Fear not, readers: I am still planning to turn my Stardew Valley farm into a battery chicken farm but progress has been slow on that front. Partly because I want to make it into a column called "Mother Cluckers" (which I, like your embarrassing uncle at every Sunday roast dinner, think is an extremely funny pun), but mostly because there are too many mods. And nothing has given me (and my chickens) more joy recently than the ability to grow lovely cacti and tiny succulents.
Stardew Valley is very easy to mod, you see. Most mods are practical and sensible, as collected in our Best Stardew Valley mods list, but my tastes run more to the whimsical and charming (similar to the new swimming mod that made Alice0 very happy last week). I have added many to my game. Notably, the kind of terrifying one that turns the horse into the male NPCs.
But now I've found two more mods for my game that add succulents and cacti to your little farm, both from this year, and I'm surprised it took me this long, to be honest. Succulents For Json Assets adds two crops and 10 craftable succulents, so it's a bit more decorative in function, but the little starter pots are so cute!
On the whole, though, I prefer Neo's Succulent Farm by Neonix. With this, you currently get 10 succulent and cacti starter plants to grow and harvest in your farm. Mine are, as yet, only nubs in the dirt. I'm making a cactus garden near the greenhouse - though they will eventually all be cleared to add more hens.
Is there any more damning metaphor for my life than my Stardew Valley character staring at their currently barren garden in the rain? Probably not. But the mature plants, as modelled in a screenshot by Neonix in the header image up at the top of this article, are really pretty. I don't think I could ever bear to harvest them. And this is only the start! Neonix plans to add more spiky juicy lads in future updates. You can buy them from Pierre's General Store, and they grow in every season apart from winter.
The design on these is great, obviously. They're really detailed little critters, and manage to convey spikiness without the capacity for spikes. I especially love the bright pink and green succulents. But they still fit perfectly with the look of the base game which is great if, like me, you don't tend to go in for mods that change the game's colour palette or art style.
I don't know what it is, but no mod for any game ever has provoked such an emotional response in me. Succulents have, of course, become very popular over the last few years, because they are small enough to live on a desk and their demands are few and simple enough that even the most hapless office drone would be hard pressed to fuck up having a succulent. Plus, they are aesthetically pleasing and sometimes will put out a giant flower when you least expect it.
They are the perfect plant for the tired millennial, I suppose, especially because you can come up with names for succulents and cacti like "angery cucumber" or "my son, the goth pumpkin" or whatever (the Zoomers' mockery of us is fair and just).
Other fun mods that arrived for Stardew Valley this week include Butterfly Hutches to attract them all the time (you can even place on in town), one that turns your dog into a blue chicken, and another that turns your cat into Punchy from Animal Crossing. Because yes, another one of my great passions is modding Stardew Valley to make it feel like Animal Crossing.
Stardew Valley is a favourite here at RPS. You can find it on our lists of best RPGs, best co-op games and best management games for pc. If you've just started playing and want a cheeky head start, check out our Stardew Valley cheats and console commands, and we can keep you up to date with Stardew Valley news on the latest free updates and mods.