Stardew Valley Patch Improves Your Marriage

Death is not the end, croaked Bob Dylan on 1988’s Down in the Groove. I’m not even sure that death is a possibility on the bright, friendly farms of Stardew Valley [official site] but there was an end-point of sorts. Marriage, rather than being the beginning of something wonderful, marked the end of independence, the full stop at the close of your spouse’s individuality.

No longer! A patch earlier this week improves the behaviour of spouses, allowing them to leave the house independently to go for a walk or visit town, and providing each with a set of unique dialogue. There are other tweaks as well, including a fix to “the farm rampage”. Boo! I don’t know what that is but it did really need to be fixed?

The full patch notes are tiny so I’ll reproduce them here:

Added unique dialogues for all spouses.
Spouses now leave the house on mondays.
Value of most animal products increased.
Holly is now poisonous.
Missing events problem shouldn’t happen anymore.
Minor bug/grammar/graphics fixes.

I was still in spouse mode when I read the “Holly is now poisonous” line and thought that there was one particular marriage that was doomed to failure. It’s all well and good retaining your unique dialogue and free range sensibilities after the wedding, Holly, but could you at least try to stop dripping lethal toxins from your maw?

But, no, that’s holly the plant rather than a human called Holly.

Improvements to NPC scheduling are the thing most likely to suck me into Stardew Valley for a prolonged stay so this patch is most welcome. And more marriage improvements are incoming, apparently.

If I had more time, I’d have been planting and growing already though. Our review certainly made Stardew sound appealing.


  1. yaktaur says:

    Deep cut on taking a lyric from Down in the Groove. What a cool name for a pretty bad album….

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      Adam Smith says:

      I’ll be honest – my first exposure to that song came through the cover on Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ Murder Ballads. I figured I’d go back to the source for the reference though :)

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        DelrueOfDetroit says:

        I used to have a roommate whom insisted that Guns N Roses owned the song Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door. Ugh, he was the worst.

        • Minglefingler says:

          I once worked with a bloke who talked about “Tiesto’s Adagio for Strings.”

      • LennyLeonardo says:

        God I love Murder Ballads. That is the worst song on the album if you ask me, but it’s a nice little breather after the horrible moving scarecrow that is O’Malley’s Bar.

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          Adam Smith says:

          Well, you know those fish with the swollen lips that clean the ocean floor?

          • LennyLeonardo says:

            When I looked at my Stardew Valley wife that’s exactly what I saw. Before the latest patch.

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            DelrueOfDetroit says:

            A plecostomus?

        • QSpec says:

          For me I am not a fan of Stagger Lee which loses me some street cred.

          And my wife thinks I’m crazy, but Curse of Milhaven is one of the best songs on the album! I think I adore the line “Ah fuck it, I’m a monster. I admit it.”

      • QSpec says:

        Nothing wrong with that. Nick Cave is holy, and Murder Ballads is a fantastic album in a series of fantastic albums.

  2. tehfish says:

    Damn, now i really want to know what “the farm rampage” entailed :D

    Anyone have any clues? googling it only gives me mentions of the patch notes…

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      Harlander says:

      I believe it’s a case where the player’s spouse would suddenly make a beeline for the edge of the map, stomping anything in the way – crops, fences, sprinklers – into dust, before vanishing off into the void.

      You really shouldn’t have said what you did about their mother.

  3. Tacroy says:

    In the interests of journalistic integrity I really must point out that the Holly you described is venomous, rather than poisonous.

    • captainparty says:

      Does that mean I can safely eat great big handfuls of the berries then? Because I have.

      • Press X to Gary Busey says:

        If you ate berries from a toxin drooling person Holly it’s fine. The plant Holly you will give inconvenient orifice firing vectors.

    • Viral Frog says:

      Actually, that is wrong.

      “Poison must be inhaled, ingested, or delivered via touch, while venom is injected into a wound. This may seem overly pedantic, but it should be noted that venom isn’t usually poisonous (meaning it generally won’t hurt you too much or at all if delivered in a different fashion than injecting, even if you swallow it).”

      link to

      Holly is poisonous, not venomous.

      • captainparty says:

        I think he might have been joking, about people who tediously correct others on the differences between poison and venom.


        • Viral Frog says:

          May have been, but never hurts to see. Had they actually thought they were correct, they now know the truth. No reason to allow someone to be willingly ignorant.

          Also… we need a special font for when people are joking or sarcastic, because it’s pretty easy to lose over text.

          • Shazbut says:

            I knew Holly and I can safely say she is both venomous and poisonous

          • Windows98 says:

            Sarcasm tags were tried on a forum I post on. People started using them sarcastically.

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            DelrueOfDetroit says:

            [/sarcasm] works.


      • Kitsunin says:

        Hang on, I think you’ve misread. He’s referring to the theoretical woman Holly, mentioned in the article. If there were toxins dripping from a lady’s maw, they’d likely be venomous ones. Figuratively speaking we refer to people as venomous, not poisonous, as well.

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    Harlander says:

    I’ll be holding out for the polygamy patch, myself.

  5. MrWolf says:

    Are we should that increased spousal autonomy and further dialog actually “improves” marriage?

  6. Viral Frog says:

    As soon as ConcernedApe makes it so that the game doesn’t end after the second year, I’ll start playing again.

    Game went from incredibly relaxing and enjoyable to “Oh crap, there’s an end and I’ve only been focusing on the parts of the game I enjoy and will be penalized for it when my farm is evaluated and the game ends abruptly?”

    It really should have set that expectation up front. Especially if that’s a Harvest Moon-like trend that someone who has never played a HM game would not know about.

    I love the game, and I would continue playing if I knew that I could continue past the two year evaluation, but at this time I can’t. So I’ve basically abandoned it.

    • captainparty says:

      You can keep playing after the 2 years, you just don’t get the achievement if you don’t pass

      • Viral Frog says:

        I see! When did that happen? In the PC Gamer review I read, the wording made it seem like there was a hard ending after the 2 year mark.

        • Viral Frog says:

          Interview*, not review.

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          DelrueOfDetroit says:

          I thought it was 3 years. Is the note you find from your grandpa a different plotline?

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            Harlander says:

            You can get a re-evaluation after that point, too. It was in an early-ish patch.

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      DelrueOfDetroit says:

      And yes, the original Harvest Moon was like this. You found a garden in your field and whenever you reached different milestones (marriage, so many crops, birthing a calf ect.) a flower would grow in the garden as a sort of progress bar. Those games would end at a point though.

  7. rexx.sabotage says:

    Adam, you would pick Abigail, you vampire magician, you!

    • pandiculator says:

      Purple-haired girl is best girl.

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        DelrueOfDetroit says:

        Poppycock, everyone knows it’s Penny.

        • Minglefingler says:

          Penny’s been cheating on you with Sam when you’ve been planting potatoes. She strikes me as the sort of girl who’ll use the young fella to knock you off because the only thing she ever cared about was getting out of that trailer.

      • TheAngriestHobo says:

        Abigail weirds me out, because it’s not clear if she’s 13 or 30. On the one hand, you can marry her and have kids a year after moving into town. On the other, she gets in fights with her mother over her hair colour and clothes, replete with the familiar refrain of “I’m not a kid anymore!”.

        I guess that’s a risk you run when your target audience is ages 8-80, though.

        • Jackablade says:

          None of the eligible girls look like they’d be out of high school were Stardew to actually use some of its thriving agricultural economy to educate it’s damn kids.

          I’m seeing the doctor on account of him being the only romanceable character who it wouldn’t be super creepy for my squinty, bearded old farmer to be seeing.

          Also, he’s a doctor, honey.

          • Blackrook says:

            I felt the same way, it was starting to feel a bit dodgy chasing after these youngish girls.

            But I got the new patch and smashed Demetrius over the head with my gold pickaxe, buried him in the desert, and picked up Robin while she was still grieving.
            I’ve put Seb and Maru to work on the farm as cheap labour and I now sit and drink beer/fish-all day > that’s how to win the game?

          • rexx.sabotage says:

            At this rate, I estimate that we’re three patches away from being able to turn the town into a free-love commune and I am okay with that… Just Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.