Rune Factory 4 is a JRPG that has a bit of everything from dungeon crawling to life simulation. Originally released on the Nintendo DS and 3DS in 2006, it’s now coming out on the Nintendo Switch. Rune Factory 4 is one of our Top 10 Games coming out this February 2020.
What Is The Game About – The Story
Rune Factory started off as a spin-off of Harvest Moon, now Story of Seasons. And while it does have a place for you to run a farm, make friends and live in a town it also has magic and monsters! So while you have to look after your farm and town you’re also embroiled in the battle against good and evil.
Your Rune Factory 4 story begins when you’re tasked with delivering a blue orb to the Native Dragon Ventuswill. Here you can choose to be either a male or female protagonist. Then suddenly a battle begins where you get hit on the back of the head and get amnesia. Of course. When you awaken you’re mistaken as a member of the royal family and are tasked with looking after the village of Selphia. You do this by attracting tourists, making friends with the villagers and working around town. At the same time, a mysterious force is at work in the nearby dungeons. The monsters there that have been defeated are turning into humans. Solve this and save the town!
What Can You Do? – Gameplay
In a world where the hero needs to balance monster hunting with domestic chores, you’re going to need more skills than a farmer. As a farmer, you might need your skills for farming and cooking but as a hero, you’re going to need to be able to fight, craft your own weapons health potions and all that. In Rune Factory 4 there are over 30 individual skills for you to work on.
To add something additional to the mix Rune Factory 4 also has monster taming. In case you weren’t already overwhelmed with all the previous tasks. In the world, you can meet monsters and make them be friendly towards you by petting and feeding them. Once tamed, you can keep them as companions, training them to fight at your side. Replacing traditional animals like cows and chickens each monster has its own skillset. You can harvest some for great ingredients daily or add them to your party in a similar way to how you can add your fellow villagers to your party. You can even tame giant boss monsters, like the huge dragons.
Relationships and dating are an important part of the game’s story. And in fact, it’s probably the one you’re going to be focused on the most because of how complex it is. Every townsperson has a gauge that you’ll work on to level up through your choice of actions. What starts off as small talk can eventually lead to adventures, Rune Factory‘s version of a date. You can handle up to six relationships at once, you player you. This can lead to marriage at about 10 love points, or they’ll think you’re joking. After you get married all your previous relationships get friend-zoned, as they should.
There are six bachelors and bachelorettes for you to choose from. But you’ll have to date the opposite gender to your character, boo. For the bachelors there’s:
- Dylas – The stoic half-horse monster with a heart of gold. He’s got a bit of a temper but hang in there and he’ll warm up eventually.
- Leon – Another half-monster this time a fox. He’s an easygoing trickster but secretly helps people whenever he can.
- Doug – Is an enthusiastic and easygoing dwarf. He’s rash and jumps headlong into situations without thinking. But has a very sweet side when it comes to his mother figure, Blossom.
- Vishnal – Is a very open and optimistic young man. He’s always the first to offer help and is friendly to everyone he meets. He’s often taken advantage of for his kindness and naivety.
- Arthur – A prince of Norad he is kind, calm and enjoys routine. He is very sweet and laid-back with a soft spot for cute things.
- Kiel – Is a polite open and kind young man. He generally always has his nose in a book and a smile on his face.
For the bachelorettes:
- Dolce – Usually very quiet and classy she has a sarcastic and somewhat catty manner of speech. She’s not afraid to speak her mind but is sweet and warm-hearted.
- Forte – Is a Dragon Knight. She’s loyal, serious and extremely stubborn. But is dependable and loves her younger brother Kiel.
- Margaret – Is a peaceful elf who plays music. She has a bossy exterior but is a kind girl at heart.
- Clorica – Is a butler working in the castle who is kind-hearted, friendly, easygoing and supportive. She’s a little ditzy though, not the best butler.
- Amber – Transformed from a butterfly monster, Amber has a cute and cheerful personality. However, she is also spontaneous and has little sense of responsibility.
- Xiao Pai – The resident clumsy girl she’s often making mistakes despite being a hard worker.
What’s New In Rune Factory 4 On The Switch
For the most part, the core gameplay of Rune Factory 4 will stay the same on the Switch. Note that this isn’t a straight port of the game but a remaster so there will definitely be added content. A new feature that’s been included is the ability to create ‘orders’ that affect what happens broadly across town. These are somewhat similar to ordinances in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, but they can do more things like allowing you to hold a requested town event (such as a harvest festival) or stopping a storm from destroying crops.
The Rune Factory 4 Switch edition will include a brand new opening cutscene, additional story cutscenes that were not in the original. As well as a ‘Veteran’ mode for returning players. There’s also an additional special called ‘Newlywed’ mode that lets players strengthen their relationship with their spouse after marriage, with new scenes. So even if you’ve played Rune Factory 4 before, there will still be some new content for you to look forward to.
Rune Factory 4 is out on the Nintendo Switch for USD 39.99 $39.99 / £32.99 / €39,99 / $59.95 AUD on the 25th of February 2020.