Sunday, 16 March 2014

Introduction to Harvest Day Country Life on Tablets, PCs and Laptops

Players like myself who love Harvest Moon always looked for farming simulation games similar to Harvest Moon on Facebook but generally without success.  Yesterday, when my beloved Family Farm Seaside Farm failed to load for the second day, I desperately sought ways to fix the problem.  One suggestion was to install another game and then reinstall Seaside.  In perusing the list of free games in the shop, I discovered a little game called Harvest Day Country Life.  It is not so much similar to Harvest Moon but actually constitutes a Thai version of Harvest Moon.

Unfortunately, I have been unable to fix the problem that prevents Farmily Farm Seaside from loading but that is neither here nor there where Harvest Day Country Life is concerned.

What is interesting about the game is that it can be played either on a mobile device or on a PC/Laptop.  To play it on a PC or laptop, one first must 'like' the Country Lfe page and then follow a link to an app that will allow one to play.  The app is easy to install and the game appears to load easily on laptops if one chooses that option.

Players familiar with Harvest Moon understand that it is the games in the series are detailed and require a great deal of time and patience.  New options are unlocked gradually.  Dialogue can be important and there usually are festivals that are celebrated.  'White Day', a version of Valentine's Day, evidently is included in Harvest Day.

The basic premise of Harvest Day Country Life is that a young man named Derek is given a farm to restore.  He is in love with a girl who is going off to the big city and during the course of gameplay will receive letters from her and will be able to send her gifts.  Gift-giving is very much a part of the game as it is in any Harvest Moon game.  Every individual has different tastes in terms of the gifts they prefer.  You actually will raise your Level by giving a number of acceptable gifts to an individual.

At the start of the game, there apepar to be three Characters who can be befriended.  They are Lee, the Mayor, Jane the Florist and a 'Kid'.  An acceptable Gift is met with the response of: 'Thank you.  It would be helpful sometimes.'  The item that elicits this response from Lee is Mushroom.  The one that elicits this response from Jane is Long Bean.  So far, I have not found an acceptable Gift for the Kid.  He is not terribly keen on Long Bean, Corn, Mushroom or Small Fish.  I will continue to waste valuable items on him until I find one that he likes.

There are three seasons in the game as there are in Harvest Moon.  The first is Summer.  The last is Winter.  The second is simply called 'Rainy'.  I suppose it may equate to the Monsoon Season in Asia.  Crops are season-specific and if you do not harvest them befroe the season changes, they will wither.

You are given one field at the start of the game, a small Bag that holds a total of five Items, basic Tools (Axe, Hammer, Hoe, Watering Can, Sickle) and 10 Bags of Long Bean Seeds.  You must clear your field, create plots with your Hoe, plant and then water the seeds in order to begin your farming life.  The Watering Can must be filled before it will be effective.

You awaken at 6.00 a.m. and automatically go to bed before midnight.  The game will save when you go to bed.  As in Harvest Moon, you can run out of energy and if you do, you will lose a day in recovering from your exertions.  It is not worth the price.

Weather and moles can decimate your field overnight.  Still in the first Season, I do not have enough money to purchase a Dog to protect my field from the Moles, although I have purchased a Fishing Rod that allows me to fish from piers.  I unlocked an area by a lake that has good fishing as well as two Mushrooms that can be collected almost daily.  The Mountain area is another area that often has two Mushrooms to be collected.  There is a single Mushroom at the end of a path that is south of the Mining area.  I unlocked the Mine but have not been able to afford a Pickaxe yet.  Even without one, though, there are two Moles in the Mine that collect ores for you.  The longer you wait, the more Coins you will obtain from their efforts.

I was forced to email the developers in order to suss out the use of the Pickaxe once i had purchased it.  You do not use it INSIDE the Mine.  Inside the Mine, the two Moles collect unspecified treasures for you that are converted into Coins instantly when you tap on the Sell bar.  It is on the land in front of the Mine that the Pickaxe can be used.  Uncover every plot to see if you can find Ores.  I found Gold on the second day.

The Mushroom House is quite different from the Mushrooms found on the various paths in the wilds.  You will find the Mushroom House in the Village.  When unlocked, it is similar to the Mine in that you collect unspecified Mushrooms that are converted into Coins instantly once a time period elapses.  In the Mushroom House, unlike the Mine, you can choose a specific time period from 2 Hours to 8 Hours.  Tap on each Mushroom square on the wall when the time has elapsed to collect 100 Coins from each Square where a Mushroom has matured.

As your Levels increase, you will have upgrade Points that can be used either to improve your Stamina, reduce prices in the shops or increase the selling price of the Items you collect.  Some of the basic prices of items you can obtain are as follows:


Long Bean: 105 Baht
  Grow in Summer.  

Corn: 240 Baht
  Grow in Summer

Calabash: 380 Baht
  Grow in Summer

Carrot: 360 Baht (Received this as a Gift)
  Grow in Winter

Chili: 160 Baht (Received this as a Gift)

Eggplant: 270 Baht
  Grow in Rainy

Lettuce: 285 Baht
  Grow in Winter


Gold Stone: 151 Baht
  Rare item.  Where it is from is still mysterious


Mushroom: 75 Baht
  Found in the Forest in the Summer season

Shoot: 75 Baht
  Found in the forest in the rainy season


Old Boot: 5 Baht

Small Fish: 15 Baht
  Typical fish found everywhere

Large Fish: 50 Baht
  Typical fish found everywhere

Small Premium Fish: 150 Baht
  Rarely found.  Sell it with high price

Gift-giving to Friends is a good way of obtaining Crops and other Items, including Gems.  You must tap on the icon of the globe to connect to Facebook.  Once connected, you will have the option to send gifts to all your Friends who play the game.  Tap then on the icon of the basket to receive all Gifts that have been sent to you.  I have received many Crops that were out of season from Friends.

The premise of the game is rather like 'Save the Homeland' in that you have a year to pay off a debt primarily by earning a specific Fame total.  Fame is earned when you fill orders at the Cooperative and Factory.   You can fill only one order per season at the Factory but you can fill more at the Cooperative.  Once an order is filled, you must wait until the next day to accept a new Order from the Cooperative.


Fame is increased by filling orders at the Factory and the Cooperative.  Levels are increased as well when you do this.  Level increases occur when Relationships with Villagers advance.  Greet or give a preferred item to the Villagers often in order to increase Friendship with them.  When the Villager's Heart is filled, you will receive a Gift in return.


Villagers are very particular where Gifts are concerned and it takes a long time to fill a Heart Level.
 So far, I have been able to find only one item that is liked by each Villager apart from the Kid.

The preferred Gift for Lee is a Mushroom.  The preferred Gift for Jane is Long Bean.   The actual responses appear to be the same for Jane and Lee.  The Shrine and the Kid are different.

For an Item that is not liked particularly: 

Well... thanks.  Don't be bothered next time.

For a preferred Gift:

Thank you.  It would be helpful sometimes.

The responses I received from the Shrine and the Kid were:

Shrine for Mushroom:  Well... I think you have to learn more about respect.

Kid for Mushroom, Old Boot:  Err... thanks.