What do you get when you fuse Second Life, Farmville and Zelda? Stardew Valley. This colorful, 16-bit masterpiece will have you farming, fishing and fighting monsters all over the countryside.
Stardew Valley originally started as a PC only game but has grown so much since 2016 it is now offered on all gaming consoles, including a mobile version.
This open ended game leaves it up to each player to play every adventure as they see fit and for as long as they like.
That being said, there are some tips and tricks that can help you along while playing the game, which is why we have created this awesome guide for your convenience.
What is Stardew Valley?
Stardew Valley offers a very simple story, but allows you to take it in any direction. You inherit your grandfathers farm after leaving the hustle and bustle of your city job with Joja Corp. behind. Picking from five different farm maps, you are tasked with turning that plot of overrun land into a thriving farm; generating revenue to expand your buildings and facilities.
Once settled on your land, you can choose to support the local encroaching Joja Corp. or rebuild the community center, which is one of the driving forces behind the game.
You can also interact with the townspeople; learning there likes and dislikes, slowly earning their trust. By doing this you can receive special gifts that will aid you in creating the most efficient farm possible. There are even 12 romanceable characters in the game that you can marry if you choose to do so!
The main goal of the game is to use the seasons and your land to your advantage, creating as many resources as possible. You can use the resources yourself or sell them for coin or other bonuses. It takes a bit of time (a year in game) to get the best seeds and equipment, but part of the fun is figuring out the right routine to get you there.
Your farmer can also forge the neighboring land for natural goods when your plants are not in season. Or even fish for rare fish at the local fishing hole.
Not only that, but you can explore deep caves and fight monsters for other rewards and power-ups.
This game leaves it up to the player on how they spend their day. The possibilities are literally endless. With constant rewards and unlockables throughout each stage of the game you can spend a lot of time trying to upgrade your rancher and his skills.
Not only is this game crazy fun to play on your own, it also offers a wonderful multiplayer mode. The game adapts to accompany up to three other farmhands and makes challenges more difficult and rewarding as you all play on together.
With constant updates since it's launch, it is ever-expanding and seems to have no end. Making it the perfect game to go back to time and time again over the years.
This colorful and all around fun game is great for all ages and is a must play if you love RPG's.
How to Play Stardew Valley: 9 Steps
This game has a lot of neat features and can be played a variety of different ways.
We compiled 9 steps to get you on the right path.
1. Get the Game
This one might be obvious, but because the game is offered on all platforms you can really customize the way you want to play. If you love farming on the go, download the mobile version for IOS or Android.
2. Choose the Farm Map Wisely
Stardew Valley offers a variety of farming maps that focus on different types of work - farming, fishing, mining, foraging and combat. Each map will give you the opportunity to acquire more resources in a certain area. The original plot giving you the most farming land. While the riverland gives you less farmland but an abundance of water, perfect for fishing. So think about which resource is most important to you from the start and begin there.
3. Activate "Always Show Tool Hit Location"
This game is great in almost every aspect. However, when choosing a square to water/hoe/chop/etc. the cursor may pick something other than what you were trying to choose. This problem can be solved by choosing "Always Show Tool Hit Location" in the settings menu. Now there will be a red outline around the tile you wise to choose, making farming so much easier.
4. Watch TV Every Morning
Just like almost every house in our society today, there is a TV in your home. This television is special, in that it offers special clues that can help you in the game. The weather forecast tells what you can expect for the next day, potentially changing what you were going to do that day. There are two shows of incredible importance: Queen of Sauce and Livin' Off The Land. Queen of Sauce will teach you a new cooking recipe every week, which will become valuable down the road when you have a kitchen to cook in. Livin' Off The Land is the most important show on TV, telling you things you can only learn from the game's wiki page.
5. Don't Stay Up Too Late
It is easy to get caught up in playing and stay up well past 1 am (in game time) trying to complete all your challenges. Keep in mind the later you stay up the less energy you will have the next day in the game, just like in real life. However, if the clock strikes 2 am and you are still out and about you will pass out on the ground where you stand. Not only that, but you will suffer the consequences. You'll have less energy the next day and be charged a percentage of your total gold to whoever dragged you home that night. So make sure you leave time in the day top get home at a reasonable hour.
6. Clear Space on Your Farm
After you start the game, you will notice that your farm in overrun with grass, rocks, logs and other items preventing you from being able to build and plant crops. You must first clear out a space in order to make room for additional building or farm land. By clearing out the vegetation you will gain materials you will need later on. So it is a great place to start in the beginning of the game.
Pro tip: Do not cut the grass until you build a silo
The grass you collect can be turned into hay, which will be useful for feeding your animals in the future. However, the only way you can store the hay is by building a silo to store it in. Focus on gathering materials and coin that will allow you to build one early in the game.
7. Use Your Seeds to get Started
Once you start the game you will be given seeds to plant. Plant those early on to grow crops. Growing crops allows you to sell them for more coin. You can then purchase more seeds and repeat the cycle. This is the easiest way to start making coin for other items in the game.
8. Keep Busy While your Crops Grow
After you plant your crops you will have to wait a bit for them to grow enough to harvest. During this waiting period you can do a variety of different things that will be beneficial for your farm down the road. You can forge for natural items, visit the mines to fight monsters or talk to the people in town for more tips and challenges along the way.
9. Use our Stardew Valley guide
The game might seem simple from the outside but there is a lot that goes on in this game. We have covered a lot of the basics here, enough to get you started anyway, but there is a lot more to this game once you level up enough that the challenge difficulty increases.
Our full Stardew Valley guide offers a more in-depth look into this game that any avid player could benefit from.
Pro tip: Know the different Stardew Valley mods
Stardew Valley is an immensely huge and interactive world filled with hidden bonuses and items. Even more enticing is the game developers went a step further by offering an array of mods to enhance the gaming experience.
For those of you that don't know, a "mod" if a package of files that changes the game in some way. Mods can add features like changing the way characters look in the game, changing the game mechanics (making fences decay more slowly), making cosmetic changes to the environment, etc.
This game is so full of mods we have decided to choose some of our favorites to share with you. But feel free to check out the rest on your own time.
- Pokemon Retextures - If you loved playing Red and Blue growing up you will love this mod. It changes all of the animals, monsters and even people into Pokemon. You can also change furniture, paintings and locations around town Pokemon themed, if you want to pretend you are Ash Ketchum revisiting Lavender Town.
- Kitty Scarecrow Replacements - Sometimes scarecrows aren't enough to scare those pesky crows away. This mod changes all of your scarecrows into a different breed of cat sitting atop a pedestal to frighten the birds away. Just a fun cosmetic change, if you are into that kind of thing.
- Lightsaber Swords - The game does not have the most interesting looking weaponry to choose from in the game. This might will make everything more exciting by changing all the weapons into lightsabers. There are different colors for each level of sword and then they repeat as a Kylo Ren type sword. It's nothing crazy, but that'll get you one step closer to farming on planet Tatooine.
- Nightmare's Additional Weaponry Mod - If lightsabers aren't your thing, try some of these weapons on for size. This mod has every weapon from Nightmare's sword (from Soul Calibur) to a simple guitar to choose from. Unfortunately, they are just visual retextures, but at least you can look cool as hell when you are playing!
- Easier Fishing - Fishing in this game can be quite difficult. Especially when it comes to catching rare fish. This mod makes fish move less frequently along with making them easier to track. This let's you enjoy fishing without throwing your controller across the room.
More Awesome Game Options
This game is pretty involved and could have you playing for hours on end. Feel like you need a break from farming?
Take a minute to check out some other game reviews that you may find enjoyable.
- If you are looking for a really bizarre puzzle, mindless clicking, not-really-a-game game, then try There Is No Game.
- If you want to play a game involving space eggs then Egg inc is the game for you!
- Looking for a vertical scrolling shooter you can play on Facebook? Try Everwing.
Stardew Valley is an insanely fun and addicting game, filled with hidden bonuses that will keep you entertained for hours. You'll be saying, "Farmville who?" after building your farm to be the best in Pelican Town.
Even after hours of playing and multiple in-game years in the books, you will still be able to discover new and exciting new items and adventures. And, with constant updates to the game and mods being created, there will surely be more and more ways to play the game in the near future. But, until then, you can use this guide to get you to where you need to go.
This is the only farming game you'll need to sustain your desire to be an old timey rancher.