The Flower Shop: Winter in Fairbrook (Winterwolves.com)

Requested by kristi78968

Natalie just finished a semester in college and all she wants to do is relax.  If only her parents didn’t insist that she get a job and become more responsible.  Fortunately, her roommate Clara manages to get her a job working in Susana’s flower shop.

Like Steve, Natalie is a slacker whose parents want her to grow up.  Unlike Steve, Natalie actually has a choice about where she wants to work.  Many of the characters from the previous game return along with one extra, Ryan who runs the General Store.

Natalie also has her own romance options, the timid Jacob, the bold Trent, the reserved Ryan and the hard-working Steve.  Steve has changed since the last game and it shows.  He’s taken a more responsible role in his family’s life, yet still retains his joking nature.  His relationship with Natalie is my favorite because they bond over their similar situations.

Like the last game, the boys have lives outside of you.  Your job is to become a part of their lives while having your own.  There are even a couple of scenes showing that, like the show Friends, many of the characters have bonded with each other over their screwed up families.

The game play is similar to the first game.  When you get up, you have to grow flowers in the morning.  You can use your weekly scheduler to decide what to do in the afternoons.  You hang out in the library, go running with Steve, go to the general store, stay at the flower shop, rest or continue working.  Like the last game, you need to have a life outside of the boy you pursue in order to raise a stat they particularly like.  Jacob likes determination, which is associated with Steve, Trent likes empathy, which is associated with Jacob, Ryan likes culture, which is associated with Trent, and Steve likes intelligence, which is associated with Ryan.  This time you only need to raise over four hundred dollars to get the special endings.

It’s addictive and can be funny at times.  I give it 9 out of 10, even better than the first one.

The Flower Shop: Summer in Fairbrook (Winterwolves.com)

Steve just got his grades back from college and they didn’t turn out as well as he hoped.  His girlfriend, Jill, is tired of his slacker ways and dumps him.  To top it all off, Steve’s dad sends him to go live with his uncle on a farm so he can learn responsibility.

Steve’s definitely a slacker type and it shows.  At first, all he does is complain about his predicament.  Then he develops into a hard-working guy.  There are four women Steve can hook up with, Clara (the small-town girl with big dreams), Susana (the vegan with a temper), Marian (the shy librarian), and Jill (your ambitious ex).  These women actually have something that you don’t normally find in a dating sim, a life outside of you.  They have their own problems along with their own hopes and dreams that you have to help them through.  My personal favorite is Clara’s relationship with Steve because they both bond with each other over their hatred for Fairbrook.

Every morning, you wake up and work on the farm.  When you’re finished, you do the activity you scheduled for that day.  You can rest, go jogging with Clara, go to the library, go to the flower shop, stay home and call Jill, or continue working on the farm.

As I said earlier, the girls have lives outside of you.  If you want to win any of their hearts, you have to have a life outside of the girl you pursue.  Each girl has a particular stat they admire, Clara likes coolness which you can get from talking to Jill, Jill likes determination which you can get from jogging with Clara, Susana likes culture which you can get by going to the library, and Marian likes romance which you can get by going to the flower shop.  You can get a normal ending and a special ending with each girl depending on whether you raised over a thousand dollars while playing.  If you don’t meet the requirements for any of the girls, you get the alone ending.

The game is fun and has a good story.  I give it 8 out of 10, some similarities to Harvest Moon.