I know it’s been a while. Well in my corner of the UK it was May half term last week so I was a little pre-occupied. Also trying my damnedest to find a job for the summer and still being unsuccessful. (Those of you who have read my 1st post will know, if not you can find it here at the old site Blogger )
So with the help of coffee and some amazing 90’s tunes (my taste in music is diabolical) I shall tell you what wonders I discovered.
What caught my eye first were the graphics. Yeah I know they aren’t the amazing 3D, 4K graphics of an unreal engine but that is part of the charm. For me it was nostalgic, early 90’s adventure style. I mean look how adorable is this?! (OOOOOH Mambo no 5 just came on, excuse me).
I mean look! OK granted it does look like a standard Facebook game, but its not. It is so much more and NOT on Facebook. (Eiffel 65 now, you know the words ). So I had a little look around the internet… OK YouTube. People were saying how it is just like Harvest moon, and Animal Crossing, games which I have never played. (Did anyone else sing “I’m blue, if I was green I would die” or was that just me and my crazy school mates?)
So it starts of your dear old Gramps gives you a letter to open for when you feel like life has just gotten too much and then presumably he passes away. (Steps Tragedy has just come on… timing guys). Fast forward a few years and sure enough there you are all grown up in a boring, depressing job working at a computer which seems to be 4 times the size of your actual body. You pull out the letter Gramps gave you and its the deeds to his farm. You (presumably) tell your boss to “jog on” and hop on a bus to Stardew valley. FREEDOM!!!
Upon arriving you meet Robin who is the village carpenter, who in turn introduces you to Lewis the Mayor and your…. farm. It needs work. “Ugh not another Farmville game, you sigh, exasperated” No, no its not “another Farmville” at all, it is so much more! Sure you buy and plant crops, tend them, sell them, raise animals etc. but there’s a whole village to explore, NPCs to meet and make friends with, and and and…. OK lets try and put this into a bit of sense, I know I’ll do sub-headings. OK firstly;
So you have a farm, and its a mess! Luckily you are provided with some tools to clean it up a bit. (HINT: Do not cut all of your tall grass you are going to need it later) You get wood and sap from chopping trees, stone from mining rocks and sometimes coal and fiber and sometimes mixed seeds from cutting bushes. Now sap is extremely useful 2 sap makes 1 basic fertilizer which improves crops. (you get standard, silver and gold crops from what I have found so far). You get given 20 parsnip seeds to start off with. You plow the ground with your hoe, put down fertilizer (if you have it) plant your seeds and water them. You need to water your crops daily unless it rains. To see if it is going to rain the next day just watch the weather forecast on your T.V.
Now just growning parsnips is boring but dont worry you can buy more seeds from the general store in town, it looks like this;
Here you can buy seeds and saplings, and sell most things. Keep an eye on the description of the seeds, it will tell you how many days they take to grow and if the plant keeps reproducing after harvest. Also there are seasons in this game. Each season consists of 28 days and unless stated otherwise, crops will die when a new season starts. I.E parsnips will die the 1st day of summer. As for live stock you need Robin to build farm buildings to store the animals in and a silo to make hay. (Remember I said not to cut all your grass this is what I meant, you use it in the silo). Im not too versed in livestock as I have only got my 2 chickens, Chuck and Chook at the moment and they are still babies so they do not produce anything.
Ugh, I hate fishing. Its quiet difficult to get the hang of. On day 2 or 3 you get a letter in your mail box from Willy the village fisherman, go and see him and he will give you a fishing rod. Different fish appear in different areas and at different times. What I do to try and level up my fishing is before I go out for the day I turn my T.V. on and watch the fortune teller. If she says luck will be on my side I spend the day fishing hoping for a few catches to level it up that way. Some fish can be quiet “slippery” (aha I made a funny) to catch. But i’m hoping the more I level up the better equipment I can get and make this process a lot easier in the future.
Foraging is quiet easy, you walk around and pick things up, such as flowers, berries, seashells and other bits. You can sell these on to make some money to buy more seeds etc but later on be careful as you may need them for the community centre bundles. More on that later. The higher you foraging the more likely you are to find mixed seeds to plant on your farm, well that’s as far as I have gotten anyway.
After a few days you will get a mail saying that an obstruction has been cleared and you can now enter the mines. These are located north of the Joja supermarket. Here you can mine stone, coal, copper ore, and find minerals. However there are little beasties down there, luckily Marlon from the adventurers guild gives you a rusty sword. I have only made it down to level 15 of the mines so far. Every 5 levels there is an elevator, and on level 10 I found a treasure chest. I’m not sure exactly how many level there are and i’m sure the further down you go, the better the ores and items are. You can also find relics in the mines to give to Gunther at the library. You may also find Geodes, which you can give to Clint the blacksmith to smash open for you to see whats inside. Fun times. Again if you want a good haul check the fortune teller channel 1st.
I haven’t even started cooking yet, You need a kitchen expansion for your house which you can get from Robin for 4000g. But you can learn recipes by watching the cooking channel that sometimes comes on the T.V.
NPCs are all over the place, you can talk to them and try to make friends with them by figuring out what they like and giving them gifts. You can only give two gifts a week to any one NPC at a time. You can also marry them if you are friendly enough, from what I have seen on YouTube. (oooh nice bit of Jamiroquai right now). They also have birthdays! If you look on the the notice board outside Pierre’s (the general store) There is a calendar which shows everyone’s birthdays and social events. Also once you start to get friendly with NPCs they will sometimes send you gifts in your mail box. Isn’t that nice? You can find most of them in the saloon on a Friday night, and most of them at the social events.
At some point in the game, Lewis will show you the run down community centre and tell you how, if people keep shopping at JoJa mart he may have to sell it to them. Joja being the company you used to work for, boo-hiss too them! You will see these strange little critters whilst in there and find a parchment. If you take this to the wizard he will translate it for you and this opens up the community centre for you. To repair the sections of the community centre you need to compete “bundles” these are seasonal as well as type specific. So there is a lot to do and find. This is an aspect that I love as I am a bit of a trophy hunter when it comes to gaming and I thrive of the sense of achievement when I complete a bundle, which you get little rewards for too!
OK so that’s the best I can describe the game as I have only just gotten to Fall of the 1st year. I have much more to learn and I expect there is much more to do and explore. I have heard that the game will be introducing multiplayer soon too so that should be fun! I haven’t even touched the adventurers guild yet either. So if you are planning on getting it, or a parent wondering if this game would be suitable for you child, it is. Its a charming game with so much to offer and i am really enjoying it. Its a great distraction from the busy depressing world.
So goodbye for now from myself and Phil Collins who is currently playing in the background.
If you are new, here is where to find where I lurk when i’m not madly writing about random stuff on here whilst listening to stuff that was “cool” when i was 13/14 years old.
And my coffee cup is empty again.
Take care xxx