This Stardew Valley-inspired game with 'dark fairytale creatures' leaves early access in December

We liked Kynseed well enough to say it "could be the next Stardew Valley" in a 2021 preview. With a few big differences, of course, including vengeful gods to worship and fearsome monsters to battle. It's been around since 2017, when it enjoyed a successful Kickstarter campaign and trip through the Greenlight process (remember that?) before debuting in early access in 2018. Now, five years later, we've got a full release date and a new trailer showcasing farming, fishing, fungus, and fantasy fighting.

Kynseed is a multi-generational game, with characters who will age and die as their adventures unfold, leaving their farms, their business, and their journeys to their children. Mundane and magical activities coexist—you can grow both food and potion ingredients on your farm, for instance—and you'll develop relationships with a cast of "colorful NPCs" while simultaneously battling "dark fairytale creatures" who lurk in the dark corners of the realm.

Cozy farm sim and brutal combat aren't the most obvious gameplay partners, but Kynseed looked very promising when we checked it out last year, even though many of the promised features had not yet been implemented.

"After jumping in and starting a game from the most recent update, it's still overwhelming how much there is to do," we wrote. "It takes me back to the first time I played Stardew Valley and got dropped into an intimidatingly giant plot of land with just a few seeds to my name.

"If a game has farming, it takes a lot to pull me away from getting stuck in, but Kynseed's ancient woodlands, faery myths, and fantasy folklore are worth leaving the safety of the farm. When you realise Kynseed is being created by three ex-Fable developers, you begin to see their influences everywhere. There are druidic stone circles, giant wooden wicker-man structures, and puns. So many puns."

Neal Whitehead, co-founder of developer PixelCount and one of the aforementioned Fable veterans, described Kynseed as "the game we’ve always dreamed of making."

"When Charlie [Edwards] and I first met we were united by our shared passion for the kind of quirky, unique and very British adventures we were able to develop together with the team at Lionhead, and we're certain we're not alone," Whitehead said. "Over the last few years working on Kynseed we’ve seen our Early Access community grow to more 100,000 players. We're looking forward to opening the land of Quill to even more players, and we can promise launch day won't be the end of this tale..."

Kynseed is set to go into full release on Steam and GOG on December 6.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.