Day 5, Spring 5: First Harvest

I HAVE A BACKPACK.

Sorry, just needed to mention that right away or I might forget. What I had expected to be the crowning achievement of my first week in Stardew Valley turned out to be barely a blip on the radar of the most eventful day in the playthrough so far.

Adopting a Dog

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Marnie was waiting at my doorstep first thing in the morning with an urgent request. Good thing Karl just happens to love dogs! If it were a cat he would’ve said no.

I needed to give him a name before doing anything else. You can pick a randomly generated one, but none of those sounded great to me. I’m a big fan of Game of Thrones, and there’s recently been a lot of hype surrounding a certain hound in that story, so I settled on the name “Sandor”.

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Welcome to the farm, Sandor the dog!

Parsnip Harvest

The parsnips planted on Spring 1 are now fully matured! Time to rake in the dough!

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parsnip_resultsThe results: 13 regular quality and 2 “star” quality. I learned on Day 2 that starred items sell for 25% more and restore 25% more energy and health than normal.

The plan is to keep my finest parsnip to give to Maester Lewis as a birthday present in two days’ time (he did give me the seeds after all). I’ll also want to put one in the shipping box to log it in the collection, which leaves 13 that I can sell to Pierre for backpack money.

I began the day wih 1422 gold and got a 100g bonus just for picking a parsnip to complete the “Getting Started” quest. I’ll need at least 478 more to buy the backpack, so hopefully parsnips are worth 37g or more; otherwise I’ll need to find something else to sell.

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I filled in this area because I’m sure some of you were mildly infuriated by my silly inefficient planting pattern. Nothing to plant there yet though.

On the way into town I briefly picked some flowers at the bus stop. Before I could get to the store though, I was interrupted by…

The Community Center

Mayor Lewis had been waiting for me to show up. My first thought was that he caught me stealing from the neighbors’ trash cans again, but he had something else on his mind.

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Lewis said that it was once great, but now nobody wants to engage with the community and it sits in ruins. JojaCorp wants to buy the land and turn it into a warehouse, and if even one more person buys a Joja membership he’s going to sell.

We are obviously supposed to dislike JojaCorp and want to save the community center, and that’s of course what Karl is going to do, but it’s really cool that the developer gave players the option to side with Joja by buying the membership card if they want. I’m intrigued to see how much of an effect it has on the game. Who knows, maybe someday in an alternate universe (a.k.a. a copied save file) someone very similar to Karl will have a change of heart and try becoming a corporate shill.

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Inside the building, a weird green apple-looking critter showed up and then vanished. Lewis didn’t see anything, so he figured it was a rat and left to eat lunch.

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After the cutscene I found myself with a new quest to investigate the community center building, but that will have to wait for another day. I have backpacks to buy!

On arriving at the general store, the bulletin board outside caught my eye. Another quest!

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This one has a 2-day time limit on it. I’ve never seen a Cave Carrot and I don’t know of any caves… more on this later.

Planned Obsolescence

Finally I went inside and sold off most of my harvest. Each parsnip went for 35 g, so I was just under the 2,000 I needed, but I was able to sell the daffodils and dandelion found on the way here to make up the difference.

I did it! First goal completed, backpack upgrade on day 5! Just look at all this inventory space!

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Then, upon closing my menu screen, what I saw on display behind me was shocking and appalling.

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The backpack envy increases

This whole time, Pierre was just waiting for some sucker to buy the last one he had in stock so he could roll out the bigger, better, flashier Backpack 2.0! Now with 50% more storage and only 400% more expensive! Literally right after spending all my money on this thing, the newer model comes out and makes me feel like the one I just bought is useless and outdated. I would have expected this sort of thing if I were at JojaMart, but at Pierre’s General Store? Why, Pierre, why?

Entering the Mines

Let’s look on the bright side. I can now carry twice as much as I could before! I need to go start filling up this backpack – and where better to do that than the new area that just opened up today?

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Sandor had me distracted earlier, forgot to show this was in my mailbox today

I ran over to the now unblocked area east of Linus’ tent and went into the mine. A mine is kind of like a cave, right? Maybe there are cave carrots in here?

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I was greeted by another new NPC who had a gift: a rusty sword.

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New character met: Marlon

Marlon is the head of the adventurer’s guild. He gives Karl a sword and seems to want him to join the guild someday, but his motivations are unkown.

I spent some time exploring the mine. From what I can gather, it has descending levels full of stone and ore, with some enemies to fight and some other treasures. You can only go down in level – going up takes you all the way back out. I’m not sure but it seems like it’s procedurally generated each time you enter. I’m going to be safe and assume that anything dropped or left down there will be gone forever.

Often you’ll need to clear a path or the ladder will be hidden under a rock, so you’ll be getting fatigued as you go deeper in the mine. As I soon discovered, this really puts a limit on how much you can explore at once. It’s clear that I’ll need to start gathering some good food items to regain energy if I want to really get anywhere here.

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The fighting is basically Zelda-esque slashing with a sword, simple yet satisfying. Enemies don’t seem very hard, but I only reached depth 3 so I’m sure there are stronger ones lower down.

Exhaustion

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While breaking stones for copper ore my energy bar got dangerously low. I ate a wild horseradish but it only gave back a tiny sliver of energy, enough to break one or two more rocks before I had to leave.

Here’s the loot I had after visiting the mine. The new backpack is already being put to great use:

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Stone, copper ore, and a topaz from mining. Slime and bug meat came from killing monsters. The hardwood was inside a crate.

Outside, it was already dark (9:30). I got out the fishing rod to catch a few fish here before going to bed. I didn’t consider that fishing uses energy too! The first cast depleted my energy to zero (which means you’re “exhausted” and can no longer run).

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I was faced with having to eat the raw carp I’d just caught in order to get back home by midnight, losing out on 30 gold. Good thing new fish are still tracked in your collection even if you don’t ship them.

Wrap-Up

What a full day. I saw a ton of new stuff and was left with no less than five new quests, so there’s still a lot left to do and see. I didn’t have time to re-plant any crops so I’ll be sure to do that tomorrow.

I also leveled up in Farming from picking all those parsnips:

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The shipping screen was minimal since I sold mostly to Pierre instead.

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Total Earned: 788 g

New Items Sold:

Item Sell Price
Parsnip 35 g
Copper Ore 5 g
Acorn 20 g
Slime 5 g
Bug Meat 8 g
Hardwood 15 g

Achievement Unlocked:

The carp from the mountain stream was the 10th type of fish I caught. For this I earned my first achievement: Fisherman! It looks like there are 10 more achievements to unlock. That might have to be a goal, to earn them all by the end of the year (if that’s possible, I haven’t read them yet).

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Upgrades Purchased:

Large Pack (24 slots)

Journal Progress:

Quest Completed: Getting Started (100g)

Quests Started:

  • Explore The Mine: reach level 5 in the mine
  • Delivery: find a Cave Carrot and bring it to Willy
  • “Rat Problem”: investigate the old community center
  • Advancement: level up in farming (done) and craft a scarecrow
  • Raising Animals: build a chicken coop

Tomorrow’s Weather: Rain

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