In Stardew Valley, every player needs to start somewhere, and that somewhere starts with choosing their farm layout. Choosing a farm at the beginning of the game is a big decision, as you can’t change it once you’ve selected it. The only way to experience a different farm layout is by starting a new save file, which might seem intimidating to new players eager to make the best choice.
At the character creation screen, you are presented with 7 different farms to choose from. Each of these has its unique features and advantages, catering to different playstyles and strategies. Therefore, selecting the right farm depends on the player’s intended plans and preferred style of play. Here’s a quick guide to each and every farm in Stardew Valley and the playstyles that align best with each one.
The Standard Farm is generally the best farm in Stardew Valley. It has plenty of space to cultivate your crops and has been the default farm since the earliest version of the game. It may lack any special features, but sometimes it’s best to stick to simple.
With its large open area, it provides the biggest area for buildings and for crops. It is easily accessible and customizable for every player, the perfect farm for making quick profits via agriculture and for newcomers.
The Riverland Farm has the second to the least amount of space for the player to cultivate since its lands are broken up into many smaller islands. This makes it challenging to place any farm structures and plots for farming since they are limited by the surrounding waters.
This farm is great for fishing enthusiasts and aqua-culturists, though, as it boasts a higher fish catch rate than any other farm. Farmers can also place lots of Crab Pots on this farm, which can turn big profits given enough time.
The Forest Farm has the least amount of cultivable land but makes up for it by specializing in foraging. Its dense vegetation allows you to forage for various seasonal items. Even though you cannot cultivate crops on the grass, you can still build structures on it, unlike the Riverland Farm.
The most important feature of this farm is its renewable hardwood sources, found on the left side of the farm. These tree stumps regenerate every day and can be cut down for hardwood, which is needed for upgrading farming structures and even your house. You can also farm fiber in the grass, which always drops mixed seeds.
There’s also a pond where players can try fishing for a Woodskip, a fish that’s normally only found in the Secret Woods. Overall, this farm is perfect for players who are aiming to complete the bundles in the Community Center as soon as possible.
The Hill-Top Farm is one of the more difficult farms to start with, as the map is cut into smaller sections by cliffs. Despite its many area restrictions, it comes with a unique feature that is perfectly suited for those mining enthusiasts.
Players will find a patch of dirt on the bottom left corner of the farm where they can find stones, ores, and geodes to mine. These resources respawn every 4 in-game days indefinitely. The drops you get from this dirt patch also increase as your mining skill progresses.
The Wilderness Farm was once known for its special feature of being the only map where monsters may spawn at night. It starts with basic monsters such as bats but later increases in difficulty proportional to the player’s combat skill level. This was the perfect map for survival enthusiasts and combat-based playstyles.
In the current update, a toggle for monster spawning has been added in the settings, which is not unique to this farm anymore. However, there is one monster unique to this farm—the wilderness golem, which is a very rare monster that can drop even rarer loot. You can still offer a Strange Bun to the Dark Shrine of Terrors in the Witch’s Hut to turn off monster spawning if you want to.
This farm is pretty similar to the Standard Farm, with a lot of tillable space to farm crops on. Their most prominent difference is that this layout has a big pond at the center and one large pond on the side where you can catch Mountain Lake Fish.
Four Corners Farm
For players who could not decide what farm to choose, the Four Corners Farm may be the perfect choice for its versatility. Originally designed for co-op, this farm has a unique blend of the Standard Farm’s expansiveness and the distinctive advantages of other farms.
As its name suggests, this farm has been divided into quadrants. Each quadrant is divided by towering cliffs, and although each has its own shortcuts, it is blocked by boulders or logs that can be removed once players upgrade their tools. In its center lies the ruins of a greenhouse, which can be repaired later in the game.
The Beach Farm offers a refreshing new look for the farm as it is now surrounded by the sea. It also has the most space, perfect for more creative players. However, we would not recommend this map for beginners as the majority of tillable land is sandy—meaning players cannot use sprinklers to automatically water their crops.
Despite its obstacles, this farm can be considered one of the best farms for its quick access to saltwater fish, beach and forest items that you can forage, and hardwood tree stumps. While none of these are renewable like the Forest Farm’s, it is more than enough to last the player for a while before having to go find other sources.
One of the many effective ways to thrive on this farm is by being an artisan and selling processed produce, given that automatically growing crops would be difficult. Another fun little bonus for playing this farm is its supply crates. What these contain will depend on how many times you’ve upgraded your house—the higher the level, the better loot you can acquire.