The Harvest Moon franchise is a popular farm simulation RPG series, which has steadily built a firm fanbase over the years.
Rune Factory pushes the brand forward by giving players the ability to fight or befriend monsters, explore caves and dungeons, as well as the traditional gameplay traits of building a farm, growing crops and falling in love.
Wii exclusive Rune Factory: Frontier is the latest in the series and the first to head to a home console, with previous entries appearing on the DS. Publisher Rising Star Games is confident of its success at retail following a string of positive reviews.
Marketing manager Raul Nieto Garcia says: “We are very happy with the media reception Rune Factory: Frontier has got since we announced its release in PAL territories, winning awards such as IGN’s Best Wii Role-Playing Game.
“As a publisher, we listen to our audience and their feedback has been very positive as well, which means we are bringing the right titles to them.
“This is one of the most anticipated Wii titles this spring and we hope it will perform exceptionally well come April.”
THE NEXT FRONTIER
Rune Factory: Frontier has had a visual uplift over its handheld predecessors, courtesy of the Wii’s more powerful architecture. And the title boasts full motion controls – adding to the gameplay established in the original games on the DS.
“This is the first Rune Factory title on a home console and the Nintendo Wii proves to be the perfect platform for it,” adds Nieto Garcia.
Where Harvest Moon constrained gamers within their farm and the town, Rune Factory opens up elements of exploration, adding dungeons, monsters and other new areas to the mix, giving the player extra depth of gameplay and an RPG feel.
Nieto Garcia says: “Rune Factory: Frontier improves on Harvest Moon’s farming and social interactions and adds a comprehensive RPG element.
“There is something for everybody in Rune Factory: Frontier, which is an outstanding amalgamation of different genres, and a perfect chance for gamers not familiar with the series to get into it.
“Also, fans of farming, RPGs, life-sims, God and even casual games will be pleased with the Frontier experience.”
Rising Star Games has a comprehensive marketing campaign planned for Rune Factory: Frontier, with print advertisements scheduled for specialist Nintendo magazines before the game’s April release.
There’s also a range of MPUs, banners and skyscrapers set to appear on anime and manga websites, with takeovers planned.
Rune Factory’s core audience will be targeted through Rising Star Games’ own digital channels, with news, assets and exclusive content for subscribers, as well as promotion through its ever-expanding Hoshi Club.