3 Reasons Why Linus is the Worst Character in Stardew Valley
Controversy coming from someone who used to adore him
I have been playing Stardew Valley for well over four years. My husband bought me the game on our PS4 way back in 2017. He was obsessed with it and thought I should give it a proper go. I was reluctant, as I was still trying to decide if I even like video games, but I gave it a fair shot and all these years later, I still play it nearly every single day. When we purchased a Nintendo Switch, we made the switch (pun intended) over to the newer console.
I love Stardew Valley and recommend it to everyone I know. The story is rich with character development, it brings awareness to illnesses like addiction and depression, and it has elements of magic and whimsy that make even a casual player smile.
However, the game is not without fault in its characters. I have my favorites (George, Harvey, and Leah are my go-to best friends) and I have my very least favorites (Pierre…just Pierre).
Linus is a “wild man” (according to Robin) who lives in a tent in the mountains by a lake. He’s very quiet and keeps mainly to himself, but has some cute cut scenes as you build up a friendship with him. While Linus was always my favorite character when I first began playing, I have grown more and more distaste and distrust for the man.
This is all in good fun, and again I adore everything about Stardew Valley and will continue to play it probably forever. This is only meant to point out some inconsistencies in Linus’s character and dialogue. Why not be a teensy bit critical?
1. Linus seems anxious upon meeting a new person since people (allegedly) bully him so badly
Not only is there absolutely no proof of Linus being harassed by anyone in Pelican Town, but there are several instances of people being kind and welcoming towards him. In a cut scene, your farmer finds Linus going through George’s trashcan for food. You get to pick how you respond — either nicely or not — but even after you walk away, Gus comes out of the Saloon and gives Linus a meal and says he doesn’t “want any villager to go hungry.”
Linus repeatedly has dialogue about people destroying his tent, throwing rocks at him (“Someone was throwing rocks at my tent last night… I just had to wait it out.”), and more, but there is never any visual evidence of this happening. Linus is present at every festival and celebration in Pelican Town. Why would he be invited if everyone hates him? Alternate question; if he’s treated so poorly by the kids in town, why would he want to go at all?
If you choose to marry someone in town, Linus will even attend your wedding. He sits right next to Jodi and Kent and Dwarf. Linus, if no one liked you, why would they make a point of sitting next to you at a town function?!
2. He’s a bold faced liar
Linus is homeless by choice. He likes to be “one with nature.” He claims that he purposely strays away from people. He says things like “I don’t need new friends,” and “I’m happy by myself, you know” but then complains that no one wants to be his friend and how he doesn’t trust anyone around him. Which is it Linus?! Do you not need friends or does it bother you that people don’t talk to you??
He says “I don’t like to stay in one place for too long. There’s just too much to experience in the world.” Well Linus, I’ve been in Pelican town for four years and you’re still in the same spot every single day. He also says “It would be nice if the townspeople could accept me for who I am. I like living out here in the open air.” Literally everyone accepts Linus and would be willing to get to know him better. He claims that everyone rejects him, but I think it’s definitely the other way around. Even Robin says she doesn’t mind Linus living in what is basically her backyard.
At the Feast of the Winter Star event, Linus says “I’d join in… but I don’t think I’m welcome,” even though you can GET LINUS AS A SECRET GIFT GIVER. He is legitimately PART OF THE DAY.
3. Linus basically adopts Leo when Leo comes to Pelican Town from Ginger Island
Linus has made it very very clear that he is happy by himself and he doesn’t depend on anyone, nor does he need anyone else around. In fact, if you get to eight friendship hearts with Linus, there is a cut scene with the option for you to invite Linus to move onto your farm with you. If you offer, he gets slightly offended. If you don’t, he’s relieved.
Yet he turns around and invites Leo to live next to him and vows to take care of him because “they’re the same.”
While this absolutely is genuine and kind of Linus to do, it seems a little hypocritical to claim for so long that he’s better off alone and that no one likes him, yet he offers to raise Leo upon meeting him for the first time. If the difference here is that Leo is a child whereas most of the other villagers are adults, then fine. But I don’t buy into that since Jas and Vincent are perfectly capable of growing and learning. Penny teaches them to be good and understanding and curious, why wouldn’t Jas and Vince be able to accept Linus like Leo does?
All in all, I still do love Linus and he’s really easy to befriend in-game. He likes just about every forageable and harvestable item for gifts, and if you frequent the mountains for mining or fishing, he’s always easy to talk to and build up friendship points. We are meant to pity and sympathize with Linus from the get-go, which I absolutely did when I first started playing. After your sixteenth farm though, it gets to be a little bit harder to empathize with someone who clearly doesn’t want to be liked.