Thursday, April 15, 2021

History of the seasons: review of the pioneers of the olive city

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Anyone who’s ever played a Story of Seasons game knows the plot of Pioneers of Olive Town: enterprising young man in his twenties escapes the hustle and bustle of the city and takes control of his grandfather’s run-down old farmhouse outside a small rural village struggling to entertain its inhabitants . To turn things around, you grow crops, raise animals, talk to townspeople and rehearse. The pioneers of Olive Town aren’t trying to change that, but it does add a tremendous amount of land to handle and craft mechanics to work with, and it fleshes out that familiar loop into a full, enjoyable take. For those of us who have played Stardew Valley The pioneers of Olive Town are full of things to do, and although the seasons go by rather slowly, I was surprised at how much I did in one day – also like what I still wanted to do at the end of each. At any point you are working on rebuilding a structure, clearing a new segment of land, planning another excursion to one of multiple mines, saving for the purchase of a new tool upgrade, try to complete a quest to develop the city, and try to get the cute girl who works at the museum to come for a walk on the beach with you. This is pretty standard stuff for most.The most dramatic differences between Olive Town and previous Story of Seasons games are the materials and crafting systems, as well as the extent of farmland you need to clear. The former borrows a lot from (surprise!) Stardew Valley, teaching you new crafting recipes as you level up various skills such as mining, fishing, and logging. This includes a number of recipes for machines that will convert materials to other materials, such as lumber to lumber or ore to bars.

It’s a problem to have to worry about the machines instead of all the other, much more fun stuff like exploring the huge farm that I inherited.

But there are just too many! Some of them even perform very similar functions, like Maker machines which convert yarn into fabric, but then separate it completely to turn wool into, well, a different fabric. Or the separate machines to convert rice and beans to powders, herbs to seasonings, and salt and pepper to spices. I could have done without, like, half of these machines, especially since by the time I was in a few seasons half of my farm looked like an industrial district between all the machines I had. running both and all the storage boxes I needed to put in place to keep all of their stuff organized when I inevitably needed to build something. Story of Seasons would be much improved if growing your farm didn’t require something like a quarter of each play day playing an entirely different management simulation instead of the actual farming simulation I wanted to play.

It’s a problem to have to worry about the machines instead of all the other, much more fun stuff like exploring the huge farm that I inherited. As with previous games in the series, Story of Seasons begins with a small patch of overgrown land that you’ll slowly clear out of trees, rocks, and grass with tools like an ax, hammer, and scythe. You’ll also repair dilapidated structures, like a chicken coop, using materials you get from clearing land (and, later, passing those materials through 20 different machines). At first the strip of land you start with seems like a lot to manage and certainly enough room to cultivate.

Then you will repair the bridge.

History of the seasons: review of the pioneers of the olive city

Crossing the bridge southwest of your farm reveals a patch of land twice the size, also overgrown, and with new dilapidated structures to repair. And there are more sections of land beyond that. Look, the farm is just huge, okay? By the time you repair the stable, you will need the horse to get you back and forth through the stretches to do your daily chores. That means plenty of room to build and grow whatever you want, including crafting ridiculous decorations like, I’m not kidding, a giant topiary cow.

The size unfortunately shows that Story of Seasons struggles to run at a regular frame rate, especially when walking through an area with a lot of stuff on the screen. And the farm ladder can take a while later, as puddles, weeds, and trees grow back quickly. If you want to keep the land clear, you’ll spend a lot of time running around your farm pounding unwanted germs. The worst offenders are puddles and even larger ponds, which appear in abundance whenever it rains and require the repeated, tedious use of a bucket to empty if you want to reclaim your space.

There was clearly a lot of love in the original writing and localization of some of these scenes, as well as a willingness to be goofy.

But the size is mostly in its favor, because you will need all this space for your hundred converters, but also for the cultivation and grazing of the animals. And it’s also fun to explore these new areas, because every new section you unlock includes new items to collect, new materials to build, new buildings to remodel. Plus, each season brings new adorable stray animals that you can eventually tame and add to your barn and chicken coop. A highlight of my entire game has been unlocking new areas, discovering the embarrassment of the riches that awaited me inside, and even delighting the seasons later with new stray animals like a clumsy brown cow and the dumbest, cutest bunny I have ever seen, ready. be tamed.

It’s a good thing the days in Pioneers of Olive Town are long, because taking care of your farm is only half the job and there really is only loads to do each day. Olive Town itself is significant and will grow with new stores and activities as you complete quests for the mayor of the city. For example, you’ll unlock a lounge with a wide range of customization options that will expand even more over time. Delightfully, all the options are available for every character, regardless of your gender.

The people of Olive Town may not seem like much when you first talk to them. Most of them will make similar comments on the closest event on the calendar – thus, anticipating the Pet Derby for a few days, then discussing the results of the Pet Derby for the next few days. It’s a shame the daily dialogue is so bland, because the cutscenes are where the characters can really shine. There was clearly a lot of love in the original writing and localization of some of these scenes, as well as the willingness to bend over and be goofy and ironic.The solid writing extends to the cast of five singles and singles, all of whom have many lovely interactions with you as you increase their affection for you with gifts and conversations. Singles are a bit more diverse in appearances and personalities than singles, but the good news is that if men aren’t wooing you effectively, you can date women just as easily no matter what gender you play. Thank the Goddess of the Harvest that Marvelous eliminated “friendship ceremonies” after the Friends of Mineral Town remake made being as gay as you like a series standard.

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