Stardew Valley is a decelerated and magical game experience, in which you can do a lot, but don’t really have to do anything at all. Still, there are a variety of things to discover, figure out, and experience.
Some of them are just nicely told, others challenge you and still, others can be quite annoying. We’ll give you essential Stardew Valley tips for beginners, so that you’re off to a good start.
Table of Contents
1) The start
The start into a new life
The popular indie role-playing game basically draws the normal path of life. Your protagonist works in a sterile environment most of the time. However, one day he remembers a letter he received at his grandfather’s deathbed. This letter is about the farm of the deceased, which your character has inherited.
Without further ado, you quit your job, free yourself from everything that holds you down, and set out in the form of your character to accept your inheritance. However, the farm may be different from what you thought it would be because when you arrive you find overgrown land and a ramshackle but homely cottage.
First tasks in Stardew Valley
At the beginning, you’ll receive a small gift. It stands in the middle of the room and contains some parsnip seeds. However, your farm is overgrown with weeds. Wood and stones are lying around everywhere, and trees and grass have also grown wild.
How you want to start is absolutely up to you. You can get to know the villagers first or explore the colorful world. However, our Stardew Valley tips are primarily about a solid base.
In this respect, you should create a place to plant and water your parsnips at the beginning. The best thing to do is to make 10 more fields of potato plants, which you will buy later at Pierre’s general store. First, however, you should collect at least 50 pieces of wood to be able to build yourself a crate. In it, you can store all the items.
Then go to the village and buy potato seeds at Pierre’s general store for the 500 gold starting capital. This is always open from 9 am to 5 pm. Wednesday is the day of rest. You can find the store north of the town square.
Control and objectives of the game
Depending on which device you play Stardew Valley on, you either use a keyboard and mouse (desktop PC), the controller of your console, or the touch control of the smartphone or tablet.
Through the in-game settings, you can still make adjustments in terms of display size and much more to customize your gaming experience.
On the other hand, there is no real objective in Stardew Valley. The game experience is what each individual makes of it. While there are, without giving spoilers, some core themes that you can devote yourself to – you won’t find a concluding storyline or anything like that.
Which map to choose?
When creating your character, you have the choice to select your favorite one from 7 farm types:
- Standard farm – a lot of farmland – optimal for farm work skill
- Riverbed farm – mostly water – optimal for fishing skill
- Forest farm – lots of trees and foliage – optimal for gathering skill
- Mountain top farm – large mining area – optimal for mining skill
- Wilderness yard – monsters appear at night – optimal for fighting skill
- Corner farm – consists of 4 parts of farmland – optimal for multiplayer
- Beach yard – lots of open space and water – optimal for gathering and fishing skill
2) General Stardew Valley tips for beginners
Layout of your farm in Stardew Valley
In general, Stardew Valley gives you a free hand in how you lay out your farm. However, especially in the beginning you should keep the paths as short as possible. It is also helpful to build paths early on. Simple wooden or stone paths are ideal for this. These will allow you to travel much faster.
The short distances will also be important later for animal husbandry. Everything you need for processing – preserving jar, oil press, loom, mayonnaise machine, cheese press, etc. – should not be too far apart.
The same applies to frequently visited buildings such as stables. Silos, on the other hand, can certainly be positioned somewhere at the very edge.
Along with this, as soon as you have some money, plan your cultivation areas carefully. This way you can better manage the efficiency of your daily tasks. After all, in the beginning, you have to take care of the irrigation, harvesting, taking care of the animals, and much more.
Tip: When planning the field, always think about the place for the scarecrows.
Pay attention to the planting season
In general, when farming, you should always pay attention to what seasonal seeds you buy. This is because each type of plant has different harvest times. Since a season is limited to 28 days, you may quickly run out of crops because you lose track of the growing season.
It is also important to upgrade your tools as soon as possible. This is because the standard tools only have an effect on one square in front of the character. If you upgrade the watering can or the hoe, their range of use expands and your work becomes noticeably more effective.
Thus, with the copper improvement you work or water a row of three, with the iron improvement a row of five, with the gold improvement a field three times three, and with the iridium improvement a field three times six.
With the pickaxe improvements, you not only work more effectively, but you can also destroy the large stone blocks. With the axe improvements, on the other hand, you’ll need fewer blows to cut down a tree and you’ll be able to chop up the different-sized wood deposits at and in the secret forest and on your farm.
If you give a tool to Clint to have it improved, it will not be available to you for two days! Therefore, it makes sense to wait until the end of the month.
Process products for more profit
Of course, you can sell everything you harvest or get from the animals immediately. However, you should listen to our Stardew Valley tips, as it makes more sense to process goods – where possible.
For example, you can make cheese from milk, mayonnaise from eggs, jelly from blueberries, oil from truffles or make your own wine. This way you increase the value even more.
In addition, when you reach the 5th and 10th level of a skill, you can opt for special specializations. For example, the Farming skill at level 5 gives you the option to choose between Cattle Breeder (20% more yield from animal products) or Crop Farmer (10% more yield from crops).
At level 10, depending on what you chose at level 5, you can choose between stable master (halves breeding time) and shepherd (more wool from sheep) or craftsman (40% higher value of processed products) or farmer (plants grow 10% faster).
Making the best use of time
At least as important as the preceding is to use the time available as effectively as possible. For example, rainy days are especially good for exploring the mine further or catching all those fish that only come out of their holes when it rains.
3) How to earn money
Why do I need money in Stardew Valley?
The currency in Stardew Valley is gold. You need it to buy seeds, build buildings, or improve your tools. Likewise, you can buy food when you need it, animals, animal accessories, fruit trees, and much more.
Furthermore, you can often buy something at festivities or at the paddy wagon, which can always be found on Fridays and Sundays in front of the Tinder Juice Forest between 6 am and 8 pm.
If you want to find out how to earn money, check out our Stardew Valley tips and tricks on earning money!
4) Build & manage efficiently
Which buildings do I need in Stardew Valley?
In general, you should always build what suits your gameplay. For example, if you plan to sell mostly animal products, the first purchases should be 3 to 4 silos. Since each animal eats 1 x hay a day in winter, you can perfectly store the grass growing on your land in the silos. But this will only happen if you build them beforehand.
On the other hand, if your focus is on agriculture, it would be more important to do the quests in the community center for the greenhouse. This way you can also grow fruits and vegetables in the winter.
If you are more interested in having a family and want to get married as soon as possible, then your focus should be on expanding your cottage. This is a prerequisite for you to even plan beyond a romantic liaison with one of the bachelors and bachelorettes.
Which layout is most efficient in Stardew Valley?
The layout should, as already mentioned, be as short as possible. This is especially important for the stables in combination with the production tools.
But also between farmland and pond to quickly fill up your water in the watering can. So everything you need to harvest, collect or exchange should be neatly planned together.
The nice thing about Stardew Valley, however, is that it’s not mandatory. If you’d rather walk all over the farm once to ride your horse to the river for a fishing trip, there’s no downside to that, other than a little in-game time lost.
5) How to: Farming
Which buildings do I need?
For farming, you don’t need any buildings, just space, seeds, and your tools. Of course, you can build a mill to process wheat, for example. Or you can build a hut, where you can place your preserving jars in a row.
Only the well might be helpful at the start of the game if the way to the pond to fill up the watering can is too far. Furthermore, since you have too little gold and materials at the beginning anyway, you should focus on the essentials.
How can I accelerate my progress in Stardew Valley?
Your crop cultivation in Stardew Valley is perfected with sprinklers. These come in three different types:
- Sprinkler (production: 1 x copper ingot + 1 x iron ingot) – 4 fields (top, bottom, right, left)
- Quality sprinkler (production: 1 x iron ingot + 1 x gold ingot + 1 refined quartz) – 8 squares (around the sprinkler)
- Iridium sprinkler (manufacture: 1 x gold ingot + 1 x iridium ingot + 1 x battery) – 24 squares (2 squares around the sprinkler each).
These are used for automatic watering in the morning. To accelerate the growth of the plants, you can also use fertilizer. In total, you have 10 variants to choose from, which you can also make yourself with the appropriate ingredients.
Stardew Valley farming tips
Strawberries are the most lucrative in Stardew Valley. You can buy them for 100 gold each at the egg festival. The strawberry seed needs 8 days to be ready for harvest.
After that, you can harvest strawberries every 4 days. As a basic price, they bring you 120 gold. In addition, you have a small chance to get 2 strawberries.
Recommendation: Save your money for strawberries in the second year and focus on finishing the greenhouse via the quests in the village center in the first year. Strawberries only bloom in the spring. So you would have to buy them again and again.
It makes more sense to grow them in the greenhouse. Don’t forget the sprinklers! This way you can harvest, process, and sell them all year round without any real effort.
6) Fishing tips: including the legendary fish!
Tips for fishing in Stardew Valley
When it comes to fishing in Stardew Valley, you have various options. You can fish in the ocean, in ponds or in the river. You can also fish in the few cave lakes. Besides fish for the community center bundle, you’ll finish your “collection” in the menu with the caught fish.
However, not every body of water has the same fish. Moreover, it makes a difference whether you fish during the day or at night, as well as in good weather or rain.
Since fishing in Stardew Valley has many special features, we have written a separate article for you. In this article, we’ll show you how to fish in Stardew Valley, where you can catch legendary fish, how to choose the right equipment and what the different movement patterns of the fish are all about.
Where can I find the legendary fish in Stardew Valley?
There are a total of 10 legendary fish to catch in Stardew Valley. However, to catch them, you must have already become very good at fishing. In addition, you might need some equipment, because they are hard to catch. So for your start in your farm life, they play a minor role for now.
The first 5 legendary fish can always be caught, depending on the season:
- Purple Fish
– summer – Time: anytime – Weather: any – Location: eastern pier near Elliot’s hut
– autumn – Time: anytime – Weather: any – Location: north Joja Market on the plank fishing northbound
– spring – Time: anytime – Weather: rain – Location: Mountain lake, near the log
- Glacier fish
– winter – Time: anytime – Location: southern tip in tinder juice forest
- Mutant Carp
– all seasons – Time: anytime – Location: sewers
The other 5 legendary fish are available to catch as part of Mr. Qi’s challenge. In our Stardew Valley Fishing Guide, we’ll show you how to get them too.
7) Friendships, Village and Community
In Pelican City, there are 6 bachelors and 6 bachelorettes. You can start a liaison, fall in love, get married and start a family with any of them regardless of gender. In addition, you can establish a friendship with any villager.
Stardew Valley Friendship, Love and Gifts
Your social bond with the inhabitants of Stardew Valley is shown on a heart scale, which you can view in the game menu. By talking, completing delivery tasks, giving appropriate gifts, or making certain decisions in heart events, hearts are filled.
At certain heart levels, special unique events are unlocked with that person. To conquer one of the bachelors or bachelorettes, you need to fill the heart scale to 8 hearts.
Afterward, you can give them a bouquet, which you can buy at Pierre’s. This will unlock another 2 hearts. Once you have reached 10 hearts, you can buy a mermaid amulet on the beach to the right of Elliot’s house over the bridge, which is still destroyed at the beginning.
If this is given to the beloved person, it will result in a marriage proposal. After the marriage, 2 more hearts can be filled and a 13th which holds a special surprise.
What can I do at the Stardew Valley Community Center?
The community center is attached to a quest line where you have to complete the individual bundles. This involves finding things, growing things, collecting things, or catching certain fish. In addition, for the bundles, you have to bring some things to the community center for some villagers.
For completing each community center bundle, you’ll receive rewards. These include, for example, building the greenhouse on your farm or repairing the bus stop. That’s how you’ll get to the desert later on.
Consequently, you should start thinking about what you need for each bundle early on so that you don’t end up selling something you would have needed.
8) Television and calendars
What is there to consider?
The calendar is a wonderful way to stay up to date. Because not only are the festivals entered here or can you optimize your harvest times on it well. It also shows you the birthdays of all the villagers. This is important in the context of friendships. Because each heart corresponds to 250 friendship points.
If you give a person something they love, you get +80 friendship points. On the other hand, if you do it on a birthday, you’ll get +640 friendship points. In addition, the points increase with the quality of the gift.
For example, if you gave Hayle an Iridium-quality sunflower on her birthday, you would receive 640 Friendship Points plus another 320 based on the quality (Normal +0%, Silver +10%, Gold +25%, Iridium +50%).
On TV, on the other hand, it’s worth watching every program once a day. Here you usually get the weather report, so you can plan your day better. In addition, there are tips and tricks in between, as well as a cooking show where you can learn new recipes.
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