The next game from Eric "ConcernedApe" Barone, creator of Stardew Valley, is called Haunted Chocolatier, a cute sim about a chocolate shop. Not much is known about the game yet other than that you run a haunted chocolate shop and go on adventures to collect ingredients.
But ConcernedApe has posted a new developer diary on the Haunted Chocolatier website with some design details about his vision for how Haunted Chocolatier's combat will go. The post is accompanied by a gif of the combat in action, showing how off-handed items like Shields will play out in fights to stun opponents who attack you.
He goes into a bit of detail about the game's greater focus on combat and on how it's not a copy-paste job of Stardew Valley's. "On the contrary," says the post, "almost everything in Haunted Chocolatier, including the combat, is completely coded (and drawn) from scratch."
Enemies who attack a shield will be stunned, allowing you to get in a series of extra-fast attacks against them. There are plans for other items that will support more aggressive styles of play, but the shield is for defensive, cautious, and patient players.
ConcernedApe ends the post with a very reasonable caveat: Anything in the game can change, and things in this new gif already differ from things in the Haunted Chocolatier trailer. There's no commitment to a release date for the game, and ConcernedApe won't be committing to a schedule of regular updates: He'd rather work on the game. It's a very reasonable way to live.