Stardewvalley skills

Stardew Valley: The Best Professions For Every Skill

The first days of Stardew Valley can feel grueling without proper skills and bonuses to help. However, as players grind the game and continue to expand their farm, they'll be able to develop their skills and unlock powerful boosts called professions, which act as specializations.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: 10 Ways To Make Big Money (Aside From Growing Crops)

Professions are unlocked at levels 5 and 10 of each skill, and once chosen, they can't be changed unless the player visits the Statue of Uncertainty found in the sewers. The statue demands a payment of 10,000 gold before a change to one skill can be made. However, with this guide, changing professions later on won't be an issue, because there are clear winners and losers when it comes down to them.

Best Farming Professions

The most basic and important skill in Stardew Valley, it's likely going to develop quickly thanks to tending to crops and taking care of any animals the player might have. Remember to water crops and plant more on a regular basis to increase this skill fast.

Level 5: Tiller

  • Crops are worth 10% more.

At level 5, the best Profession to pick is Tiller. Players will often find themselves selling extra crops for some money, and only a handful will be turned into recipes or used in artisanal goods. As such, it's always a good idea to have a bonus that increases the selling price of them. Rancher, on the other hand, is a bad choice since it's never recommended to sell animal products without first turning them into fine artisanal goods.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: How To Romance Every Character

Level 10: Artisan

  • Artisan goods are worth 40% more.

The bread and butter of earning money in Stardew Valley is selling artisan goods. All the crops and animal products produced at the farm can be turned into wines and cheeses, which can then be sold for incredible prices. 40% is a massive boost to the already bloated prices of artisan goods, so get it as soon as possible. Agriculturist, however, only increases the growth of crops by 10%, which isn't as useful given that players can use fertilizers to achieve that instead. Artisan is simply the better investment.

Best Mining Professions

Players don't have to go to the mines to increase their mining skill level. Using a pickaxe or any other method or tool to break any rocks even on the farm will steadily level up the mining skill. Depending on how hard the rock is to break, it will give more or less experience.

Level 5: Geologist

  • There's a 50% chance for gems to appear in pairs when mining a node.

Gems don't really have a big use in Stardew Valley, but they do sell for a nice price. Having more of them is therefore a nice bonus, even if the Miner profession that adds +1 ore per vein might seem tempting. However, Geologist has better level 10 professions than Miner, so in the long-term, it's a much better pick and will earn you more money. Plus, gems are a nice gift for some villagers as well.

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Level 10: Gemologist

This is another massive price increase to the already good selling price of gems. It's a fantastic way to make more money. To be fair, the Excavator profession is a valid choice, too, but for simple money-making purposes, the Gemologist path is simply supreme. Chances are, players will be finding plenty of geodes anyway at this point in the game, that the price increase will be more useful.

Best Foraging Professions

Foraging encompasses both gathering foraged items as well as chopping wood. Clearing out large, difficult-to-break wooden objects like stumps and logs will grant additional experience. Any item picked up from the ground that qualifies as a seasoned foraged item will give a bit of experience as well.

Level 5: Gatherer

  • There's a 20% chance of double harvest on a foraged item.

Foraging is incredibly easy to do in the beginning of the game, making this choice a no-brainer. Wood is plentiful on any day in Stardew Valley, which makes the Forester profession almost useless, but foraged items which are seasonal can be great villager gifts when stored throughout the year or sold for a bit of extra gold. The double harvest bonus is fantastic, as it gives a small chance of finding even more of those rare seasonal goods, which can be used to make artisan goods for cheap.

Level 10: Botanist

  • Foraged items are always highest quality.

At this point in the game, not only will foraged items be more plentiful when found, they will now always have the best quality as well. This means that their price will be better, and they can also be used to make better artisan goods. It's a nice side income on top of farming and animal products, so it really helps to have the highest quality. The Tracker profession isn't as useful, since by level 10 players will know the spots where foraged items are most plentiful anyway.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: 10 Best Fish (And How To Catch Them)

Best Fishing Professions

Fishing is pretty straightforward. No matter what the player catches, whether it's actual fish or trash or algae, the fishing skill will increase over time. Moreover, emptying crab pots will also grant a bit of experience.

Level 5: Fisher

This is another simple price boost, but these are the professions that players can reap the most benefits out of. Early on, fishing can be pretty hard to do with a bad rod, and so it's best to have at least a decent selling price for the catch that players do manage to get. The Trapper profession is pretty useless, since it simply reduces the crafting resources needed to make a crab pot, which in all fairness are not that expensive to make.

Level 10: Angler

The Angler profession doubles the initial price boost that players will have unlocked at level 5. By now, fishing should be a walk in the park, and any fish caught will fetch a very nice price when sold. It might not be the most original choice, especially when the alternative is the Pirate profession that allows players to find more treasure. However, the mines and Skull Cavern have enough opportunities for that anyway, so it feels slightly redundant to pick, especially at level 10.

Best Combat Professions

Combat is another straightforward skill. Head to the mines or to Skull Cavern to slay monsters for some experience.

Level 5: Fighter

  • All attacks deal 10% more damage and you gain +15 HP.

Picking this over Scout, which increases critical chance by 50%, is a no-brainer. It's a more balanced choice, which increases not just damage but also defenses by providing a bit more HP to the player. Early on, it's a nice general boost that doesn't force players to make a drastic decision, and the Fighter profession also has much better level 10 professions to unlock.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: Every Crafting Material (& How To Get Them)

Level 10: Brute

Level 10 gives a tough choice, but ultimately damage prevails. A good player at level 10 will be able to rely on foods that boost speed and defenses while crawling in the mines and Skull Cavern, so the 25 HP boost isn't quite as significant as a 15% damage boost in the grand scheme of things.

NEXT: 10 Common Mistakes Beginners Make In Stardew Valley


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Stardew Valley: The Best Professions To Pick For Every Skill

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There are five skills in Stardew Valley: Farming, Foraging, Mining, Fishing, and Combat. These skills will increase in level with various tasks to a maximum of level 10. At levels 5 and 10, you get to choose a profession, which is a slight bonus in each of the skills.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: Tips for Getting to Level 100 Of Skull Cavern

But, when given the choice, it can be a difficult one. Of course, every profession is useful, but some are arguably better than others in general. Read on to see which profession is the better one for the average player, as well as how to use the Statue of Uncertainty to change professions.

Please note: This guide will look at the better choice amongst the professions. For a full guide on every profession and how it works, please click here.

Farming Level 5

BonusesChoices at Level 10
  • Animal Products sell for 20% more gold
Coopmaster or Shepherd
  • Crops sell for 10% more gold
Artisan or Agriculturist

At Farming Level 5, you will be given two choices: Rancher or Tiller.

In most cases, Tiller will be the superior option. There are two reasons for this. First, animal products should be crafted into artisan goods, not sold raw. Second, choosing the Tiller profession will unlock the Artisan profession at Level 10, which is far superior to the two options given at Level 10 if you choose Rancher.

Farming Level 10

Level 5 ChoiceChoices at Level 10Bonuses
  • Coop animals become friendly more quickly
  • Time eggs take to incubate is halved
  • Increases coop animal product quality
  • Barn animals become friendly more quickly
  • Sheep produce wool more quickly
  • Increases barn animal product quality
  • Artisan goods sell for 40% more gold

If you choose Tiller at Level 5, you'll be given a choice between Artisan and Agriculturist at Level 10.

If you chose Tiller, as recommended earlier, the far superior choice is Artisan. Given that artisan goods are some of the most profitable items in the game, it's much better than the crop growth speed increase given by Agriculturist.

If you did choose Rancher, Shepherd is the better Level 10 choice, making sheep produce wool faster. This late in the game, you probably won't need the incubation speed bonus of Coopmaster. Which type of animal you befriend faster also comes down to personal preference.

Mining Level 5

BonusesChoices at Level 10
MinerBlacksmith or Prospector
  • Gems occasionally appear in pairs (50% chance per node)
Gemologist or Excavator

After enough time smashing rocks in the mines, you'll reach Level 5 in Mining, and you'll be given the option between Miner or Geologist.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: Everything You Need To Know About Mining

The better choice here depends on how far into the game you are. In terms of profit, the best choice is Geologist. Gems sell for a lot of gold, while increasing the ore drops by one doesn't make a huge difference, especially in the late-game. However, in the very-early game, the extra ore goes a long way. So, if you're still in the first Spring or Summer, Miner might be a better choice temporarily.

Mining Level 10

Level 5 ChoiceChoices at Level 10Bonuses
  • Metal bars sell for 50% more gold
    • Does not apply to Radioactive Bars or Refined Quartz
  • Your chance of finding Coal is doubled
  • Gems and Minerals sell for 30% more gold
  • Your chance to find geodes is doubled

If you chose Geologist as the Level 5 perk, the option is between the Level 10 perks of Gemologist and Excavator.

  • Gemologist: Makes all gems sell for 30% more
  • Excavator: Your chance to find geodes is doubled

Gemologist is the clear winner here in the long run. Throw some diamonds in some crystalariums and you'll be a millionaire before you know it. Excavator's double geodes bonus is nice but doesn't compare to the profit of Gemologist. However, if you're trying to complete the Museum collection, it might be nice to have Excavator for a bit temporarily, as it'll help you find the last few missing minerals.

If you did choose Miner at Level 5, the better pick between Blacksmith and Prospector is Prospector. Coal will always be necessary, so a double chance to find it is great. Selling metal bars for a higher profit shouldn't be too necessary, because you should mostly be using them for crafting, not selling them. By the time you have a surplus of them to sell, you probably won't be hard-up for cash.

Foraging Level 5

BonusesChoices at Level 10
  • You'll obtain 25% more wood when chopping trees, stumps, or logs
Lumberjack or Tapper
  • 20% chance of double harvest of forageable items
Botanist or Tracker

The Foraging skill applies to a few different things, including the actual foraging you do for items around the valley, but also chopping wood. Level 5 gives the choice between Forester and Gatherer.

The better choice is undoubtedly Gatherer, especially when paired with the right perk at Level 10.

Forester is alright, but daily luck can increase how much wood you get, too. There's no shortage of wood in Stardew Valley. However, it can be an alright choice in either the early game or any period where you're trying to build a lot of farm buildings.

RELATED: How to Farm Wood in Stardew Valley

However, in the long-term, Gatherer is better. Plus, the forage bonus of Gatherer applies to those precious, precious Truffles. Head to the Statue of Uncertainty and switch to Forester temporarily to get yourself a bunch of wood when you need it, then switch back.

Foraging Level 10

Level 5 ChoiceChoices at Level 10Bonuses
  • Hardwood can drop from any tree when chopped
  • Syrups sell for 25% more gold
  • Foraged items are always the highest possible quality
  • Shows the location of forageable items, artifact spots, and panning locations

At Level 10, you'll have to choose between Botanist and Tracker (if you chose Gatherer).

Go for Botanist here, as it makes every foraged item the highest quality. This is incredibly overpowered, especially when it comes to picking up Truffles. They'll all be Iridium-quality.

Tracker shows the location of forageable items, which is kind of cool, but pales in comparison in terms of usefulness. However, it'll also point you in the direction of artifact spots and the location of places where you can pan. If you're trying to complete the Museum collection, the artifact spot tracking might be nice for a bit.

RELATED: Stardew Valley: Pro Tips To Help Master the Game

If you chose Forester at Level 5, choose Lumberjack at Level 10. This makes all trees have the ability to drop that precious hardwood we all need. Tapper makes syrups sell for more. That's not the better choice unless you're running a large Maple Syrup operation.

Fishing Level 5

BonusesChoices at Level 10
  • Fish sell for 25% more gold
Angler or Pirate
  • Reduced ingredient cost for crafting Crab Pots
    • 25x wood and 2x Copper Bar, instead of 40x wood and 3x Iron Bar
Mariner or Luremaster

The Fishing skill tree goes in very different directions. At Level 5, you'll be given the choice between Fisher and Trapper.

Fisher is absolutely the better choice here. The resources to make Crab Pots are not that hard to get ahold of, and Crab Pot captures don't sell for nearly as much as the average fish caught with a rod — especially after a 25% sale increase.

If you're in need of some extra Crab Pots, you can use all the extra money you made from having the Fisher perk to just buy the Pots from Willy.

Fishing Level 10

Level 5 ChoiceChoices at Level 10Bonuses
  • Fish sell for 50% more
    • Does not stack with Fisher's 25% bonus
  • Your have twice the chance to find treasure when fishing
  • Crab Pots won't produce junk items
  • Crab Pots don't require bait

If you choose Fisher at Level 5, you'll get to choose between Angler and Pirate at Level 10.

At Level 10, choose Pirate (if you chose Fisher). With an increase in the number of treasures you find, this perk can lead you to that sweet, sweet Prismatic Shard or Dinosaur Egg. Angler's sale bonus is definitely nice, but, frankly, it's just not as fun, and that has to count for something here.

If Trapper was chosen at Level 5, opt for Luremaster. This makes it so Crab Pots no longer require bait. Mariner, the other option, prevents Crab Pots from producing trash items. Sure, it's nice to not lure in driftwood with your Crab Pots, but not having to use bait at all is far better. If you pull in trash, who cares? You didn't waste any bait!

Combat Level 5

BonusesChoices at Level 10
  • All attacks deal 10% more damage
  • Additional 15 HP for your max health
Brute or Defender
  • 50% extra chance to deal critical strikes
Acrobat or Desperado

Combat is the final skill tree in Stardew. At Level 5, the options will be Fighter or Scout.

Fighter should be chosen for the HP bump alone. There isn't much you can do to improve your HP in Stardew, so opt for that. You'll also get an attack bonus for every attack, not just the rare critical strikes. It might not work out to more damage mathematically, but it's much more stable and reliable.

Additionally, with the addition of the Volcano Forge in the 1.5 update, you can now supercharge your weapons with great bonuses, including adding critical hit bonuses and damage percentage.

Combat Level 10

Level 5 ChoiceChoices at Level 10Bonuses
  • 15% increased damage when attacking
  • +25 HP added to your max health
  • The cooldown time on special moves is halved
  • Doubles the damage dealt by critical strikes

After enough time in the Mines, Volcano, or Skull Cavern, you'll reach Level 10 in Combat and be given the choice between Brute or Defender (if Fighter was chosen) or Acrobat or Desperado (if Scout was chosen).

If you chose Fighter at Level 5, choose Defender at Level 10. Again, HP increases are hard to come by, so the bonus 25 HP is great. Brute's 15% damage increase is nice, but the best offense is a good defense (or enough stamina), after all.

For Scout, Desperado is the better choice. It'll make it so critical strikes sometimes do much more damage. This is far superior to Acrobat, which halves the cooldown on special moves.

The Statue of Uncertainty

If you're unhappy with a profession choice, never fear. The Statue of Uncertainty can help you change professions. All you need is to have the key to the Sewers and 10,000 gold.

You can unlock the Sewers by obtaining the Rusty Key. Gunther gives you this special key after you donate 60 items to the Museum.

To make a change in your professions, just pay the Statue of Uncertainty and select which skill you'd like to swap professions in. Then, that night, you'll be prompted to pick a Level 5 and Level 10 profession again.

This can be done as many times as you like without repercussions. It's a great way to get a temporary bump in something that you don't need long-term, like switching over to Forester when you need a bunch of wood for a project.

However, you should note that you lose whichever professions you're swapping out the moment you make your selection. This means you won't have them for the rest of the day. Anything already in the shipping bin that would have received a bonus from a profession that you removed will not receive the bonus.

NEXT: Stardew Valley: Complete Guide And Walkthrough


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Stardew Valley: Skills Guide

List of Skills and Useful Crafting Unlockables

Stardew Valley features 5 skills, each with 10 levels and 4 separate professions that can be chosen to give your character a boost. Each of the skills will unlock new crafting and cooking recipes as you level, expanding your options on the farm and increasing your farmer's ability to earn money and accomplish your goals. This list of skills and unlocks leads to more in-depth skill guides that can teach you the fundamentals of each of them.

Leveling Skills
You'll level skills as you use them, with each level up taking substantially more work. While I'll touch on how you level each of the skills in Stardew Valley, I have a guide dedicated to Skill XP and how to level them which may have a bit more info on the mechanics. The skill guides also cover this aspect and list all of the crafting unlockables for that skill as well as how to make use of it.


Combat Skill

Stardew Valley's Combat skill gains experience as you slay monsters in the mines, skull cavern, secret woods, and any area with enemies. You can't begin to use this skill until after day 5, when the way to the mines is cleared. Each level gives you +5 additional hp, though weapons take no energy and thus proficiency is a non-issue. As you descend the mines - where you use Combat most - you will level it, and also unlock new weapons the deeper you travel. Combat in Stardew is fairly simple, but you can augment your character with up to 2 rings and one pair of boots, found on the inventory screen. Learning the rhythm of combat is important for harder enemies, but for the most part you'll spam attacks and try to position enemies to take advantage of knockback/stun while fighting. An enemy with their back to the wall is especially vulnerable!

Notable Crafting Unlocks for Combat:

  • Sturdy Ring (level 1) - Craft the sturdy ring to cut the duration of negative status ailments in half. Useful against a few types of debuffs you'll encounter in the mines. A nice ring if you're not so hot at combat. Many people will use magnet rings to gather far-away items.
  • Life Elixir (level 2) - Fully heals your character. Not that great but it's also able to recover 200 energy. Takes 1 each of the four mushrooms, easily obtained in quantity (over time) if you chose mushrooms over bats for the cave.
  • Warrior Ring (level 4) - Gives you a burst of speed sometimes when an enemy is slain. Good for getting back on track after a fight, since the clock is always ticking while you're in the mines or Skull Cavern.
  • Slime Egg-Press and Slime Incubator (level 6 and 8) - These two items go with the Slime Hutch to let you breed slimes (which you can fight). They can be useful for collecting slime as well as the drops from the harder (purple/black) slimes. Having one on your farm may lead to a rare event that can let you farm your slimes for other drops in the form of a few rare minerals.
  • Ring of Yoba (level 7) - This ring gives you a chance to have extended invincibility when damaged, allowing you to have time to get out of sticky situations when surrounded and avoid a little more damage. It can be a real life-saver. Works best when your luck is high that day.
  • Iridium Band (level 9) - The Iridium Band is the ultimate ring in Stardew Valley, offering magnetism, +10% damage, and a glowing effect. What is more, two can stack. Though you may want to use a ring of Yoba, two Iridium bands is probably the ultimate combo as the magnetism is highly useful when you're detonating mega-bombs in the Skull Cavern.

Farming Skill

The Farming skill will rise as you harvest crops. No other activity gives skill experience. Leveling farming will give you some nice craftables that let you expand on your ability to make money with produce, from the cheese press to kegs and other items. Farming skill gains give you hoe and watering can proficiency, which makes those two activities consume less energy. Look at the farming guide to learn more about making money with this skill. Check out the linked guides below for in-depth information on some money-making aspects of farming as well as bundle completion..

Notable Crafting Unlocks for Farming:

  • Scarecrow (level 1) - Scarecrows are essential to keeping crows from eating your crops. They protect an 8-tile radius, so one can work wonders for a medium-large sized garden. You can move them at any time using the pickaxe.
  • Fertilizer (level 1 ) - Fertilizer gives a chance at better quality plants. Use it after tilling the soil but before planting. Thankfully, it takes only sap to craft, so you can get a large quantity just chopping down some trees.
  • Mayonnaise Machine (level 2) - The mayonnaise machine lets you make more money from eggs that chickens provide, many players' first experience with managing livestock. It's not wildly profitable but does help you to get more out of that investment.
  • Bee House (level 3) - The bee house lets you generate income from a single flower, with more expensive flowers making more money. The bees will passively produce honey so long as there is a flower in range, so you've only got to ensure the life of that flower and collect the honey when it is ready!
  • Preserves Jar (level 4) - The preserves jar lets you make pickles from vegetables and jam from fruits. A very handy item for the mid-game.
  • Cheese Press (level 6) - Cheese presses turn Cow and goat milk into two types of cheeses, with the latter more valuable. Cheese is also a decent healing item, though you may be better off selling it and buying salads if that's your intention.
  • Oil Maker (level 8) - Oil makers can generate gobs of cash if you've got pigs on your farm. You can produce truffle oil, certainly one of the most profitable Artisan Goods in the game.
  • Keg (level 8) - Like the oil maker, you can make a lot of money via hops/wheat for beer and pale ale, or using fruits to make expensive wines. The final value of wines is based on the base price of the fruit - try it out with ancient seeds for some serious cash.
  • Seed Maker (level 9) - The seed maker can allow you to make foraged produce for any of the four seasons if you put in the right vegetable. See this tutorial for in-depth information.
  • Iridium Sprinkler (level 9) - While you unlock several other types of sprinkler along the way, the Iridium sprinkler covers a large area and is the first to be efficient material-wise for making a massive farm.

For More info on Farming See:
Crops to Grow for Bundles (By Season)
Spring Crop Prices
Summer Crop Prices
Fall Crop Prices
Winter and the Seed Maker for growing winter foraged produce.

Fishing Skill

This skill is leveled by successfully catching fish or collecting them from crab pots. Fishing is the skill that Stardew Valley players have the hardest time figuring out how to use. The mini-game is a little challenging at first, but with some practice you'll easily reel in all but the most difficult fish. I have separate guides on How to catch fish and how to use bait and tackle for when you level the skill a bit. See the main fishing guide for some extra fishing spots. There are also pages on the fish found in the four seasons and where to catch them!

Notable Crafting Unlocks for Fishing:

  • Bait (level 2) - See the guide above for how to use bait. Bait decreases the time for fish to bite.
  • Crab Pot (level 3) - Crab pots can be placed in water and will give you items each day. Good for getting garbage for the next item, but you'll also catch things like lobster which can be valuable.
  • Recycling Machine (level 4) - You'll catch glasses, newspaper, cds, trash and driftwood when fishing. Put them in the recycling machine and get valuable and useful crafting items out of it, as opposed to selling that trash for only 2-3G each. It's a very good way to help yourself with crafting materials that are not as easy to come by early on in the game.
  • Better Bait and Tackle (level 6) - At level 6, you can start using the best fishing rod in the game, and it's capable of taking tackle. These have a variety of effects, outlined in the guides above. In short, tackle can make fishing much much easier. The normal fish become effortless and hard fish are simpler to catch. Combined with fishing levels, only legendary fish should give you trouble.
  • Worm Bin (level 8) - The Worm Bin will automatically generate worms for your fishing endeavors (in the form of normal bait). Though bait isn't expensive, it's nice to have these if you fish regularly.

For More Info on Fishing See:
Catching Fish in Spring
Catching Fish in Summer
Catching Fish in Fall
Catching Fish in Winter

Foraging Skill

The foraging skill is leveled by collecting wild plants and chopping down trees. This skill gives some unique unlocks that help you collect a couple of rare resources that can only be gained from nature. Gaining skill in it and upgrading your axe will make woodcutting much less strenuous on your character. You'll need a lot of wood, so it's not an awful idea to plant some trees.

Notable Crafting Unlocks for Foraging:

  • Field Snack (level 1 ) - This is a cheap, craftable snack made of the three types of tree seeds. It gives 45 health and energy and can be found in the crafting tab. Good if you do not yet have a kitchen. You should save some of your seeds for planting trees, however.
  • Wild Seeds (levels 1, 4, 6, and 7) - You'll unlock spring, summer, fall, and winter wild seed recipes as you level. These can be handy for when you want to grow more of the harvested items, or if a villager happens to like them for a gift.
  • Tapper (level 3) - Placing tappers on trees lets you get one of three kinds of resource (maple syrup, pine tar, oak resin) which are used in crafting/cooking recipes. The items themselves are valuable enough that you could make a farm dedicated to growing these things, though nothing will top pigs/oil maker or simply farming. Just another fun idea!
  • Charcoal Kiln (level 4) - A good item if you have not had much luck with coal in the mines. You can turn 10 wood into one piece of coal with the charcoal kiln.
  • Lightning Rod (level 6) - This one is used during summer thunderstorms to make battery packs, one of the more rare items in Stardew Valley. They're used in advanced crafting, so you'll want to make some of these to harvest nature's power. Each lightning rod can store one charge for 24 hours, and prevents the bolt from striking something more valuable as well!
  • Totems (levels 6, 7, 8, 9) - You can make single-use totems to instantly warp to one of three places (Which are not covered by the mine cart). The Rain totem is handy if you need to catch a specific fish that only comes during rain, and of course waters your crops. You have a greater chance of rain the next day when you use this. Warp Totem: Farm is good for getting out of bad situations in the skull cavern or for when you're out late and want to go home instantly. Mainly for the end-game.

Mining Skill

The mining skill is (nearly) essential to leveling up your tools and crafting things for your farm that require metal. Particularly Iridium Sprinklers from the Skull Cavern. You'll one day want copper/steel/gold variants and this is the cheapest route. You'll level combat simultaneously as you work your way through the mines. Skill experience is gained by breaking rocks in any way (even with bombs), and levels come with proficiency in addition to unlocks. Upgrading your pickaxe will make harder rocks take far less hits and thus consume less time and energy.

Notable Crafting Unlocks for Mining:

  • Furnace (level 0) - You'll get this recipe from Clint the blacksmith after you've been to the mines and located ore. Find the furnace on your crafting tab under the esc menu. Having coal and ore in your inventory (5 ore each) you can smelt ore into bars.
  • Bombs (levels 1, 6, and 8) - Bombs let you blow up large areas, with larger variants unlocking with more levels. They're a little pricey to craft but are a worthy use of materials when you're trying to make it as deep as possible in the Skull Cavern.
  • Transmutations (levels 4 and 7) - Level 4 lets you transmute copper bars into iron and level 7 iron into gold. Head to your crafting tab to use it, not the furnace!
  • Crystalarium (level 9) - Place a gem into the Crystalarium, and it's locked in. The Crystalarium will then dispense that gem at regular intervals. One diamond becomes 10 over time if you are patient, and diamonds are the most profitable and rare item to place inside. More Crystalariums can produce a variety (or more of one kind) for you and help as gift-giving options to make friends with the villagers in Pelican Town.

For More Info on Mining See:
Getting Copper, Making Bars and Finding Coal
Skull Cavern


How To Know The Best Professions To Pick On Each Skill In Stardew Valley

Last Updated: September 16, 2021

Are you still struggling to decide which profession you want to take on each of the skills in Stardew Valley? Do you want a better understanding of what each profession does? You came to the right place because in this guide, we’ll show you what you need to know about each profession.


Stardew Valley succeeds because it seamlessly incorporates elements from other games. While it is primarily a farming simulator, it is also a dating sim and an RPG. It’s because of this that makes it endlessly replayable. There are a lot of choices, options, and possibilities you can explore whenever you play through the game. One of the best examples of this are the professions on each skill.

What are the Professions?

There are five skills in Stardew Valley: Farming, Mining, Foraging, Fishing, and Combat. These are player attributes that level up through the use of specific tools and actions. At Levels 5 and 10, players will be able to select one of two professions they can specialize in. These professions have their own sets and bonuses that can drastically alter your experience. Let’s take a closer look at each skill,their professions, and which of them are the better choices.


This is what you’ll mostly be doing in Stardew Valley. Whenever you do farm activities like harvest crops or care for animals, your farming skill increases.

Level 5 

Once you reach Level 5, you’ll have the option between two professions, Rancher or Tiller. Rancher makes animal products worth 10% more, while Tiller makes crops worth 10% more. While it would make sense that you would choose Rancher if you plan on raising farm animals and making them your primary means of profit, Tiller is the better option primarily because of the upgrades it offers when you reach Level 10.

Level 10

If you chose the Tiller profession, at Level 10 you can choose between Artisan or Agriculturist. Artisan makes artisan goods sell for 40% more, while Agriculturist makes crops grow 10% faster. This is the reason why we recommend choosing Tiller over Rancher even if you want to raise farm animals. The products yielded by your animals are worth more if they’re turned into artisan goods like Mayonnaise or Cheese. By choosing the Tiller profession, you will get the chance to take Artisan and make so much more money than simply selling your animal products as is.

If you chose the Rancher profession, at Level 10 you can choose between Coopmaster or Shepherd. Coopmaster makes your coop animals more friendly, halves the time it takes to incubate eggs, and increases the quality of coop animal products. Shepherd, on the other hand, makes barn animals more friendly, makes Sheep produce wool more quickly, and increases the quality of barn animal products. 


You increase your Mining skill whenever you break rocks. It doesn’t matter how you do it whether it’s by using your Pickaxe, using Bombs, or broken by monsters, as long as you’re breaking rocks, your Mining skill will increase.

Level 5

At Mining Level 5, you can choose between Miner or Geologist. Miner adds +1 Ore in every vein, while Geologist increases the chance for gems to appear in pairs by 50%. Both of them are pretty good choices. Miner is better if you’re early on in the game and you’ll find yourself needing Ores to upgrade your tools. Long term, however, Geologist is the superior choice since more gems means more money.

Level 10

If you chose the Miner profession, you can choose between Blacksmith and Prospector.Blacksmith makes Metal Bars sell for 50% more gold, while Prospector doubles your chance of finding Coal. Prospector is a better choice here since you won’t really be selling your bars. You’ll be using it mostly for crafting. Coals are very important, however, since you’ll need it whenever you want to smelt something.

If you chose the Geologist profession, you can choose between Gemologist and Excavator. Gemologist makes Gems and Minerals worth 30% more, while Excavator doubles your chance of finding geodes. Gemologist is the better option since geodes aren’t all that valuable later on in the game.


Whenever you gather forage items such as Leeks, Mushrooms, or Spring Onions, your Foraging skill increases. Chopping down trees using your Axe will also increase this skill.

Level 5

At Foraging Level 5, you have the option to choose between Forester and Gatherer. Forester lets you get 25% more wood whenever you chop Trees, Stumps, and Logs, while Gatherer gives you a 20% chance to double harvest foraged items. Forester does have its benefits especially if you find yourself short on wood, but Gatherer is better long term. Since Truffles are considered a foraged item, the buff from the Gatherer profession will be useful once you get Pigs.

Level 10

If you chose the Forester profession, you can choose between Lumberjack and Tapper. Lumberjack can make Hardwood drop from any tree when chopped, while Tapper increases the selling price of syrups by 25%. Obviously, Lumberjack is the better choice here since Hardwood is a precious resource and has many uses. Syrups take really long to make and aren’t worth the trouble of selling them for profit.

If you chose the Gatherer profession, you can choose between Botanist and Tracker. Botanist makes every foraged item you gather the highest possible quality, while Tracker reveals the location of all forageable items. Botanist is not only the best choice here, it’s also one of the best professions in the game. Every forageable item you find would be in Iridium quality meaning you can sell it for very high prices or use them to make very valuable products.


Fishing skill is increased whenever you catch something out of a body of water. Fish, algae, trash, whatever you get as long as you catch it using a fishing rod will increase this skill’s level. Using Crab Pots to harvest fish will also work in increasing this skill’s level.

Level 5

At Fishing Level 5, you have the option to choose either Fisher or Trapper. Fisher makes every fish you catch worth 25% more when sold, while Trapper reduces the resources needed to craft Crab Pots. Crab Pots aren’t that hard to make so Fisher makes sense as the better option. Plus, with all the money you make from taking the Fisher profession, you can just buy Crab Pots from Willy’s Fish Shop.

Level 10

If you chose the Fisher profession, you get to choose between Angler and Pirate at Fishing Level 10. Angler makes fish sell for 50% more, while Pirate doubles the chance for you to find treasure while fishing. Both of these are very viable options. It’s worth noting that Angler’s 50% bonus won’t stack with the bonus from Fisher. So we’ll give the slight edge to Pirate. Getting more chances to get treasures like the Prismatic Shard is better than selling your fish for a slightly higher price.

If you chose the Trapper profession, you’ll get to choose between Mariner and Luremaster. Mariner will ensure that Crab Pots will no longer produce junk items like Driftwood, while Luremaster allows Crab Pots to work without using any Bait. Luremaster is the better choice here since you wouldn’t have to waste any Bait every time you use a Crab Pot.


Every time you battle a monster, this skill’s level will increase. 

Level 5

At Combat Level 5, you can choose between Fighter or Scout. Fighter makes all attacks deal 10% more damage and increases your max health by 15, while Scout gives you a 50% extra chance to deal critical strikes. You can’t go wrong with either one of them but Fighter seems like the better choice. The additional damage plus bonus health can go a long way especially early in the game when you’re still trying to clear the Mines.

Level 10

If you chose Fighter at Level 5, you can choose between Brute or Defender at Level 10. Brute gives your attacks a 15% increase in damage, while Defender increases your max health by 25. Defender is the better overall choice since there aren’t many actions or items that can increase your HP in the game.

If you chose Scout at Level 5, you can choose between Acrobat or Desperado. Acrobat reduces the cooldown of special moves by half, while Desperado doubles the damage dealt by critical strikes. Desperado is definitely better than Acrobat since you won’t be relying on your special moves to deal damage anyways. Having reliable damage provided by Desperado can help you kill monsters easier.

Useful Tips

  1. You can alway change your professions. But it’s gonna cost you. Go to the Statue of Uncertainty inside the Sewers and you can offer 10,000g to reset your professions. 
  2. You can change your professions as many times as you want as long as you can afford it. The bonuses won’t apply on what you have on the shipping bin on that day though so, keep that in mind.
  3. Can’t figure out how to unlock the Sewers? We got you covered. Check out our in-depth guide here.

So there you have it! That’s everything you need to know about each profession in Stardew Valley. Be sure to check back with us again for more guides on your favorite games. Have fun!


Skills stardewvalley

Stardew Valley Professions

Comparison on Benefits to Help You Choose

Professions in Stardew ValleyStardew Valley offers character customization via professions.

Once you hit level 5 in a skill in Stardew Valley, you'll wonder which profession is the better choice. Based upon your first selection, you get a second bonus at level 10, which further specializes you in the selected profession. That said there are dozens of combinations of professions because of this, though only some of them make a huge difference in play style. Overall you should pick that which matches your own preferences. Some are a bit too powerful or weak, however, and that may lead you to wanting to know which is generally perceived as the best pick.

Note that many choices are subjective. A secondary purpose of this list of professions is to let players know ahead of time the choices they will get to make at level 10.

Combat Professions

Fighter vs Scout

Fighter (Level 5)
All attacks deal 10% more damage and you receive +15 HP. A nice, reliable boost.

  • Brute (Fighter Level 10) - Damage is increased another 15% to 25% over base.
  • Defender (Fighter Level 10) - You gain +25 HP.

Scout (Level 5)
Critical strike chance increased 50% over the base amount. Not additive, but does stack with other bonuses. You won't crit half the time like you may think.

  • Acrobat (Scout Level 10) - Cooldown on special moves is halved.
  • Desperado (Scout Level 10) - Critical hits deal more damage.

Better Choice: Fighter is probably the better pick, just for the reliable damage. You can already spam attacks and stunlock most monsters. Fighter will help you to rip them to shreds and give you a minor defensive boost. Brute makes it all the better. With Scout/Desperado the damage is not nearly as reliable though it probably comes out similarly on an average. Some damage will be wasted with crits on weak monsters though, and that must be considered. Special moves are not very useful most of the time, so I didn't even consider acrobat.

Farming Professions

Rancher vs Tiller

Rancher (Level 5)
Animal products are worth 10% more.

  • Coopmaster (Rancher Level 10) - Befriend coop animals faster. Incubation time is cut in half.
  • Shepherd (Rancher Level 10) - Befriend barn animals faster. Sheep produce wool faster.

Tiller (Level 5)
Crops are worth 10% more.

  • Artisan (Tiller Level 10) - Artisan Goods are worth 50% more. This includes things like wine, beer, and cheese. Pretty much any crafted good.
  • Agriculturist (Tiller Level 10) - All crops grow "10%" faster.

Better Choice: By and large the biggest boost to profit in Stardew Valley is to be gained from taking Tiller with the Artisan Profession. This is due to the fact that animal products AND garden produce are boosted when turned into artisan goods and you have ample choices for making them. The boosts to coop and barn animals are much more narrow. Even if you have a large animal farm, you may be better off turning those products into artisan goods and benefiting from the higher sale price.

Fishing Professions

Fisher vs Trapper

Fisher (Level 5)
The fisher profession offers a 25% boost to all fish value. This is a nice, flat boost that affects both reel and crab pot fishing.

  • Angler (Fisher Level 10) - Fish are now worth 50% more.
  • Pirate (Fisher Level 10) - Chance to find treasure is doubled (around 30% chance, more with higher luck).

Trapper (Level 5)
Trappers get reduced resource requirements to make crab pots. The original requirement is 40 wood and 3 iron bars. This is greatly reduced to 25 wood and 2 copper bars. As easy as copper is to get, this allows you to make many, many more crab pots.

  • Mariner (Trapper Level 10) - Crab Pots never catch trash
  • Luremaster (Trapper Level 10) - Crab pots no longer need to be baited

Better Choice: Fisher with the Angler job can allow you to easily purchase crab pots for 1500g, though fisher + pirate is not an awful idea so that treasure chests come up a bit more often - you can find great things inside and it will help you find some artifacts for the museum. Pure money is not always the best pick. That said, if you are a crab pot fan and like going about collecting from them you would not be greatly hindered by going that route. Of mariner/luremaster I would prefer the Mariner. Crab pots can disappoint with trash, but not having to bait (5G!) is not that big a bonus when compared to always catching good stuff inside. However if you're a heavy recycling machine user, the trash isn't that bad a problem.

Foraging Professions

Forester vs Gatherer

Forester (Level 5)
Wood is worth 50% more.

  • Lumberjack (Forester Level 10) - Normal trees occasionally drop hardwood.
  • Tapper (Forester Level 10) - Syrup is worth 25% more.

Gatherer (Level 5)
Chance for double harvest when foraging.

  • Botanist (Gatherer Level 10) - Foraged items are always gold quality.
  • Tracker (Gatherer Level 10) - Locations of forgable items are revealed.

Better Choice: These two offer some fairly bland choices. Wood isn't really a money maker, so who cares if it's worth a bit more - that's a lot of energy expenditure for a little return on investment. Tracker is not very helpful compared to other things here, and given you do not really need many foraged items of gold quality it pretty much rules out Gatherer's level 10s as very useful (gold quality foraged items aren't used in bundles or anything). This doesn't make Gatherer useless, and I'd certainly take Botanist with it. You do need some foraged things for recipes (like mushrooms). All that said, I personally prefer Forester with Lumberjack. You need a lot of hardwood, and while there is a reliable source in the secret forest, it's not such a quantity that it makes Lumberjack useless. This is a more obvious choice if you took the mushrooms as opposed to fruit for the cave.

Mining Professions

Miner vs Geologist

Miner (Level 5)
Ore veins yield +1 ore.

  • Blacksmith (Miner Level 10) - Metal bars are worth 25% more.
  • Prospector (Miner Level 10) - Coal find doubled.

Geologist (Level 5)
Gems have a chance to spawn in pairs.

  • Excavator (Geologist Level 10) - Geode find doubled.
  • Gemologist (Geologist Level 10) - Gems are worth 30% more.

Better Choice: I personally don't consider mining in Stardew Valley to be a money maker, so boosting gem and metal bar values are worthless to me. Because of that, and that ore can be bought, Geologist seems to be the better pick because of Excavator. Finding more coal may be useful, but it can be crafted and farmed from the dust sprites around level 40-80 in the mine. You can find all kinds of nice things inside geodes, so Excavator's kind of a grab bag that may result in some great finds and will help you to have more gifts for residents of Pelican Town.


In Stardew Valley, you will have to level up your skills at some point during your playthrough to gain access to other parts of the game, such as getting new recipes or unlock a new profession. 

How to level up every skill in Stardew Valley

In total, there are five skills in Stardew Valley; to level up all of them, you will need to earn experience points, and how you do this will depend on each skill in the game. 

That said, keep reading, and we will explain how to level all skills in the game, along with what you stand to gain from doing so. If you are looking for a specific skill, we got a table of contents below; use it to jump to the skill you want. 

How to level up mining skill in Stardew Valley 

To level up your mining skill in Stardew Valley, you will need to do as the name suggests, by mining; more specifically, you will need to break rocks with a pickaxe. Each time you break an ore mound or rock, you get a small amount of experience that will slowly level up your mining skill; We recommend going into the mines and mining ore veins, as these will give you the most XP.

How to level up mining skill in Stardew Valley 

Along with this, every level you gain will give you one proficiency pickaxe; the cost of energy will also decrease with the more levels you gain in mining. You can also earn a decent amount of Mining XP from visiting and doing all of the above inside skull cavern. Leveling up the mining will also unlock the following below. 

Level One Mining
  •  Cherry Bomb Recipe.
Level Two Mining
Level Three Mining
Level Four Mining
  • Glow Stone Ring Recipe.
  • Transmute Fe Recipe.

Related: How to get iron bars in Stardew Valley

Level Five Mining

 When you reach level five, you will get the choice of picking the professions listed below.

  • Geologist Profession.
  • Miner Profession.
Level Six Mining
Level Seven Mining
Level Eight Mining
Level Nine Mining
Level Ten Mining

 When you reach level ten, you will get the choice of picking the professions listed below.

  • Excavator Profession.
  • Blacksmith Profession.
  • Gemologist Profession.
  • Prospector Profession.

How to level up the fishing skill in Stardew Valley 

To level up fishing in Stardew Valley, you will need to do a few things; all of them involve some form of fishing. To start, you will need to complete the fishing mini-game and catch fish using a crab pot successfully. The types of fish you catch will also factor in the mix, with rarer ones giving a bit more XP. 

How to level up the fishing skill in Stardew Valley 

Along with this, catching fish with both a rod and crab pot will net you experience to raising your fishing skill. Every time you level the skill, you will also increase your proficiency with a fishing pole; as well, the energy cost of using a fishing rod will decrease, and rare fish will become easier to catch.

You will also need to level up fishing to unlock the following below.

Level One Fishing
Level Two Fishing
  • Bait Recipe: Wily's Fish Shop will start to sell it as well.
  • Fiberglass rod: Upon reaching level two, the rod will be unlocked and sold at Willy's Fish Shop.
Level Three Fishing
  • Crabpot Recipe: you can also buy it at Willy's shop when you reach level three.
  • Dish o' The Sea Recipe
Level Four Fishing
  • Recycling Machine Recipe
  • 1+ casting distance
Level Five Fishing

You get the choice of these two professions when you reach level five.

  • Fisher Profession
  • Trapper Profession
Level Six Fishing
  • Spinner Recipe: Wily's Fish Shop will start to sell it as well at this level.
  • Trap Bobber Recipe: you can also buy it at Willy's shop when you reach level six.
Level Seven Fishing
  • Treasure Hunter Recipe: Willy's fish shop will start to carry this item when you reach level seven. 
  • Cork Bobber Recipe:  Willy's fish shop will also start to carry this item when you reach level seven.
Level Eight Fishing
  • Dressed Spinner Recipe:  Willy's fish shop will start to carry this item when you reach level eight.
  • Barbed Hook Recipe: Along with the dressed spinner, barbed hooks will unlock in the fish shop.
  • Worm Bin Recipe
  • 1+ casting distance
Level Nine Fishing
  • Magnet: Willy's fish shop will start to carry this item when you reach level eight.
  • Seafoam Pudding Recipe
Level Ten Fishing

You get the choice of these four professions when you reach level ten.

  • Luremaster Profession
  • Marner Profession
  • Angler Profession
  • Pirate Profession

How to level up the foraging skill in Stardew Valley

To level up your foraging skill in Stardew Valley, you will need to do one of two actions; harvest items on your farm or in the valley and chop trees down. Harvesting items on your farm will grant XP based on the value of the item you find. 

How to level up the foraging skill in Stardew Valley

Chopping trees down is the same amount no matter what; chopping small logs on the farm gives you no XP, so don't bother relying on them for XP. Along with this, grabbing items inside the mine like picking mushrooms, will also add to your XP bar. Further, the more levels you gain in foraging, will both lower the energy cost of using axes and increase your proficiency with axes. 

You will also need to level up foraging to unlock the following below.

Level One Foraging
  • Field Snack Recipe
  • Wild Seeds SP Recipe
  • Trees will start to drop seeds
Level Two Foraging
Level Three Foraging
Level Four Foraging
  • +1 Wild Berry harvesting 
  • Charcoal Kiln Recipe
  • Wild Seeds Su Recipe
Level Five Foraging

You get the choice of these two professions when you reach level five.

  • Gatherer Profession
  • Forester Profession
Level Six Foraging
  • Warp Totem Beach Recipe
  • Lighting Road Recipe
  • Wild Seeds Fa Recipe
Level Seven Foraging
  • Tree Fertilizer Recipe
  • Warp Totem Mountains Recipe
  • Wild Seeds WI Recipe
Level Eight Foraging
  • +1 Wild Berry harvesting 
  • Warp Totem Farm Recipe
Level Nine Foraging
Level Ten Foraging

You get the choice of these four professions when you reach level ten.

  • Tracker
  • Botanist
  • Tapper
  • Lumberjack

How to level up the combat skill in Stardew Valley

To level up the combat skill in Stardew Valley, you will need to fight monsters; you can find monsters in the following locations listed below.

  • Skull cavern
  • The Mine
  • Wilderness Farm
  • The Sewers              

How to level up the combat skill in Stardew Valley

In short, fight monsters and slay them; over time, you will gain XP and start to level your combat skill. We recommend getting a better weapon by upgrading it to speed this process up. Along with this, the more levels you get, you will start to unlock the following. 

Level One Combat
Level Two Combat
Level Three Combat
Level Four Combat
Level Five Combat

You get the choice of these two professions when you reach level five.

  • Scout Profession
  • Fighter Profession
Level Six Combat
  • Oil Of Garlic Recipe
  • Slime Egg Press Recipe
Level Seven Combat
Level Eight Combat
  • Explosive Ammo Recipe
  • Slime Incubator Recipe
Level Nine Combat
Level Ten Combat

You get the choice of these four professions when you reach level ten.

  • Desperado Profession
  • Defender Profession
  • Brute Profession
  • Acrobat Profession

Related: How to make refined quartz in Stardew Valley

How to level up the farming skill in Stardew Valley

In short, to level up the farming skill in Stardew Valley, you must do the following actions listed below.

  • Harvest crops (both vegetables and fruit count)
  • Pet Animals
  • Shear and milk animals

How to level up the farming skill in Stardew Valley

Doing the actions listed above, will over time, add experience to leveling your farming skill; these actions will also raise your proficiency with your hoe and water can tools. Along with this, the more levels you get in farming will unlock the items listed below. 

Level One Farming
  • Basic Fertilizer Recipe
  • Scarecrow Recipe
Level Two Farming
  • Sprinkler Recipe
  • Mayonnaise Machine Recipe
  • Stone Fence Recipe
Level Three Farming
  • Farmer's Lunch Recipe
  • Speed Go Recipe
  • Bee House Recipe
Level Four Farming
  • Iron Fence Recipe
  • Basic Retaining Soil Recipe
  • Preserves Jar Recipe
Level Five Farming

Reaching level five in farming will give you the choice of picking one of the two professions listed below. 

  • Tiller Profession
  • Rancher Profession
Level Six Farming
  • Quality Sprinkler Recipe
  • Hardwood Fence Recipe
  • Cheese Press Recipe
Level Seven Farming
Level Eight Farming
  • Deluxe Speed Go Recipe
  • Keg Recipe
  • Oil Maker Recipe
Level Nine Farming
  • Quality Fertilizer 
  • Iridium Sprinkler
  • Seed Maker
Level Ten Farming

Reaching level five in farming will give you the choice of picking one of the two professions listed below. 

  • Agriculturist
  • Artisan
  • Shepherd
  • Coopmaster

For more on  Stardew Valleywe at PGG have you covered with tons of guides like how to get sashimi and how to propose in Stardew Valley.

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