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Rune Factory 4 Special (Nintendo Switch)

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Amazon has Rune Factory 4 Special (Nintendo Switch) on sale for $25.99. Shipping is free.

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https://www.amazon.com/Rune-Facto...07XLGKW39/
  • The popular spinoff from the Story of Seasons series returns as an HD remaster of the Nintendo 3DS classic combining farming and family life with monster battling and taming with an epic story that's accessible to new players and series veterans alike
  • A world where every day is filled with adventure - Whether it be governing as the local ruler, tilling the fields or heading to a dungeon to take on dangerous foes, the diverse amount of activities ensure that each day is a new adventure
  • Customize your battle strategy - Use swords, spears, staffs and magic to personalize your battle tactics as formidable monsters await in trap-laden dungeons. Invite the townsfolk along, develop friendships with certain monsters and grow stronger together
  • Plenty of romance - The addition of Newlywed mode allows players to deepen their relationship after wedding vows have been exchanged, while newly added cut scenes and Veteran mode ensure there's plenty of other new content for returning fans to experience
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Created 01-27-2022 at 06:18 AM by lipton
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Cataguy asked this question on 01-27-2022 at 01:37 PM
01-27-2022 at 01:37 PM
They're similar in some aspect (farms, relationships, etc), but the best way I heard it described was SDV was a farming sim with some RPG elements whereas Rune Factory 4 was a farming RPG with some sim elements.

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Rune Factory 5 comes out on March 22 in English: https://www.nintendo.com/games/de...-5-switch/
It is Better than Stardew Valley in every single way, honestly. Like I really mean it. Marriage events, perks for being married, farm work, monster taming, combat, character animation and liveliness (va lines for all main characters), the music, really everything. The only thing stardew might have done better is peaceful village because there are constant events and things for the player to do in rune factory versus stardeau where you mainly just farm and do maybe one event per month. There are birthdays, holidays events, typhoons, seasonal events, it's just much more alive and dynamic, the Town of Selphia vs the town of Stardew Valley, some players might prefer a more involved experience with the town and some would prefer to be a hermit who only does farming, the different games can vary in value depending on what you want.

One notable difference, is this game is anime themed to the max, if you've got some weird thing against anime, girly stuff or whatever then you may not like this, however a major downside of this title vs Stardew is that there is no same-sex marriage, the best you can do is an illusion wardrobe to make a male character appear female or female character appear male, but you will always be referred to by the proper pronouns or name.
Stardew Valley is a cheap copy of Harvest Moon for SNES.

Rune Factory is Harvest Moon with JRPG elements which segregate it from the main Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons series. Fantasy races for characters, monster raising (not like pokemon, more like monster rancher), and fighting in dungeons. Farming serves are your source of income as well as ability to improve your equipment and relationships in town.

Personally, Rune Factory games are a lot more fun than Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons as the main series has mostly become about manufacturing while Rune Factory crafting is entirely optional. Running dungeons is also optional. Not engaging in either will mean more difficulty and not progressing the plot, but a high level farmer can grow endgame weapons (yes really) and a high level explorer can forage for endgame farming products. It all evens out. Just have fun and do what you wanna do. Shops will sell equipment if you find yourself behind so farming truly is the go-to sustained income anyway.

Being a Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons game, there are social relationships and ability to marry local candidates. Rune Factory games are more social unlike the predictable Story of Seasons games where characters merely say "how do you do", maybe some quick character lore, and go about their business. Talking to people everyday often provides different dialogue relative to weather, upcoming town events, and current character events (town events are different from character events, which provide more character lore). Getting to know people is the same tossing of items at NPCs as Harvesr Moon/Story of Seasons, but in Rune Factory some characters require plot progression as well as character event triggers. This leads up to the biggest problem with Rune Factory 4 in particular.

So Rune Factory 4 on the original release on 3DS had a big issue with randomly generated events. As I said before, Rune Factory marriage can require these events. The problem is that character events can only be triggered when there is no town holiday going on and if the weather is right (there is one PER WEEK in Rune Factory 4 so be careful! You can "order" them gone as prince/princess). Since events are randomly generated at the start of a day, yes this means save scumming (the act of saving the night before and reloading save file to get results you want). Allegedly the release of Rune Factory 4 on Nintendo Switch remedied RNG, but I didnt see much change. It is still absolute hell to get the marriage event for characters like Arthur and Leon who have multiple event triggers needed for marriage. If you want the men to propose to you, get ready to jump through MORE hoops.

Stardew Valley is very appealing to western players because of it's availability on a wide variety of platforms, Doom/Dragon's Lair-style, it's easy gameplay, and it's progressive social relationships (LGBTQIA+ friendly). Newer Story of Seasons games are only NOW allowing for samesex relationships with the Friends of Mineral Town and Olive Town games on Switch (and mostly because it's easier to program lets be real). For the most part all Harvest Moon and Rune Factory games are heterosexual-only with some weird outliers like the sexless rival character in Harvest Moon Magical Melody on Gamecube. If this is a concern for you, Rune Factory 4 allows you to change the protagonist portrait so you effectively become the female protagonist and vice versa. This means as a female, you can marry female characters. I dont recall pronouns changing, though. You will still be able to have kids anyway.

As an aside, if you hate modern anime you will likely hate some Rune Factory characters. Rune Factory 4 has a little girl-looking fairy character who is marriagable, which is imo creepy. Even if she's potentially hundreds of years old, im not falling for that Fire Emblem-assed 1000-year old dragon excuse. The other characters are alright but some are too tryhard quirky for my taste like Clorica, the narcaleptic female butler in the royal palace and the detective florist. At least the english dub is really really good, with Matthew Mercer as Leon and Vic Mignogna as Vishnal.

If you are looking for more JRPG elements, you will level up and raise skills for everything you do with everything you do. Throwing things eaises throwing skill, walking raises walking skill, and talking to people raises your social skill (imagine). As I stated before, just have fun and do your best. You wont hit walls are one would with Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons. Buy equipment from shops (which update as you progress the plot) or craft them yourself. Befriend monsters and mount them to get to places faster. Or just have them join you while farming as a pet.

Small note, you can customize the entire game world by tossing objects around but I believe it's quite limited. You can buy a forge, lift it up, and leave it in a NPC's house if you please. Nobody will ever mind. If that's what you find convenient, go for it lol. I left all of my crafting and storage in the player room and didnt upgrade room size much until endgame.

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How is this compared to Stardew Valley?
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#4
Quote from Cataguy :
How is this compared to Stardew Valley?
They're similar in some aspect (farms, relationships, etc), but the best way I heard it described was SDV was a farming sim with some RPG elements whereas Rune Factory 4 was a farming RPG with some sim elements.
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#5
Quote from Cataguy :
How is this compared to Stardew Valley?
It is Better than Stardew Valley in every single way, honestly. Like I really mean it. Marriage events, perks for being married, farm work, monster taming, combat, character animation and liveliness (va lines for all main characters), the music, really everything. The only thing stardew might have done better is peaceful village because there are constant events and things for the player to do in rune factory versus stardeau where you mainly just farm and do maybe one event per month. There are birthdays, holidays events, typhoons, seasonal events, it's just much more alive and dynamic, the Town of Selphia vs the town of Stardew Valley, some players might prefer a more involved experience with the town and some would prefer to be a hermit who only does farming, the different games can vary in value depending on what you want.

One notable difference, is this game is anime themed to the max, if you've got some weird thing against anime, girly stuff or whatever then you may not like this, however a major downside of this title vs Stardew is that there is no same-sex marriage, the best you can do is an illusion wardrobe to make a male character appear female or female character appear male, but you will always be referred to by the proper pronouns or name.
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Quote from HotShotAzn :
They're similar in some aspect (farms, relationships, etc), but the best way I heard it described was SDV was a farming sim with some RPG elements whereas Rune Factory 4 was a farming RPG with some sim elements.
I would more say that stardew is a farming simulator with some life simulation, and this one is more a life simulation game with more farming.

Just in general the relationships are far more detailed in rune factory for including children and even a new game + mode from your kids inheriting your stuff and starting over. Like really the actual village Life is a huge huge focus of the game, but I wouldn't say farming is to the side either, there are a huge amount of plants and the way you get gear for farming faster is organic and feels like an RPG where for Star do it just feels like you go to one area and grind and eventually acquire stuff (the mines)

Like for rune factory there's entire sets of equipment and stuff and magic, rune abilities, and you can magically enhance farming I guess by hoeing half of the entire field with one click for example.

I would definitely give the life Sim game title to RF4S, and the farming simulator to Stardew. I still say Stardew is much more peaceful and the villagers leave you alone more.
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#7
Would it be worth it to get this when I already have the 3DS version? Is there anything extra in this?
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#8
Stardew Valley is a cheap copy of Harvest Moon for SNES.

Rune Factory is Harvest Moon with JRPG elements which segregate it from the main Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons series. Fantasy races for characters, monster raising (not like pokemon, more like monster rancher), and fighting in dungeons. Farming serves are your source of income as well as ability to improve your equipment and relationships in town.

Personally, Rune Factory games are a lot more fun than Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons as the main series has mostly become about manufacturing while Rune Factory crafting is entirely optional. Running dungeons is also optional. Not engaging in either will mean more difficulty and not progressing the plot, but a high level farmer can grow endgame weapons (yes really) and a high level explorer can forage for endgame farming products. It all evens out. Just have fun and do what you wanna do. Shops will sell equipment if you find yourself behind so farming truly is the go-to sustained income anyway.

Being a Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons game, there are social relationships and ability to marry local candidates. Rune Factory games are more social unlike the predictable Story of Seasons games where characters merely say "how do you do", maybe some quick character lore, and go about their business. Talking to people everyday often provides different dialogue relative to weather, upcoming town events, and current character events (town events are different from character events, which provide more character lore). Getting to know people is the same tossing of items at NPCs as Harvesr Moon/Story of Seasons, but in Rune Factory some characters require plot progression as well as character event triggers. This leads up to the biggest problem with Rune Factory 4 in particular.

So Rune Factory 4 on the original release on 3DS had a big issue with randomly generated events. As I said before, Rune Factory marriage can require these events. The problem is that character events can only be triggered when there is no town holiday going on and if the weather is right (there is one PER WEEK in Rune Factory 4 so be careful! You can "order" them gone as prince/princess). Since events are randomly generated at the start of a day, yes this means save scumming (the act of saving the night before and reloading save file to get results you want). Allegedly the release of Rune Factory 4 on Nintendo Switch remedied RNG, but I didnt see much change. It is still absolute hell to get the marriage event for characters like Arthur and Leon who have multiple event triggers needed for marriage. If you want the men to propose to you, get ready to jump through MORE hoops.

Stardew Valley is very appealing to western players because of it's availability on a wide variety of platforms, Doom/Dragon's Lair-style, it's easy gameplay, and it's progressive social relationships (LGBTQIA+ friendly). Newer Story of Seasons games are only NOW allowing for samesex relationships with the Friends of Mineral Town and Olive Town games on Switch (and mostly because it's easier to program lets be real). For the most part all Harvest Moon and Rune Factory games are heterosexual-only with some weird outliers like the sexless rival character in Harvest Moon Magical Melody on Gamecube. If this is a concern for you, Rune Factory 4 allows you to change the protagonist portrait so you effectively become the female protagonist and vice versa. This means as a female, you can marry female characters. I dont recall pronouns changing, though. You will still be able to have kids anyway.

As an aside, if you hate modern anime you will likely hate some Rune Factory characters. Rune Factory 4 has a little girl-looking fairy character who is marriagable, which is imo creepy. Even if she's potentially hundreds of years old, im not falling for that Fire Emblem-assed 1000-year old dragon excuse. The other characters are alright but some are too tryhard quirky for my taste like Clorica, the narcaleptic female butler in the royal palace and the detective florist. At least the english dub is really really good, with Matthew Mercer as Leon and Vic Mignogna as Vishnal.

If you are looking for more JRPG elements, you will level up and raise skills for everything you do with everything you do. Throwing things eaises throwing skill, walking raises walking skill, and talking to people raises your social skill (imagine). As I stated before, just have fun and do your best. You wont hit walls are one would with Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons. Buy equipment from shops (which update as you progress the plot) or craft them yourself. Befriend monsters and mount them to get to places faster. Or just have them join you while farming as a pet.

Small note, you can customize the entire game world by tossing objects around but I believe it's quite limited. You can buy a forge, lift it up, and leave it in a NPC's house if you please. Nobody will ever mind. If that's what you find convenient, go for it lol. I left all of my crafting and storage in the player room and didnt upgrade room size much until endgame.
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Last edited by SeikenDensetsu January 27, 2022 at 06:10 PM.
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#9
Quote from sherryillk :
Would it be worth it to get this when I already have the 3DS version? Is there anything extra in this?
Rune Factory 4 Special has a newly wed mode which is a "nuzlocke" challenge mode where you follow the plot given before you with your marriage candidate of choice. You are limited to around two ingame weeks to beat each challenge.


For no reason whatsoever, newly wed mode character portraits are fully animated. Only for protagonist and marriage candidates. No idea why it isnt a thing in the main game either. Felt so out of place.


This version of the game also has an extra short story mode with some artist ive never heard of (the art is frankly ugly and scribble-like). They're basically short stories of the protagonist, the marriage candidate of your choice again, and your child. I found them to be shitty but they're fully voiced so maybe give it a go?


Rune Factory 4 special also allegedly fixed the RNG event issues required for marriage.


If you own a hacked 3DS and a hacked Nintendo Switch, you can actually import your Rune Factory 4 save file from your 3DS to Rune Factory 4 special on Nintendo Switch. Using JKSV homebrew, just extract the save and use this homebrew program to convert then import to Switch. Rune Factory 4 special uses the same save file structure as the 3DS original game. This also applies to PC port. 3DS can convert to Switch and PC ports but not other way around!

https://gbatemp.net/threads/rune-...19/page-12
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#10
Quote from sherryillk :
Would it be worth it to get this when I already have the 3DS version? Is there anything extra in this?
Yes! There are pretty serious bugs and a lot of quality of life improvements here, and the graphics are so much better. You can actually see Eliza! 100% but it again IMHO, also soft resetting is different on the switch for save scumming. I have both versions as well and it is totally worth buying again.
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#11
I have Rune Factory 5 on Switch. But since my Japanese isn't very good yet, it's taking me ages to do anything... there is a TON on dialogue.
I only ever played the beginning of 4 on 3ds. Seeing this sale makes me want to play it on the TV.
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#12
I highly recommend Rune Factory 4 if you like Stardew Valley. The characters in this game are unique and their dialogs are fun to read.
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#13
If you are a PC gamer, this is currently $24 on Steam.
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#14
Quote from RedC1537 :
I have Rune Factory 5 on Switch. But since my Japanese isn't very good yet, it's taking me ages to do anything... there is a TON on dialogue.
I only ever played the beginning of 4 on 3ds. Seeing this sale makes me want to play it on the TV.
Rune Factory 5 comes out on March 22 in English: https://www.nintendo.com/games/de...-5-switch/
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FYI, GameStop has same price new.
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