There are two types of games I love to play when I want to relax, or right before I go to bed: Farming sims and puzzle games. Specifically, Harvest Moon and Picross. I’m not sure if it’s the relaxing music or the “no stress” gameplay, but its quite cathartic for me after a long day. So, you can imagine how hyped I was when I stumbled upon a game that combined both of these things. Piczle Cross: Story of Seasons is a themed Picross game featuring puzzles, music, and other Story of Seasons aesthetics. But is it a game specifically for SOS fans, or something everyone can enjoy? Let’s take a look.

If you’re unfamiliar with how Picross games work, each puzzle begins with an empty grid of squares, with a set of numbers running along the top and left-side. Once you fill in the correct squares in the grid, the finished product will reveal a picture.

In this case, the pictures are all things from the Story of Seasons games, like tools, items, characters, animals, and buildings. As you complete puzzles, you will notice your farm begin to grow. You can see your farm in the background of the main screens, with the two main characters constantly working. It’s just a basic view that you can’t really do anything with. If you complete a puzzle that ends up being a chicken, for example, then chickens will appear on your farm. Same with cows, dogs—you get it. It would have been neat to be able to interact with it a little more though.

Songs from the games play in the background, and the sound effects are from the Story of Seasons games, as well. It’s a little nostalgic if you’ve played any of the Harvest Moon / Story of Seasons games and you hear a familiar tune playing. If you press pause during a puzzle it will tell you the song title and the game it’s from. You can adjust the sound effects and music , thank goodness. As nostalgic as some of those songs are, they can get a little repetitive.

The puzzle screen is basic, like most Picross games. You don’t want a bunch of distractions while you’re counting. The colors and songs in the puzzles will change with each season. Winter is the most boring time of year… as usual.

As far as the number of puzzles go in Piczle Cross: Story of Seasons, there are a whopping 350 levels to complete and 5 collage puzzles.

Collage puzzles are much bigger and are broken down into multiple, smaller puzzles. When all of them are completed they will form one big picture. You definitely get your money’s worth as far as content goes. There are also little achievement badges you get for completing certain groups of puzzles. Once you’ve finished them all, you can start all over again.

I enjoy Picross puzzles, but for some reason they’re more fun when they’re themed—as with the Legend of Zelda Picross game that was on the 3DS, or Mario’s Picross on the Gameboy. Here, you’re getting a normal Picross game with a Story of Seasons theme, kind of like the monopoly board game and how there are 1,000 different themes you can choose from.

So, if you’re a Picross fan, you’ll enjoy this game. And if you’re a Story of Seasons / Picross fan, you’ll really enjoy this game. If you’re unfamiliar with Picross, I highly recommend trying it out, especially if you like puzzles or pixel art. It can seem intimidating, but, once you get the hang of it, it’s quite addictive.