Stardew Valley Video Game Review

Welcome to Queer Fudanshi! Today, I’m going to be reviewing a Video Game called, Stardew Valley.

This is the first Video Game I’m reviewing guys! Whoo! lol. I hope that in time I’ll be able to review more video games for you fans of LGBT representation with gaming tendencies (like me).

Stardew Valley is a farming/socializing game. I know, most of you are like, “What?” The way the game is setup, you start as corporate worker bee who’s been droning away his life at a job he/she hates. (Btw, you can choose gender at the start of the game, but I’m going to stick with male pronouns from now on). The player then gets a letter from his late grandfather with the deed to a farm in the Stardew Valley. The game begins from there.

Grandpa's Letter

Where to Buy:

STEAM

My Review (Spoilers Ahead):

This game is great! There so much to it and yet at the same time it is such a simple game. It’s one of those things that’s like an iceberg. It seems small at a first glance, but then as you look deeper into it you notice that it’s really deeply detailed and full of life.

Complexity

Fudanshi Farms Game Start

At start, this game is kind of overwheliming ’cause there’s so much newness! I want to cook, farm, socialize, and more!

You start out with a very dirty and abandoned farming ground. You have to find out how to plant crops and tend them daily. Then in addition, you can immediately start socializing with the people in Pelican Town, the farm’s town. Just like with the crops, you have to talk to the people daily in order to get anywhere with them.

The thing is, if you chose to that’s all you’d have to do, but there is so much more to this game.

I have put in 18 hours into this game and have only been playing for the past week. In that time, I usually end up spending way too much time playing the game just because of how immersive it is. It sucks me in. In addition, with all that time spent, I’m only half way through the summer of my first year in Pelican Town. There’s still so many new things haven’t played yet.

That said, just seeing the game change and grow as I go is so worth while.

Learning Curve

Stardew Valley Egg Hunt

I will say that there is a learning curve to the game. While the game is certainly not hard, there is an adjustment period for its system and mechanics.

For instance, the villagers. The game gives each village NPC a schedule. Then, those schedules change based on the day, weather, and season. I honestly had to google tips and tricks on the game’s wiki and other sites in order to figure out where people were. If a player wants to get closer with an townsperson, he’ll have to figure out that villager’s schedule. That takes time and effort.

In addition, there were other things that took an adjustment period to me like fishing and figuring out the town events. The town holidays specifically all have special qualifications and rules that need to be followed in order to get the best outcome. Either the player has to try it out, fail, and try again in a following year or look up the info (like I did) and still possibly fail.

This all makes the game interesting though and again, challenging but not hard.

Socializing

Stardew Valley Alex

As stated earlier, you can talk to the townspeople and get to know them better. Once you figure out where they will be, you can start to merge them into your daily routine. Two characters who I immediately stuck to were Alex and Sam. I mainly chose them because they’re both marriage-able (even to guys) and they popped to me.

What’s interesting about this game is that the creator (this is an indie game made by one guy) wanted each character to have depth. So, he wrote characters to have story lines, backgrounds, and contradicting personalities from what you might first think.

Alex for example, my current favorite and whom I consider to be my character’s best friend, started off as a condescending jock character. Later on, I found out that Alex was putting up a front to cover his insecurities created from having an abusive father.

Not all characters will have such a compelling backstory, Sam is basically just a teenboy in a young 20s body, but they will each have some sort of depth to them. You as a player just have to spend the time to get to know them.

Dating

Stardew Valley Dating

Alright, so let’s get to the meat and bones of the game (or at least to me when I started). Out of all the villagers, there are 10 people that the player can pursue for marriage. The player has to get to know the villager like all the others, and if done right a romance will form.

Keep in mind, this is Queer Fudanshi, so this game had to have some kind of Queer spin. It turns out all of the characters will be open to dating the character no matter what the gender of the player is.

This I found to be slightly problematic. It’s a little too easy. For instance, there’s Alex again. I’ve grown to love Alex, but Alex was at first presented as the typical Straight Jock. Of course, this was to cover his insecurities, but that has presented an idea of Alex in my mind that’s hard to push away.

Alex specifically says, “I wish there were more women around here, you know?” all the time. In addition, he only hangs out with Haley, the typically blonde beauty. This sets a typical image of straightness in my mind that I’m just like, “How can you justify turning him gay?” It just doesn’t feel right.

Ultimately, you could defind it by saying he was putting up a front. In addition, in real life I have no claim over a person’s sexuality. If someone I assumed was straight said he was gay then cool. That’s what it is. It’s not really a thing about him, but about my own assumptions and expectations.

It’s interesting that this game brought put this whole conversation and conflicg out of me.

All that said, I’ve only invested my time in Alex and Sam out of the male candidates. I’m having my personal problems with Alex, but he’s turning out to be a great guy.

Sam on the other hand seemed great at first, but is turning out to be too much of a man baby for me. A nice man baby, but a man baby all the same. Several times he’s gotten into trouble and as his friend I’ve backed him only to not be thanked and given the blame.

For now, I’m trying to look more into the other three candidates before I decide on one. It’ll take some time however, so I can’t comment on their characters at the moment.

Overall

This game is a great game! There’s so much to it and I enjoy all of it. I came to the game for the socializing, but I was surprised how much I also enjoyed the farming and foraging aspects too.

If you decide to buy the game, know that there will be a lot involved with it, and you can not only get a lot out of one game, but there’s enough to constitute multiple playthroughs.

This game is a must play.

Stardew Valley gets 5 stars out of 5.