Stardew Valley – Progression Guide: How to Progress

Stardew Valley: A Guide to Progression and Leveling Up

Stardew Valley offers players a relaxing farming and life simulation experience in the charming town of Pelican Town. While the game may seem simple at first glance, there is actually a lot of progression involved, with various skills and secret items to unlock through grinding tasks. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the different aspects of progression in Stardew Valley, ensuring that you don’t miss out on any quests or areas.

Does Stardew Valley Have Progression?

Yes, there is indeed a progression system in Stardew Valley. The ability to completely transform and customize your farm is a clear indication that you can advance in the game. Players can upgrade their Farmhouse, construct high-tech buildings for animals, and even marry a villager of their choice in Pelican Town. Additionally, there are numerous equipment upgrades that can be obtained by discovering new ores and crafting evolved versions. The beauty of Stardew Valley is that there is no time limit, allowing you to progress at your own pace.

How Should You Progress in Stardew Valley?

Many Stardew Valley enthusiasts like to set goals for each season and year to track their progress effectively. The first year is usually the most crucial, as it offers the most significant opportunity for advancement. Players can accomplish most of the game’s important tasks within the first year and even unlock new islands and dungeons by the second year, expanding the gameplay beyond Pelican Town. This guide will provide a detailed pathway for leveling up each skill, upgrading your farm, and completing quests in a strategic manner.

Skill Progression

In Stardew Valley, there are five primary skills: farming, mining, foraging, fishing, and combat. Each skill has ten levels, and leveling up allows you to unlock new recipes that can be lucrative for making money. Moreover, higher skill levels enable you to access better equipment, enhancing your proficiency in specific areas.


Farming is a key aspect of making money in Stardew Valley and is also one of the most relaxing activities in the game. The progression path for farming is intriguing, much like mining, as it evolves throughout the levels. At the beginning, you’ll be using the Hoe to till the soil and the Watering Can to water your crops. However, this can become tedious, with crows eating your crops and the stamina drain from watering them daily.

By reaching level 2 in Farming, you unlock the Scarecrow and Sprinkler, two game-changing items. The Scarecrow repels crows within an 8×8 tile radius, protecting your crops. The Sprinkler automatically waters adjacent tiles, eliminating the need for constant manual watering. These advancements make farming a far more enjoyable experience, requiring minimal interaction until the planting and harvesting stages.

Reaching level 4 in Farming unlocks the Bee House and the Preserves Jar, allowing for additional profit generation. The Bee House passively produces Honey, which can be sold for money. The Preserves Jar transforms fruits and vegetables into Pickles and Jelly, doubling their value. Further progress in farming (level 9) results in obtaining the Iridium Sprinkler and the Keg, both of which can significantly contribute to your income. The Iridium Sprinkler boasts an expansive watering range, while the Keg triples the value of fruits by converting them into Wine.


Mining is instrumental in obtaining ores for building and equipment upgrades on your farm. It’s comparable to farming in terms of skill progression’s significance. There are four essential ores in Stardew Valley: Copper, Iron, Gold, and Iridium. Upgrading equipment requires these ores in the exact order listed. Initially, your Pickaxe won’t be able to break certain rocks, and weaker ones may take multiple hits. As your quality upgrades progress, you’ll eventually gain the ability to obtain Gold and Iridium Ores and break nearly all veins with a single strike. Your main goal in mining is to discover and obtain these ores to enhance your equipment.

Monitoring your progress in mining is relatively straightforward, as your progress aligns with the level you’ve reached in the Mines. The deeper you go, the more proficient you become. It’s important to ensure you have the appropriate equipment, as you won’t be able to progress further without it. For upgrades, consult Clint the blacksmith and provide him with the required bars made from the listed ores. To produce these bars, you’ll need to use the Furnace, which you’ll obtain from Clint after collecting your first Copper Ore. Mining progression steadily improves as you encounter new, valuable ores essential for upgrading.


Though foraging may not be as crucial for progression as farming or mining, it still plays a role in your overall gameplay. Leveling up in foraging allows you to cut down trees and collect natural items from the ground. While it may not yield incredible recipes, forageable items are essential for completing Community Center bundles. One notable item you unlock at level 2 in Foraging is the Tapper, which passively harvests items from trees, earning you substantial profits and providing resources for various recipes.

Upon reaching level 6 in Foraging, players unlock the Lightning Rod, enabling the production of Battery Packs. These packs are vital for constructing Iridium Sprinklers. Foraging also grants access to Warp Totem recipes, which allow instant teleportation to the Beach, Mountain, and Farm without using a significant amount of energy.

While the focus of progression in Stardew Valley often centers around maximizing profits, it’s important to remember that the game offers diverse experiences. Whether you aim to amass wealth or simply enjoy the immersive gameplay, understanding the mechanics and progression paths is crucial. With this guide, you’ll have the knowledge to efficiently advance through Stardew Valley and create your idyllic virtual life on the farm.