No need for custody hearings in Olive Town, apparently.

Fans of Story of Seasons got a treat last week when the latest entry in the video game franchise, Story Of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town, was released for the Nintendo Switch. The first all-new game in the series since 2016, Olive Town continues its tradition of combining agricultural simulation with charming slice-of-small-town-life storytelling.

▼ Trailer for Story Of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town

Olive Town allows the player to get married. Okay, technically it’s called a “Best of Friends Ceremony,” but for all intents and purposes it’s a wedding; the participants wear tuxedos and wedding gowns, and afterwards you start living together as a family. Your love can even produce a child, turning the family of two into a family of three.

All of those are things are features that Story of Seasons has had for some time. However, Olive Town also sees the debut of a new mechanic: divorce. If at some point you decide you want to dissolve your union with your spouse, you can visit a shrine in the forest where a spirit lives, and ask her to “Undo my familial relationship.”

And just like that, you’re back to living the single life. Divorces in Olive Town are uniformly amicable, with no loss of affection level between you and your former spouse. In addition to playing the field and marrying a different character, you’re also free to propose to your ex once more and get hitched all over again.

▼ Second time’s the charm?

One could say that it’s a progressive, enlightened outlook on marriage, where mutual happiness and a genuine desire to be together are what form the bond. If you’re just not compatible, you both walk away with no hurt feelings, and nothing lost, right?

Except, wait, what happens if you have a child? Does Olive Town include custody hearings and visitation rights? Does your kid split time between each parent’s farm?

Nope. Should you and your spouse divorce in Olive Town, your child is instantly erased from existence.

▼ …wheee horsey…?

Making the whole thing even more morbid is that having a child in Olive Town doesn’t just put a checkmark in your character’s profile. You choose a name, and gender if you desire, and the game gives you updates on their early-life milestones, such as special messages when your child learns to crawl, stands up for the first time, and celebrates its birthday every in-game year.

And while you can remarry the same spouse, that first baby is gone forever. Sure, you can make another child, but the one who was scrubbed away in your divorce will not be coming back.

The surprisingly dark way in which the game handles the situation has prompted reactions on Twitter such as:

“A game of darkness is about to begin!”
“Pure madness.”
“Divorce in the game doesn’t affect your future, it retroactively wipes out the past, including your child…terrifying.”
“So you ask the forest spirit to undo your family situation, and then your child ceases to exist…does that mean the spirit eats your baby????”
“’Ethics’ has been disabled.”

So if you’re playing Story Of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town, make sure to put just as much prior thought into sowing the seeds of your family as you do into sowing the seeds in your field.

Source: Gamewith via Twitter/@yamatakekichi via Hachima Kiko, Twitter
Images: YouTube/コンシューマ&アミューズメント – マーベラス公式チャンネル
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Follow Casey on Twitter, where he’s gotta say, that Olive Town cow is pretty cute.