Natsume’s next upcoming 3DS title.

OR: When localizing and publishing games for a North American market, what factors and criteria does Natsume look at and consider to determine what content should or should not be left out? 

GM: Basically, context is key in any localization decisions we make. For example, we have a beach volleyball game for 3DS coming out soon, Super Strike Beach Volleyball. Since the characters are on the beach, it’s only natural that they’re wearing swimsuits. Therefore, in that situation, it was an easy decision.

However, honestly, usually something that has a CERO C rating in Japan [OR Note: CERO is the Japanese equivalent of the ESRB rating system in the United States. A ‘C’ rating means that the game was deemed suitable for ages fifteen (15) and up] is probably something that Natsume as a family-friendly company would be unlikely to publish in the first place. Therefore, any changes we make to games that we do publish are relatively minor.

“Chulip was a labor of love, as it took a lot from everyone involved to make it happen.”

OR: Is there any word on a new Ninja or Gabrielle series mobile game being released?

GM: Both the Ninja and Gabrielle series have been very good to us, so we’re definitely looking at releasing more games in those series. However, we don’t have anything to announce at this time.

OR: Shifting gears, Natsume has published a lot of classic games in the past. Most recently, Lufia: The Legend Returns was released for the 3DS e-Shop in 2015 and Lufia: Curse Of The Sinistrals was published in 2010. Does Natsume still retain the rights to publish the Lufia series here in North America? And if so, is there any chance of seeing the games in the series being ported over to iOS or Android?

GM: Unfortunately Natsume does not hold the rights to the Lufia brand.

OR: Along those same lines, certain games such as The Legend Of The River King and Afrika are published by Natsume here in North America despite being developed by other companies. What is the likelihood of seeing other games that you may have published on one original platform being published on another completely different console?

GM: That would be up to the original developers to decide on – but we’re always looking for fun games, whether classic remakes or new ideas.

OR: On 10/8/15, Natsume announced via Twitter that no more Game Boy, Game Boy Color, NES, or SNES games would be coming to Nintendo’s Virtual Console. Additionally, Natsume has made it clear that there are technical issues that make it impossible to port Harvest Moon 64 over to the Virtual Console. Despite all that, what is the possibility of seeing GameCube classics such as Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life or Harvest Moon: Magical Melody coming to the Virtual Console or being re-released as a port on another company’s console?

GM: If we have the opportunity to release our titles via virtual console services, we’ll always be pursuing those opportunities. We really want to get some of these classical titles in the hands of new players.

Reel Fishing Masters Championship

Gameplay images from Reel Fishing Masters Challenge (PlayStation Vita).

RFMCFishingOR: What can we expect to see in the future for other classic IPs such as Reel Fishing?

GM: The Reel Fishing series is one of our fan favorites, so another game in the series will likely be coming, although we don’t have anything concrete to announce at this time.

OR: One of the most unique games to ever be published by Natsume was Chulip for the Playstation 2. What factors were behind the decision to bring this game to North America?

GM: Chulip was a labor of love, as it took a lot from everyone involved to make it happen. The project had many ups and downs, but thankfully it was able to make it to the North American market and can still be purchased on PSN. For those that haven’t played it, you should give it a try! It is truly something special.

OR: When translating the dialogue and the art for Chulip, what was the approach that Natsume took to maintain the original Japanese version’s quirkiness and charm in the translation and still make it accessible to a North American audience?

GM: Our goal was to keep the game pretty much as it was. Changing the quirkiness would take away from the charm and overall philosophy of the game. Thus, we did our best to stay true to the Japanese text while dealing with a strict character limitation. We knew going into the project that the game would receive a T rating, unlike most of all of our other titles, so we were prepared to leave the translation as close to the Japanese as possible.

OR: On December 10, 2015, Medabots: Rokusho and Medabots: Medabee were released in the North American market for the Wii U Virtual Console. How difficult was it to get those classic titles ported over to the Wii U’s virtual console?

GM: The titles for Virtual Console are handled by Nintendo. The publisher and Nintendo discuss which classic titles would be a good fit and have the best potential to sell. Once a title is agreed upon, Nintendo and the publisher work together to bring that title to the designated system, with Nintendo doing the bulk of the work.

OR: For those of us who would like the newest Medabot game, Medabots 9, localized for North America, what can fans of the series do to help make it happen?

GM: We love hearing how enthusiastic fans are for the upcoming games! We too really wanted to bring another Medabots to North America…it just doesn’t look possible at this time. We wish we had better news, but rest assured we’ll keep trying.

The Ninja series is a mobile platform IP from Natsume.

OR: Are there any new IPs (RPGs or otherwise) on the horizon for Natsume to either develop or publish themselves? What direction is Natsume heading towards in the future?

GM: As always, we have our eyes open for unique or quirky titles that we know our fans would love and appreciate.  We’ve got an exciting future with our existing IPs, including the Gabrielle series, the Ninja series, Reel Fishing, and of course, Harvest Moon.

Localized for the 3DS in 2013 by Natsume.

OR: When Hometown Story was being developed for release in Europe on the 3DS, Yasuhiro Wada (the original creator of Harvest Moon who had left Marvelous to open his own studio, Toybox) took the opportunity to implement several enhancements to the game that ranged from better shop mechanics and faster story development to adding in fishing. Will any of these additions ever be patched into the North American version of the game via the e-Shop?

GM: It has been discussed. However, nothing has been decided at this time.

OR: Lastly, if people want to find out more about Harvest Moon: Seeds Of Memories or to keep up with what Natsume is doing next, where should they go?

GM: Our social media is absolutely the place to find all the latest Natsume news, including tips and tricks for Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories!

Fans can find us on Facebook (, Twitter, (, CeeCee’s Tumblr (, Instagram (, and our homepage (

All images used were provided courtesy of, and are the property of, Natsume.

Have you played Harvest Moon: Seeds Of Memories? What about Chulip? Or any of Natsume’s other games? Sound off with your favorites in the comments below!

Quentin H.
I have been a journalist for oprainfall since 2015, and I have loved every moment of it.