Let me tell you a story.
So back in 1996, Victor Interactive Software made a game called Bokujou Monogatari, which literally translates as "Farm Story". They then contracted Natsume to localize and publish it in the west. Natsume thought the name "Farm Story" sounded kind of dull so they renamed it to Harvest Moon (though obviously what it was really missing was -ville) .
Victor Interactive was acquired by Marvelous Entertainment in 2003. They continued to make the games and Natsume continued to localize them. But Marvelous has their own localization studio now: Xseed. Why hasn't Xseed been localizing these games, especially since Natsume hasn't exactly been doing the greatest job? Turns out that the name "Harvest Moon" belongs to Natsume, not Victor/Marvelous. And the Harvest Moon games have been their cash cow for a while now so they don't want to give that up.
This situation continued for a while but finally with their latest release Marvelous decided they had enough. They're using Xseed, not Natsume, for the localization. Which means they can't call it "Harvest Moon" in the US so instead it's being released later this year as "Story of Seasons".
But the story doesn't end there.
Natsume still owns the name "Harvest Moon" and they're free to do what they want with it. And they've apparently decided to go for maximum dickitude because they're releasing "Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley" head-to-head with Story of Seasons. That's right, they're making a "Harvest Moon" game by a completely different team that's going to be directly competing with an actual Harvest Moon game that can't actually be called Harvest Moon.
So anyway, a trailer for Natsume's Harvest Moon game was just released
. And I have never seen a trailer that specifically references the "series" the game is part of so many times. It's kind of ridiculous when you realize that this game is really the clone. (Well, they seem to have added in some Minecraft elements too, which is actually kind of neat, but we'll have to see how well it really works...)
Marvelous/Xseed really have an uphill battle to convince folks to give their game a shot here. If the casual consumer (and I hate to use that term, but Harvest Moon really does appeal to a casual audience) walks into a game story and sees both "Story of Seasons" and "Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley" on the shelves which one do you think they're going to go for?