Harvestella is only a few months away and Square Enix is finally starting to dish a little more on its social farming sim. While the core loop will focus as much on job-based combat and character relationships as anything else, raising fruit and vegetables will also play an important role. Thankfully, Square confirmed players will get to harvest some of the hornier produce out there.
There is no shortage of normie real-world plants to incorporate into a JRPG take on Stardew Valley. Apples, oranges, and grapes immediately come to mind. Cabbage, carrots, and potatoes as well. But developer Live Wire didn’t reveal any of those in Square Enix’s latest blog post about the game. Instead, it led with peaches and cucumbers:
“Spring crops include the Nemean Tomato, the Strawbuddy, and the... mouth-watering Cucumble and Wisty Peach,” the blog post reads. Uh-huh. Look, you can admit that the cucumber looks like a green eggplant, and that it and the peach are the de facto emoji for thirsting, or you can blame my imagination.
The dishes they can be turned into, on the other hand, do indeed look mouthwatering, including peach rose mousse and zucchini and mince sandwiches. These will be players’ rewards for carefully tending their crops, though Square stopped short of revealing how romance will work in the game and if you can woo NPCs with a five-star Nemea Bolognese.
Crops can be shipped to market raw or refined into more sophisticated goods. Players can also raise livestock, and of course it wouldn’t be a sim without fishing. The more you upgrade your fishing rod, the higher the chance of a rarer catch. The game also has dungeons players can fight through alongside NPCs. Recruiting them will open up access to their unique character class, while helping NPCs navigate the problems in their lives will strengthen your relationship and unlock new rewards.
But if Harvestella sounds too sweet and chill, don’t worry, it also has its apocalyptic moments. Taking a page out of Grapes of Wrath, every spring, summer, autumn, and winter is followed by a plague-ridden fifth season called the Quietus. “During this time, crops wither and die, and a deadly dust keeps people trapped indoors,” the blog reveals. “You’ll need to plan around the changing seasons and the grim inevitability of Quietus, as you attempt to solve the mysteries behind this season of death.”
Okay, I’m going to go stare out the window now and contemplate the rest of my fleeting life. Harvestalla comes to PC and Switch on November 4.