an exact number on the gender divide. So long as people continue to buy these games we’re happy, we’re very pleased to cater to the female and male gamers out there.
Keep an eye out for our full interview with Rising Star where we discuss the state of the company, which we’ll be publishing very soon.