It's a brilliant addition to the Rune Factory spin-offs, but a poor choice had me putting this game off to the side.

User Rating: 8 | Rune Factory Frontier WII
If you're just wondering why I didn't play this game quite as much - two words - Runey System.

You don't get to know a lot about it, and as I'm not one for reading guides I just went into the game. By the time I realized what was going on, I was ensured that I'd be doing math every in-game day for a couple in-game months to get my game where I wanted to be and then have to maintain the little buggers or else face not being able to grow crops. I imagine there were other penalties, but I don't recall.

Gameplay - 8/10

The Runey System! Like I just said, I basically hate when a game feels like a chore. The Harvest Moon series - yes, even the spin-offs- have always been my source of relaxation and just well, farming and sometimes killing things and raising monsters in this case. However, the tossing in of a required maintenance of Runeys (sucking some out of an area, tossing them in another one) and strategy regarding them kind of blew up the entire idea of relaxing during the game. I would spend most of my days attending to the things - that is until I came across a code that allowed me to disable the Runey System... Without that, I would have never played this game as long as I did. Aside from that - running, farming, attacking, and dungeon exploration were all a joy. Minus running - that was just running.
Also, the artwork is stunning and worth a mention.

Characters - 10/10

I adored the characters. This time around, I found myself actually facing a hard choice between them wife-wise which had never happened before (even in Rune Factory DS.) The dialogue they had was engaging and it actually felt like real character development as opposed to some of the other games. Raguna himself (main character) was also a rather good choice even though I'm not fond of blushing which he does a lot of.

Sounds - 7.5/10
The sounds are pretty standard and it's basically farming and dungeon background music. However, I did notice some of the characters sounded disturbingly similar. In fact, five of the girls voices to be precise. I love the character diversity, but I didn't like hearing Selphy in Bianca (whom I'm not fond of.)

Story - No rating.
I've chosen not to rate the story because it's not really a story. None of the HM / Rune Factory games have enough of a story to actually rate. They just give reasons for you to farm or beat dungeon bosses / dungeons in this case. This one is no different and it was nothing special to me, though it wasn't bad either. You get the idea.

Graphics - 10/10
This game was simply beautiful. Even when not comparing it to the other games, the game's art is enough to stand on its own. I didn't expect any wii games to be as stunning as this one managed to pull off, and the animated cutscenes were a lovely touch however limited. The characters all have portraits that change expression to give a more realistic idea of what's going on, and are also beautiful works.

Overall, I had to give it a 8. I'm happy I bought it, but that Runey System was a serious pain. Normally I'm fine with things that feel like chores, but not in a Rune Factory game; poor place for that. That belongs in traditional RPGs (Grinding... which is actually also in this game, though it never felt difficult.)