Thursday, October 30, 2008

Heart Events in 1st Generation of Rune Factory 2

In Part I of Rune Factory 2, otherwise known as the '1st Generation Game', your character's primary goal is marriage and procreation. Most 'Events' in this phase of the game occur in the course of a 'Request' made on the Bulletin Board. 'Heart Events' are no exception.

There are a number of events that require you simply to meet a girl at a specific location. In the case of Mana, you need to meet her at the Pier. In the case of Cecilia, you meet at the Crossroads to watch a shooting star event together. Sometimes, it is the reward itself that makes the Request romantic, as when Yue gives your character a 'kiss on the cheek' after you bring her the fish she required from you.

In the 1st Generation game, you become familiar with the characters in the village, their birthdays, their likes and dislikes and obtain all the necessary tools for a successful life.

A Game that requires a minimum of 60 hours to play

For players who grumble that games are not worth the money spent on them because they can be completed in too short a time period, I would recommend almost any Harvest Moon game, but especially Rune Factory 2. 60 hours is the minimum amount of time needed in 'real life' to complete the game. When one speaks of 'completing' any Harvest Moon game, it usually has nothing whatsoever to do with the 'END' of the game, but rather the situation where the plot has been completed and the player has achieved all basic goals. Harvest Moon games tend to last 255 years...

Rune Factory 2 contains more than 940,000 words, making it incredibly rich in dialogue. This allows greater character development and makes Rune Factory 2 a true example of an 'interactive novel'.

Tree of Tranquility is a game that spans more than one generation but the actual form of the game is the same in most basic aspects in both generations. You marry and have a child in the first game, but then have the option to replay the entire game as your child in the second.

Rune Factory 2 is another 'next generation' game but completely different from ToT. In Rune Factory 2, your first character is able to unlock only a limited number of new options. His essential role in the game is to marry and have a child. The initial character is male, but you can choose the gender of your child. It is the child who actually is able to unlock the major plot points contained in Rune Factory 2 and the child who will be able to fully explore all dungeons, defeat 'bosses' and perform the advanced skills such as Cooking, Forging and making Accessories.

The first generation game requires about 20 hours to complete if you are determined to marry at the earliest opportunity. The second generation game requires another forty hours... if not more...

Briefly, I was puzzled and frustrated when the gates in the dungeons would not open, no matter how many generators I destroyed, how many monsters I defeated or how many rune points I had in the dungeon plots. With a barn filled with monsters at maximum 10 hearts, a field fully tilled and planted and having shipped almost every item available to me, I wondered why I was given no new options in terms of expanding any aspect of the game. The Requests brought me money, items and an increase in Love and Friendship Points but unlocked no new areas and allowed me no significant progress in any way.

It was a relief to discover that I had done all that could be done in this generation apart from marrying and having a child. In all other Harvest Moon games, I take my time, raising every eligible girl or bachelor to the maximum 10 hearts before I marry anyone. I am not certain that I should take THAT much time in this initial game, as Rune Factory 2 is due to be released in a couple of weeks, and I would like to have a fairly decent preliminary guide in place when players gain access to it. I therefore will concentrate now on having a child who then can experience the 2nd half of the game.

I played only one game similar to this in the past. There was a wonderful game called 'Phantasy Star III' that spanned generations. You could choose a spouse and your character then would be the child of that union. In a 'third generation' option, you then would choose a spouse again and play the final portion of the game as the child of THAT union. It therefore contained a multitude of different futures and characters in a single game. I did not play the original console version. Instead, I found a copy of the GBA trilogy, containing all three Phantasy Star games in a single cartridge. It represented incredible value for the price.

I see now that a new version of Phantasy Star is being produced. I will be interested in playing it but hope that they will release a new version for the DS as that is my favourite platform.

In any event, players of the old Phantasy Star games should be very interested in Rune Factory 2 as it represents a detailed and complex universe where your own interaction can take place in two different generations and two different games.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Stern Warning about Tree of Tranquility

Although it is frustrating to be prohibited from publishing an internet guide myself for 'Tree of Tranquility' as I wrote the Official Strategy Guide for BradyGames, it is not right for players to copy information from my guide to send to IGN or other internet sites for publication!

Is it too much to ask in view of all the free internet guides I have written and posted that players refrain from plagiarising the one printed guide I wrote?

I obviously believe in giving as much access to information as possible to players but it is rather shameful when some one copies the guide verbatim and then sends it out for publication under their own name.

Well, I am not going to belabour the point...

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Requests and Fodder in Rune Factory 2

The Requests posted on the bulletin board can result in rewards that vary from tools and other items indepensable to your character to small amounts of money and sometimes nothing more than a simple 'thanks' from the originator of the Quest. You do need to fulfill all Requests, I expect, in order to be able to move on to new ones. Characters tend to give the same kind of reward as well. A Character who gives seeds as a reward will continue to give seeds. A Character who gives tools that help with Monster Care will continue to give items that relate to Monsters (hint, hint!). I rather suspect that there are some time requirements for quest appearances as even after completing every quest on the board, it was a day or two before a substantial number of new requests appeared. In fact, I had a barn filled with monsters, the Milker and the Shears for a few days before the Request that resulted in the Brush appeared on the board.

Again, patience is required sometimes in every Harvest Moon game. The heart levels of my monsters did not increase much until I had the Brush but it was not a real hardship to be obliged to wait a couple of days.

One suggestion I would make to any player who begins to collect monsters is to grow as much grass as possible in your field in order to be able to feed them without going bankrupt. The cost of fodder is prohibitive to a beginning farmer. A plot of grass grown in your field can produce 36 portions of fodder, not to mention 1 Rune Point. Grass will continue to grow after it is cut as long as you water it.

One bag of Grass Seed costs 300G. One portion of Fodder or Feed costs 400G. In the initial season of the game, if you have as few as four monsters and no ripe grass for fodder, you will be forced to spend 1200G per day on Feed. If you have your barn filled with monsters, 16 monsters will require 16 fodder per day, making the cost 6400G per day if purchased. By investing in Grass Seeds, you save a significant amount of money as well as creating another source for Rune Points. If you stagger the planting or reaping a little, you can make certain that one or two plots of grass always are ripe each day, giving you constant access to 1 or 2 Rune Points from grass alone. (Reaping ALL your grass on the same day in the early stages of the game will give you more Rune Points than you will be able to use effectively. It is better to stagger the harvests.)

Another aspect of farming needs to be mentioned. If you keep fully-ripened crops in any field (whether it is your own field or a dungeon), you must continue to water them regularly. Otherwise, they will begin to die. By losing the crop in even a single square in a 3 x 3 plot, you lose any chance of having that plot produce Rune Points. In other words, if you neglect any plot and even one plant dies, you might as well harvest the remaining crops in that plot and plant a new Crop.

A new aspect of the game is Music. The Music component in RF2 reminds me a little of the flute and the ability to use it to train your Dog to perform various moves in 'Save the Homeland'. Music in Rune Factory 2 is used, inter alia, to interact with tamed monster companions in battle. Your first musical 'ability' is a 'Special Concerto', described as 'A sprightly tune. Allied monsters will flash yellow and perform their best move if successful.' As each type of monster has unique abilities, the 'Special Concerto' will have different effects depending on the identity of the Monster who accompanies your character.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Strategies for Using Runes in Rune Factory 1 and 2

Expert players will be aware of the dual use for Crops in both Rune Factory 1 and 2, but beginners may not be familiar with the system and may not understand how it works. Runes are tiny orbs of brilliant light that can be found on a plot with 9 fully ripened Crops/Flowers. In both Rune Factory games, your character's energy levels are determined by two factors: HP (Health Points) and RP (Rune Points). When your character's RP bar reaches zero, any use of tools will begin to consume HP. This is the most simplistic explanation and in fact, there are other uses for Rune Points, such as the casting of Spells. At the start of the game, however, it is mainly in order to preserve your HP that you need to keep your RP at maximum.

Only an entire 3 x 3 plot filled with fully-ripened crops will produce 1 Rune Point daily. If you harvest ANY of the crops/flowers in that plot, a Rune Point no longer will appear. What this means in effect is that you need to have a strategy with respect to the crops that you grow throughout the map.

A Crop grown in any of the dungeons/caves may be more useful sometimes as a source of Rune Points than for the product it produces. Keep the 3 x 3 plot of crops intact and it will continue to produce 1 Rune Point daily. This can be very useful when your energy is depleted while fighting monsters and smashing rocks for treasure.
Don't forget to continue to water the crops that are fully ripened in any field if you choose not to harvest them.

Crops in Rune Factory, as in any Harvest Moon game, ripen at different rates and have different values. A crop with a high shipping value should be grown for shipment. One with a very low shipping value can be grown for Rune Point production instead.

For example, in Spring in Rune Factory 2, you can grow Pink Turnips. (Regular turnips, I believe, are the equivalent in Rune Factory 1.) They grow very quickly and have a fairly low shipping value compared to some of the other Spring Crops. Although you may be in need of money in the first Spring, you still should keep some 3 x 3 plots filled with fully ripened Turnips or Pink Turnips in order to have access to Rune Points on a daily basis.

There is a question of timing as well when considering when to harvest a crop. If you wish to harvest the crop and ship it, you still should wait until the Rune Point it has produced can be used effectively and not harvest it at 6.00 a.m. when both energy bars are filled. In Rune Factory 2, for example, shipments are collected by Mana at 3.00 p.m. It would be a waste of a good Rune Point to harvest a 3 x 3 square of fully ripened crops of any kind at 6.00 a.m. Better to use some energy either in chores or fighting monsters, then replenish the energy with the Rune Point before you finally harvest the Crop prior to 3.00 p.m.

Remember that you need to have fully-ripened Crops or Flowers in all 9 squares of any 3 x 3 plot in order to produce 1 Rune Point. If one square ripens more slowly or if you harvest one or two of the plants, no Rune Points will appear. It therefore requires an 'all or nothing' strategy where harvesting is concerned.

There is one further consideration or potential complication in both games. If you wish to keep fully-ripened Crops/Flowers in your field on the farm, you cannot set any Monsters the task of harvesting your Crops!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Strange Problem with Cursed Tools in HM DS

A player emailed me with this problem: With a cursed tool equipped in the Tool, the player had the required amount of money and rang the Church for service. Carter told the player that he doesn't have the cursed item with him. (I am using 'him' because the character is a boy in HM DS.) The tool is equipped: in fact, the character is unable to remove it now because it IS a Cursed Tool.

This is not the first time I have heard of this, but I cannot recall any solution. Does any one have any helpful information about this?

1st Romantic Festival in Rune Factory 2

The first Romantic Festival that you will experience in Rune Factory 2 is the Flower Festival of Spring. It occurs on 13 Spring on the Holiday. You have the opportunity to ask any eligible girl to go 'flower-gazing' with you at Cherry Blossom Square.

You do not need to have any particular heart level with the girl in order to have your invitation accepted by her. All invitations will be accepted. In fact, a nice aspect of the interaction that leads to the invitation is the ability to avoid the invitation. In each case, you will be given two options:
1. to invite the girl to view the cherry blossoms with you;
2. to simply make a remark about the beauty of cherry blossoms in Spring.

If you avoid the issue, you will be able to invite the girl later if you wish. This gives you a chance to think about it. Of course, you can experience the event with each girl without saving the result as I do.

The invitations can be made as soon as you meet the girl in the morning of the Festival. After your invitation is accepted, simply walk to the middle of Cherry Blossom Square. The event will be initiated. It takes virtually no time, unlike many of the Festivals in Harvest Moon. Afterwards, you can continue your day as usual, although the only business that appears to be open is the Clinic. Other buildings are unlocked but empty as every one tends to go outside to enjoy the sunshine and the beauty of the ever-falling exquisite blossoms.

Here are a few of the events. Note that any dialogue in parentheses is intended to reflect thought rather than speech in this game. I have included these interchanges so that players can have some idea of the personalities of the different eligible girls in Rune Factory 2.

As with respect to Mist in the original Rune Factory, the 'natural' choice for partner in the sequel is Mana, the girl who made it possible for you to start a new life. This is apparent if you choose to invite Mana to the 'flower-gazing' event.



Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)
Mana: Sorry, Frey. Were you waiting long?
Me: No, I just got here myself.
Mana: That’s good.

We walk together beneath the arch.

Mana: It’s pretty, isn’t it?
Me: Yes, it is.
Mana: This is the place where we first met.
Me: Yeah, it is.
Mana: Just think, if I hadn’t happened to come by at that very time…
Me: If I hadn’t wandered to this very town…
Mana: We never would have met.
Me: Yeah.
Mana: (I’m glad I came here that day.)
Me: Did you say something?
Mana: No, it’s nothing. Thanks for coming to look at the flowers with me today. See you around.
Me: Yeah, I had fun.


Note: You can see that Alicia definitely has 'set her cap' or rather her pointed witch hat' for you! She makes no secret of her romantic interest. If only she hadn't tried to cheat me out of 200G in her Request Event!

Me: Would you like to go flower-gazing with me?
Alicia: My reading was right after all. Yes, I would. Cherry Blossom Square is the best place to go for flowers.

At Cherry Blossom Square:

Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)

Alicia arrives.

Alicia: Sorry, Frey. Were you waiting long? According to my fortune, you should have just gotten here.
Me: You’re right. I haven’t been here long.
Alicia: I knew it! I’m a natural fortuneteller.

We walk together beneath the arch.

Alicia: The cherry blossoms are pretty, aren’t they?
Me: Yeah, they are.
Alicia: My fortune says that couples who go on a date here have a high chance of getting married.
Me: Really?
Alicia: It’s true! And my fortunes are never wrong!
Me (with tear): (I wonder if that’s true…)
Alicia: Thanks for inviting me out here today. I had a fun time.
Me: Me too.



Julia is on the docks with Max near the ship.
Julia: I want to go see! Do you like flowers too, Freyr?
Me: Hm? Well, yes, I guess so.
Julia: Well, the Flower Festival’s really just a reason to hava a big party, but…
Me: Ahh, that sounds fun. By the way, Julia…

My choices now:
Want to go see the flowers with me?
Aren’t the blossoms pretty?

Me: Want to go see the flowers with me?

Julia: Oh, you’re inviting me? That sounds great! Okay, so let’s meet at Cherry Blossom Square.

Your character should go now to Cherry Blossom Square.

Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)

Julia arrives.

Julia: Sorry, Frey. Were you waiting long?
Me: No, I just got here myself.

Julia: That’s good. Let’s go under the cherry tree.
Me: All right.

We go together beneath the arch where I first met Mana.

Julia (with music) It’s pretty!
Me: Yes, it’s very pretty.
Julia: The cherry tree is always in full bloom this time of year.
Me: This tree is my first memory of this town. I couldn’t take my eyes off of it.
Julia: Really? I guess it stands out, doesn’t it?
Me: Yeah, it does.
Julia: Well, I should be getting home. See you later!
Me: All right. This was fun.



Me: I thought maybe you and me could go together.
Cecilia: Really?! That’d be great! Let’s meet up at Cherry Blossom Square, then.
Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)
Cecilia arrives.
Ceci: Sorry, Freyr. Were you waiting long?
No, I just got here myself.
Ceci: That’s good. Let’s go look at the flowers.
We walk together beneath the arch.
Ceci: The cherry blossoms are pretty, aren’t they? I love looking at them like this.
Me: I like this too.
Ceci: You mean… being here… with me?
Me: Oh, well, I was talking about the flowers.
Ceci: (with tear) Yes… Of course.
Me: N-No, don’t get me wrong. I like you too, Cecilia. Obviously.
Ceci: Really? Thanks.
Me: Yeah.
Ceci: Thanks for inviting me out here today. It was a lot of fun.
Me: I had fun, too. See you around.


Note: Sometimes I could kick my character in the head for being so maladroit! At least he did manage to say SOMETHING to mend the poor girl's feelings.


Rosalind: The way the wind whips the cherry blossoms from the trees and sends the petals dancing through the air… It’s like a warm, fragrant snowstorm.
And I think the cherry blossoms are even more beautiful this year than they were last year.
Me: Hey, Rosalind…
Rosalind: Yes?
Want to go see the flowers with me?
Ever wonder how the flowers taste?
Ah, are you inviting me? Well, I have no reason to say no. I humbly accept your invitation. So, how about we meet at Cherry Blossom Square?

At the square:

Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)
Rosalind: Sorry, Freyr. Were you waiting long?
Me: Hello, Rosalind. I just arrived here myself. Shall we go look at the flowers?
Rosalind: yes, let’s do.
IN the garden:
Me: It’s beautiful. It’s so picturesque. When I heard that this town had a custom of looking at flowers… It’s not that I didn’t believe it, exactly, but I just didn’t understand what it was about. But now, standing under this tree, I think I understand now.
Rosalind: Ha ha ha!
Me: I couldn’t count how many times I must walk right past this very spot. And I’m sure that I see this tree every time. But only on the day of the Festival do I really see its beauty.
Rosalind: I wonder why that is?
Freyr: It’s because I’m with you.
Rosalind: Oh, Freyr.
Me: …
Rosalind: … Freyr?
Me: Yes?
Rosalind: I don’t think I’ll ever foreget being with you here today, Freyr.
Me: Me neither.
Rosalind: Ha ha ha!
Me: Well, we’d better get going.
Rosalind: All right. Freyr, you’ll ask me out again, won’t you?
Me: Of course!
Rosalind: Ha ha ha. Thank you. I’m going home now. Take care.



Dorothy and Barrett stand together near the entrance to Trieste Forest.
Dorothy: G-Good… morning, Freyr. Today… we’re going to see all the flowers blooming… at the Flower Festival. I … I like flowers…
Me: Dorothy…
Want to go look at the flowers with me?
Do you like cherry blossoms too?
Me: Dorothy, would you care to go and look at the flowers with me?
Dorothy: Ah… that’s … that’s very sudden… What sh-should I say… Ah, well… yes… I would… Well, I think… the flowers in Cherry Blossom Square are meant to be … very beautiful. So… let’s meet up in Cherry Blossom Square, shall we…?
At the Square:
Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)
Dorothy: Sorry, Freyr. Did I make you wait long?
Me: No, I just got here myself.
Dorothy: O-Oh, really? That’s, um, good… Uh, do you want to go, you know, over to the cherry tree?
Me: Sure.
She follows me through the archway.
Dorothy: It’s so pretty…
Me: Yes, it is, isn’t it?
Dorothy: I love flowers… The, um, cherry blossoms, too…
Me: They really are breathtaking. Seeing them for the first time had a tremendous impact on me.
Dorothy: Yes, they, um, seem more… special than other flowers.
Me: I know what you mean.
Dorothy: There’s something about just looking at flowers that makes me feel so… peaceful… Well, I should be getting home…
Me; All right.
Dorothy: Thanks for inviting me out here… Goodbye, Freyr…
Me: See you later.


Yue is by the pool above Cherry Blossom Square today.

Yue: Good morning! Today’s the Flower Festival. I like looking at the flowers when they are this pretty. What am I thinking? I don’t have time for this! I ashould be out selling food for the festival!
Ha ha ha. You never quit, do you? By the way, Yue…

Your options now:
Will you go flower watching with me?
What else do you sell for the festival?

If you choose the latter:

Yue; Well, I’ve got plenty of party favours for sale too! Why, do you want to buy any?

(But she won’t sell anything! A menu will not open, no matter how many times you speak to her.)

I ultimately asked:

Me: Yue, would you like to go look at the flowers with me?
Yue: You’re asking me? Yeah, that sounds nice. Let’s go! I think the cherry tree at the Cherry Blossom Square is the prettiest to look at. Why don’t we meet over at the Cherry Blossom Square?

At the Square:

Me: (We’re supposed to meet here.)
Yue: Sorry, Freyr. Were you waiting long?
Me. No, I just got here myself.
Yue: Good. All right, let’s go over to the cherry tree.
Me: All right.

We walk through the arch.

Yue: (with music) It’s pretty!
Me: it is, isn’t it?
Yue: Don’t you think the cherry blossoms have a special charm to them? They’re just not like any other flower.
Me: Yeah, I feel the same way. The first time I saw them, they took my breath away.
Yue: it’s almost like a painting.
Me: Yeah, it is.
Yue: Well, I’d better be getting back. Thanks for inviting me here, Freyr.
Me: Thanks for coming, Yue. I had fun.
Yue: See you!


The tryst with Rosalind is the most romantic perhaps. For once, your character actually becomes quite articulate with a woman! Instead of monosyllabic responses, he actually speaks rather eloquently of his appreciation of the beauty of the tree.

When he takes Dorothy to the Festival, it is she who becomes rather articulate, losing some of her shyness in the presence of the beauty of the Cherry Trees.

I am rather drawn to Yue personally, as I think she is gorgeous, and I love the way she dresses. Her personality is sweet. Although I love Alicia's fashion sense, and find her very amusing, her emphasis on money is a little distressing. I rather like the 'wanderers' in these games. Yue is a wanderer... One would like to give her a home. On the other hand, there is Mana...

If you experience the Flower Festival with Julia, you may notice that your character speaks nostalgically of his first meeting with Mana. I believe that he is predisposed to fall in love with Mana, despite the way he behaves in Rosalind's presence. It makes sense, after all, that the woman who is responsible for his new life would be the one he should marry. I probably will marry ALL the girls at some point, but the natural choice would be Mana.

Almost every one will make reference to the Festival when you speak to him or her on the day. Among the interchanges, the most amusing may the conversations with Jake, Cammy and Tanya.

Jake: Don’t you ever give it a rest?
The Flower Festival is today. What’s the point of that, anyway? Can’t you look at flowers any day? I don’t undersand you humans.
Me: I think it’s because we like to do things together.
Jake: Isn’t it just an excuse for you all to get drunk in the afternoon?
Me: No, I don’t think that’s quite it… Ha ha ha.

Cammy: Oh, good morning. Hey, did you know? Today is the Flower Festival. I just want to climb up into one of those blossoming trees!
Me: Cammy, I think you’d rather climb trees than look at the flowers!
Cammy *giggles* Can you tell?

Cammy *giggles* Can you tell?

Tanya (at the docks): Hey, have you seen a big, sharp sword anywhere around here? I wonder where I left it…

Despite having spent the Festival with every eligible girl, I am not certain what the effect is in terms of Love Points. Simply by SPEAKING to all the girls about the Festival, I gained a Love Point with Dorothy and one with Yue. I did not have to invite either girl in order to gain the point. On the other hand, I gained nothing with some of the girls, even after speaking to them about the Festival a couple of times. If inviting a girl has any Point value, it is not a full point.

Two-timing is not encouraged for the most part. When I tried to ask Ceci to the Festival AFTER viewing the blossoms with another girl, she angrily responded (with cross hurt): 'What do you mean you havent' made any plans? You've already been with somebody else, haven't you?'

I would suspect that in Rune Factory 2 as in the original, the actions that raise heart levels will differ from girl to girl.

'Most Favs' for Characters in Rune Factory 2

As with the original Rune Factory, you do not have to raise heart levels much in order to be told what a character likes to receive as a gift. Even in the first week of Spring, characters were confiding their likes and even their dislikes:

Yue will give you a bag of Daikon Seeds when you complete her quest for Honey. In case you do not get the point, she will continue to tell you afterwards:

Yue: I couldn’t ever turn down a good DAIKON RADISH. I don’t care how many I’ve eaten.

With the sly humour I am beginning to expect from RF2, Tanya will refer to her love of edged blades obliquely when she confesses one of her favourite foods:

Tanya: I like any fruit, but my favourite is APPLE. I like both eating APPLE and peeling it.

Barrett: I like fish… SALMON, for example. That’s all you need to know.

Herman: (with music) I can never have enough TOMATO JUICE after breakfast. Whenver I get my hands on some TOMATO JUICE, I can’t hold back.

Gordon: I really like a good PUMPKIN. But I always eat too much of it! Ba ha hah ha!

Ceci: Do you know what my favourite thing in the world is? It's DIAMONDS. And RUBIES. Oh yeah, and EMERALDS. Oh yeah, I can’t forget SAPPHIRES. Plus AMETHYST. I like that, too.

Alicia shares Ceci's love of diamonds.

Alicia: I really like a nice DIAMOND. What do you like, Frey?

Max appears to focus on war trophies. He has given me 'tips' on three different war trophies that he likes, calling it 'background knowledge' each time.

Max: For some reason, I’ve beens strangely captivated by PROOF OF WARRIOR since I was young. Well, just a little background knowledge you should remember.

Max: FLUFFY SCARF is so enchanting the way it’s so fluffy. I just love this. Well, just a little background knowledge you should remember.

As a total non sequitor, he made a comment one day to the effect that:

Max: I don’t like PLATINUM at all.

Byron: I must admit, I do love a good EGGPLANT. I just can’t stop eating them.

Egan: I really like WHITE CABBAGES. They’re very healthy.

Ray: I like PINK MELON.

Douglas: I like SKIPJACK, kid. Don’t forget that, now.

Natalie: My favourite things are PUMPKIN PUDDING and TOMATO. Do you like them, Frey?

True to form, you have to pry information loose from Dorothy, who is almost pathologically shy. (One is reminded a little of Candace in ToT.)

Dorothy: Is something wrong?
Me: Oh, no, but… What’s your favourite thing to eat, Dorothy?
Dorothy: Oh, um… I like… I like fish… and, um… I really like… CHAR.

Incidentally, for the record, I absolutely LOVE this game. I have to stress, however, that I was not tired of playing Island of Happiness and fully intend to return to it when time permits. Everything about Rune Factory 2 embodies my own fantasies in terms of the landscapes, the graphics, the beauty in the depiction of the characters... and as some one who loves fencing in real life, how could I not respond to a game that allows me to farm AND wield a blade in combat?

The spiritual premise both of Rune Factory and Rune Factory 2 that allows you to use a weapon to TAME a creature rather than killing it makes it superior to other 'combat' games. It is true to the essential philosophy of Harvest Moon which insists that one must live in harmony with the land and all living creatures if possible.

Note: With respect to the text in screenshots, I'm afraid I can't do much better. It does not translate well in this build, as it is not a 'bold' font. It is perfectly legible on the DS but not as easy to read here. As I have added the actual text to my post in every case, it shouldn't matter.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Light-Hearted Charm of Rune Factory 2

I loved the original Rune Factory game, and in fact, in many respects it represented the ultimate fantasy fulfillment for me, combining as it did swordplay and role-playing adventure with Harvest Moon activities. I was not certain how similar Rune Factory 2 would be when I began to play it.

In fact, the characters and landscapes are as exquisite and romantic as the first game in the series but the creators appear to have approached this game with a more light-hearted attitude. Apart from the sometimes sly references to Kardia and the first game, there generally appears to be more playfulness in the dialogue and interactions between characters.

A new twist is the manner in which one obtains tools and necessary items. In a way, it reminds me of 'Animal Crossing'. One consults the village bulletin board, where 'requests' or quests are posted. Choose a request and complete the task to earn a variety of rewards, from money to tools to other useful items such as Empty Bottles for Potions. It is a chance, obviously, to learn the map and the schedules of the characters in the game, a very clever 'tutorial' as it were, combined with the fun of a treasure hunt.

In fact, you can obtain a Fishing Rod, a Hammer, an Empty Bottle and 4000G in a matter of hours or less in the second day of the game. If you are determined, you can acquire even more money and items.

As always, the Fishing Rod is a lifeline at the start of the game, allowing you to make enough money to purchase your first sword almost immediately. A reward of 4000G for delivering a portion of spinach to some one is not unwelcome and will allow you to purchase defence items such as a shield and bracelet as well as some crop seeds.

On the first day, when I saw the prices of items in the shops, my heart quailed but by the second day, I had accomplished a great deal and felt that the world was my oyster. That does not mean that the game is easy by any means. It simply means that one can begin to embark upon the real adventures fairly early...

Predictions in Rune Factory 2

A fascinating option in Rune Factory 2 is the ability to pay for a change in the weather. It is not a guaranteed success when one pays, but the possibility is there. When you speak to Alicia and ask her to use her fortune-telling abilities, you have the following options:

Weather reading.

Tomorrow’s weather.
I want it to be sunny tomorrow.
I want it to rain tomorrow.
Oh, never mind.

If you ask for a specific result, like rain, she will say:
Alicia: That will be quite difficult. But, for 1000G, I’ll give it a try!

If you ask for tomorrow’s weather, she will give it, THEN exact the price of 10G.

In other words, if money it tight in the first couple of days, you may wish to opt out of a weather prediction until you have purchased other real necessities. Even so, it is a very cool option indeed, especially after IoH, where the weather was set 6 days in advance...

I rather suspect this is Harvest Moon's answer to all the players like myself who reloaded their games again and again in other HM games (apart from IoH) in order to control the weather! For a mere 1000G, you can do it in an honest way.

Feline Titles outside of Harvest Moon

As this is my own website, I can take as many liberties as I like with the subject matter. I promise I will not do it often, but for any one who is interested in the kittens, here is the latest update.

As of today, the kittens' titles are:

Ashleigh Attila, Prince of Purrsia, aka 'Ashkins', 'Baby Bear' or 'Little Bear'
(The spelling of Ashley was changed so there would be no doubt as to his gender, even though the traditional gender of the name 'Ashley' was male, as is evidenced in 'Gone with the Wind'.)

Princess Fiamma Marmee Marigold, aka 'Beauty' or 'Little Marm'

Lots of alliteration in the classical Anglo-Saxon fashion and an over-abundance of names, to follow a family traditions.

Thanks again to all the players who participated in this ongoing process. As the ancients understood quite well, a name does hold power. Words in fact have power. Some even believe that it was a Word that shaped our world 'in the beginning'. ('In the beginning was the Word...'

Walkthrough for IoH and Guides in General

Instead of creating a new post, I have edited the existing post that provides a Walkthrough for the 1st three seasons of the 1st Year in Island of Happiness. The Walkthrough is included now at the end of my General Guide as well. In the Summer and Autumn seasons, I no longer provide a daily walkthrough as most of the activities a player needs to perform each day are no different from those given in the Walkthrough for Spring.

I now have begun to work on Rune Factory 2, although I am far from finished with IoH. As this is the only place in the world where I can moan about my frustrations in writing guides, I am going to be selfish for a moment and MOAN a little.

Whenever I begin a new game, I feel like a schizophrenic. There is a part of me who wishes to PLAY the game freely, without responsibility or delay. The other part of me feels compelled to write down every Event and every action taken in my game journal in preparation for the guide... It is the latter that ALWAYS is victorious in this little internal personality war. I therefore am moving EXCEEDINGLY slowly through Rune Factory 2, as I transcribe the text of every Introduction Event and every list of items offered at every shop or business.

I want to scream: 'Let me play this game!' 'Let me ENJOY it a little!'

I couldn't enjoy it properly though, if I neglected to write down the information that will be needed for the guide. I would be nagged by a little voice that would continue to tell me that I was not doing my self-appointed job...

Well, there's the MOAN out of the way. Now I will return to the labour at hand, which is to write down the list of items offered by another shop...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

First Look at Rune Factory 2

The original Rune Factory was an exceptionally beautiful game and I loved the combination of classical RPG combat and adventure with traditional Harvest Moon gameplay.

Rune Factory 2 is no less exquisite in its graphics. It is an intensely romantic vision of life in visual terms. As you enter the village for the first time, you are surrounded by a shower of pink cherry blossoms.

For all of its beauty, Rune Factory 2 has as much sly humour and wit as any other Harvest Moon game.

Here are some initial screenshots. I need to change settings on my camera somehow as the settings that worked for Island of Happiness are not producing the same quality of screenshot here.

In meeting some of the characters for the first time, I was delighted to discover that the blacksmith is a woman who has a fine understanding of the power and beauty of edged weapons. In fact, she waxes poetical about swords as her poor son practically begs her to cook dinner and be an ordinary Mum! Tanya is a woman after my own heart...

Here is the Introduction Event with Tanya and her son Roy:

Tanya: Look at this sword, Roy! Isn’t it beautiful?! Check out that edge! And the hilt is incredible!
Roy: Yeah, it’s… uh… great. Swords are nice and all, Mom, but can you make me some dinner?
Tanya: Dinner? A meal feeds your belly for a few hours, but a sword like this can feed your soul for a lifetime!
Roy: (with cross hurt): What?! I don’t even know what that means!
Tanya: Come on! Aren’t you glad you have a fun mother like me?
Roy: I’d rather have a normal mother *sigh*…
Roy: Hey, who’re you?
Me: hey there! My name’s Frey. What’s yours?
Roy: I’m Roy. Where are you from?
Frey: Actually, I don’t know myself….
Roy: Hey, what kinda answer’s that? You have amnesia or something?
Frey: That's a big word for some one your age…
Roy: Well, you know… I pick up what I hear.
Frey: I’m tending to Mana’s farm at the moment.
Roy: That dried out piece of junk? Good luck growing anything there!
Frey: I know it won’t be easy. But I kinda like the challenge… That’s why I figure I’ll be staying around here for a while… Guess I’ll be seeing you around!
Roy: Well, if you ever have any questions about anything, you can always talk to me!

Tanya: Oh, I haven’t seen you around here before.
Yeah. I’m new here. My name is Frey. I’ll be living at the farm just outside of town.
Tanya: Ah, yes… Douglas was telling me about you. My name is Tanya. Nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you too, Tanya!
Tanya; So, Freya, are you interested in swords? Blades? Sharp objects of any kind?
Me: Well, um, not obsessively…
Tanya: Oh, that’s a shame. I am! Obsessed, I mean. Just can’t get enough of them!
Frey; O-Okay… Whatever does it for you, I guess…
Tanya; Unfortunately, though, monsters never come into town, so I don’t have a chance to try my blades out on any of them… *sigh*…
Frey: Oh… That’s too bad… I guess.
Tanya: Indeed it is! Anyway, let’s talk about you, Frey! I feel every true man should own at least one sword!
Frey: Th-They should…?
Tanya: Yes, they should! Should you decide to become a real man yourself, come on by! I’ll show you all sorts of fine weaponry!
Frey; Uh, okay, thanks… I’ll keep that in mind…

N.B. The English version of this game has not been released yet. I am playing an advance build sent to me by Natsume.

Updated Changes in Tree of Tranquility

Changes from the builds on which the Official Strategy Guide is based and the final retail version now have been confirmed to include the following:

1. Raw fish no longer is available at the Fish Shop. Pascal sells only 'grilled' fish;
2. Decent Cocoons no longer can be purchased from the Brownie Ranch. This does not negate the exploitation I discovered but makes it a little more difficult as you must have silkworms of your own to spin the Cocoons. There still is profit to be made using your own Cocoons by transforming them into Silk Thread, then using Blue Herb to dye them to create the product with the highest shipping value.
3. From what I have been told, Wool no longer can be purchased from the Brownie Ranch either.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Unlocking Sheep in your 1st Year in Island of Happiness

It is possible to unlock Sheep at Mirabelle's Shop in the 1st Year. Like most achievements in Island of Happiness, it appears to depend upon a combination of factors. I experienced two events: Taro's Expansion Event and the next morning, Noe announced 'A Growing Island' in the 3rd Event of its kind.

The text of both events is:

Taro’s Remodeled House

Taro: Hello, Freya.
So, what do you think? We had a little remodeling done. Gannon did the work. Fine craftsmanship, as always.
I nod.
Taro (with music): Of course, we couldn’t have afforded this if you hadn’t shipped so much and made the island so prosperous. Thanks for all your hard work, Freya!
After: Now this place really feels like home.

A Growing Island

Good morning, Freya!
Great news!

Noe enters.

Noe: The island is getting more and more lively.
Well done, Freya!
We have so many residents, it’s like a renaissance!
I nod.
Noe: Keep up the good work. We’ll watch out for you.
See you later.

Immediately afterwards, I went outside to find Gannon, who had completed my Animal Barn expansion.

In my original game, Sheep were unlocked as soon as my Animal Barn expansion was complete, but apparently this is not a requirement. Players have written to the effect that they were able to obtain Sheep without ever expanding their barns. What is necessary, however, is a certain rate of accomplishment generally. I am not certain if Taro's House Expansion invariably is followed by the 3rd 'Growing Island' Event because obviously players could achieve their completion percentages in different ways. I had 56% completion and 66 individuals on the Island.

The second rancher had arrived two days previously.

In another player's game, he unlocked Sheep as soon as the 2nd rancher arrived. It is possible, therefore, that a certain completion percentage as well as the arrival of two ranchers is required.

I am not certain how many factors are relevant with respect to many of the new options that are unlocked in this game but I have been diligent in ALL areas:
Farming, Ranching, Mining, Fishing, Cooking. Is it necessary to have a certain number of Recipes in your Cookbook? Does it matter how many different kinds of fish you have caught or different ores and gems collected? Shipping in general IS relevant as are the total number of residents. Taro says: 'We couldn't have afforded this if you hadn't shipped so much and made the island so prosperous.' Noe speaks of a 'renaissance' for the island in terms of all the people who have arrived.

It cannot be a coincidence that both events were followed by the appearance of Sheep on Mirabelle's Menu.

Another player has been kind enough to share all of his achievements prior to the moment when Sheep were unlocked in his game. Like me, he had experienced both Taro's Expansion Event and the 3rd Growing Island Event. As soon as the 2nd Rancher arrived, Sheep appeared on the menu.

So I now postulate the following requirements for Sheep:

1. Experiencing Taro's Expansion and the 3rd 'Growing Island' Event with Noe;
2. Bringing 2 Ranchers to the Island.

I sincerely hope that NO ONE will be able to shoot THIS down. Island of Happiness is driving me insane in terms of being able to make categorical declarations.

Incidentally, the rules for winning Contests at Festivals are a little more complex than first appeared. (Everything in this game is!) You actually CAN win an Animal Festival with an Animal with only 2 hearts, although it is not very likely. Having an Animal at 9 to 10 hearts should guarantee that you win. At two hearts, a Cow who had been bred three times won the Contest. I believe that the use of the Cow in breeding was the key.

What I have not been able to ascertain is why Mirabelle will bestow a new title upon one Animal with 2 hearts and nothing on another of the same level. When it is an Animal that can be bred, it would make sense that experience in breeding might increase its title. If it is a dog or horse, however, what are the variables? I doubt title is random, although the levels of the competing animals probably ARE random. Thus, if the game loads three animals with low heart levels to compete in a Contest one year, your Animal is more likely to win at a lower heart Level. If all three opposing entries are at 8 hearts, however, your Animal will be obliged to have 9-10 hearts to win.

I had a thought in the middle of the night about the Dog and his ability to earn a new title at a low heart level in one game and no title in another. Perhaps it depends on the number of times that he has 'defended' his farm against the Wild Dog! Who knows? As I wrote a month or so ago extensively about the appearance of the Wild Dog and how my own Dog actually SLEPT through one visitation, I am not certain if he really 'earned' his title, but the fact remains that the Dog in THAT game changed title at the first Dog Festival and the Dog in my current game, whom I did not set out in the field yet, earned nothing in the first year.

With reference to a player's comment about the items offered by Mirabelle, I found it odd as well that Sheep Miracle Potion was offered LONG before Sheep themselves were unlocked. In fact, both Cow and Sheep Miracle Potions were available in Spring of the first year in my game, although I did not unlock Sheep until the Autumn.

At the Fish Festival, it is possible that ANY size of Fish of 'S' Rank will win. Any Large Fish of 'A' Rank and at least 9-10 Quality will win. I will continue to revise my Guides as data increases, although I should be able to begin on Rune Factory II tomorrow.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Heart Levels for Beginners in Island of Happiness

I received an email from a player today who asked me whether the hearts displayed in the Individuals List would change colour according to heart level. This made me realise that Harvest Moon traditions that many of us take for granted probably need to be explained to some beginners.

In fact, the hearts displayed in the Individuals List next to each character's name do not change colour. Hearts for any character eligible for marriage will be red and all other characters will be green. (I believe the hearts next to your child's name may be red as well.)

When you speak to any individual who is eligible for marriage in your game, you will see a heart on the screen itself. That heart will be black in colour when you first meet the character. As you 'raise' or increase his/her heart level, it will change colour. Each 'heart level' represents a specific number of points:

Eligible Bachelors and Eligible Girls:

0 to 10,000 points: Black Heart
10,000 to 20,000 points: Purple Heart
20,000 to 30,000 points: Blue Heart
30,000 to 40,000 points: Green Heart
40,00 points to 50,000 points: Yellow Heart
50,000 points to 60,000 points: Orange Heart
60,000 points to 65355 points: Red Heart

And the other character heart levels...

0 Hearts: 0 to 25 Points
1 Heart: 26 to 50 Points
2 Hearts = 51 to 76 points
3 Hearts = 77 to 101 points
4 Hearts = 102 to 127 points
5 Hearts = 128 to 152 points
6 Hearts = 153 to 178 points
7 Hearts = 179 to 203 points
8 Hearts = 204 to 229 points
9 Hearts = 230 to 254 points
10 Hearts = 255 points

If your character is a girl, there is an exception in the person of Shea, who never has any heart displayed on the screen. You can access the Individuals List at any time, however, to see what his actual Heart Level is. Two hearts, for example, represents 'Purple Heart' Level.

At deepest red heart level, the eligible Bachelor/Girl will be at a minimum of 60,000points or 10 hearts.

This system is common to most Harvest Moon games. In some games, like HM DS/Cute DS, you can purchase an accessory that, when equipped, will show you the precise number of points earned in Affection or Friendship with each individual. Island of Happiness has the Individuals List but no Accessory that displays precise totals in terms of points.

What name would you choose?

Playing Harvest Moon through the years, one is required to choose names for characters, pets and animals on a regular basis. I am curious now to see what names other players would choose for these two adorable (real) kittens.

For the bluepoint Himalayan, would you choose Attila or Ashley?
For the shaded flame or marmalade Persian, would you choose Fiamma or Marmee?

Perhaps you do not like ANY of these names, in which case, what would YOU name them?

Strictly speaking, this is not a proper Harvest Moon post, but most Harvest Moon players appear to love cats as much as I. I wanted to share the photographs and thought it would be interesting to find out what other players thought of them.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Perplexing Event Requirements in Island of Happiness

With some misgivings, I have tried to be specific in my Guides where requirements for Events and Individuals are concerned, but each time I am specific, the requirement is proven false.

For example, there have been rumours to the effect that shipping at least 200 items, possibly from the shipping bin in front of Taro's house, is a requirement for Elliot's Purple Heart Event.

This has been proven false in two ways:
1. Players who did NOT ship 200 items were able to trigger the Event when Elliot reached purple heart level; and
2. Players who SHIPPED over 200 Crops from the shipping container in front of Taro's house were UNABLE to trigger the Event after Elliot reached purple heart level. One player shipped over 300 Crops from the shipping container in front of Taro's house and had Elliot almost at blue heart without being able to trigger the event...

Something else is going on here. As Farming Degree Points are the one consistent element in the game, I am attempting to discover if this may be an actual requirement, but so far nothing has been confirmed.

There is another possibility. In most Harvest Moon games, events are limited to specific days. I really would like to know what days players have been able to experience Elliot's Purple Heart Event. Characters have different schedules on different days of the week. I was able to experience Elliot's Purple Heart Event on Monday, but not on some of the other days of the week. Perhaps there are specific days when it can't be triggered and is as simple as that.

It is very possible that Event schedules will change depending on how many areas have been unlocked in a player's game, as the schedules of most characters change accordingly. For example, with respect to the Heart Events of characters who visit the Forest or Jungle on specific days, surely this will affect the schedule of any Heart Event. One will be obliged to play many different games to be able to pinpoint precise requirements in each situation.

1. Schedule of any Heart Event when only East Town has been unlocked;
2. Schedule of any Heart Event when only East Town and the Forest have been unlocked;
3. Schedule of any Heart Event when East Town, Forest AND Jungle have been unlocked.

In many cases, the schedule will be the same if the character is one who does not visit the Jungle or Forest... if he/she does, however, the schedule may be altered based on the days when the character would be in these areas.

It is rather vexing, in a way. Island of Happiness is far more complex than other Harvest Moon games where unlocking options and events are concerned. When players, including myself, were unable to experience Rival Heart Events, it did appear that the events were tied to specific items and shipping: shipping ores allowed Sabrina and Vaughn's events to occur, shipping Crops allowed Elliot and Julia's to trigger, shipping fish was the trigger to unlock Denny and Lanna's Events and cooking had the same effect with respect to Pierre and Natalie's Events. Is this in fact the case or is it simply a huge coincidence?

Even the Subsidiary Characters are not unlocked in the manner in which the original strategy guides claimed: you can bring ALL Fishermen apart from one to the Island in the first Spring without much trouble.

I do believe that the Mineral Town characters are unlocked when you achieve 50% completion in terms of the Island itself but possibly this will be disproven as well. In my own games, Popuri and Karen always are the first to arrive in the first Autumn season. If any one has managed to bring Mineral Town characters to the Island sooner than this, I would be interested in the details. I do believe that all bridges must have been completed in order for the Mineral Town characters to begin to appear.

In these circumstances, a Walkthrough for the first few seasons of the game probably is most helpful to players. I have written one and it is posted both here and as part of my General Guide for IoH. It takes the player from the start of the 1st Spring through Autumn to the arrival of Mark or Chelsea in the first week of the season.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Walkthrough for A 'Perfect Game' in Island of Happiness

I've added a little Walkthrough section for the first season of the game to my General Guide but I thought I'd post the information here as well. By following this Walkthrough, you can have both the Original Inn and the Island Inn on the Island by the 2nd day of Summer. Both the Cafe and Diner will be on the Island and you should have been able to win the Spring Crop Festival, obtaining your first Wonderful, thereby unlocking Charlie's ability to set them in your Tools. The Original Inn and the Cafe will be expanded as well. You should have 35 Residents on the Island at the very least.

Daily Tasks in Spring: Collect Seaweed from the large boulder at the beach and ship it.
Collect ALL weeds and ship them.
Collect all Wild Grass: Give one to Taro each day, save one in your rucksack for energy restoration and ship the rest.
Collect all Flowers and ship them.
Water your Crops if you have sufficient energy to do so.

On your very first day on the Island, you will not be able to do anything apart from being introduced to your fellow shipwreck survivors and having your first Tutorial. You will meet Noe today and he will offer to teach you how to move using the stylus. Take this opportunity to collect every weed and stone on the field and ship all of them.
Use your energy to till two 3 x 3 squares with the hoe and plant the two bags of Seeds that you will find in your rucksack. You may or may not have enough energy afterwards to water them. Go to bed before you pass out!

3 Spring: Today you will meet Chen and Charlie. You have 500G and 2 bags of Turnip Seeds at the start of the game. If you wish to buy a bag of Potato Seeds, you can do this now, as well as buying some Chocolate to keep for emergency use in your rucksack.

Make certain that you give Taro a wild coloured grass as a gift. Blue Grass is the highest in energy value so give him one of the other two colours if possible. Do this EACH DAY to raise his heart level. Make certain that you stash one Wild Grass in your rucksack for emergency use and ship the rest.

Here are the values of the Wild Grasses that you will find in the first week in Spring in West Town and the Beach, the only areas unlocked at present.

Blue Grass: 20G (+10 SR +1 FL)
S Rank: 120G
Sell: 12G
Grows in Spring

Indigo Grass: 20G (+9 SR2 FL)
S Rank: 120G
Sell: 12G
Grows in Spring and Summer

Purple Grass: 24G (+7 SR +2 FL)
S Rank: 140G
Sell: 14G
Grows in Spring and Autumn

Collect EVERY flower and weed and ship them all. Gather Seaweed from the boulder at the Beach and ship it. You should have enough money after 5.00 p.m. to buy the Medium Rucksack from Chen’s Market. Buy a couple of Chocolate bars for emergency use.

4 Spring: You should be given 3 bags of Seeds to use in the Tutorial. Whatever you do not plant will be taken from you at the end of the tutorial so plant as many seeds as possible. Even if you cannot till a complete 3 x 3 square, till as many squares as possible and throw the seeds on them because you will lose them otherwise.

All tutorials end at 6.00 a.m., giving you an entire day afterwards to spend as you wish. Unfortunately, you may have very little energy after this Tutorial. Restore whatever energy you can with Wild Grass and Chocolate. Ship the Seaweed from the Beach and any Flowers and Weeds. Remember to save two Wild Grasses, giving one to Taro and keeping the other for energy restoration.

5 Spring: Today is the Shipping Tutorial. By now, you should have been shipping quite a few items daily. Don’t speak to Taro, however, until you have collected every weed and stone on your field and have shipped all of them. Time does not pass during tutorials. If you wish, you can water your crops as well. You should plant at least one bag of Potato seeds this week if you can.

Make certain that you give Taro a Wild Grass and keep one for yourself, shipping all others, as well as Seaweed, any Flowers and all Weeds.

6 Spring: Today is the Hammer and Axe Tutorial. Again, use the tutorial time to collect every weed and stone on your field for shipping. Water your crops if you can.

After the tutorial, collect the Seaweed and all Flowers and ship them, as well as any Weeds and every Coloured Grass except two. Give Taro one of them and stash the other for use in restoring your energy.

7 Spring – 10 Spring: Continue with the same activities daily. If you have given Taro a Wild Grass each day, you will obtain a Fishing Rod tomorrow.

11 Spring: At 6.00 a.m., Gannon will introduce himself to you and announce that he has smashed the boulder that prevented access to East Town. This gives you an entire new area to explore in order to gather wild grasses and flowers, as well as lumber and material stone.

If you have given Taro a Wild Grass every single day, you will experience an Event with him as soon as you leave your house. He will give you a Fishing Rod and ask if you wish to participate in a tutorial. You really need to do this!

Once the tutorial has begun: DO NOT SPEAK TO TARO!!! As soon as you speak to him, the tutorial will end.

Use this tutorial to catch 100 items. You will not be able to see your Energy bars, but your character will make a little motion with his/her hand when energy decreases by ½. At this point, eat at least 2 fish. Do not let your Energy fall below that halfway point as you need to keep enough energy in order to be able to water your Crops after the Tutorial. You should be able to catch 100 items at least in this fashion, as long as you eat raw fish on a regular basis throughout this tutorial.

This is your best opportunity to fish without losing ANY time, so make the effort and you will be rewarded. Catching 75 items will bring both Denny and Lanna to the Island! Subsidiary fishing characters will begin to arrive as well. You need 15 Subsidiary Characters to unlock the Diner and the Café. Exploiting the Fishing Tutorial is the best way to make a headstart on these goals.

You do need to ship quite a few of the Fish you have caught in order to bring Denny and Lanna to the Island as quickly as possible.

Make certain that you walk to East Town today to meet the Harvest Sprite of the district. Gather Seaweed, Flowers, and Wild Grasses as usual. You no longer need to give Taro one each day once you have the Fishing Rod, but continue to speak to all characters daily if possible.

12 Spring: If you used the Fishing Tutorial to catch at least 100 items, you probably will experience Denny’s Introduction Event at 6.00 a.m. this morning.

Depending on weather conditions in the past week and a half and the crops that you planted, you may be able to harvest Turnips today if you have not harvested them previously. Buy the Large Rucksack if you did not purchase it previously. Look for Fishermen on the Island. If you caught 100 items, you should have at least on Fisherman on the Island now: Kaleb. If you continue to fish diligently, Tyler and Iku should arrive in the next couple of days.

13 Spring: This morning at 6.00 a.m., you should experience Mirabelle and Julia’s Introduction Event. Now the Animal Shop will be open and you will be able to purchase supplies as well as animals once you have built barns for them. If you have sufficient funds, order a Chicken Coop from Taro today. If not today, order it tomorrow.

Remember to fish, continue to plant new Turnips and Potatoes, water them when necessary and ship Seaweed and all Flowers daily. Ship all Large and Medium Fish that you catch and most of the Small Fish.

14 Spring: Lanna should arrive at 6.00 a.m. this morning, if you have been fishing diligently. If you did not order the Chicken Coop yesterday, order it today. Look for Tyler and Iku, both of whom should have arrived now.

15 Spring: If you ordered the Chicken Coop yesterday, Taro will give you a chick today. Go immediately to Mirabelle’s Shop to purchase enough Bird Feed for at least a week. You may wish to purchase one adult chicken as well in order to have eggs immediately. An adult Chicken can be placed outside to find her own food during fine weather, but a chick must remain in the barn and be fed.

16 Spring: Your next major purchase should be a House upgrade from small to medium. Save your money for that. Meanwhile, continue to plant, water, harvest and ship crops. Fish daily and ship all large and medium fish. Ship most of the small fish but keep a few for energy restoration. Ship all Flowers and Seaweed daily.

17 Spring: Vaughn will arrive today on the island. You may find two more fishermen, Shane and Yoshi. If Lanna is on the island, Lloyd will be here as well in the evening in East Town.

18 Spring: Order your first house upgrade today if you did not do so previously. Continue to perform all tasks as usual.

19 Spring: If your house upgrade is completed, you will experience Eliza’s Introduction Event this morning. Afterwards, go to Gannon’s house and he will announce that his house has been upgraded. Go to Chen’s Market to buy a Refrigerator. As soon as you have purchased the Refrigerator, a Kitchen will become available. Purchase that when you can. The Cabinet can wait.

20 Spring – 26 Spring: You need to try to make enough money to order the Bridge to the Meadow. When the Bridge to the Meadow is completed, all Festivals will appear on your Calendar AND the Café and Diner will open, as you have fished enough to bring the required number of subsidiary characters to the Island.

Once you have the Diner and Café, your life will not be such a struggle to survive as Fullness and Stamina can be restored far more quickly and easily with Cooked Dishes.

28 Spring: If the Bridge to the meadow was completed yesterday, you will experience an Event announcing the Spring Crop Festival tomorrow. If the Bridge is completed today, however, the Event will not occur, but the Festival still will occur at the Meadow tomorrow. If you have been diligent in farming, you should have at least one 'A' Rank Turnip. Save it to enter in the Festival tomorrow. In fact, if you have ripe Turnips of 'A' Rank in your field, you should be able to keep them there overnight if you prefer, provided Sunlight and Water requirements have not been exceeded. Freshness does not really matter much where Crop Festivals are concerned. What matters is Rank and Quality. You really need a Rank 'A' Turnip to win.

Perform all your usual tasks today, collecting and shipping Seaweed and Flowers, fishing as much as possible and watering whatever crops still remain on your field.

29 Spring: Spring Crop Festival.
Take an 'A' Rank Turnip to the Meadow between 10.00 a.m. and 5.50 p.m. SAVE YOUR GAME BEFORE YOU ENTER THE MEADOW!

You will win your first Wonderful today and you may wish to control the colour. This is accomplished by changing the total number of points earned towards your Farming Degree. If you do not obtain a colour that you want, reload, ship a couple of items or use a tool to increase points. At this stage, your energy levels will be limited, however, so you should not be too concerned about specific colours. Most useful probably would be:

Yellow Wonderful: Allows you to unlock the Rice Paddies when set in your Hammer or to smash large smooth boulders. In your Hoe, would allow you to till the Rice Paddies, but at the end of Spring, Rice may not have enough time to mature before it dies at the start of Winter. It would be a gamble to plant it now, but if you obtain a Yellow Wonderful, keep it nonetheless.

Orange Wonderful: One of the most useful Wonderfuls in the game. Set in any tool, it will double the yield. At this stage, when you need lumber for building, it would be very useful set in your Axe. Later, when you have access to the Mine, you can set it in your Hammer to increase Ore and Gem yields. Set in a Milker or Shears, it will increase Milk/Wool yields.

Blue Wonderful: If you obtain this, keep it and set it in your Watering Can. It will allow you to water three squares at a time.

Red Wonderful: If you obtain this, keep it and set it in your Watering Can. It will allow you to water two squares north to south, allowing you to reach the centre square in a 3 x 3 plot.

Green Wonderful: If you obtain this, set it in your Watering Can to reduce the Stamina use from 3 to 2.

Purple will give you 2G each time you use the tool in which it is set, and Indigo will increase the number of tool slots by 5. These are less useful, however, at this preliminary stage than the Wonderfuls described above.

REMEMBER TO FISH BEFORE YOU LEAVE THE MEADOW! You can fish as much as you wish at any Festival without spending any time doing so. You do need to be vigilant where energy is concerned, however. You won’t be able to see your Energy Bars at any Festival but your character will make physical gestures as energy is depleted. The first gesture is wiping his/her hand across his/her face, a movement made when energy goes below the halfway mark. When you are near the point of passing out, your character actually will totter on his/her feet, exhibiting weakness and dizziness in doing so.

All you need to do is to eat some of the fish you catch to keep your Energy above the critical point.

As always, water your remaining crops, fish as much as possible and don’t forget to set your Chickens outside on any fine day, returning them to the Barn at night.

In fact, if you haven’t built a little pen from Stones yet, do it today for your chickens. Setting them outside in fine weather reduces stress and increases affection as previously stated. If you have 4 feeders in your Chicken Coop and only 2 Chickens, you can fill all 4 feeding trays for emergency use on any Typhoon day in Summer. If they were outside for a few hours on any day prior to a Typhoon, they won’t suffer stress either, as the food in their feeders will be eaten on the day of the Typhoon.

As you are nearing the end of the season, try to keep at least one Seaweed for use in obtaining a Recipe, as you will not be able to gather it in any season other than Spring. Keep one of each colour of grass if you can for use later and a couple of Turnips and a few Potatoes for use in obtaining Recipes. When you have obtained 5 Recipes, Pierre will arrive on the Island.

When the Bridge is completed, Luke and Madelynn will arrive to open the Café and Diner. If you completed the Bridge only on 28 Spring, however, nothing will be open on the day of the Festival. You will have to wait until 30 Spring.

30 Spring: You should find the Café and Diner as well as the Original Inn and Island Inn on the island now. Go to each to meet every character. Now you can buy Cooked Dishes to restore your energy levels. With Madelynn, Nicole will arrive. With Luke, Lance will arrive. The Original Inn will bring Robin and Brook to the Island inmmediately. The Island Inn contains three individuals: Taka, Vanessa and their child. You should have at least 33 Characters on the Island.

One of the last member of the Fishing group should have arrived as well. This is Harvey, who frequents the Beach at night.

30 Spring: You should find the Café and Diner as well as the Original Inn and Island Inn on the island now. Go to each to meet every character. Now you can buy Cooked Dishes to restore your energy levels. With Madelynn, Nicole will arrive. With Luke, Lance will arrive. The Original Inn will bring Robin and Brook to the Island inmmediately. The Island Inn contains three individuals: Taka, Vanessa and their child. You should have at least 33 Characters on the Island.

One of the last member of the Fishing group should have arrived as well. This is Harvey, who frequents the Beach at night.

By the end of Spring, you should have shipped at least 100 Turnips and/or Potatoes. Turnips are easier to grow as they mature faster.

Summer Exploitation: The Seaweed was the key to early profit in Spring. In Summer, until the Mine is unlocked, the greatest amount of money is obtained when you catch and ship Pirate’s Treasure. Pirate’s Treasure can be caught only at the Beach. If you wish to ‘cheat’ a little, save your game BEFORE you cast your rod. If you don’t catch a decent size of fish or Pirate Treasure, reload and try again.

1 Summer: Today, you should experience an Event with Noe at 6.00 a.m., provided you have followed this Walkthrough religiously. He will tell you that the island has expanded and that more residents will continue to arrive. The event is entitled: A Growing Island.

Go to the Original Inn to experience its expansion Event. You will find new characters at the Original Inn in the form of Thelma and her granddaughter. Now you should have 35 characters on the Island.

Now go to East Town. You should find that the Café has been expanded as well. Enter each to experience the Event. Now you can obtain Recipes by giving Madelynn ingredients!

The Diner and Island Inn should be expanded in a few days if you continue to make progress, but meanwhile, you can obtain one Recipe per day from Madelynn.

Some ingredients will result in Recipes that you can’t make at this stage in the game. I would recommend that you start with Eggs, both for Luke and Madelynn. Egg Soup is the first recipe Madelynn will give you and required nothing but an Egg. Boiled Egg is the next. You only can obtain one Recipe per day, but remember to visit the Café each day with an ingredient Madelynn will accept. Both Pudding and Ice Cream are very useful recipes, but you will need a Cow before you can make them. Even so, there are many other recipes for Eggs that you can make.

Now that the Café and Diner offer Cooked Dishes to replenish Energy, you need to chop every Branch you encounter for Lumber. In particular, you need to begin to chop the wood that is in East Town. With an Orange Wonderful set in the Axe, you can obtain 2 pieces of Lumber each time you chop a branch. If you obtained a different Wonderful at the Festival, you still can work on increasing your store of Lumber for future building projects. After all, you can regain energy lost by buying a dish at Café or Diner before you return to West Town.

Your next goals:
To build an Animal Barn so you can obtain your first Cow from Taro;
To build the Bridge from West Town to the Forest, to unlock the Mine, the Harvest Goddess Spring, and the Witch Princess as well as some Subsidiary Characters. Nathan and Alisa and the Church will be unlocked only when the bridge to the Forest is built.
The prices for each are:

Animal Barn
200 Lumber + 12,000G
Or 22,000G if you do not have the Lumber

Bridge to Forest:
500 Lumber + 20,000G
Or 45,000G if you have insufficient Lumber

If your first Wonderful is an Orange and it is set in your Axe, you should have been able to obtain 200 Lumber fairly easily, but 500 will take longer, even with your yield doubled by the Wonderful. In fact, I would advise players not to wait for the Lumber to accumulate and use Gannon's Lumber instead. As always, fishing is a good option to obtain the money you need.

Early Summer: Depending on how quickly you can make the money to order the Bridge to the Forest, I would make this the next goal as completion of the 2nd bridge will produce the following results:

1. Allow you to meet the Witch Princess;
2. allow you to meet 3 more Harvest Sprites;
3. Allow you to meet the Harvest Goddess when you throw an offering into the Spring;
4. Allow the Island Inn AND the Diner to expand;
5. Unlock the Mine
6. Give you a new source for Wild Coloured Grasses, Flowers, Lumber and Stone.

1st Week of Summer:

You may not have sufficient funds for this project in the first week of Summer but save your money, continuing to fish, plant tomatoes and corn, gather Wild Grasses and Flowers, chop branches and do not forget to obtain a new Recipe from Madelynn each day.

You should be able to take eggs to her to unlock new Recipes for a few days; when she no longer has anything to offer in return for an egg, take chocolate. After that, take Turnips if you saved any from Spring and when those are exhausted, Potatoes. In all honesty, though, it is better to SHIP your crops in the first year because shipping 100 of each crop will unlock new options. If you did not save any crops from Spring, therefore, you have not made an error. Time enough for that next year.

The Chicken Festival will occur if you unlocked the Bridge to the Meadow, but your Chickens will not have the minimum heart level of 9 required to win. Even if you cannot win, enter one of your chickens in the Festival. It will gain a title, however low that title may be! Use the Chicken Festival as an opportunity to fish from the East River, shipping the items that you catch afterwards. As always, keep a sharp watch on your character’s physical responses when you fish at a Festival so that he/she does not pass out.

If you have given items to Madelynn daily for new Recipes, Pierre should arrive even before you have sufficient funds to order the bridge to the Forest. Once Pierre is on the Island, his fan will follow, giving you yet another Subsidiary character. Cooking will bring another subsidiary character to the Original Inn.

For Energy Recovery, use the Eggs that your chickens produce rather than using Crops in the first year. Eggs have low shipping value but are quite useful when made into Egg Soup or any other Cooked Dish. When you have an adult Cow who produces Milk, you can obtain recipes for Pudding and Ice Cream, two excellent recovery items in the early stages of the game.

One of the best Energy Recovery items is Relax Tea, but that is obtained in two stages. First, Luke at the Diner will give the Recipe for Relax Tea Leaves in return for a common green Weed. Make the Relax Tea Leaves, then give them to Madelynn at the Cafe for the Recipe for the actual Relax Tea.

2nd Week of Summer:

This is another reason to build the Bridge to the Forest! Luke has so many useful Recipes to offer. Other recipes he will give you are those that use Medium Fish: Sashimi, Boiled Fish, Grilled Fish and others.
Return to the Diner when the Bridge is completed to experience the Expansion Event. You now will be able to obtain new Recipes both from Luke and from Madelynn.

When the Forest is unlocked, the Island Inn should be expanded as well. You need to enter the Inn to experience the expansion event.

When the Bridge to the Forest is completed, ‘pack a lunch’ if you can by cooking your Eggs and taking every possible recovery item with you in your Rucksack before you enter the Forest for the first time. The reason for this is because you should be able to explore the Mine later in the day. Empty your Rucksack of non-essentials such as Branches, Stones, Lumbers and perhaps all tools apart from the Hoe and the Hammer. If you have the Large Rucksack, you should have sufficient slots for mining. If not, you will have a little more trouble.

One more act of preparation is advised: if you have an Orange Wonderful in your Axe, ask Charlie to remove it and place it in your Hammer instead today. You need to enter the Market before 9.00 a.m. to find him there. Otherwise, you'll be required to wait until the afternoon, as he spends the remainder of the morning at the beach.

Now you need to cross the Bridge into the Forest to experience the Witch Princess’ Introduction Event immediately. You will meet the Forest Harvest Sprite at the same time.

You will find a multitude of Wild Grasses and Pinkcat flowers on the ground, but do not collect more than one Flower now if you are planning to visit the Mine later. You need empty slots for Gems.

Afterwards, walk north and take the path to the left (west) to find the Harvest Goddess Spriing. A locked building will be seen to the right of the Spring. This is the site of the future Church. You should be able to unlock that in a day or two. To start the process, throw a flower (Pinkcat is to be found EVERYWHERE at this season) into the Harvest Goddess Spring. You will meet the Harvest Goddess, adding another Resident to your Individuals List and making all sorts of rewards possible in the future.

After you have met the Harvest Goddess, return to the main path and continue to walk north. As you cross into the Mountain area, you will meet the Mountain Harvest Sprite. Continue North afterwards, taking the winding path upwards first to the west and then to the east, through a narrow little bottleneck that leads to a clearing. At the top of the clearing is the entrance to the Mine.

You have a choice now between entering the Mine immediately or continuing north to the next screen by backtracking to the main mountain path and continuing north to the very peak of the Mountain. The reason for going to the top of the mountain is to meet the Mountaintop Harvest Sprite. If you have space in your Rucksack, you can continue to collect coloured Wild Grasses but leave the Flowers on the ground for your next foraging trip.

1st Visit to the Mine: If you can explore the Mine on the same day that the Forest is unlocked, so much the better but remember that there are no time limits where progress is concerned in Island of Happiness.
What you do need to do in the Mine on your 1st visit is to take home at least 20 items to ship. They can be gems or ores, even Junk Ore, but you need to ship at least 20 items in order to unlock Regis and Sabrina.

The first important floor of the Mine is Floor 25 where you can find Adamantite, a necessary material in the construction of Makers. It is not very likely that you will reach this floor on your first trip and do not be concerned even to attempt it. What you may wish to do is reach at least Floor 12, so that you can find the widest variety of gems, including Rubies and Emeralds. With an Orange Wonderful in your Hammer, each time you find a Gem/Ore inside a Rock, the yield will be doubled. This will be quite helpful to you.

Remember not to allow yourself to pass out. You should save your game as soon as you arrive on any Floor. If you stumble into a Pitfall and lose too much energy, you can reload instead of saving the error.
Make certain that you organise your Rucksack so that at least one empty slot always exists for any Item found inside a Rock. If you smash a Rock but your Rucksack is full, you will lose whatever items would have been found inside the Rock.

You can stack items of different Quality and Size, although I always try to keep each Rank separate as long as possible. The game actually averages the Rank, Quality, Size and Freshness of all items in any stack.

Do not bother to use your Hoe on the first visit. Your main priority this time is to find at least 20 Ores/Gems to ship. Make certain that you ship them before you go to bed!

Unlocking Regis and Sabrina: If you shipped at least 20 Ores/Gems from the Mine, you will experience Regis’ and Sabrina’s Introduction Even the next morning.

The day after you visit the Forest for the first time, return to the Harvest Goddess Spring to offer another flower to the Goddess. If you do this, you should be able to experience Nathan’s and Alisa’s Introduction Event tomorrow morning, unlocking the Church.

Before the 2nd week of Summer has ended, you should have over 50 characters on the Island, and experience the 2nd ‘A Growing Island’ Event, wherein Noe will tell you that even more people have moved to the Island. You should have at least 46% completion if not more.

Note: New options and events are unlocked by a combination of factors in Island of Happiness. If you follow this Walkthrough, you should be able to achieve all goals described herein, but remember that you need to ship crops, fish and items from the Mine regularly. You need to obtain new recipes as well.

Once the Bridge to the Forest is completed, you can order an Animal Barn from Gannon. You should have enough Lumber to be able to provide the 200 Lumber required and thereby pay far less for the Barn than if you had been obliged to use his lumber. Paying the higher fee for the Bridge allowed you to unlock a new area earlier. I believe it is worthwhile to do this. Now, however, you can use your own Lumber to build the Animal Barn.

When the Animal Barn is completed, Taro will give you a calf. This calf will produce no Milk until fully grown. You therefore need not purchase a Milker immediately although you should buy a Brush as soon as possible. Using the Brush daily raises an Animal’s affection level. The Brush can be used on your Horse and Sheep as well. Do not forget to buy Fodder immediately! There is no excuse for allowing an animal to be stressed from hunger.

I do not advise players to allow livestock to roam in the field when they are at low heart levels as they will not respond to the Bell. In fact, you cannot take any Animal outside until it is fully grown. You therefore must have sufficient fodder to feed all livestock.

I do not advise players to grow grass at this point either. Your energy levels are too low to justify the expenditure of energy. You do not need to water grass daily but it will need water. If it receives either too much or too little water, it will die. Don’t bother with it until the second year or so.

Depending on how far you have managed to raise Chen’s heart level, you may or may not have a Horse by the time the Horse Festival occurs in the first Summer. If not, do not fret. Attend and speak to every one to gain friendship points. Even if you have a Horse, you will have no chance of winning the Contest in the first year, as you need an Animal with 9-10 Hearts to win any Animal Contest.

Remember that most arrivals and Introduction Events are based on fulfilling specific requirements in Island of Happiness. This Walkthrough has included the actions and achievements that are required but if you neglect any of these goals or actions, you may not experience the events according to this schedule. For example, Pierre will not arrive until you have obtained 5 Recipes. It is not the date, therefore, but fulfillment of the goal that brings him to the Island. It is shipment of Ores/Gems that brings Regis and Sabrina to the Island.

Completion of the Bridges is fundamental and should be a very high priority. If you must sacrifice other goals temporarily in order to complete the Bridges, do so.

For the first season and a half, Fishing is the key to early success. Growing and shipping as many crops as possible is important but Fishing will bring you the highest number of subsidiary characters in the first season. Once the Mine is unlocked, you can focus equally on all activities.

Next on your list: persuading Chen and Charlie to give you a Horse and Mirabelle to give you a Dog. You may have noticed the little brown dog in the Forest. When you have raised Mirabelle's heart level to 2 Hearts, enter the Forest on a rainy or snowy day to experience an Event. Chen and Charlie will bring the Horse to your House.

Note: Mirabelle loves both Pinkcat and Eggs: 'Oh, a gift for me? Thank you very much, Freya!' You actually can speak to her when she is working at the counter to give her a gift. Go to the side of the counter and hand her the gift.
3rd and 4th Weeks of Summer:

Every player will achieve progress at a different rate and the weather cannot be controlled effectively in Island of Happiness, as it is set 6 days in advance. I therefore will not continue with a day-to-day walkthrough but rather one that deals with specific goals for each week.

In the 3rd and 4th Weeks of Summer, if you have achieved all goals given above, your new goals will be:

To order the third Bridge from East Town to the Jungle;
To ship as many Summer Crops as possible;
To have at least 1 Rank ‘A’ Tomato on 29 Summer in order to win the Summer Crop Festival and another Wonderful.
To make certain that Mirabelle is at 2 Hearts so that you obtain your Dog on the next Rainy Day.
To obtain enough Orichalc in the Mine to order the Small Harvest Goddess Pendant, Small Kappa Pendant and the Medium Harvest Goddess Pendant if you have not done so previously.

Each Bridge project is more expensive than the preceding Bridge. The third is the most expensive of all. You may or may not be able to afford it before the end of Summer. Not to worry. Continue to perform your regular chores, growing and watering Tomatoes and Corn Crops, fishing daily, visiting Luke and Madelynn with ingredients for new Recipes daily and visiting the Mine to obtain more Orichalc from the 50th Floor as often as possible.

A priority must be to obtain at least 1 Rank ‘A’ Tomato. You have a better chance of this if you have planted more than one plot of Tomatoes and perhaps have planted them on different days in both the first and second weeks of Summer. Typhoons can occur quite frequently in Summer, retarding the growth and lowering the quality of your Crops. Tomatoes do require a normal amount of water, however, so water them daily and hope for the best.

The Small Kappa Pendant is the only Kappa Pendant you need at this stage in the game but you are well-advised to have BOTH the Small Harvest Goddess Pendant and the Medium Harvest Goddess Pendant. If you equip BOTH, you can increase your Stamina almost to maximum level. With the Small Kappa Pendant equipped as well, you should be in a very strong position where Energy levels are concerned. The only drawback is the fact that these accessories will occupy three out of four Equipment slots!

Finding Orichalc in the Mine is not sufficient. Shipping Orichalc will not unlock the option either. You must have at least one piece of Orichalc in your Rucksack when you visit Chen’s Market in order to experience the Event that will add this option to the list of tasks Charlie will perform for you.

If you can take an ‘A’ Rank tomato to the Summer Crop Festival, you will win another Wonderful. I personally would opt for another Orange Wonderful at this point, as two Orange Wonderfuls in your Hammer will triple your yield in the Mine. It is too late to benefit from the Rice Paddies as even if you set a Yellow Wonderful in your Hammer to smash the boulder between your Farm and the Paddies, Rice cannot mature before the end of the year and will die when Winter arrives.

You could opt instead to increase your area of effect by obtaining a Blue or Red Wonderful but I think the Orange will give you the greatest profit at this point.

The Accessories I recommended will make a tremendous difference, allowing you to reach the bottom of the Mine. There you will meet the Harvest Goddess, obtaining more Wonderfuls and new Recipes.

Meanwhile, you may wish to fill your small chicken coop with chickens, in order to have 4 eggs each day for energy restoration. You may wish to buy another Cow as well, even though it will take some time for both cows to reach adulthood. Brush your Horse and Cows daily.

Even if Maribelle reaches 2 hearts in the Summer season, you may have to wait until Autumn to obtain your dog as the Event can be triggered in the Forest only in bad weather. It seldom rains in Summer at this point in the game.

1st Week of Autumn:

With the arrival of the Autumn season, you will find there are many rainy days. Enter the Forest on the first rainy day to trigger the Event that will introduce you to your Dog.

Mushrooms are found in the Wilds in Autumn. You will find Shitake, Toadstools and Matsutake. Take Shitake to Luke and make certain that you are given the Steamed Egg Custard Recipe. It is one of the best Energy recovery items at this stage, requiring an Egg and a Shitake to make. You will be able to obtain many Recipes from Luke by giving him Shitakes but most of them cannot be made at this point.
Another useful Recipe, but not one that is given immediately, is for Foiled Mushrooms. Before he gives you that Recipe, however, he will give you quite a few others. You may wish to keep your Shitake to make Steamed Egg Custards until later in the season after you have found sufficient Orichalc to make the Medium Harvest Goddess Pendant.

As soon as you can afford the Bridge to the Jungle, order it built. On the morning that it is completed, enter the Jungle to meet the final Harvest Sprite, Manfred, and two other characters: Shea and Wada.
Now you have access to all main areas of the Island with 50% completion. More Subsidiary Characters will arrive on the island now as well.

If you meet all new characters, you should be able to experience Mark or Chelsea’s Introduction Event the day after the last bridge is completed..

Once Mark/Chelsea has arrived, the Mineral Town characters should begin to visit the Island. If you complete the Bridge to the Forest in early Autumn, Popuri and Karen should be the first Mineral Town visitors.

If you have been fairly diligent in Farming, Fishing, Ranching, Mining and Cooking, the following characters should be on the Island on the day the 3rd bridge is completed:
W. Princess
H. Goddess

This represents more than 50% completion and, the next morning Mark/Chelsea should be added to the list. A Subsidiary Character who will be added the day after the Bridge to the Jungle is built is Gerald.

Note that one of the Subsidiary Characters is linked to Farming and one to Ranching. If you have made little progress in these areas, Megan and Buck will not be included on your Individuals List. A couple of characters are tied to Cooking. Three of the Mining characters are included on this list, but if you have reached the 75th or 100th floor by this date, you will have 5 Mining Characters. In many cases, the characters will not be added to the Individuals List until you actually have MET them. Explore the Island to meet all new characters as soon as possible.

Your next major project should be the acquisition of a Maker Shed. You should have been collecting Adamantite in the Mine with each visit in anticipation of creating all the Makers.

Autumn of the 1st Year:

If you have not managed to order the Maker Shed before the end of Summer, make it your first goal of the Autumn season. Autumn will represent the season of greatest bounty in terms of items from the Wilds, as Mushrooms will be available throughout the Island in Autumn. It is important, therefore, to have built all three bridges if you wish to take advantage of this opportunity. Rare items available from the Wilds in the Autumn season include Blue Magic Red Flowers and Matsutake Mushrooms. (The Matsutake are the equivalent of the ‘Truffles’ in other Harvest Moon games.) If you take a Blue Magic Red Flower to Luke, he will give you the Recipe for Bodigizer, a potent medicine for restoration of Stamina. You probably will not be able to find sufficient flowers to MAKE many portions of it, however. If you give Luke the Bodigizer you make, by the way, he will give you the recipe for Bodigizer XL, the most potent Stamina restorer.

More practical, however, are the Recipes made with Shitake Mushrooms. In particular, you should obtain the Recipe for Steamed Egg Custard. With an Egg and a Shitake Mushroom, you can make a very good Cooked Dish that will aid you well in the Mine. I believe it is worthwhile even to purchase 4 Chickens from Mirabelle in order to have adult chickens laying eggs at the earliest opportunity as well as bringing a Ranch subsidiary character to the Island. If you are not gathering 4 eggs per day, however, you still can make Foiled Mushrooms or Grilled Mushrooms with nothing more than a Shitake.

Unfortunately, Recipes are given in a specific order that takes no account of the ingredients you actually may have unlocked. You will need to give quite a few Shitake Mushrooms to Luke before you obtain the Grilled Mushroom or Foiled Mushroom Recipes. In like fashion, you must obtain many other Milk Recipes from Luke before your gift of Milk will elicit the very useful Pudding Recipe.

Bear in mind the fact that you ultimately need to ship mushrooms in order to unlock seeds (or spores).
One reason to obtain a Maker Shed as soon as possible is to be able to order the Seed Maker. With this, you can convert mushrooms into seed to plant on the pallets in the southeast corner of your Field. Shitake are the most useful of all Mushrooms but you may wish to reserve one Pallet for Toadstools and one for Matsutake. Matsutake are far more valuable than most items, even if Shitake is required in more Recipes.

For your second Maker, I would recommend the Butter Maker, as Butter is an ingredient in many Recipes, but the Cheese Maker is very useful as well. Shipping Ranch Products will increase your Income and bring more Subsidiary Characters to the Island. As all basic Makers, apart from the Seed Maker, cost 20,000G and require 10 Adamantite to make, I personally would advise against the Mayonnaise Maker until you have made both the Butter and Cheese Makers. The reason for this is value for cost. Mayonnaise has a lower shipping value than the other Ranch Products. Furthermore, I believe that, at this early stage in the game, Eggs are one of the most valuable resources in creating Cooked Dishes as Recovery Items.

When you have at least 56% completion and 65-66 characters on the Island, you should experience two Events:
When you enter Taro’s house, you will experience his Expansion Event; and
At 6.00 a.m., Noe will visit your house in the 3rd ‘A Growing Island’ Event.

After these events have been triggered, when the 2nd Ranch character arrives on the Island, Sheep should appear on the Menu at Mirabelle’s Animal Shop. The easiest way to bring the 2nd Rancher to the Island is by purchasing a total of 4 Cows from Mirabelle. There is only one problem with this strategy if you have not expanded your Animal Barn first. A cow who is not an adult cannot be sold. You therefore will have a full Barn without any ability to buy a Sheep unless you sell an adult Cow. I would recommend that a player expand his/her Animal Barn instead of selling a full-grown Cow who may be the only cow at this point who has earned more than one heart.

Note that you never need to have more than 4 Chickens or Livestock in Island of Happiness for the purpose of unlocking any new option. My own strategy is to expand BOTH Barns but keep them only half-full. This allows me to fill all food trays in preparation for any typhoon or snowstorm (or in case I forget to feed the Animals one day!) Animals thus never suffer stress from hunger. I usually place the chickens outside in a pen during the day as they then will not require the Bird Feed set in their trays. This is another way to prevent stress from hunger if a storm occurs.

Ranch products have high shipping value, especially when you are able to play one of the Touchscreen mini-games. On the other hand, animal care is time-consuming, especially when one of the Touchscreen mini-games is offered. With too many Chickens or Livestock, you may find that you will be forced to use the Touchscreen daily in your animal care for more than one of your animals. If you enjoy these games, then this is a positive effect but if you prefer not to spend too much time on animal care, you may wish to keep your population small once you have made at least 100 ranch products in each of the Makers. Making 100 Mayonnaise, 100 Butter, 100 Cheese and 100 Yarn in your Makers will bring the other Ranchers to the Island. Once they have arrived, you simply need to make 5 of each Ranch Product in the Makers each season and greet the characters regularly to keep them on the Island.

There is a great advantage in breeding your own animals but only after the Animal bred has high heart levels. Any chick hatched from an egg or any Calf/Lamb born to an existing animal will have a heart level equal to half of the Mother’s heart level when born. (When it is an egg, the chick’s heart level will be half the heart level of the chicken who laid the egg initially.) It is possible that breeding has a positive effect on the mother as well in terms of her chances of winning an Animal Contest. A Cow who won the Cow Festival at only 2 Hearts was one who had given birth at least twice, perhaps three times prior to the Contest. To guarantee that your Animal will win an Animal Contest, however, she should be at 9-10 Hearts.