Stardew Valley On Switch Is Almost Perfect, But Misses Obvious Opportunities

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Stardew Valley on Switch is the same great game, but there aren't any added Switch features Chucklefish

Stardew Valley is available now on the Nintendo Switch and it’s almost the perfect way to play one of my favorite games of the past few years. Just about everything is a perfect recreation from the PC and console versions, but now you can take it on the go (if only I had this during jury duty). However, a few seemingly obvious missed opportunities may make fans who already own Stardew Valley on a different platform balk from double-dipping.

This review is going to skip over what Stardew Valley actually is, because there are plenty of other reviews out there to read if you don’t know yet. The short answer is I love Stardew Valley, have played hundreds of hours of it on other consoles, and can’t recommend it enough. Instead, this review will focus specifically on the Switch version and how it compares to other consoles.

As a whole, Stardew Valley on Switch is great. Everything from the other versions is represented, along with the added ability to play the game wherever you want, thanks to the Switch. You can even pause your game in the middle of the day by putting the Switch to sleep and allow yourself to pick the game right back up without having to start the day over. If you’re on a subway and you get to your stop or need to put down your game immediately, it’s definitely a nice feature.

Unfortunately, that’s about where Stardew Valley stops utilizing the Switch’s features. There is no touchscreen support, motion controls or HD rumble features (or rumble at all). The biggest missed opportunity is touchscreen support, which doesn’t need to be a complicated remapping of controls to play with only your finger pokes. A perfect example is the journal, which even flashes when you have a reason to check it. From my years of cell phone gaming, it feels natural to want to reach over and poke the journal icon even though I know nothing will happen. Instead, you need to use the unwieldy mouse icon to scroll over and click on it, just like on PS4 and Xbox One.

Similarly, I’m not looking for anything crazy with HD rumble. Seeing as how other console versions have rumble, like when reeling in a fish, it seems odd the Switch doesn’t even get basic support. I’m not terribly upset that Stardew Valley doesn’t use the feature as other versions of the game lacked these features as well, but it just feels like a missed opportunity to make the Switch version feel a little special.

The long save times also need to be addressed. When playing on an Xbox One, the save time when transitioning between days is done in the blink of an eye. The Switch version is so long, the developers went in and added a line of text saying that saving could take a while. This isn’t going to ruin anyone’s experience with Stardew Valley on Switch, but it is something that can cause minor annoyances.

If you haven’t played Stardew Valley, the Switch version is the same special game you’ll get on any other platform (with the addition of mobility and longer save times). Still, the missed opportunities aren’t deal breakers and I would still recommend Stardew Valley to Switch gamers. At its core, the game is incredibly fun and engrossing. Get it – just have the screen wipes on hand after you forget and poke the journal button for the fifth time.

REVIEW SUMMARY
Stardew Valley
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Stardew Valley On Switch Is Almost Perfect, But Misses Obvious Opportunities
Stardew Valley on Nintendo Switch is a great way to play the farming game, but it misses some obvious opportunities.
  • It's the same Stardew Valley you know and love
  • You can now play on the go
  • Long save times
  • No special Switch features
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