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Sunday, February 18, 2018

How Eric Barone, Stardew Valley developer became a millionaire with one game a Harvest Moon rip off

Eric Barone, who goes by the handle ConcernedApe, is Stardew Valley's sole developer. He programmed the game, wrote the story and dialogue, created all art assets as well as all sound effects and music.

Stardew Valley was downloaded tens of thousands by PC Steam users. It sold more and more in the days that followed. Most games who played it were hooked - and they told their friends...

Stardew Valley was one of the least expensive games released in 2016 at $14.99. The game hit the number one spot on Steam's Top Seller. Nearly a year later Stardew Valley was released on consoles in December and made it onto the Xbox Store and PlayStation Store best-seller lists. At the close of 2016 the game was estimated to have sold more than two million of the PC version estimated revenue of over $25. On Xbox One and PS4 its sales revenue is more than $35 million.

Making any game studio rich but as Stardew Valley was make and developed by Eric Barone alone he stands to have made between $20 and $25 million. A great story when you know that Eric Barone was unable to find programming job in 2011 after graduating from college. Stardew Valley's production started at a time when Eric was working as an usher in a theater.

Developing the game took four years. Stardew Valley is an open-ended country-life RPG! You’ve inherited your grandfather’s old farm plot in Stardew Valley. Armed with hand-me-down tools and a few coins, you set out to begin your new life. Can you learn to live off the land and turn these overgrown fields into a thriving home? It won’t be easy. Ever since Joja Corporation came to town, the old ways of life have all but disappeared. The community center, once the town’s most vibrant hub of activity, now lies in shambles. But the valley seems full of opportunity. With a little dedication, you might just be the one to restore Stardew Valley to greatness!

Stardew Valley was created by game designer Eric Barone, under the alias of ConcernedApe. During the four years he spent solo-developing it, and he taught himself the necessary skills to produce the game's music, art, programming, and design. The game was released on PC on February 26, 2016, and within two months passed 1 million copies sold. Within a few months the game expanded support to Mac and Linux, it released on Xbox One and Playstation 4 in December 2016, and Nintendo Switch in late 2017. There have been two major post release updates - the first which added new farm maps, marriage options, and content, and the other which expanded supported languages to include German, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Russian, Japanese and Simplified Chinese. Since release the game has sold over 3 million copies worldwide.


  • Create the farm of your dreams: Build your farm from the ground up on 1 of 5 map layouts suited to your play style!
  • Master your ranching skills: Raise animals, grow crops, start an orchard and build useful machines!
  • Become a part of the local community: Get to know all 30+ residents of Pelican Town!
  • Customise your farmer: There are hundreds of character customization options to choose from!
  • Settle down and start a family: Share life on the farm with 1 of 12 characters you can date and marry, and even have children with!
  • Explore vast, mysterious caves! Encounter dangerous monsters and valuable treasures!
  • Spend a relaxing afternoon at one of the local fishing spots: The waters are teeming with seasonal varieties of delicious fish. Craft bait, bobbers, and crab pots to help you in your journey toward catching every fish and becoming a local legend!
  • Cook delicious meals and craft useful items to help you out: With over 100 cooking and crafting recipes, you’ll have a wide variety of items to create. Some dishes you cook will even give you temporary boosts to skills, running speed, or combat prowess. Craft useful objects like scarecrows, oil makers, furnaces, or even the rare and expensive crystalarium.
EU Trade mark now includes gameplay and sound copyright - this could stop anyone from copying the look and play of games like Harvest Moon. Look out Eric Barone don't answer the door if Natsume come knocking!

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