Marriage is always a big draw of farming sims, and Stardew Valley is no exception. There are infinite discussions online on who is the best bachelorette in Pelican Town, and nobody can really come to an agreement. But it's widely accepted that Haley is one of the worst romances in Stardew Valley. And then, of course, there are players who make mods so they can woo the undateable, like Sandy or even Pam.
But while these many romanceable Stardew Valley villagers might easily steal the hearts of gamers and there's an archetype there for everyone, the problem with these villagers is what happens after they get married. It's unclear if what happens after marriage in Stardew Valley is intentional, meaning a somewhat dark and depressing truth, or not.
Stardew Valley Needs Better Marriage Interactions
Each resident of Pelican Town has a distinct personality, both surface-level character traits and secrets that must be uncovered. For example, though Haley comes off as rude and shallow in the early hours, her cold exterior will melt away and players will learn of her love for photography. Likewise, Shane also gives the player the cold shoulder when they first move to Pelican Town, but later they can discover his drinking problem caused by depression and even help him recover from it, for which he'll be thankful.
And while many of these relationships bud into cute romances, like going camping with Emily in the Secret Woods or kissing Abigail in the mines, some players have pointed out what happens after they move in with the farmer.
After a spouse marries the player in Stardew Valley, they can help around the farm and might make food for their partner at the beginning of each morning. They might still go about their usual business, such as Emily continuing to work at the Saloon, but going forward, most interactions will be related to the farm or the kids.
Their personalities will slowly change after marrying the farmer, and some Stardew Valley players have thought this to mean that marrying the farmer ruins their lives, or at least, some of them. For example, Leah will no longer sculpt or create art when living on the farm, despite the beautiful scenery still at her disposal. This might suggest that she's too busy assisting with the farm and making the player food to work on her own hobbies. Likewise, Sebastian always dreamed of moving to the city, but once he gets married to the player, those dreams begin to fade.
Some things have been added since the early versions of Stardew Valley. For example, Elliot will go on a book tour during his 14th heart event, meaning that he still regularly pursues his own goals while helping the player out around the farm.
It would be great to see Stardew Valley include more interactions such as these. While some folks like Penny can still live simple yet happy lives on the farm and it might even be better for them than their original situations, it's possible Stardew Valley could grow past 14 heart events and add more late-game marriage content that would help these relationships develop even further. Some players have also mentioned the lack of general interaction players have with their spouses after marriage, and how it would be nice to see events like celebrating anniversaries or the kids' birthdays. It's not clear whether or not Stardew Valley will receive any more updates, but players can always turn to mods for this kind of desired content.
Stardew Valley is out now for Mobile, PC, PS4, Switch, and Xbox One.