Harvest Moon is celebrating it’s 20th anniversary this year. For the 20th anniversary, Natsume is doing two things: They are bringing the series to PC for the first time and bringing the series to consoles which has not been done in a few years. The new Harvest Moon game is known as Light of Hope.
Light of Hope’s graphics are top down and players view the cast of Light of Hope with more realistic proportions. Light of Hope does away with the full 3-D perspective which harken back to its most recent predecessors, which were the first Harvest Moon games developed by Natsume after their split with Marvelous Entertainment (It begs repeating: The series known in the West as Harvest Moon now is different from Bokujo Monogatari, the original farming sim franchise that now goes by Story of Seasons stateside).
Producer Taka Maekawa informed Polygon that this 2.5D style is meant to evoke the very first Harvest Moon game. Although the 16-bit Super Nintendo sprites have been replaced with 3D-rendered models, the flat perspective and grid-based, limited range of motion are all straight from Harvest Moon on SNES.
This art style might remind people of the popular farming sim Stardew Valley. However, Natsume is adamant that Light of Hope is not taking anything from Stardew Valley but rather they are going in their own direction. The switch version will have full touch controls and the pc version can be played with just a mouse.
The game is expected to launch in early 2018.