Doraemon: Story of Seasons is a farming simulation RPG and a licensed spinoff to other well-known farming simulations like Harvest Moon. Due to the Doraemon characters and cuteness, it's an extremely charming game. For those that have never heard of Doraemon, he is a well-known robotic cat robot sent back in time to aid a young boy named Nobi Nobota. The Doraemon franchise has been around in Japan since 1969 and has slowly gained recognition worldwide since then. A simple Google search and you can find all sorts of content about Doraemon and his wacky adventures.
For the most part, the gameplay is fairly simple and easy to navigate, with the story revolving around Nobita and his friends developing the town, finding all of Doraemon’s gadgets to return home. You get a plot of land, a farm, and basically need to take care of the place like it’s your own. There are many activities that are fairly cute, ranging from raising animals, fishing, mining, growing your vegetables and so much more. If you're familiar with the Harvest Moon or Story of Seasons franchises, then you know what to expect here. However, for hardcore farming simulator fans, Doraemon lacks some of the genre's most prominent features like dating and a less rewarding gameplay system compared to other games. If you just want a game that is focused on the farming aspect of it, then you will have blast with this title.
Doraemon: Story of Seasons hasn't done much to change the fundamentals of the Harvest Moon formula and feels simply reshaped with a Doraemon appearance. Things do start out somewhat tedious, as it takes plenty of time to build up your tools which will make the farming segment less tedious as you progress. Doraemon is also missing a few QoL features that other farming games have. For example, the game lacks a minimap while navigating through the areas, though luckily you will be visiting the areas a lot, so you will most likely have it memorized soon enough. Interaction with the other Doraemon characters also become stale as the game goes on as none of them really has much to say and will repeat their exact interaction as you redo festivals later in the years.
The game is a stunningly beautiful one, with a colorful watercolor appearance that brings out the charm of the Doraemon series to life. Most of the locales are also well detailed, including the day and night cycle, with only the cavern areas being dull to look at. The game also has a great system performance as long as you're not in the main town. Game music is also relaxing, which makes farming an enjoyable experience. My primary gripe with the sound design is that there is minimal voice acting and you will just hear Nobi grunting all day, which can get annoying so it's best to turn the voice acting off.
Although the title lacks some of the popular features of other farming simulators, such as dating, Doraemon: Story of Seasons is a charming game that I think is great for kids and a great starting entry for the genre. It doesn't add anything new to the genre, but if you wanted a game that is a great farming simulator along with an establishment of a popular IP, then Doraemon: Story of Seasons is worth a look at, as well as being a much better game to play for a younger demographic. But there are plenty of other competing options out there and it will probably not be your go-to title.
Versions tested: Nintendo Switch
Disclaimer: A copy of this game was provided to RPG Site by the publisher.