Even the world's most prolific creators had to start somewhere, and for indie sensation Stardew Valley's creator, Eric Barone, somewhere was a game called 17CF Quest. It's endearingly awful, but it's fun to see where Barone first cut his teeth in game design.
In an interview with GQ (opens in new tab), Barone opened up about his history with game development, saying that he had never wanted to make computer games commercially. He dabbled a bit as a child, but when he was "18 or 19" he decided to make a game to coincide with an album release from his band, 17 Colorful Feathers. "One of the ideas I had was, when we released our album online, I would include a video game with it," he told GQ. "I crafted this dumb little game like The Curse of Monkey Island. It was called The 17CF [Quest], or something like that.
Barone shared a link to his first game in the article, which you can download here (opens in new tab).
Fair warning, when I unzipped the file and tried to run it, it tripped my antivirus software, but that's likely just because it's an unsigned executable. I went ahead and ran it anyway and, sure enough, it's a point-and-click adventure game that looks like it was made in MS Paint. Still, the game works and there's loads of objects to interact with.
If anything, I just find it inspiring to know that someone who started with something as rough as 17CF Quest went on to create a massive hit like Stardew Valley.