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Stardew Valley (PC) artwork

Stardew Valley (PC) review

"Stardew Valley is a farming and micro-management sim/RPG oozing with charm and brimming with life."

My Second Life

I only recently picked up Stardew Valley, but after putting a few hours into the game, I just became addicted to it. A full-on Stardew Valley junkie has been born. Now playing SV so long after its extremely successful release and talking about it makes it seem like Iím preaching to the choir; I mean it is already one of the highest selling indie games released this year. So reading this review must be something akin to seeing people download Snapchat or create a Twitter account for their first time. Either way, I canít just abscond from writing a review because I feel like a grandpa that recently discovered Reddit, so letís get to it.

Stardew Valley is a farming and micro-management sim/RPG, much like Harvest Moon or Animal Crossing. Inheriting a dilapidated farm after the MCís grandfather passes away, you choose to start a new life in this cute, rural town oozing with charm. With no specific ďend-gameĒ per se, you are free to do anything, and almost anyoneÖ, you want. What many, who donít own this game, fail to realize is just how much there is to do in this game. Intensely meticulous and well-polished game design allows for the ability to truly create a new, virtual, second life in SV.

Stardew Valley (PC) image

An Unbelievable Amount of Content

Living in a seasonal world with day/night cycles and various weather patterns, life is woven into the game due to so much variance and attention to detail. NPCs and businesses have schedules/operating hours, festivals and story features are time/season-gated, crops require maintenance, and relationships that may lead to marriage and children can be forged. You are also free to enjoy a solitary or social lifestyle performing one of many available activities, such as: farming, fishing, mining, cooking, crafting, organizing, foraging, exploring, etc. A Community Center/Museum/Bulletin Boards, alongside a Quest system that slowly promotes progression, provide hub-like areas filled with tasks and objectives for you to undertake. Additional RPG aspects of SV include: skill levels (which increase based upon the amount of work put into each activity), upgradable equipment/weapons/tools, upgradable farm buildings, and mail!

Even though SV is set in a semi-rural area, it does not mean that there arenít any peculiar activities or supernatural beings running around. Slime monsters, ghosts, and sprites fill up the 120 floor mine, a reclusive wizard keeps watch amidst his tower, and Junimos (forest spirits) help perform major repairs/create new access routes around town in return for fulfilling collectible requests. SV also incorporates beautiful pixel graphics and colorful art design, employing the use of strong primary colors and seasonal themes alongside immersive particle animations (lightning strikes, snow, falling leaves/flower petals, etc.). Stardew Valley is far cry from a boring or stereotypical Hick Town.

Stardew Valley (PC) image

A Must Have Experience

ConcernedApe, the one-man developer team, and Stardew Valley are shining examples of how developers and their games/game releases should be modeled after in this industry. The high-content, high-polish, and bug-less game/game release is something that is becoming rarer and rarer these days, and ConcernedApeís love for his craft is blatantly transparent after spending 10 minutes in the game. I also remember that he was spending all day, every day, answering, and solving, individual bug reports and questions all by himself - for a week, during launch. He also didnít even have Early Access support to rely on either.

Knowing how amazing SV is, along with the developer, I can easily recommend this game to anyone. There arenít many games on the market that have such widespread and mainstream appeal, especially towards the non-gamer/casual crowd; however, Stardew Valley has so much content that even niche gamers should be able to find something to do and like.

Stardew Valley (PC) image


silversuriv's avatar
Community review by silversuriv (September 06, 2016)

silversuriv loves to review games as an escape to reality, preferring to stay on the analytical side of the spectrum. Steam

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