Stardew Valley: A prime example of therapeutic gaming.
I’m a lot of things, a bleeding heart, a weeb and relevant to this article: mentally ill. I’ve struggled with depression all my life, I’ve left many things in tarnished pieces; school career, friendships, etc. One thing I really have trouble with is accomplishing the smallest of things, this is where games come in. I admit that for a long time it was mostly escapism and “ignoring my problems” until I found a tiny (or so I thought) farming simulator made by one man, I fell in love with the gorgeous but not overly taxing for my potato computer graphics. At first I thought I’d get bored and stop playing a week in…then I started paying attention to the character dialogue. I give all the awards to the creator for writing such….genuine characters. I found myself wanting to work to earn their friendship.
I then had to work my farm to afford the expensive tavern food Shane liked..I mean the gifts for the villagers! It felt so good to do something even if it was only in a video game. My brain then figured the big idea out…if I could wake up every morning to take care of two cows and like eighty crops…I could start to take care of myself again. I’ve been better than I have been for months…all because of a farming sim. I sincerely thank the creator of this darling game.