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So, I finally decided to get on board the hype train for this game, mostly because I heard it has really good replay value and I need something to sink my time into to get some sense of like, productivity, and what better hands to leave than up to than the wizards themselves behind intelligent game design? It could be fun, and I hear you get a cute cat in it- which this crummy apartment lease doesn't allow, so why not live the outlandish fantasy of having an animal companion and the freedom to move into the middle of nowhere to pursue your cottagecore dreams.
There were a hell of a lot of shirt options running around in here, but I think I'm pretty happy with my outfit. Bruise tones are kind of my thing IRL, anyways. Being able to pick a more accurate shade of green for my eyes than in most character generation screens was a bonus too, because if it's not a lurid limey sort of colour, than it's a swampy sort of brown, and neither are quite accurate. They're a dull sort of green, not really the sort of eyes to write much home about, but they're mine nonetheless.
I ended up going for the Four Corners layout because I'm an indecisive bastard, and it seemed to be a popular choice. I figured it had to be popular for a reason, right? And even though I don't have any friends to play with in co-op mode, it seemed kind of cozy to have a house tucked away into each square and the option to sort of pluck the best attributes from all of the map types (minus the man eating monsters attacking you at night, I have enough on my plate to not worry about being mobbed by jellies or imps or mushrooms or whatever when trying to scramble back to my rickety farmhouse and beloved pet cat.) A real eat your cake and have it too sort of set up.
Trying my hand at a little interior decorating. I never said it was my strong suit.
It's a pretty cute, tiny house. I decided to move some items around to make it easier to access the two things you really need in a house: a bed to crash on after running around like a chicken with its head cut off in the woods, wielding an axe with the deranged pleasure that only mountain men and hikers who've bitten off more than they can chew (who'll make crazily expensive corpses, have you seen the price tags on some of their gear?) would understand- and the TV. To check out the local channels and figure out how to make salad (which you wouldn't think would be rocket science, but to be fair, we were apparently an office rat, so we probably subsisted off of cheap takeout that leaves you feeling greasily unwell in our life before becoming a farmer.) I don't even want to think about how tired my little guy must be after sprinting around town all day. Moved the table and plants around, though I'd like to get some more furniture to really make this place feel like it's mine. We also don't seem to have anything by the way of storage or cooking equipment, so chests and eating raw parsnips like some messed up version of sashimi it is. If you slice them thinly, it's practically the same thing.
Trying to plan for the long term. Crops are looking a hot mess.
One of the most rewarding, and probably frustrating, aspects to most games like this is setting up a nice solid base. I just want a home, you know? I couldn't play Project Zomboid long enough to make a similar videogame diary on it because a) that game's difficulty wall makes Scrivener's look like child's play, or Reaper like it's for toddlers- and b) it got really frustrating, really quickly, trying to establish a solid home for yourself in the apocalypse. Especially if you don't turn the spawning function off! I like my games a little less stressful, a little less resource management-y, and Stardew lets me customize my space and work towards some basic goals without feeling the rush-rush-rush of traffic jam rat at peak, aptly named, rush hour. It's nice. The gravel squelches kind of weird when you walk on it, but we can't win everything, you know? I never thought I would appreciate the rain as much as I do in this game. In the city, it just kind of makes the side walks smell vaguely of piss and grime and dirt- I guess it's aerosoling all of the gross shit that's usually tamped down by people's shoes and baked in by the sun. It spits, and it's rare to get one of those properly cold, properly terrifyingly icy Northern downpours that make you feel like you've been baptized by some oceanic equivalent to a trial by fire. That makes you earn the right to be cleansed, and it makes you gasp all open mouthed and shuddery, the involuntary flinch and sucking at air while your bones rattle and slosh around inside of your frigid meatsuit. Pretty close to a religious experience, right there. Good stuff. Anyways- watering cans with the shitty beginner can sucks ass, and it's difficult to really feed yourself enough to make the energy suck worth it, so it's a great boon in game when it does storm. Thankfully, spring looks to be pretty damp weather in here too.
It's going to work smoothly, once it gets going.
Even more set up. I like to try to plan for the long term- knowing how things will go is comforting, in a sense. I'm not at all the sort of person to dash recklessly into the cool night, because who knows what's lurking and waiting for you out there in the woods? Maybe it's not as 'fun' and certainly not as spontaneous, but I like knowing where I'm going, and what's going to happen- the predictable, humdrum sort of sense where a day will unfold exactly as you drafted it on paper and flick off little ink smudged checkboxes as you go through the motions. It's going to be one hell of a place once I've got it all automated and running- I kind of literally hate this watering nonsense, I don't know how people play on the Beach farm layout, where apparently sprinklers don't work because of the sandy soils except on one tiny farming patch. You've got to really love the fishing minigame and like, trawling through water to play that way, but I guess there's always at least one glutton for punishment who is obsessed with fishing minigames. I kind of hate them. I'm not that great at them, admittedly, but I also can't fish, so at least I'm consistent. I'm fairly sure I'd just starve if I got lost in the woods. All the more motivation to try to pull up my botany knowhow, I guess. Thankfully, in this corner of the woods, there aren't too many insects that want to kill you, it's really more of a matter of it being next to impossible to find enough to sustain yourself on in the dead of winter, unless you're hellbent on drinking spruce teas and being a sad, if warmed up little man.
What can I say? I'm pretty competitive. I like to win. And those bright pastel colours contrast pretty well with the green shrubbery and backs of rusted out pick up trucks that they were parked on. I think the guy who owns it(?) looks an awful lot like my character, except he's a jock, I'm pretty sure. I haven't really interacted much with the villagers yet, but he did mention something about tossing balls and the big leagues when I accidentally ran into him at the beach. Frankly, that's a weird spot to go if you're playing football or soccer or whatever, but who knows, maybe he was practicing his bumping for volleyball. Anyways. It wasn't that hard, so long as you stick to a long loop around the area rather than tunnel visioning after a few more sporadically spread out ones. The pink bunny is adorable, and if the scale in the game is anything to go off of, I kind of am in love with the fact that it's basically as big as our character. I wish I had a stuffed bunny like that... It looks very snuggle-able. I hope that Sunshine likes the company inside! I saw a big fish tank for sale at the fisherman's shop down by the pier, so I've been saving up some money to get it and fishing about to get him some buddies to watch when I'm out and about all day doing farmer-ly tasks. I'm sure he can find his own entertainment while he's wandering around the farm, but on rainy days especially, it would be nice to give him something to look at and enjoy while he's relaxing on his little carpet pet with plants for decoration and the bunny for company.
The training rod really makes a difference here.
Usually, it's a lot more difficult for me to talk to people in person than online- but even online, sometimes I run into issues. I just kind of keep to myself, like some reclusive little wild animal or something like that. So I spend a lot of time lurking around on gameboards to try to find some clues if I get stuck, or try to see if there's supposed to be an easier way to go about things, and it turns out, for fishing there totally was! The little green rod from the fisherman down by the pier's shop, I think his name is Willy- sets your bar to sort of what it would be if you were already level five in fishing, which makes it a whole heck of a lot easier than my first attempt with the rod that they actually start you off with. I appreciate the fact that it's such a cheap investment, which makes it easy to attain earlier in game- when it'd actually be useful.
Look at all of my fishes!
Some of them I'm going to use towards the community centre goal, some I'm going to sell off, and whatever's left over I'll drop off into the fishtank for Sunshine to have some companions. I also levelled up fishing once, which seems like it's got a pretty hard progression bar considering I spent literally the entire day fishing and this is a pretty decent haul, but maybe my perception is just skewed because the foraging skill gets added to when you cut down trees I'm pretty sure, and between my wood hoarding and specially set up little mini forest at the bottom of my map, it makes for a massive landslide in skill points when you pair the industrious woodcutting with berry gathering rushes in the summer and fall.
Also, I discovered that most of the towns people don't like quartz- I think I saw that canned goods os jams or whatever and salad are pretty widely liked, and coffee? But it's kind of funny to give them random items and see their reactions. I also sold off a bunch of sap, and I had no idea that people would be trying to eat it... Apparently it smells bad? Well, Leah seemed to like it on her salad with some vinaigrette, but then when you give it to her she hates it. Hilarious. Maybe she'd like some wood instead?
Still chipping away at this.
Making some decent progress on the bundles front. It's kind of cute, seeing the little jellycube guys wander around after you've filled out all of the slots, and watch them try to fix up the old community center, presumably. It is a little annoying when they come to a total stop in front of you though, but like most things in game- people, animals, you can walk right through them if you keep jostling against them long enough. I'm curious on what the bridge will unlock, maybe it's to a new area? Could be fun to see if it goes out of town- I haven't really been using the wikia, just going in blind for the most part and following the game's instructions. I hope so, it would be fun to have a matching area to the little bridged off sea urchins and tidal pools down on the beach by Elliot's house- he lives such a charmed little writer's life.
It perfectly lines up that we would get a cat in the game just as I've got a cat buddy in real life, though it's still ongoing process on getting it close enough to say hello. He looks far too fluffy to not be someone's old domestic, though- so hopefully he'll warm up to me, my treats, and the little cat house I'm building him on the porch so that he's comfortable. I decided to name the cat Sunshine, since he's a bit of an orangey yellow colour, and it's a cute, happy name. I've got to make sure that he's cozy inside of the house though, even if it's a bit small, so it might be a little difficult to make sure that he's comfortable... I think you can use your watering can to keep his bowl full, that makes the most sense, so I'll try that out.
Did not expect to run into a jock me.
This one's kind of silly. I haven't really gotten around to greeting very many of the villagers, yet- mostly it's been much easier to run into the women, since they idly go about their business inside of the town during reasonable hours in the daytime, so I'll run into Evelyn or Leah or Emily or Penny, so this one took me kind of by surprise. I didn't really expect to find someone who looks like me! We're not very much like one another in terms of personality, though- I'm not any good at sports. It does strike me as a little weird that he goes down to the beach to practice, seeing as I'd imagine kicking up clouds of sand everywhere wouldn't really be the most conducive set of circumstances for learning, or that a letterman jacket would be all that comfortable under the baking heat of the sun, but then again, Willy seems pretty snuggled up too for being down by the waterfront all day. Maybe it's because it's quite a lot cooler closer to the shoreline, or out on a boat, though? There's also so many redheads in town, it can get kind of confusing telling them apart- but at least his green jacket's pretty noticeable. Not that there's usually very much company to mix him up with down by the beach, except for the guy with long hair and stuffed into a suit like some sort of vampiric aristocrat.
I was really excited about finding this.
There are a lot of things that you wind up taking for granted when you're not purposefully keeping an eye out to appreciate them, and being able to see clearly in game is one of them- it was a nightmare running back home and trying to plant the last bit of mixed seeds you'd found from slashing up fiber-plants in the mines, only to realize you couldn't tell about a horse from a house on your carefully planned out grids that were set up to be fully automated with the sprinkler systems. There is no bigger bane than having to water each tiny square of plants by hand. I found this glowring while slaying some monsters in the mines, and it is SO useful, especially when you're scampering back home to squeak in before the deadlines that'll sap your energy the next morning- the bathhouse is useful, but getting there is such a process, especially with the slowed down walk cycle they have as you approach the water's edge. It is kind of a cool place, but I wish it was easier to get there! At any rate, the ring makes it easier than trying to run madly between haphazardly placed torches filched from the mines, again- you can make them, I think, but I'm usually saving up my wood to turn into charcoal or setting it aside for when the winter hits and it won't be replenishable, and I might want to upgrade my house or something like that.
I got a horse.
I've basically given up on updating these images in order. I'm not too sure if this'll make sense in the future, because if I'm diligent I'd try to keep track of the numbers previous and fill in the gaps, or I might wind up just haphazardly uploading things willy nilly, we'll have to see how that pans out. Who would have thought that the game was more fun to play, than it was to document playing? I have been careful to take plenty of screenshots though, but it'll just be a little while before I work my way through the backlog of them. I've been really enjoying it, I'm almost all the way through my second year in the game already, which is kind of shocking to me. Been making a steady stream of income with the preserve jars and kegs, and once I've got the quarry filled- then we'll really be in busy. Stone is in short supply for the time being, but check out my little horse! Even with the minecarts, getting into town or around to the little train station area (that I've taken over to grow trees in to harvest for wood to free up more farming space on my farm) can be a drag sometimes, so the speed of the horse makes it a lot easier to get out and about in a timely manner to make some friends. Pretty much everyone likes salad, except for Willy- but I'll usually just buy him a pint from Gus' counter if I see him while I'm swinging into the saloon on a Friday night to mingle. Mostly I've gotten hearts with the villagers who spent time around the mines, where Linus lives- but I'm working on getting my friendship up with everyone. At twos and threes for the most part. My horse is SO cute, I'm always careful to park him back into his stable at night, not just leave him adrift on the map- and he gets a copse of trees nearby so he can snuggle behind it, as well as look over at some crops to chew on or just sniff. We have matching flowers: Hat Mouse is such a bro.