Stardew Valley developer Eric 'ConcernedApe' Barone is apparently working with a team on second project that's not Haunted Chocolatier.
In an interview with Game Informer (opens in new tab) (via PCGamesN (opens in new tab)), Eric revealed that he's working on a collaborative project which allows him to have "the best of both worlds" as they can develop games both by themselves and as part of a team.
The Stardew Valley developer didn’t reveal what the other project is, but did say that Haunted Chocolatier "is another completely solo game, kind of like Stardew Valley, where I’m doing literally everything." Due to this, the developer also said: "That one will probably come out first."
Unlike the surprise success of Stardew Valley though, Eric also said that they’re "not trying to make the next big indie hit" and was also "almost considering" releasing the next game under a new alias so that future players don’t associate the new game with Eric’s wildly successful Stardew Valley. However, he eventually decided against this idea due to it feeling "a bit disingenuous."
If this is the first you’re hearing about either of Eric’s projects, here’s what you need to know. Announced in October 2021, Haunted Chocolatier is Stardew Valley 2 in all but name as the developer sticks to their usual style of a top-down, pixel-art game set in a cozy town with the added twist of ghosts and chocolate. We also know that Haunted Chocolatier will have NPC "relationships like in Stardew Valley".
Unfortunately, there hasn’t been much else revealed about Haunted Chocolatier just yet, however, fans believe they may have sussed out the game’s potential release date thanks to a series of screenshots shared by the developer. In the fourth screenshot shared, the currency counter in the top right corner features the number 2,023 - which some believe is Eric teasing the release date in plain sight.
Just can’t wait to play ConcernedApe’s new game? This Stardew Valley mod gives you a little Haunted Chocolatier.