12 Spoiler-Free Stardew Valley Tips and Tricks to Get You started
February 10, 2021BLOG
February 10, 2021BLOG
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If you want to succeed with a farm in the Stardew Valley, you can rely on useful working methods such as the use of sprinklers for automatic irrigation. Learn how to build your own sprinkler here.
Sprinklers sweep your field. Each morning, the four adjacent fields are automatically accompanied, which can save a little work.
For the unknown, Stardew Valley is a hugely popular indie role-playing game where you inherit your grandpa’s farm (and all the subsequent adventures that have sprung from it). The game serves as a spiritual successor to the farming RPG Harvest Moon franchise (and, even better, tackles many of the frustrating aspects of Harvest Moon games in the process). Playing the Stardew Valley blind is a really fun experience, but there are some traps new players you can deal with or get a little help with with a tip list like this one.
The following tips and tricks have been carefully selected to accomplish three things:
With that in mind, we’re not just trying to keep our suggestions spoiler-free, we’ve gone out of our way to organize the list so that the least revealing suggestions are at the top of the article. You can stop reading any time you feel you risk missing a bit of the magic of self-discovery.
Or the first tip is less one tip and more like meta-suggestions for playing the whole game. If you are used to playing games with a multiplayer element, you may need to take a deep, deep breath and get yourself some good chill to play in Stardew Valley.
Stardew Valley is a balanced single-player experience. Unlike bluffing, say, a popular FPS or MMORPG game for getting the best loot drops before they leave, there’s nothing in Stardew Valley you can really miss because you failed or didn’t play the game in some sort of right or optimized way.
In the context of the game, you can be the most avid farmer Stardew Valley has ever seen, or you can do enough just to keep your farm running so you can explore the game.
No matter how you play, the only person setting the pace of play is you, and if it seems overwhelming or you start to feel stressed about it, take a deep breath and relax. There are no setbacks in the game that you cannot recover.
I am my son, Linus, catching up after a long day.
To get ahead in the game, be nice to everyone (and every single thing) you come into contact with – except the things that want to eat you up, go ahead and hit their faces a few times. Friendship and kindness are the foundation of the Stardew Valley universe, and if you are kind to creatures big and small, you will be rewarded.
Talk to your neighbors. Bring them treats from your farm. Write down what they like (and what they don’t like). When you make friends with people, they will open up to you, sharing their lives (and often tips and work in progress). Even animals respond to your kindness. A cow that you stop raising every day produces better milk; the chicken you are interested in produces larger, higher quality eggs.
This is the shortest section in our tips guide (because we go to great lengths to avoid spoilers), but it’s also the most important. We think you’ll find the game much more enjoyable if you work on making friends with the crudest and most eccentric of the city.
One thing new players almost always get thrown off is the game’s “hit location” mechanism. The game is 2D and everything (planting crops, placing objects, etc.) occurs on coordinate planes that are not visible from the box. Due to how the orientation of the avatar on your screen, the tools you use, and the grids interact, the effects of using your tools can appear a little skewed sometimes. You can sometimes swing your tool while facing forward and have it hit objects beside or behind you.
Some tools have a range of 1-3 squares that you can use strategically to your advantage. You have to move less and you expend less energy, so it pays to be really good at targeting the tools you “hit.” In addition, taking this action required quite a bit of energy. Hitting the right square means not wasting that energy.
To help you use the tool exactly where you want it, press the ESC key to open the game menu, then select the tab with the little controller icon, as seen below. Check the option “Always Show Hit Tool Locations”.
This places a red square directly on the square which will interact with the given tool (as shown in the image at the top).
There is also a keyboard shortcut to temporarily change the hit location. Hold down the SHIFT key while using the tool to display the hit box, even when the option is turned off. That’s a handy little tip to remember when tool placement frustrates you.
You eat by throwing food in the air and chopping it up like a Tasmanian devil.
Second only to being frustrated at one of the misplaced cuts is the confusion of new players about how tired their characters are. Unlike many RPGs, where you can swing your tools and weapons tirelessly, Stardew Valley has a fatigue meter. Physically demanding activities, such as swinging tools and weapons, tire you out. Fortunately, walking and running are not.
At the start of the game, you can feel tired all the time. You can cope in one of two ways: eat or sleep.
Eating food increases your energy level. Raw food gives you the energy you deserve; cooked food gives you more. Early in the game, there is a delicate balance between selling food for a profit versus eating it for energy. If you find yourself drained in the morning and don’t want to waste food, take the time to attend to energy-consuming tasks. Sort your chest. Plan your farm. Explore the map. Head to town to chat with townspeople and build friendships.
Or eat all your food and cut down whole forests like crazy. Far from us to stand in the way of your lumberjack wishes.
Food may give you the energy to tackle chore after task during the day, but there’s one thing you can’t eat in Stardew Valley: clocks. You have to sleep every night.
You wake up at 6 am at your farmhouse every morning. If you don’t get back to bed before 2 a.m., you pass out from exhaustion. Each of the 18 in-game hours equals 45 seconds of real-world time, so a packed day in your new farm life is equal to 13.5 minutes of real-world time. You will be amazed at how much there is to do in the game and how fast the days go by.
It is best to go to bed before midnight because your energy bar will be fully refilled the next day. If you sleep between midnight and 2:00 a.m., you’ll have less energy the next day.
And, if you don’t sleep by 2 a.m., you’ll pass out wherever you are and wake up with less energy the next day.
But that’s not all. If 2 am breaks down and you pass out anywhere outside your farmhouse, the consequences can range from a small financial ding (the in-game equivalent of finding you and hauling you home for a fee), to a large ding if you are in the more dangerous areas of the game (where you can lose not only money but random items from your inventory).
As long as you are at the front door of your farmhouse before the clock strikes 2:00 a.m., you will be fine, but you will not get the full benefit of sleep.
Extra sleep tip: the game only saves you when you go to sleep (be it planned or passed on a dusty trail) every night. The downside to this is that if you exit the game before bed you lose all your progress for the day. The upside is that if you do something really stupid (like dig up all your best plants from the ground instead of watering them), you are one rage away from absolution. Just stop before bed.
Holiday decoration is serious business in the Valley.
Stardew Valley days aren’t the only things to do. One of the things that almost always catch novices off guard is the fact that the in-game seasons (which reflect spring, summer, fall, and winter) are not as long as 90 days as you might anticipate. The in-game season is only 28 in-game days. When you first start playing the 28 days may seem like an eternity as you get your bearings but trust us, in no time you’ll be like “% * # @! It’s summer already! ”
The seasons in Stardew Valley are important because each season has unique plants you can grow, unique wild plants to forage, and unique fish to catch. If you lose a particular crop or catch a certain fish in a certain season, you will have to wait (in most cases) until the next year to get one. It’s not the end of the world, but if you need that thing for some project or quest you really want to work on, waiting a year is tough. Remember, if you play your days to the full, each season is about 19 hours of gameplay.
With that in mind, we recommend planning with care. Stardew Valley values good, thoughtful planning. Don’t plant crops late in the season when you don’t have time to harvest them. Instead, try to prepare (and save money) so you can buy crops and plant them on the first day of the season.
Also, make sure to harvest all of your crops before the season rolls around (as unharvested crops will wilt as the season’s change).
Tree felling is no joke. You will need a better ax.
You may do a lot of exploration in Stardew Valley, but you are a farmer at heart and a farmer has the tools. Better tools mean an easier time working on your farm. From the very beginning, you will meet characters who can improve your tools and you should really take advantage. Tool upgrades can make your tools run faster (fewer hits to chop down trees), more efficient (more water in your can and water reaches more crops), and can even hit special items that level tools can’t. the lower one.
You need to save resources to upgrade, and you need to have the time when you do upgrades. The upgrade process takes two days in-game and for two days, you won’t have that tool. If you leave your watering can be increased in midsummer, there will be two days where you can’t water your plants and thirsty plants don’t grow.
With that in mind, upgrade the window in the calendar where the effect of losing tools will be minimized or removed altogether. If you increase your watering capacity on the last day of fall, for example, you will not be penalized because 1) you don’t have to water the plants on the last day when you harvest them and 2) there is no harvest to water in winter, so you won’t need your watering on the first day of the new season.
Despite the back-to-nature vibes of the game, and the strong drive towards an understated, low-tech presence in your new valley home, the television in your farmhouse is completely useful. Depending on the day of the week, you can tune the weather report, horoscope, or cooking line or outdoor channel.
These channels will, respectively, tell you the weather forecast for the next day (rainy days are great for exploring because you don’t need to water the plants), reveal your horoscope (the game has a variable “luck” and how lucky or unlucky your horoscope plays a role in fortune based endeavors such as finding rare items), teaching you recipes (cooked food is very strong in the game and you want to learn all the recipes you can), or giving you tips about the game (the outdoor channel is filled with advice on the mechanics of the game, the city, agriculture, and so on).
At a minimum, you should at least check the TV every day for cooking broadcasts as there are many recipes in the game that you can only learn by doing.
Full energy meter and already watering the plants? Yes, please.
Speaking of weather forecasts and rain, rain is your best friend. No, really, early in the game especially you’ll love nothing more than to check the TV and find out there’s a storm to expect.
Early in the game, you will need to farm for resources and money, but farming at an early stage can be really time-consuming and tiring. If you overplant, you can quickly feel overwhelmed by how much farmland you have. Rainy days are a sweet, sweet, relief from your agricultural responsibilities. See a cool cave you want to explore? Want to get to know the villagers better? Need to squeeze a few pieces of wood to build your supply? Rainy days are the perfect day for doing everything but farming, so when you wake up to the sound of thunder, pack your backpack and get ready to explore your day.
This guy. Take one for the team.
When you first arrive in Stardew Valley, the very friendly mayor stops to introduce himself. Among other things, he tells you that you can put your salable items in the wooden trash cans right outside your farmhouse and he will take them to various markets for you.
A lot of new players are avoiding squares because there has to be a catch, right? Surely if the mayor acts as the middleman and sends your crops to the market or your fish to the docks, then he takes the cut?
Set aside your suspicions, dear readers! Stardew Valley is healthy and mayor your patron saint. Despite the impossible economy, a tough little guy hauls all the booty you boxed in and sells it for you every night. When you wake up in the morning, you get a breakdown of the sales and 100% of the sales.
The only time you don’t want to use the box is if you need the money right away. The mayor doesn’t collect things and sell them until midnight and you don’t get the money until the next morning. If you have a large pile of plants that you have to sell now to finance important purchases, skip the boxes and take them to the right store to sell them.
The city carpenter can build additional farm buildings for you. At first, most of these buildings (and subsequent upgrades) were too expensive, but there’s a building worth buying as soon as you can afford the capital price: silos. The weeds you cut down on your farm to make way for other projects are wasted if you don’t have a silo. If you have a silo, the weeds you cut become hay.
Even though you may not have any cattle right now, eventually you will probably try some of the farms and all your cute little barn friends will starve. A silo or two at the start ensures you don’t throw away the weeds you cut, but save them for later.
When it comes to building issues, many crippled new players try to plan their farms and worry that they are putting the buildings in the wrong place (or that there won’t be room to upgrade them later). Good news! First, you can move any buildings at a later date (without penalty). Just visit a carpenter and choose a new place. Second, don’t worry about changing the footprints of the various upgradeable buildings. Fortunately (and with TARDIS that might not be like quality), the upgraded building maintains the same footprint no matter how large the interior is. This means a simple starter barn takes up the exact same space as your farm as a fully upgraded barn. Feel free to plan and place paths, fences and trees,
Farmers love rain. Fish love rain. You know what to do.
Hands down, fishing is the most polarizing thing in the Stardew Valley player community. It’s like a mini-game that some people find very natural and others leave their hair.
If you are one of those people who find fishing downright frustrating, we’d like to offer you a few words of encouragement and tips. First, treat the fishing mini-game more like a dance and less like a click-spamming endurance challenge. When you hook a fish, it will bob up and down on the fishing “meter”. The goal is to keep the fish inside the “catch bar” (which raises the side indicator from red, yellow, green, before you finally catch it). Each time the fish spends outside the “catch bar” decreases the indicator until the fish finally escape. If you click like crazy, you’ll send the bar sailing past the fish and most likely lose it. Instead, click slowly at first and watch the fish behave.
Even if you’ve got a natural flair for it, the first bit of fishing you do will be brutal. The “milestone” is small, the fish are fast, and you will lose a lot more than you catch. But! There is a silver lining. The more you fish, the better you get at it (both in terms of gameplay skills and in-game skill points) and the bigger the catch bar.
So even if it frustrates you to death at the start, stick with it because not only is being the master angler rewarding, but profitable fish, required for some in-game missions, and there are opportunities for you to show off your fishing skills for rewards along the way. .
We’ll close by echoing our opening suggestions. Take your time, don’t stress out getting everything as fast as possible, and remember to stop and enjoy the sights, adventures, and, of course, the people you meet in your new home.
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