- Harvest Moon: Save the Homeland FAQ
- [Updated 19 Jan 2018]
- Q: What are you doing?
- A: Trying to beat HM:StH as fast as possible.
- Q: How do you "beat" a Harvest Moon game?
- A: Though a lot of HM titles are rather long and open-ended, StH is unique in that the game ends after one calendar year for each playthrough. There are nine possible endings, so the Any% category aims to beat the game in one of those ways. If the player successfully completes a winning ending, they are allowed to start the game over, but without losing the inventory, money, animals, and house extensions they've accumulated. In this way, the All Endings category consists of beating the game nine times in sequence, but building up resources to make each consecutive ending easier and faster to complete. These attributes make StH particularly well-suited to speedrunning, at least among HM games.
- Q: Why aren't you farming?
- A: StH is also unique in that the focus is less on crops and animals and more on the social aspect of the game. In order to advance the plot, it's necessary to trigger a variety of cutscenes in a certain order. These cutscenes involve certain characters, depending on the ending, that the player must befriend by giving gifts. Also, it goes without saying that in any HM game, farming is slow :P
- Q: What's your goal?
- A: Having finished a run of each ending at least once, I am returning to each one gradually to improve the routes and times, aided by a program called Cheat Engine that helps investigate hidden values and cutscene triggers with more precision. I'll grind runs more once I have my Japanese copy next month. I also will be running New Game+ for each ending, and eventually All Endings, once I've conducted more research.
- Q: Why did you reset?
- A: It depends on the ending, but it is usually because I either got bad weather luck or bad foraging luck. StH features a seasonal weather system, where each season has a wet, mild, and dry season. During the wet season, it is something like 80-90% to rain, so if I am relying on it for maximum timesave (e.g. Azure Swallowtail, Treasure Hunt I and II) but fail to get rain on one of the days, I may reset. Also in StH, unlike most other classic HM titles, forageable items (like berries, herbs, and flowers) grow in a random pattern, and regrow over a period of days, rather than always appearing in the same set location everyday. As such, I may reset if too few forageables spawned at the beginning of the run.
- Q: What's the world record?
- A: The leaderboard for StH can be found here: https://www.speedrun.com/hmsth
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