Hey, prospective farmers, we’re entering the final countdown, with just a couple weeks left ‘til the release ofStory of Seasons. Now, you were probably expecting this week’s Story of Seasons blogger to have been Nick or Ryan, but ‘tis I, Danielle, the in-house QA Tester for XSEED and fellow Bokujo fan! I’ve been working behind the proverbial curtain for a while now, but I figured I’d have to turnip to the party sooner or later.


My introduction to the series started with the Game Boy Advance game, “Har- I mean… Game We Can’t Mention by Name, but Rhymes with ‘Briends of Brineral Brown.’” Yeah. Now don’t get me wrong, the olderBokujo games will always have a special place in my heart, but it’s been great to see all the improvements the series has made since then. I know I was happy when character customization became a feature, and it looks like it’s here to stay, too! (I’m looking at you, Pokemon.) The 3×3 planting/harvesting system, which makes your basic chores go way faster, is a welcome addition too.

Although I’ve been a fan of the series for all this time, my introduction to the game industry was much more recent. It was very exciting for me to actually get to work on a Bokujo game behind the scenes. Before this project, I’d had no experience within the game industry to speak of, so this was quite the learning experience for me. As the office newbie, my work included various “gopher” tasks (as in “go fer this, go fer that”), but my main job from October to around December has been to work with Nick and Ryan on QA’ing Story of Seasons. And let me tell you, QA testing is a lot more extensive than I was expecting. Right off the bat, I was given a Google Doc comprised of the entire Story of Seasons script. All of it. All 35,849 lines.

Throughout the testing, any time I’d encounter a new line, I’d look it up on the Google Doc and mark it as pass or fail based on grammar, spelling, context, and/or whether or not there were any text overages.  Incidentally, with each line passed or failed, you’d have to sign off in the relevant spreadsheet cell with your name and date. Anytime someone asked me what day something happened, I knew. Although it did get to the point where my name stopped looking like a word.

Story of Seasons does a good job of taking the concepts of the previous installments and introducing, expanding or changing them in fun new ways. One of my favorite new features to the Bokujo series is the “Conquest” system, an all-out farming battle royale between Oak Tree Town’s farmers. (Joust with pitchforks to the death! THERE CAN ONLY BE ONE. Ok, no, not really.) Truthfully, Conquest required a lot more forethought and planning than I originally anticipated. For example, certain Conquest awards go to the farmer who ships the most goods on a certain day, so stockpiling goods to ship on that day, and taking the financial hit in the meantime, becomes a good long-term strategy. Finally, my tendency to hoard things is paying off!

The purpose of the Conquest system, besides giving you more fields to work with if you win, is to bring the village together in the spirit of friendly competition. Fritz and Elise, two of the four farmers you’ll find yourself competing against, are as different as night and day. Fritz is a former student from the city who found his way to Oak Tree Town the same way the main character did. He doesn’t exactly have it all together yet (who does though, honestly), nor does he have the most assets, but his determination more than makes up for that.


Elise, with all her riches and frills, doesn’t quite seem to fit in to the “hard-working, down-to-earth farmer” archetype. She also has the advantage of having her horde of maids doing all the dirty work of farming for her.  If only a true blue-collar farmer would show her the error of her ways through example! No, not you, Fritz, sit down.


We all have our favorite characters and events from the game, really. I like to think we all took a piece of the game with us, especially Nick. (Incidentally, you guys should ask him what his favorite color is.) As for me, I’ll keep on digging, watering, and looking forward to the next great harvest.


– Danielle