‘Return to PoPoLoCrois: A Story of Seasons Fairytale’ is one of many in the PoPoLo series but is a cross over with ‘Story of Seasons.’ This means that ‘Return to PoPoLoCrois’ has ‘Harvest Moon‘ styles of gameplay mixed with the PoPoLo games style which on paper sounds great but let’s start with the presentation before we get stuck in to the gameplay.
The graphics are really quite good for the 3DS. The environments are what you would expect from the series as a whole – lush green environments with bright colors with a Manga art style thus keeping with the PoPoLo series roots.
The games’ story opens with Prince Pietro’s birthday. The town has turned out to celebrate the Princes birthday but beasts have been spotted roaming around the kingdom which in turn spurs Prince Pietro into action. This leads him to being stuck in Galariland where he must find a way home. It is a nice little story however the game does not throw much in terms of exposition and if you are looking for a really deep story then unfortunately you won’t find one here.
My biggest gripe with the game is the controls, more specifically the fact that Pietro is controlled by a tile system with eight directions. After a while this began to grind my gears. The battle system is on a grid and is as basic as you can get. You move a character close enough to an enemy and either attack or use an ability. That really is all there is to it and because of that I never died in all the time I spent with the game. Also if you really do not want to fight, quite frankly, boring random battles you can set the encounter rate to low and just get on with the story with little interruption.
Finally we get to the farming in the game – not the collecting items type but actual farming. Pietro comes across various areas to set up farms which really, if you are just focused on finishing the game, you do not actually need to pick up a shovel as this can be avoided. The farming does net you some good items and it fills your pockets. It is also actually quite addictive and fun but unfortunately it takes a long time for the farming side of the game to actually arrive in the game.
In the end ‘Return to PoPoLoCrois: A Story of Seasons Fairytale’ is a charming RPG. The farming side of the game is very fun but the simple battle system and lack of a deep rewarding story left me feeling a little unsatisfied. However if you are a fan of JRPG’s or if you just love tending to the fields, ‘Return to PoPoLoCrois: A Story of Seasons Fairytale’ is a must buy for you.