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Stardew Valley’s 1.6 Update Is Out—Here’s Some Of The Biggest Changes (2024)

The popular farming sim and ultimate cozy game, Stardew Valley, dropped a major update on Tuesday after months of anticipation. Stardew’s 1.6 update has an insane amount of new content that touches every area of the game, from new menus and DIYs, to a new farm layout, new crops, and the ability to have multiple pets and play with seven friends at once. It’s enough updates to make the game feel fresh, but isn’t so new that you can’t ease back into a beloved farm and toil away.

It’s important to note here that the free update is currently only available for PC players. The update will come to mobile and consoles like the Nintendo Switch later on. If you’re not a PC player, the 1.6 news has not changed gameplay, and you’ll be able to play normally while you wait for it to show up. If you don’t have the game yet on PC, you can purchase it on Steam for $15, and it works on PC, Linus, and Mac computers.

As soon as the PC update arrived, I opened up Stardew Valley and started a file with the brand-new farm layout (which has me very broke) to dive right in. The update also works on your existing Stardew files, and I’ve been bouncing back and forth between my brand-new file and a later-game file to see what’s new in different seasons. Everywhere I look, I see something new. Moss to forage off trees! New reactionary dialog from NPCs! A prize machine in the mayor’s house!

If you hate spoilers, I’m honestly not sure why you read this far, but you should definitely stop reading. I’m about to tell you about some of the biggest changes I’ve spotted since playing the updated game.

Photograph: Nena Farrell

Ranch ModeThe biggest change to see right away is the new farm layout. Stardew’s 1.6 update adds the Meadowlands Farm, a grass- and animal-focused design for my fellow animal ranchers. This farm grows a special blue grass that game creator Eric Barone says animals will love. It can raise animal’s hearts faster, improving the eggs and milk they give you. There’s less farming land available, and a few changes to initial quests. I’m enjoying the Meadowlands Farm so far—I immediately created one when the game dropped–even though starting with two chickens and no parsnip seeds is definitely a slower path to the infinite wealth I’m seeking. But even though I’m broke, it’s still been fun to have such a different start to the game.

Photograph: Nena Farrell

Fresh CropsThe first question my sister asked me when I started playing: “Are there new crops?” At first, I told her no. I didn’t see anything new to purchase in the shop. But there are new crops with the update–you just won’t find them in any stores.

Instead, you find four new crops (one for each season!) in a few different ways—mainly, digging them up from the ground in the game’s well-known Artifact Spots, although spots with these new crops have a slightly different style you’ll be able to spot. You can also win them in the brand-new Prize Machine in the mayor’s house, once you get your hand on a prize ticket. The new crops are carrots for spring, summer squash for (shocker) summer, broccoli for fall, and powdermelon in winter. These new crops can be used in the game’s main quest, too. Just choose Remixed Bundles for the Community Center in your starting settings.