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Stardew Valley Was 2017’s Most Downloaded Game on the Switch Because We’re all Just Trying to Calm the Hell Down

stardew valley nintendo switch best games

Nintendo has released a list of 2017’s most-downloaded games on the Switch and the game that took the #1 spot in the global market is Stardew Valley. If you’ve never played Stardew Valley, you’re probably surprised that of the many awesome games available on the Switch, a simple RPG about life as a farmer is so popular. If you have played Stardew Valley, you probably get it.

Stardew Valley is not the type of game I’d usually go for, myself. I didn’t click with Animal Crossing or similar games. I like games that are story-driven. I like action. (In no way is that meant to knock any certain type of game, I’m just clarifying my own preference.) But I don’t think I’ve ever poured the number of hours into a game that I have playing Stardew Valley.

The basic premise of the game is that your character, fed up with your menial corporate office job, moves to the farm you inherited from your late grandfather. You get to decide how to grow your farm, and progress in specialities like fishing, ranching, or mining. At the same time, you explore relationships with the local townfolk, building both friendships and romantic relationships.

You also have the opportunity to take down a giant corporation.

Oh, and sometimes there are monsters. Aliens, too.

Ultimately, I, along with so many others, love Stardew because it is relaxing AF. The planting/mining/wooing routine of your character’s daily life is highly addictive and hits that perfect sweet spot of keeping your mind engaged while letting you zone the hell out. (I will also never stop being amazed at just how different every player can make their farms and their characters’ lives.)

I listen to a lot of political podcasts, both for work and out of a masochistic need to stay up to date on the hellscape that is current news. So over the last few months, my near-nightly routine has been to settle in with a podcast on the speakers and Stardew on the Xbox. If I hadn’t had the extreme chill of Stardew to balance out the politics, I definitely would have snapped by now.

Just look at this article. I didn’t use all-caps to express my thoughts ONCE once. Just thinking about Stardew Valley is relaxing.

(image: Nintendo)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) has a lot of opinions about a lot of things. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband Brock Wilbur and too many cats.