Update: Stardew Valley multiplayer is now live on Nintendo Switch. Developer Eric 'ConcernedApe' Barone confirmed on Wednesday that the 1.3 update is rolling out for Stardew Valley's Switch version, enabling both online and local wireless multiplayer for up to four players. The update also enhances the overall game with expanded relationships, more items, and other features. In a Twitter DM, Barone also confirmed that, yes, you do need a Nintendo Switch Online subscription to play Stardew Valley online, though you don't need one for local play.
The free 1.3 multiplayer update is now available on Nintendo Switch. Have fun!December 12, 2018
Original story: Stardew Valley multiplayer update 1.3 will arrive on Nintendo Switch this Wednesday, December 12, developer Eric 'ConcernedApe' Barone announced today. The update also includes a smattering of single-player content, including a winter festival, new character events, and most importantly, horse hats.
Online multiplayer on Switch will function as it does on PC, allowing you to invite up to three friends into your valley and farm together. Your friends can join you in your current save file, or you can start a new one together. Story progress is shared between players, but inventories, relationships, and other individual milestones are separate. You can scale the difficulty to suit the size of your group, and you'll be able to communicate in-game using a new chat box "with colored text and nearly 200 custom Stardew Valley emojis." Relatedly, I'm gonna need these emojis on Android, stat.
Stardew Valley isn't currently listed as a game whose multiplayer component requires Nintendo Switch Online, but all signs suggest you will need a subscription to play it online. For one, most Switch games do. The Switch port of Stardew Valley will also feature local multiplayer which, Barone specified, can be played "without the need for a Nintendo Switch Online account." However, as Barone said on Twitter, you won't be able to play in split-screen on one console by adding another controller or sharing your Joy-Cons.
As Nintendo announced during an early 2017 Nindies showcase, Nintendo Switch will be the first console to receive Stardew Valley multiplayer. Barone said on Twitter that the multiplayer updates for Xbox One and PS4 are "in-progress," and says more more information is on the way.
As we said earlier this year, Stardew Valley is good self-care and has a lot to teach about work/life balance.