Since it was announced last year, fans have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of online multiplayer for Stardew Valley, the beloved farming simulator from Eric Barone and Chucklefish.
Now finally after some slow development and rounds of QA testing, developers feel they are ready to open a public beta to the world. A post appeared this morning on their development blog announcing the new open beta of the multiplayer features that will be available to players on Steam and GOG.
Players can opt in to the beta through Steam now with a special password, while GOG players will have to wait a few more days. The announcement also reminds them that this is still a beta and glitches are very possible, so fans eager to try the new features should be sure to backup their save files somewhere as well as uninstalling any mods they may have accumulated for the best possible experience online.
If you’d like to add your friends to a farm you already have, you’ll have to build them lodging in the form of small cabins you can purchase within the game. You can build up to three on a single farm. Once everyone has a home, save and return to the title screen and you will have the option to launch that file from the co-op menu.
If you’re more interested in starting a new farm to build together, simply choose ‘Host New Farm’ and go about building a custom experience for you all to enjoy on the menu shown below:
Then, your friends can explore with you and you can work together to build the farm to a profitable success. You can even pop the question and marry your friends within the game! If you get sick of your guests, simply demolish their cabin to divorce them and kick them out of town.
Servers can be ‘friends-only’, allowing Steam and GOG friends to see your open game and join right up. Alternatively they can be ‘invite only’ so that you can send invites to those specific individuals you’re hoping will join you. If the server is set to ‘offline’ everyone who isn’t you will be immediately kicked from the game.
It is certainly a promising start to what should be an amazing new set of features for fans of the game. Multiplayer could add a new depth and replay-ability to the simulator, keeping things interesting beyond the initial story. We will keep you up to date on more news about the beta and the upcoming update as it happens.