Games like Stardew Valley give you the freedom to enjoy the worlds they offer at your own pace, as you craft and explore to your heart’s content. They are creative sandboxes that you can spend hours and hours on accomplishing your goals. Whether you play them alone or with friends, they are always an enjoyable experience.
Stardew Valley became a hit when it released thanks to its charming atmosphere and gameplay that’s inspired by the great Harvest Moon games. This open-ended farming sim manages to create a relaxing experience for everyone to enjoy, as you do whatever you want in a local community featuring various unique characters to interact with. What makes this indie title even more impressive is the fact that it was all made by one single person!
As of writing, Stardew Valley is only playable solo. However, the developer is working hard to add multiplayer support, both local and online, to allow you to enjoy his lovely 2D simulation with your friends. Looking for more games like Stardew Valley to dive into as you wait for multiplayer support? Then take a look at this list of similar titles which may just have that hidden gem you are looking for.
7 Best Games Like Stardew Valley
Rune Factory 4
Compared to Stardew Valley, Rune Factory 4 is a fantasy-themed farming RPG with more focus on combat and exploration than farming. Crafting is also a huge part of Rune Factory 4, where every piece of armor and every type of weapon is crafted by you. There are also skills which you level up by doing activities associated with the skill, such as farming, mining, fishing, and more.
In general, Rune Factory 4 puts a lot more focus on everything except the farming part, where Stardew Valley shines. That doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy the simplicity of farming as you delve into the complexity of everything else this cute RPG has to offer.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf
Instead of managing and customizing your farm, Animal Crossing: New Leaf appoints you as the mayor of a town where everyone is an animal. You get to choose a random layout of the town map at the start of the game while later you are given the freedom to customize the town in various ways, creating your own house, chopping down trees or using the town’s funds to build many different structures. Constructing an ordinance brings new laws to the town which can have a variety of useful effects.
The game’s time is directly connected to the time in real-life, making it a true life simulation, with events going on at various times. Villagers that you can interact with have their own sleeping schedules and spend their time doing various things. You’ll get to meet a variety of different personalities, including rude ones, but also very friendly ones.
Overall, Animal Crossing: New Leaf is a relaxing life simulation with a cute world of animals that is fun to play.
While it may not be as huge in scope as Stardew Valley, World’s Dawn is an adorable little game that offers a calming experience with no combat. As you customize your house, mine, cook, farm, take care of your pets and more, you’ll also get to discover many secrets hidden deep in the game’s small town. Festivals are fun to attend thanks to the nice mini-games included.
World’s Dawn is full of breath thanks to its cast of unique characters that are greatly developed. Each of them is interesting to interact with thanks to plenty of well-written dialogue that you get to see as you form relationships. If you’re looking for a life sim that puts more emphasis on character development, then World’s Dawn is the game you have to try out.
Starbound is a 2D sandbox title that puts you in a procedurally-generated world filled with quests, items, enemies and unique planets to explore. While there is a story that you can progress through, Starbound lets you run wild, crafting armor and weapons while colonizing many planets. You also have your own spaceship that you use to teleport to other planets, while the interior of the ship itself is fully customizable, allowing you to decorate it the way you like.
While you can do farming in Starbound, it is not that in-depth as it is in Stardew Valley. Starbound is a lot more focused on exploring its vast universe and fighting epic bosses while you spend hours crafting and building huge structures, be it castles or a regular house, anything that you can think of. Choose from one of 7 races and survive together with your friends, or try out many great mods that further enhance your adventure.
Overall, if you prefer sandbox titles that give you the freedom to do whatever you want, then Starbound is a great title that you can spend a long time playing alone or with friends.
You have probably heard of this superb 2D sandbox game filled with exciting boss battles and exploration in its randomly-generated worlds. With a pleasant soundtrack following you day and night, Terraria is a lot more about building anything you can imagine, mining deep below the surface, exploring and crafting powerful armor and weapons to prepare for the fights with epic and diverse monsters. You can also enjoy your endless journey with friends.
If you’d like to play a game that you can spend hours building incredible structures, then Terraria will surely scratch that itch for creativity, combat and exploration that you are looking for.
Fantasy Life manages to stand out in the life sim genre by including 12 ‘Life classes’. These life classes range from careers such as carpenters and blacksmiths to mercenaries, paladins, and even wizards. Each class has its own quests and activities to do, and if you no longer want to be a carpenter, then you can simply choose to change your class to something else, letting you enjoy everything the game has to offer.
If you’re looking for another relaxing game to spend your spare time with, then Fantasy Life is an RPG that you’ll love playing every day.
Harvest Moon Series
If you didn’t know already, Stardew Valley is inspired by this classic series of games, making it no surprise how similar the games are. Also known as Story of Seasons, the Harvest Moon series are beautiful and calming farming simulations that you can sink hours into, just like Stardew Valley. You’ll no doubt have lots of fun playing these titles, as without them, Stardew Valley wouldn’t exist.