Stardew Valley has tons of options for late game play thanks to the game’s 1.5 patch, which delivered additional content and quality-of-life upgrades. These included the new region of Ginger Island, along with new quests, which gave players lots to chew on. But the deluge of extra content overshadowed one of the less splashy, yet hugely impactful, upgrades: the ability to “place most furniture outside.” This allows players to truly redesign Pelican Town, in a way that was never achievable before.
With the ability to finally decorate regions in Stardew Valley, the game’s lifespan becomes even greater, giving players expanded creativity and more reasons to play indefinitely. It’s been roughly a year since the 1.5 patch, which launched on Dec. 21, 2020 for PC, and on Feb. 12, 2021 for consoles (which included Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X). And in that time, players have used these outdoor furniture placement powers to create some beautiful regions in Pelican Town, with a number of players decorating the entirety of the game’s map.
Cindersap Forest, the large forested region directly below a player’s farm, has become a prime candidate for redecoration.
But there are tons of ways fans have expressed their creativity across Stardew Valley’s map.
Some of the design techniques clearly echo those of Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Stardew’s wood fence and stone fence are a lot like New Horizons’ country fence and stone fence — and designers intersperse them to set the scene and create discreet areas, along with various pathing types and decor items.
Like in New Horizons’, players are also decorating the yards of the residents who live there.
It might even be a bit easier to decorate Pelican Town in comparison to New Horizons. That’s partially because Pelican Town is not as customizable; there’s no terraforming, of course, and there are also town decorations that are fixed and unchangeable. But Stardew Valley’s interface also makes laying down furniture and decor easier. You can simply place furniture, rather than removing it from inventory and manually pushing it around.
Even better, savvy players don’t actually pay for all of the furniture items they’re using. Instead, you can buy the Furniture Catalogue — which allows you to spawn furniture items for free — and just take it with you as you do design projects. The Furniture Catalogue doesn’t come cheap, costing 200,000 gold and purchased from the Carpenter Shop; it also isn’t available until players have upgraded the farmhouse, which has its own series of costs.
But it does mean saving resources (and money) in the long run. This is especially handy when crafting items like the Iron Lamp-post item, which requires an iron bar and a battery pack to craft. Battery packs can only be created in limited windows — using lightning rods during storms — that the player can’t control or automatically replenish.
These Pelican Town redesigns continue the longer legacy of Stardew Valley players using certain workarounds for aesthetic ends — like using the game’s crops for aesthetic purposes, when decorating a farm. (The image below has modded trees, but using coffee plants as shrubs is achievable in the vanilla game. Other players commented that tea plants also work as shrubs.)
This might just be tip of the iceberg, in terms of creative possibilities for the popular game. Stardew Valley has long had a thriving mod community for the PC, and recent patches only expand those possibilities. In November 2021, the developers released a 1.5.5 patch that “future-proofed” the game by migrating it to a framework that would allow mods to use more than 4GB of RAM. (And a small 1.5.6 patch was released in December, offering additional “quality of life,” fixes.)