In early December, ConcernedApe dropped the much-anticipated 1.4 gameplay patch into the picturesque world of Stardew Valley. The update brought a windfall of new features to the beloved farming sim, such as new events for the Pelican Town citizens, the ability to farm fish, 60 new items, a host of cosmetic additions, and a ton more.
Because the update was so substantial, there are likely a lot of new players looking to plant their first crops. In this guide, we’ve put together a list of early-game tips that should help you get your farm off up and running. They range from simple layout suggestions to not-so-obvious quality of life stuff. So, if you’re diving into Stardew Valley for the first time, plant some of these tips and watch them grow into a fertile and thriving farm.
Watch TV Everyday
The television in your house isn’t just for decoration. The various shows offer some handy tips and tricks for growing your farming empire. More importantly, though, is the weather report. If the forecast calls for rain, you won’t have to water your crops that day. This saves you from expending precious energy, and frees you up to tackle other energy-hungry tasks, like adventuring in the mine or fishing. It’s important to take advantage of rainy days early on because without sprinklers to water your crops, you’re guaranteed to be expending stamina doing so yourself.
Look Out for Worms
While roaming around Pelican Town, you’re likely to see some wiggling worms poking their heads up out of the ground. If you’re carrying a hoe with you, you can churn them up for an item. In the early game, worms are a good source of clay, and you can often find treasures for the museum or geodes to be broken open. They’re also the only way to find books for the library, which offer up all kinds of helpful hints. Keep a close eye out, though, because worms can be hard to spot!
Repair the Bridge to the Tide Pools
Cash can be hard to come by during the first couple of seasons in Stardew Valley. Sure, you’ll get a small amount from selling the early game crops, but if you’re looking to really bolster your coffers you’re going to want to make your way over to the tide pools. On the beach, you’ll find a broken bridge that costs 300 wood to fix. Do so and you’ll have access to all the coral and urchins you can carry! These items sell for a good amount of gold, and can be a great way to improve your finances early on. 300 may be a lot to ask at the beginning of the game, but the payoff is well worth it.
Talk to Your Crush Every Day
Walking around Pelican Town, you’ll meet an assortment of hot and available townsfolk. Luckily, Stardew Valley lets you romance pretty much anyone! If you’re looking to woo somebody, you’ll want to talk to them every day. Not only does this gradually improve your relationship with them, you’ll also learn about their interests. Bring them gifts that align with their favorite things and you’ll rack up those sweet, sweet heart points in no time!
Go to Bed Before 2 AM
Hitting low energy levels is dangerous for many reasons in Stardew Valley, so it’s important to get to bed before you pass out from exhaustion. However, you may not know that there exists a time limit on how long you can stay awake, even if you manage to have some leftover energy at the end of your day. That limit, it turns out, is 2 AM. If you’re out and about when the clock strikes, no matter where you are, you’ll fall over and wake up in your bed the next morning with a chunk of your energy bar missing. In Stardew Valley as in life, sleep is a requirement.
Contribute to the Community Center
There’s an old, dilapidated community center to the north of Pelican Town proper. At the start of the game it’s run down and falling apart. You can revive it, though, by collecting specific bundles of items and bringing them to the Junimo spirits that live there. You can check what bundles are available on the bulletin board inside the community center or in the “community center” screen in the escape menu. Make sure you note what the Junimos want because it’s easy to accidentally sell off some of the required items—the first several bundles require various spring and summer crops. The rewards for completing bundles are always substantial, so tending to the building is well worth your attention. In order to gain access to the community center, you’ll need to enter Pelican Town from the bus stop on a day that it’s not raining sometime after the 5th of Spring.
Keep Track of the Date
Speaking of dates, it’s important to note the passage of time in Stardew Valley. There are two main reason to keep track of the date: first, you don’t want to miss the birthday of any townspeople! Bringing them a gift on their birthday will greatly improve your relationship with them, which is hugely important if you’re trying to date and marry them. The other reason you ought to be aware of the date is that many of the items the community center bundles require season-specific crops. For example, the “Spring Crops” bundle in the Pantry category require crops that you grow in the (you guessed it) spring. If you miss a specific date, you’ll have to wait a full year before it rolls around again!
Build the Greenhouse Before Winter
The winter season in Stardew Valley is a barren one. Little to no crops grow during the cold, meaning it can be tough to earn money. If you fix up the dilapidated greenhouse on your farm, though, you can keep the gold coming in. To do so, you’ll have to complete all the pantry bundles in the community center, which appear after you complete a single other bundle. It’s important to know this early because some of the items you need require some foresight, like truffle oil that calls for the use of an oil maker, or the honey that needs a bee house to make. Get started on this one early, because it can take some time!
And that wraps it up for this guide. Need any other tips? Ask in the comments section and we may add to this list!