After a long, long build up to this moment, it is finally here: Stardew Valley has multiplayer, it’s live, and you can enjoy it with friends right now.
“Stardew Valley now supports up to four-player co-op,” the game’s creator explained. “Co-op is nearly identical to single-player, but with one to three other friends playing together with you to achieve a common goal. Any single player game can be ‘converted’ to a co-op game by having Robin build one or more cabins on your farm. One player serves as the host, and the other players connect to the host in order to play. Therefore, the host must be in-game at all times when the group wants to play.”
Update 1.3 wasn’t just about multiplayer; the patch also added a new traveling festival, a winter mystery, additional character events, skull cavern changes, the ability to swap professions, craftable signs, more outdoor decorations, an auto-grabber, indoor garden pots, and (most importantly) hats on horses.
Stretch your mind back over two years ago, when the much-loved Stardew Valley first confirmed it was getting a multiplayer version, thereby justifying our burning desire to write about it on Massively OP. Original creator Eric Barone and the studio he brought on to handle multiplayer, Chucklefish Games, kept a tiny trickle of hope coming over the last two years of seeming delays, but multiplayer went into beta testing this past spring, and now we have a real release date: August 1st. Yes, soon! That’s for PC, Mac, and Linux; the YouTube blurb says Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Switch are still underway.
As previously reported, the patch allows four players at a time, so three including the host player; you can marry other players, divorce them, chat, share farms, and share money, but only the host can pause the game (and it pauses play for everyone), and a few things are separate, like inventories and relationships. And everybody gets a cabin.
“In deciding what to share vs keep separate, our main goal was to encourage cooperation and teamwork,” the devs wrote on Steam when the beta was in testing. “Since the farm and your money pot are your main way of progressing through the game, they have to be shared in order to facilitate cooperation. Without this, there would be no need for players to even interact!”
With word that Stardew Valley’s multiplayer update is almost upon us, we only have one question: Which of you peasants will toil the rich fields of Massively Overpowered and bring us the harvest of turnips that we so desire?
For those who have been eager to play this farming/life simulator with friends, you can get a preview of it thanks to the debut of the beta. Steam users can jump into the open beta of the patch right now, with GOG players expected to gain access in the coming days.
In the multiplayer edition, up to four players can farm and adventure on the same server. Players can invite friends from their Steam or GOG lists, or else they may choose to send out invite codes to populate their little fiefdoms. The multiplayer FAQ answers some other questions, such as how marriage and festivals work among multiple players, but there still is no official word as to when this patch will go live.
Ready to go farm with, adventure alongside, and marry your friends? Stardew Valley’s multiplayer mode may be here before you know it. In fact, it could be coming as soon as May.
Lead Designer Eric Barone put out this statement on Twitter this week: “Update on Stardew Valley multiplayer: still making good progress on fixing bugs, if all goes well it should be ready in about a month.”
Back in March, we announced that beta testing and quality assurance had commenced for the multiplayer mode on this popular indie title. Stardew Valley puts players in the role of a young person who takes over an overgrown farm from his or her grandfather. While the land is worked, the player can interact with locals in the community, uncover secrets, and go on fighting expeditions in a mine.
Doesn’t it feel as if it’s been half of forever since Stardew Valley was supposed to pick up official multiplayer, thereby finally becoming a multiplayer sandbox we can legitimately cover because it’s awesome and we’d like to? It’s actually been almost two years as Chucklefish Games, whom creator Eric Barone brought on to handle the ports and multiplayer, worked on just that, with a late 2017 beta and early 2018 launch planned. Obviously, that didn’t happen. Last month, we learned that the beta is now slated for spring. The latest news is that… work continues. And also hats.
“Stardew Valley multiplayer is in QA and bugs are being fixed at a very good pace!” Barone tweeted yesterday. “One of my favorite things in the new update… hats on your horses. They look very good on the horse. Looks pretty natural, actually.”
Remember Maguss, the Harry Potter-esque ARG everyone was buzzing around right up until Pokemon Go company Niantic said it was making Harry Potter: Wizards Unite? It’s just about to launch its open beta; you west coasters will want to wake up early on Saturday indeed to make the 8 a.m. EST starting time on Android and iOS. The game originally raised almost half a million dollars on Indiegogo, so its popularity seems assured!
What else happened in the world of MMO testing this week?
- Camelot Unchained finally has a beta date: the fourth of July. Fortunately, nothing else important happens on that day. Our interview all about how beta will work is pretty great if we do say so ourselves.
- Dead Maze officially launched! No more beta! Free at last!
- Villagers & Heroes seeks iOS beta testers ahead of its launch at the end of this month.
- Project Gorgon laid out the details of its upcoming Steam beta.
- Stardew Valley promised multiplayer beta this spring.
- Soulworker Online is inching ever closer to testing here; forums for NA and EU arrived this week.
- Ashes of Creation dazzled again with more footage of “alpha zero” gameplay.
- Staxel landed on our sandbox radar; it’s currently in early access.
- Bless Online is anticipating that when it starts, its early access open beta will run half a year.
We’ve tucked whole list of games temporarily and very much permanently in test stasis right on down below.
If you’ve long looked forward to farming with and marrying your friends in Stardew Valley, the day is inching ever closer. While the game’s multiplayer side has been delayed on multiple occasions, it’s aiming for a beta test starting this spring, so players can take advantage of all the patch features included therein. That includes playing together, new crafting features to distinguish belongings, and yes, the ability for players to marry one another instead of town residents.
No word yet on whether or not multiplayer will also allow you to have illicit marriage affairs after marrying your fellow players, but we’re going to go ahead and say that falls a bit outside of the game’s scope.
The patch will also add language support for French, Italian, Turkish, and Korean, so further players can enjoy more localized languages in addition to all of the multiplayer functionality. Again, nothing is certain quite yet, but if all goes according to plan the testing of multiplayer is just around the corner.
Sorry for the headline tease, but we couldn’t resist. As Stardew Valley fans — or “Dews” as they call themselves — eagerly wait for the long-promised multiplayer update, creator Eric Barone teased the community by saying that he was enjoying it in the privacy of his own home.
“Four-player Stardew Valley LAN party at my house,” Barone tweeted. “It’s really fun. It still needs some work, but the underlying network code is solid. Being in the same room and yelling at each other about what to do next, or if anyone has any stone, is great fun. Can’t wait to share this. Also, I’m finished with the new content and have shifted all my attention to getting multiplayer ready!”
Barone confirmed that players can indeed marry each other in the game. The last we heard, Stardew Valley’s multiplayer mode was slated to arrive in early 2018. The PC version is scheduled to get the mode first.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from Dragon Nest, TERA M, Mabinogi Mobile, Icarus M, Summoner’s War, Star Trek Online, Osiris New Dawn, Lord of Vermilion Arena, PUBG, Stardew Valley, Warframe, Overwatch, Path of Exile, Astroneer, KurtzPel, RuneScape, Dota 2, Second Life, and Renaissance Kingdoms, all waiting for you after the break!
It’s been a long time coming, but Stardew Valley is finally seeing some movement on the multiplayer front: The official blog has a post from Chucklefish Games, which was brought on by creator Eric Barone to work on localization, multiplayer, and ports.
“I’m here with an update for those of you who have been waiting so patiently for news on multiplayer!” writes the Chucklefish dev. “Now that we’ve pinned down the main technical issues, we know enough to feel confident describing the gameplay you can expect from it.”
Multiplayer will apparently consist of bringing a few friends in as “farmhands” in the main player’s game. Player-to-player marriage, multiplayer-relevant UI, and events and festivals are coming too, though local multiplayer and PvP are off the table.
“You won’t need to set up a server to run multiplayer. Friends can be invited onto the farm through Steam. The invite mechanism for non-Steam versions is TBD, but likely to be similar in most cases.”
Good Old Games may not get the attention of Steam’s big sales, but then Steam’s sales aren’t what they used to be either, which might just make the GOG sale going on right now worth a look. The site has never had much in the way of MMORPGs, but there are good bits for our multiplayer online RPG readers:
GOG is also giving out a freebie copy of Rebel Galaxy to peeps who are making their first purchase with the platform.
Anybody spy more that’d be of interest to our community?
If you’re not a big fan of Steam’s dominance of gaming trends in the west, maybe you think a competitor will do the service some good — and a competitor does indeed to appear to be on the way.
A tweet lobbed by Niko Partners games industry analyst Daniel Ahmad on Easter sent games journalist scurrying to cover his claim that Tencent is planning a relaunch of its existing games platform as a global Steam-competitor dubbed WeGame. The existing service, Tencent Games Platform, already has 200 million users in China, but when relaunched, it’ll service the west too, beginning with a release of 100 games from primarily western developers. Gamasutra reports that Stardew Valley and Don’t Starve are already on the platform, the latter having sold a million copies there in its first month.
Tencent is already the largest gaming company in the world and according to Bloomberg is currently the 10th largest publicly traded company on the planet. Massively OP readers know it best as the company that owns League of Legends studio Riot Games.
Adorable retro sandbox Stardew Valley is releasing a boxed collector’s edition today. Expect the original game, plus a soundtrack disc (hey Justin), a guidebook, and a map. OK, the map part is pretty cool. Chucklefish’s posted price is $29.99 on both core consoles in North America, with rollouts across the global later this week.
The main reason we keep an eye on Stardew Valley is that it’s been planned for multiplayer for over a year now, but it’s taking foreeeeeever. It was meant to launch in October with the 1.1 patch but didn’t. In December, console launches came and went. In February, Stardew creator Eric Barone revealed the game will land on the Switch, and indeed the Switch will see multiplayer after PC and before the other consoles — but still not soon. The update won’t even be ready in time for summer, Chucklefish said at the time.
And so… we wait. Welp, here’s a new trailer to tide you over at least.