Review: Rune Factory 4

Fair skies above the clouds come crashing down on a dragon in the form of a resilient hero, whose origins and intentions are unknown due to the unfortunate consequence of having lost all memories on impact. Noticing a unique ability to bring soil to life and connect with monsters, Ventuswill, the Divine Wind Dragon, issues you a proclamation: stay in this castle as royalty, and bring prosperity to the town of Selphia!


  • Gorgeous graphics, Bringing an almost modern 16 bit feel to it all. Chunky graphics lathered over a 2D world, The game really pops and can look absolutely breath taking at times.
  • Animations are every bit as good as the graphics, See characters fluently roll , jump and fght with such grace.
  • Cartoon/anime style cut scenes that are just brilliant to watch.
  • Combat is very reminiscent of Zelda games with you being armed with an assortment of weapons, shields and items.
  • Music is a subtle love letter to RPG fans bringing tranquail notes as you explore the land. Encounter a fight and listen as the music erupts into an inferno of drums, percussion and awesomeness.
  • Gameplay is split acroos a multitude of game genres. You gave your RPG style adventuring and fighting, A date sim where by you can woo prospective partners, Farming sim as you have a field to grow crops, caves, enemies and all manners of crazy and most of all its a time management game. You can do whatever you want within a day and activities are measured by your RP bar. Doing tasks will lower it until you need to rest.
  • You have your own room where you can store items in a chest, A calendar to mark down special in game events, A diary to save whenever you like and a bed to rest for the night. More thing become available as you play through the game.
  • You can re watch cut scenes and go over old dialogue from within the Library.
  • Huge open world hub.
  • Bottom screen has a huge detailed map that can be interacted with to display names, and shows peoples locations etc.
  • Controls are surprisingly easy to learn. You can do all the inventory stuff through the touchscreen but you do have quick access buttons on the shoulder buttons.
  • On screen prompts are always with you so you never forget what needs to be done.
  • Game pace is laid out in a organised way at first as it slowly introduces you to the mechanics of the game and has you doing multitude of tasks as to familiarize yourself with them.
  • Tasks can be collected from the office and give very clear instructions on what to do.
  • You can have people go out adventuring with you.
  • Find new seeds,items,loot as you set out on adventures across the huge lands.
  • You are in complete control of what you do every day. Feel free to play as you want and the game still rewards you and in no way can you mess up.
  • You can marry people if you feel that way inclined.
  • The atmosphere within the game is just top notch.
  • Use headphones for the best experience.
  • Story is a well written one that has it all, Love, tragedy, humour and even has nods to other game titles chucked in.
  • Farming may sound boring but it is so easy to do and with so many possible outcomes, Doing simple tasks can sometimes yield the biggest reward.
  • The game is very much suited to the handheld as you can play as little or as much as you like.
  • Very easy to get into too and within minutes the game will have you under its spell.
  • Level up in every area of your stats. Even digging up weeds will level you up and you get a satisfying skill up notification.
  • You can play as a man or a woman.
  • Three difficulty settings: Easy, normal and hard.
  • You can change the difficulty whenerver you like in game.
  • The user interface is clean and simple to understand with button presses kept to a minimum.


  • No proper 3D implementation.
  • Long text heavy opening section.
  • Very text heavy.
  • Game pace at the start is not for everyone and doing the same task over and over could grate a few people.
  • With so much going on you can at times feel a bit overwhelmed.
  • With no clear direction this can cause issues of people losing focus.

In Summary, This game is awesome! Really became one of the first must have games for the Nintendo 3DS. Its blend of so many game genres wrapped in a simple easy to use enviroment really gives a gamer a lot. The story is engrossing and fun, Cut scenes look fantastic and the fact you can do what you want when you want is so good. Its a game that everyone needs to experience for themselves. I just cannot get my head around how they managed to add so many , what sounds like complicated genres and mechanics yet plays as smooth and effortlessly as a simple platformer! Now the game may not be for everyone but that said they will be far and few between. The game is easily one of the best releases this year and a perfect game to play over the coming holidays. Hours upon hours of fun! Stop reading this and go buy it.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!