Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley for the Nintendo 3DS has recently received some new information through one of Natsume's developer diaries. The Harvest Moon series is known for bringing its characters closer to nature with the quirky and cute animals, plus a major focus on land cultivation. The Lost Valley's direction is to bring the formula back to the basics.
A major point in the series, animals, have gotten a neat renovation. Each animal, from the puffy sheep to the admittedly spunky-looking chickens, now has a personality. Referred to as their "skills," animal traits can be mixed and matched within various barns to personalize the way farmers lay out their farms. These traits make a large difference in the way the animals interact with each other and with the farmer, so it's best to keep the creatures happy by paying close attention to every individual traits.
Animals in The Lost Valley can favorite seasons and choose whether or not they prefer to be clean. Elegant animals love to be clean, and absolutely despise any mess. Maybe it's best to keep animals with this trait together in one barn, but what happens if they like different seasons? Traits can be bred on to offspring, then leveled up to optimize the perfect animals for a farm.
Of course, skills don't just happen. Well, a few of them do, but most are taught by feeding the animals. If I had the option to learn from eating, life would be good, but alas, that's reserved for Harvest Moon animals. After making various feeds, farmers can serve their pets and teach them any variety of traits that can be passed on. No word regarding a maximum or minimum number of skills has been given just yet.
The last batch of information from the developer diary comes in the form of a history of development. As Natsume began work on The Lost Valley, it was codenamed "Back to Basics," meaning just what it implies. The upcoming installment of Harvest Moon on the 3DS will feature four animal types -- cows, chickens, horses, and sheep.
Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley will be available for the Nintendo 3DS in the third quarter of 2014 for North America and European fans will have to wait until 2015. In the meantime, Natsume also provided a trailer to tide over the eager fanbase.