Since the Harvest Moon series first made its way onto the gaming scene in 1996, its extensive installments and gameplay variety have made it a force to be reckoned with.
Harvest Moon isn't the only farming simulator out there, however; there are numerous games with similar mechanics that offer a fresh take on the farming gig. We’ve picked out seven fantastic games similar to Harvest Moon that you won’t be able to keep your hands off.
I know you expected this one, but how could we create a farming simulator list without Stardew Valley? Upon its initial release in 2016, Stardew took the gaming world by storm, with both critics and gamers issuing overwhelming praise for the farming simulator. The world of Stardew Valley is expansive, and the story, combined with the interactions with NPCs, makes Stardew Valley one of the best games out there.
Build up your home and your farm the way you want to. Before you know it, you will have sunk hours into the game while still having more work to do. Stardew Valley is not just a must-have farming simulator but also a must-have game in general.
Stardew Valley is available to purchase from multiple platforms; you can buy the PC version here.
There are many installments to the Rune Factory franchise, and each title is a perfect homage to Harvest Moon that instills fantasy RPG elements. You don’t just farm or build relationships in Rune Factory -- you can explore dungeons and craft weapons or armor among other common RPG activities.
Farming simulators like Harvest Moon are great role-playing games to start with, and Rune Factory builds on this and mixes it up. If you love fantasy games and farming simulators, then Rune Factory is perfect for you.
Rune Factory 4 is available from Amazon for $29.99.
Shepherd’s Crossing 2 is an open-ended sandbox that gives you the opportunity to play the game the way you want to. There are aspects of the farming simulator that you can ignore entirely, giving you greater customization within your game. Shepherd’s Crossing 2 combines all the wonderful aspects that were perfected by Harvest Moon -- relationships and farming -- and then allows you to shape your world the way you want to.
Furthermore, Shepherd’s Crossing 2 is considered a much more difficult game to work through than Harvest Moon. So, if you're looking for a challenging farming simulator game, then Shepherd’s Crossing 2 is the right one for you.
Sheperd's Crossing 2 is incredibly hard to get hold of online, unless you want to pay over $200 for it. You can always check eBay and local stores for the game. If you like the sound of Sheperd's Crossing, then the first game is available on PS2 for $19.99 on eBay.
World’s Dawn is a beautifully designed game that introduces extensive farming simulator elements that go beyond the original Harvest Moon. World’s Dawn shares similar functions as those of Stardew Valley, with you being able to farm, hunt, and fish as well. There are over 30 NPCs to interact and build relationships with, so you will always be keeping busy with this one.
World’s Dawn builds upon the foundations set by Harvest Moon and tries to expand them into new territories. You’ll be able to achieve a truly fantastic experience when exploring all the features that World’s Dawn has to offer.
You can purchase World's Dawn through Steam.
Wild Season is incredibly similar to Harvest Moon and has a very similar aesthetic as well. The game has roots in the visual novel and RPG genres and promises to deliver on a fantastic story as well as being a great farming simulator. Considering that Wild Season focuses on the story element surrounding the simulator, building and maintaining relationships with townspeople is now more important than ever.
If you’re looking for a very similar gaming experience to Harvest Moon, then Wild Season is your ticket. It doesn’t venture as far out of the genre as the other games that have been mentioned, but it does breathe new life into the genre.
Wild Season is only avaliable through PC, and you can buy it here.
Everyone is aware of this adorable simulator full of cute animals running around and asking for your help. Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the perfect game to get into casually, especially with the release of the mobile version. You get to set up your house however you want it while being able to fish and collect various objects around the world. Animal Crossing is a perfect addition to your simulator games without being too taxing.
Animal Crossing is a calm game that follows the real passage of time and allows for a high level of customization throughout the game. Although this doesn’t have any farming aspects, there are still many activities to take part in and enjoy the community present in the world.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is available on Amazon from $28.
Farm for Your Life is an incredibly quirky take on the farming simulator genre as you still plant crops as you would with Harvest Moon, but you also must build up your defenses to stop zombie attacks. It is an intriguing combination of Plants Vs. Zombies and Harvest Moon with many funny and intriguing experiences to be had. Farm for Your Life adds in a survival element to the tried and tested formula perfected by Harvest Moon.
Farm for Your Life offers a variety of gameplay aspects, from tower defense to farming simulation and time management. Combining all these aspects, you create an incredibly fun game that becomes addictive faster than you would think.
Farm for Your Life is available through Steam.
These are our top farming simulators similar to Harvest Moon, but there are many more out there! Explore and enjoy the fantastic and diverse gaming genre that was bought to prominence by Harvest Moon.
What did you think of our list? Do you have any favorite farming sim games that we left out? Let us know in the comments below.