By Jack Lumber
Coach of Rutgers Division 1 Stardew Team
Let me preface this by saying I absolutely adore Stardew Valley. It changed my life when I first played it, and I wouldn’t be the man I am today without it. I wouldn’t be on the competitive team if I didn’t love it. And of course I can’t get enough of the big content updates, most of 1.4 adds even more hours of great content and all sorts of new secrets to find. Except this: “when you catch a silver or gold quality fish, a ‘perfect’ catch now increases the quality by one. (This is the only way to get iridium quality fish.)”
Fucking really? Fishing is already one of the most useful skills, eventually in the late game, but this is absolutely broken. Not only does it further increase the disparity between low and high ELO players, but it forces us to completely rethink our team roster for tournaments. Our combat + mining flex players now have to grind out fishing to become absolutely perfect at it, which cuts into their academic and personal lives, but if they don’t we’ll be forced to cut them from the team because their niche doesn’t exist anymore. Not only that, but our strategies for most of the major farm types are useless because every team for the foreseeable future is only going to be playing on the river map!
I tell you, this is going to lower public interest in the professional scene too. Remember Overwatch League Season 2, when every game was GOATS vs GOATS? If you saw one game, you saw them all, because the game balance didn’t encourage more than a single style of play. Mr. Barone needs to get this sorted out before the next season starts, or this could screw Competitive Stardew Valley on every level.