—The Thread and the LPs—
My continuing series of Harvest Moon-ish Let’s Plays brings me to a pair of indie farming darlings: ConcernedApe’s Stardew Valley and Monomi Park’s Slime Rancher. They’re vastly different in execution but similar in premise: take up a farm/ranch in a new land, and work it until you’re obscenely rich. Stardew Valley is directly inspired by the original SNES Harvest Moon and brings its classic top-down farming format into the modern age, while Slime Rancher is instead a relaxed FPS built around Luigi’s Mansion-esque animal vacuum capture and fantasy guano.
They’re an odd but complementary pair, and I’m here to suck them utterly dry of content.
—The Thread and the LPs—
Take inspiration from what you love, then beat it at its own game. This was most likely ConcernedApe’s mindset when he made Stardew Valley, a game heavily inspired by Bokujou Monogatari, particularly the original SNES Harvest Moon, that easily stands beside if not above the best of its influences. The premise is identical to the early games: take over your late grandfather’s farm, work it until you’re rich, and work the townsfolk until you’re rich with a spouse. But there’s also a slew of new ideas, updates for the modern age (E.G.: wooing any gender, a Steam contract-mandated crafting menu), and more mature storylines for the characters (E.G.: alcoholism, depression, actual dysfunctional families).
It’s a solid core game that has worked hard since its release to elevate itself and the very idea of casual farming sims, and as of content update 1.2 (which the majority of this LP employs) it’s one of indie gaming’s most-replayable and satisfying success stories.
The Best clan has an illustrious farming dynasty reaching from the flawed paradise of Castanet Island to the capitalist wasteland of Not-Germany. Theories abound as to how these mysterious women began taking over entire villages through the sheer power of farming; some scholars believe the clan’s origins lie at the end of the Rat Prince Pubert’s reign over Selphia, but new studies show the origins may lie with a mysterious, unsolved alien encounter at the borders of Pelican Town in the Ferngill Republic. Shortly after a UFO sighting, locals reported a strange figure posing as the local late farmer’s granddaughter, claiming his farm for her own, and drowning in money within a few short seasons.
These reports were true. Except the UFO was a bus.
This alien creature, designation 8357, has come to Earth to understand its people, its creatures, its plants, and its money. She’s also come for them hot young singles. All of them.
(The actual story: Grandpa died, left you something for when life sucked, working for Joja sucked, the thing he left you was a farm, so now you’re a farmer. I like mine better.)
This is about as close to a 100% LP as reasonably possible. All collections, all items, all upgrades, every villager to 10 hearts, all achievements, etc. The core LP with 8357 was voted by viewers from the previous Harvest Moon-ish thread to use the Wilderness Farm and to eventually marry Sebastian.
I will show off the different farms and some of the other people you can marry near the end of the LP, including a Joja Drone character made purely for helping out Joja Corp and doing other horrible things.
Mods will be avoided until the latter end of the LP, when there’s not much else going on and I feel like I could stand to speed a few things up.
As stated, the LP uses Version 1.2, though I will also show off 1.3 and multiplayer.
My co-commentators are YamiNoSenshi and IrishRodent. Yami is a fellow Bokujou Monogatari fan but has not played Stardew, while IR has played enough of Stardew for everyone in our Discord.
(By Natália Santos)
(By Xel Esparza)
Something I’ve wanted to do as an addition to this thread since the beginning is take a look at a similar game that I’ve enjoyed for many months now, and which Skippy Granola has recently picked up himself: My Time at Portia. It’s a crafting/construction game in the vein of many of such games on Steam right now, (Rust, ARK, Minecraft, etc), except the crafting isn’t a hollow replacement du jour for an incomplete concept. Crafting is the point, and so the developers, Pathea Games, built the game around it and populated it with its own unique art direction, characters and worldbuilding. The result fits nicely between Minecraft, Animal Crossing, and a bit of Stardew Valley.
Portia is still in early access, but the devs are constantly adding to it and improving the quality-of-life, and though yes, it can be pretty grindy, it’s already a relaxing and engaging game that Skippy and I both recommend. If that doesn’t convince you, then at least enjoy our adventures with grumpy, honey-voiced grandma Lurmph.
Cute sells. Slime poop sells. Apparently. Combine the two, and you have Monomi Park’s adorable indie darling Slime Rancher.
While similar in core premise to Harvest Moon - take over a ranch and work it until you’re filthy rich - Slime Rancher is instead a casual, relaxed FPS. Take care of slimes of many varied types and natures; suck up everything with your vacpack a’la Luigi’s Mansion; explore a large, colorful world filled with secrets and treasures; and maybe learn a little something about yourself and the nature of love. …Huh?
You are Beatrix LeBeau, an adventurous human who’s bought a ranch on the distant planet(?) The Far, Far Range. She’s traveled 1000 light years and spent a year in hypersleep, and as soon as she arrives, she’s ready to hop to work.
The world is inhabited almost entirely by slimes, and their post-food refuse, “plorts”, sell for lots of Newbucks on the market. Strapped with a vacpack in desperate need of upgrades, Beatrix will scour the world for slimes and treasures of many kinds in the pursuit of her fortune.
She’s not entirely alone, as several colorful characters will send her letters and requests to help her out, and even Beatrix’s ex, Casey, shares some sweet letters to bring her up to speed after Beatrix’s year in hypersleep. The ranch’s previous owner, Hobson, has also left many messages around the Range describing the world and his time there. And funnily enough, his ruminations on love and a past relationship seem to mirror Beatrix and Casey’s story…
Deep storytelling in a slime poop tycoon game? We’re pleasantly surprised too.
This is a 100% LP collecting every slime, upgrade, achievement, treasure pod, Slimepedia entry, etc. Nothing goes untouched.
The LP uses Version 1.1.2 through Part 10, and additional content updates are shown until the LP concludes on Version 1.4.0.
My co-commentators are JigglyJacob and TorpidTypist. Torpo is familiar with the game while Jacob is new to it but an enthusiast of the cute.
(By Natália Santos) - Slime Bikini Fashion
(By Ousire, Twitter) - Felt Rad Slime
(By Fish Noise) - Geop Slime
I gotta say, from the first post I half-wondered if Grunty from Banjo Kazooie was going to inherit a farm. Thankfully we have someone more(?) qualified for the job.
Really glad this has started - I was going through Rune Factory 4 slowly - but I think I can start off on this thread instead. I love the opening to Stardew Valley
Oh ho ho, I have stories about this one after me, my brother, and my sister-in-law played a bunch of Stardew last year.
Let’s just say that my sister regretted marrying him within a week. I’ll wait until it actually happens before I really talk about what happened though.
Oh hell yeah, I love both these games. Slime Rancher should have an update within like, the next day or two. I’m eager to find out what they’ll work on once they put out the Viktor update; more Slime Rancher shenanigans, or start a new project? I’m excited for either prospect.
Check out this fantastic interpretation of 8357 from Natália Santos!
Slime Rancher begins, joined by JigglyJacob and TorpidTypist! It’s adorable and deceptively horrific!
Since I last played the game they have added them two new modes - I might go and relax playing Casual mode.
Slime Rancher looks like a fantastic chill-out game. I’m tempted to grab it for myself from the first video alone.
Slime Rancher looks cool, but its pun game is weak compared to my boy, Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime.
Making more headway into our first week, meeting more townsfolk, and a brief look at the bizarrely most difficult thing in the game.
I finally beat Prairie King later in the LP.
“I wish you could name them.”
I really, really agree with you. I had a honey tabby I called “Beans.” I think I still have him but it’s been a while since I’ve played. I gave him his own kennel.
Took all day before I could upload this due to router problems. Got it sorted though, so you all get to enjoy burns and radiation poisoning with us. Let’s make nuke slimes!
A cat with a normal name? It was clearly named by someone else.
This week unlocks the meat of the game and the LP: the community center and the mines. Yay for more killing!
I’m not entirely clear what Mochi is actually doing with those plorts she trades you for. Is she engaged in some sort of poop investment banking? Some sort of small-batch artisanal kom-poo-cha?
Anyway I’m curious to see if her little event thing makes her less of a douchehole, or if Monomi Park leans into it even harder.
Update: No, she’s still a huge bitch.
Delicious and dangerous. We unlock some new locations to explore, including a lovely forest with well-hidden raccoon jerks.