Marvelous announced that it finished working on 99% of Story of Seasons: A Wonderful Life. As its release window of January 2023 draws closer, Producer Hikaru Nakano and Director Rika Hoshina discussed the game in a Famitsu interview. The two of them discussed topics such as new elements and what they strove to preserve. For this remake, they said they also added lots of new scenes to focus on the idea of family. [Thanks, Famitsu!]
According to Hoshina, Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life’s life simulator elements were a key component to the game. She absolutely wanted the player to still be able to look back on the game after they play and think, “That was a good life.”
As mentioned earlier, the development team wanted to shine a spotlight on family in the remake. In order to do so, it has put in a lot of new scenes for you and your family. You can also unlock lots of new scenes featuring the various bachelors and bachelorettes.
A challenge Hoshina encountered was in balancing what was in the original and what would be in the remake. Since the enjoyable parts of Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life only became more apparent when you tried to 100% the game, Story of Seasons: A Wonderful Life had to become more obvious to match modern standards. The development team noted Harvest Moon could be quite difficult, and the team noted it a lot of trouble adjusting that. It still needed to present a challenge, but in a way that newer players wouldn’t find daunting.
Something else she found difficult was the difference between gamers then versus now. When Hoshina asked newer players what was liked about Harvest Moon, they said it was too dark. This may be why farm animals no longer have a lifespan, as of Story of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town. While the original game used their deaths to convey the feeling of life, the birth of new animals will signify life in Story of Seasons in order to make the remake have a brighter atmosphere.
The characters also had to change with the times. For example, the team had to change Marlin’s hairstyle to better fit in with his backstory of someone who had been working in the city. However, the team didn’t have to change much of anything with Rock. This is due to the fact that Rock’s unique worldview remains odd even in 2022.
Story of Seasons: A Wonderful Life will appear on the Nintendo Switch in Japan on January 26, 2023. It will come out in Summer 2023 in other regions.