Stardew Valley creator Eric Barone hosts a mini-AMA on Twitter

Stardew Valley Creator Eric “ConcernedApe” Barone announced today that he is publishing the game on Android devices, meaning he has taken full responsibility for publishing across all digital platforms.

After making the announcement, he invited followers to ask questions “about anything”, promising he would answer as best he could. And boy, did people accept his offer.

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To Barone’s credit, he’s been hanging around for over an hour now (he’s still going as I write this), answering pretty much every question he’s asked. Most of them – but not all – are related to game development. Some examples:

The complexities of self-publishing:

“I still don’t have enough experience with mobile devices as I started publishing there recently. Consoles in general are much more complicated than PC. Steam is the easiest to work with. They just let you be free and if your game has problems, that’s up to you. I appreciate that.”

How he started making Stardew Valley:

“I coded from scratch using XNA (which provides some low-level gaming functions like loading resources and drawing textures on the screen). I’ve never used any game creation software, but I’m not against it or anything.”

How much he loves chocolate (Barone’s next game is “an adorable chocolate shop simulator” called Haunted Chocolatier):

“I like chocolate, but I also think making chocolate and candy in a dark, snowy city felt like a fun, cozy thing to do with lots of room for imagination and magic.”

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How he maintains a proper work-life balance:

“It can be difficult and I fail a lot. But what helps the most is if you make a game that you’re really excited about and try your best to have fun while doing it. Everyone needs some leisure time, but if you can have fun at your job, you can fake it a little bit.”

The relationship between your new game, Haunted Chocolatier, and Stardew Valley:

“There will be some sort of connection, but I can’t reveal the extent of that yet.”

We are alone in the universe:

“No.”

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Will there be more Stardew Valley updates?

“There may be, but it’s unlikely there will be any future updates as big as Update 1.5.”

Advice for new game developers:

“Make the game you love, that you’re so excited to work on that you’ll jump over any hurdle to bring it to life. The software or the approach you use isn’t all that important. Find a way.”

Monetizing YouTube videos with music by Stardew Valley:

“I don’t really care if individual youtubers use the music for their backgrounds or whatever. I think if a big company was using the music for an ad or something, I would care. So it’s case by case, but if you’re just a person making YouTube videos I don’t care.”

About awesomeness:

“There is so much potential in the human mind and willpower and it just needs to be unlocked, almost everyone has a huge amount of untapped potential and I hope everyone can discover their own key.”

When will we hear more about the Haunted Chocolatier:

“Hopefully soon. To be honest, I’d like to post more about Haunted Chocolatier, but I also feel kind of rude or insensitive doing so before the mobile 1.5 update is released.”

There’s a lot more to it than just that, including a commitment to bringing the Stardew Valley 1.5 update to mobile, thoughts on activating mods for the console versions of the game, and even a little troubleshooting. When Barone said he would answer questions as best he could, he wasn’t kidding.

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