Stardew Valley and Animal Crossing: New Horizons are quite similar games. They're both wildly popular social simulators that players have loved playing. Stardew Valley was released in 2016, and the latest Animal Crossing iteration came out in 2020, though the franchise itself dates back to 2001. The games have deservedly been compared to each other over time. The question is: Which one is worth buying?
Stardew Valley vs Animal Crossing: Which one to buy
Well, the answer to that question depends on a couple of things. Typically, Animal Crossing: New Horizons costs more. It's a Nintendo game, so they almost always cost $60 USD. At Walmart, it's a bit cheaper for $50 USD, though that is still fairly expensive.
Stardew Valley costs the same on the Nintendo eShop ($60) and in Walmart ($50), so there's not much benefit there. However, not everyone has a Nintendo Switch. The console costs $300 USD, so the total price of the two can get very high.
Players who do have a Nintendo Switch don't have to worry about that though, which boils the question down to personal preference. Stardew Valley is older, which can often mean the bugs are all worked out. Animal Crossing: New Horizons is much newer, which likely means the game will be active for a long time.
Stardew Valley is not a Nintendo exclusive. This means it is available to gamers with other platforms, which is a huge bonus. In this case, Stardew Valley is available for PC players. It costs just $15 USD on Steam, with $5 worth of DLC.
The cost is much cheaper for PC players, but again, not everyone has one, and they are more costly than a Switch. For players who have both, Stardew Valley is probably the easy choice since it's far cheaper. Plus, New Horizons players have a long list of complaints about the game. On the other hand, Stardew Valley players do not (at least not as much).
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Either way, players can't really go wrong as these are two similar games, each with it's own set of pros and cons. The good news is, they're both spectacular games that players love to play.