The extremely popular Harvest Moon franchise is on its way to the PlayStation 2, complete with the graphics upgrades expected on the system. Fans of the two-dimensional look of the series shouldn't worry, however -- as previously reported, though Harvest Moon 3 will take place in three-dimensional space, all of the graphics are high-resolution two-dimensional cel-shaded images that create a cartoonish feel, reflecting the feeling of the game itself.
The structure of the game has also been changed to allow for more character development. For example, the timing of the game has changed. Whereas earlier games in the series set specific deadlines for the care of the farm, Harvest Moon 3 will allow players different deadlines. Players looking for a dense, yet short, gameplay experience have the option to complete the game in a single game year. Those looking to truly make the farm their own can take care of it for much longer. Five cows and six hens can be kept at maximum, and it appears that fewer agricultural products will appear in the game. It is expected that the reduced stress of less products will give the player a chance to concentrate even more on the options that do exist. Finally, Harvest Moon 3 will have an increased focus on the love and dating elements seen in the previous games, but marriage will no longer be an option. It is expected that this decision was made to allow the love simulation to continue throughout the entire game. Harvest Moon 3 is expected to hit Japan on July 19, with a North American version expected later this year.