As you may have heard, Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns has a release date at last: February 28. We also have a brand new trailer–our first since E3! Over the next few weeks, we’ll be revealing more and more about the game’s North American version in a series of blogs and Facebook posts.
In this blog, I want to talk about animals. There isn’t much to report about livestock as the roster is mostly unchanged from the previous Story of Seasons game—the camel is no more and the “zebu” cow has been replaced with a buffalo—but Trio of Towns contains some interesting new features with pets and wild animals.
The previous Story of Seasons title had just a few kinds of dog and cat in several different colors. Trio of Towns has over two dozen types of cats and dogs. As in previous games, pets have abilities like herding livestock and finding items, and different pets will be adept at different things. Naturally, the way you physically interact with a pet will depend on its size, and different characters will react to the pets that you show them in their own unique ways. For example, here’s Lulukoko’s “jack of all trades” and Story of Seasons localization staff waifu Ludus being adorable:
Here’s a full list of cat and dog breeds in Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns.
Jack Russell (Terrier)
And, of course, we can’t forget about our game’s mascot, the adorable capybara (aka Capy or Capy-san in our office). I asked longtime Story of Seasons fan Danielle, an animal-lover, to get a screenshot of a plump capybara (walk your pets, guys) and she replied, “I don’t want to abuse an animal.”
With a pet, you’ll also unlock the game’s StreetPass function. Register your pet with Dessie, and it’ll visit the games of players you StreetPass with. Your pet will bring back items from their worlds, and it might even show up in their game. Other pets can show up in your game too, and talking to them reveals some information about the farmers who’ve raised them.
Once you meet Tsuyukusa’s guardian Inari, the foxy deity can form a bond between you and a favorite pet, designating it as your “furmiliar.” This will give it an adorable bow and will trigger special cutscenes. The word “furmiliar,” which is translated from “sourumeito (soulmate),” was Danielle’s handiwork, and makes me groan-smile every time I read it.
Protip: If you’re feeling spoiled for choice and can’t decide on a pet to raise, check out the inside of the game box’s cover sheet for a cute quiz.
Walking around the three towns, you’ll notice several dozen animals wandering around. These range from stray cats and dogs to wild animals like a bear (Westown), foxes (Tsuyukusa), and monkeys (Lulukoko). As in previous games in the series, the bear will charge you, but thankfully he can’t do any actual “damage” to you.
If you fulfill certain conditions, you will get special cutscenes featuring these animals. Befriend them with gifts and they might leave presents for you. And if you have a designated furmiliar, things can get a little weirder. I don’t want to give away too much, but I will say that many of the wild animals have hilarious personalities.
Finally, A Dearly Departed Hamster
One question I keep seeing on forums, Facebook posts, and Twitter is, “Will Hamtaro be in the game?” For those of you who hadn’t heard, the cute hamster character is featured as a pet in the Japanese version ofStory of Seasons: Trio of Towns, complete with a little voice clip.
Sadly, Hamtaro will not be in the North American release of the game. I can’t get into the specifics of why—the reason is more complicated than the usual licensing fee problems you might expect—but I will say that you’ll be hard-pressed to find new, official Hamtaro merchandise on sale in this part of the world. While many remember the character from his TV debut over a decade ago, Hamtaro doesn’t really have an official presence in North America anymore.
It goes without saying that we were gutted by this development and tried to keep Hamtaro in. We hate releasing a game that doesn’t have all the features of the original version, but in this case our hands were tied. For those of you who were looking forward to raising Hamtaro, I’m very sorry. But even without the little guy, there are still more varieties of pet to raise than ever before. We hope you enjoy all the different ways animals play a part in the world of Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns.