I’m insanely excited about the tweet Barone made in December revealing one of the new items: bigger storage chests! (If you know, you know, and if you don’t know, you will soon after you start playing and need to store everything.)

How Should You Prepare for the Update?

First and foremost: Buy the game if you don’t own it already. The game’s power requirements are low compared to other popular games, so it should be easy to play on just about any existing PC.

For existing users, if you use mods, you’ll need to prepare for the likelihood of updating all of your mods after the update goes live. There’s no way to know when mod makers will have time (or if they will at all) to update a mod you like, so you’ll have to keep an eye on that yourself. SMAPI and Content Patcher are minimum requirements for many mods, so start with updating those.

If you have an existing file you want to hit perfection on or the completion-related Steam goals, like crafting any item, you might want to complete the existing goals before any new additions arrive. Crafting and cooking recipes are sometimes tricky to unlock or find since they often depend on other achievements in the game, and there’s no telling where the new recipes will be.

What Do You Need to Play Stardew Valley?

To play the new update on March 19, all you really need is a working PC. But for the best experience while you play, here’s what we recommend having available.

A Game Controller

You can play Stardew with just a keyboard, but a game controller is much more intuitive and comfortable to use. I find I often use both, since the keyboard is where I activate my mod shortcuts, but a great gaming controller is preferable by a long shot whenever I’m doing any normal tasks around the farm, heading to the mines, and especially when I’m fishing. I refuse to fish via keyboard.

A Steam Deck

If you’re bummed about needing to wait to play on your Nintendo Switch, you could get a similar experience with the help of a Steam Deck. Our favorite at WIRED for PC gaming is the Valve Steam Deck, and you can even upgrade to the OLED Valve. Extra bonus with the Steam Deck is that your mods can work on it, too. Here’s how to do it.

A Great Headset for Co-Op

Did you see that mention of eight-player co-op? Because I sure did. While eight voices trying to manage the same farm sounds a little crazy, I have loved playing Stardew Valley in co-op mode. I once played one file for over a year with a friend to hit the in-game perfection levels together. (Hot tip: don’t miss the recipes on the TV!) Having a good gaming headset makes everything easier on co-op, since it eliminates echoes and crappy audio.


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