zConnection: Rune Factory: A Fantasy Harvest Moon Review

In the opening of Rune Factory, main protagonist Raguna is on his last legs, ready to collapse from exhaustion and starvation, when at his most critical moment he stops in front of young Mist's house. In his final breaths, he pleads with the sweet young girl to give him some food and water. Mist responds by giving Raguna a hoe and water bucket; either Mist is a firm believer of the old Chinese proverb, or she's some sort of sadist.

So begins the main premise of Rune Factory, an RPG-enhanced spin-off of the long running Harvest Moon series by developer Natsume. Adding a dungeon-crawling, monster battling mechanic to a slower-paced, farming and harvesting mechanic should make for a great combination, but this shaky marriage might end up dividing gamers who either prefer fast paced battles, or relaxing, stress-free agriculture.

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