Eric "ConcernedApe" Barone's passion project sold extremely well in its first seven months, reaching almost a million copies. The indie game Stardew Valley is essentially a simple farming simulator, but for some reason people are loving it.
Stardew Valley sales have reached almost one million units on Nintendo Switch. The game is one of the most successful indie titles in the past two years, especially on Switch. At Nintendo's fiscal year results briefing for 2017, it was mentioned several times over as the reigning indie title in terms of sales, considering it sold that many copies in half a year.
Shovel Knight was the star of the show when it released in 2017, but was soon followed by the aforementioned game made by a single man, Eric "ConcernedApe" Barone. He started making Stardew Valley back in 2011, but did not finish the game for another five years. Barone needed help with localisation and ports so he contacted UK developer and publisher Chucklefish to help him release the game for as many consoles as possible in as many languages as possible.
At the start of 2018 it was reported that the game sold more than 3.5 million copies across all platforms, which proves that the indie scene is no laughing matter. Basically anyone with an idea and some skills can develop and publish a game nowadays, so those of you who are second guessing themselves should give it a shot. You never know if your game might be the best-selling title of the year.
The second game that was mentioned on Nintendo's briefing was Overcooked: Special Edition, which was another game heavily popular with YouTubers in the past year. Despite being launched with a myriad of bugs, it still managed to sell more than 500,000 copies on the Switch. Since the release, the developers have worked on fixing the bugs and patching the game up to an enjoyable state.
Stardew Valley originally released on Windows, OSX, Linux, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2016. That's a hefty amount of development for essentially a one-man developer. Later on the Nintendo Switch port released in October 2017 and there is a planned port for the PlayStation Vita sometime later in 2018.