Fishing is one of the many activities in Stardew Valley. It can be a little bit hard at first, but after some practice, you’ll get the hang of it. You’ll definitely want to stick with it, as fishing is very worthwhile — after some time and effort, you can earn quite a bit of profit. Here’s everything you need to know about fishing in Stardew Valley, from the basics to how you can make the most of it.
Let’s get started.
Fishing in Stardew Valley: The Basics
It all starts with the fishing pole, which you’ll get from Willy after you meet up with him on the beach starting on your second day in Stardew Valley. You’ll start out with the Bamboo Pole. While it can be hard to use at first, you can use it to catch any fish in the game.
Just cast your line into some water and wait for a small exclamation mark before you reel it in. Occasionally you’ll fish up seaweed, algae, or trash — if you do, just cast your line back in again. These items still give you fishing experience, and once your level gets high enough, you’ll catch trash less often.
When you do reel in a fish, the fishing minigame starts, and it’s time to really start fishing. Just move the green fishing bar so it aligns with the fish, and once the progress bar fills up, you’ll have caught the fish! And if you keep the bar on the fish the whole time, you’ll get a perfect catch, which increases the quality of the catch. It might take a couple of attempts at first, but you’ll be catching fish in no time!
However, if you can’t get the hang of it, you can always purchase the Training Rod from Willy for 25g. The selection of fish it can catch is limited, but it’s much easier to use. It can also be a great way to level up your Fishing skill and get some practice. As your Fishing level goes up, the size of the fishing bar goes up with it, making fishing even easier. Once you’re ready, you can switch back to the Bamboo Pole and start catching them all.
Fishing Poles, Bait, & Tackle
As you increase your fishing level, you’ll gain access to additional rods. While these rods may not increase the size of the fishing bar, they give you access to a variety of other helpful effects. First up is the Fiberglass Rod, which you can buy after reaching Fishing Level 2. It lets you use bait, which attracts fish and makes finding and catching them quicker and easier.
After reaching Level 6, you can buy the Iridium Rod, which adds further usability by letting you use tackle along with bait. There are all sorts of tackle in Stardew Valley, and they have a variety of effects. For example, the cork bobber further increases your fishing bar, while the barbed hook “clings” to fish. Once you get the right tackle for the job, you’ll be able to catch even the hardest fish, even if it takes a couple of tries. You’ll want to get the Iridium Rod and start using tackle once you get the chance.
Of course, there are other ways to fish if you don’t want to put in quite as much effort. One such method is using crab pots, which you unlock at Fishing Level 3. Just place them in the water and put in some bait, and there’ll be something inside the next morning. Of course, you’ll still need to collect your catches and put in more bait each day. But if you get the Trapper and Luremaster professions, it becomes even more hands-off, as you’ll no longer need bait to use the crab pots. Overall, it’s a decent way to earn some passive income and gain some fishing experience along the way.
The final way you can tackle fishing in Stardew Valley is with fish ponds, which are a type of farm building you can purchase from Robin. You’ll still need to catch the fish first, but once you do, you can toss them in and they’ll reproduce, making it a little easier to get more of the rarer fish. You’ll also get to complete quests to boost the capacity of the pond (up to 10) and get some fishing experience along the way. The only catch is that you’re limited to one type of fish per pond. Once you’re ready, you can harvest them and use them however you desire. If you’re in it for the profit, Lava Eels are a particularly great option, as they sell for 700g each!
However, fishing ponds can do more than just multiply most fish. Fish ponds produce items regularly, and while it’s often stuff like roe or some kind of trash, several fish produce valuable items like diamonds, dragon teeth, or iridium ore! Super Cucumbers, Rainbow Trout, and Stingrays are all great options if you want to potentially get some great items in addition to roe. You’ll also want to raise some Sturgeons, as you’ll need their roe if you want to make caviar.
Of course, you can’t just cast your line just anywhere and expect to pull up a fish, especially if you’re looking for a specific one. Whether a certain fish shows up (or even can show up) depends on all sorts of things, including time of day, season, and weather. Fish type also varies based on which body of water you cast your line into.
There is some overlap, but the types of fish you can find can change a lot depending on whether you’re fishing in the Mountains, Cindersap Forest, Pelican Town, or the Beach. There’s also the Mines, the Secret Woods, and the Sewers, along with all sorts of other fishing locations. If there’s a decent sized body of water, chances are there’s fish there.
However, there is one notable exception — the Standard Farm map, where there’s no fish to be found. If you want to be fishing on your farm in addition to farming fish, you’ll want to go with one of the other farm maps in Stardew Valley. The Riverland farm or the Beach Farm are great options, if that’s what you want.
Fortunately, you don’t have to be running all over the place to get the fish you need forever. It may take a while, but once you unlock Qi’s Walnut Room on Ginger Island, you’ll gain access to Magic Bait, which lets you catch just about any fish from any body of water, regardless of the time, season, or weather. With it, no fish will be safe for long.
Legendary Fish & Where to Find Them
Now that you got the basics, it’s time to take your fishing to the next level. Sure, catching stuff like Lava Eels, Sturgeons, and Stingrays is great and all. What you really want, though, is to go after the legendary fish, which are the rarest and most valuable fish in the game. They’re also the hardest to catch, and you can only catch them once. Each of the five fish are found in a very specific location, even if you use magic bait. If you want to find them, you’ll need to decipher clues from the lost book Secrets of the Legendary Fish. However, we’ll skip all of that and just tell you everything you need to know, including where to find them.
How to Catch the Mutant Carp
First up is the Mutant Carp, which is both the easiest legendary fish to find and the easiest to catch. However, it’s still a legendary fish, so you still want to be well prepared with bait, tackle, and food. Just head down into the Sewers, which you gain access to after donating 60 items to the museum, and start fishing. Unlike the other legendary fish, there aren’t any special requirements. You just need to keep casting until the Mutant Carp bites. No matter where you are in the Sewers, there’s a 10% chance it’ll appear. You’ll know when they’re there because the fish icon in the fishing minigame is slightly different. You may fail to catch them a number of times, but just keep trying. With some fishing buffs and a cork bobber, it’ll happen eventually.
How to Catch the Angler
Next up is the Angler, which can only be caught from the plank bridge north of Joja Mart in the fall. However, before it can appear, you’ll need to be at Fishing Level 3. Of course, you can always use food to buff your Fishing Level if you’re not quite there yet. Dish O’ The Sea and Seafoam Pudding are always great options. Just make sure you’re no more than fifteen tiles from the edge of the map, and there’ll be a 20% chance that it will appear. As long as you’re persistent and keep trying, you’ll catch the Angler in no time.
How to Catch the Crimsonfish
Then there’s the Crimsonfish, which can be caught from the pier on the east side of the Beach during the summer. If you want to get over there, you’ll need to repair the bridge with 300 wood. As long as you’re Fishing Level 5 and your bobber is four tiles away from the pier, you’ll have an 18% chance of hooking the Crimsonfish. They’re a little more difficult to catch then the Angler or Mutant Carp. However, if you keep at it and make use of buffs and tackle, you’ll catch the Crimsonfish sooner rather than later.
How to Catch the Glacierfish
For the Glacierfish, you’ll need to make sure to get things down to a T. The only way they’ll appear is if you cast your line from the southernmost tip of Arrowhead Island during the winter in Cindersap Forest. If you’re standing in any other spot, then you’re out of luck. However, all of that precision is worth it. As long as you’re at least Fishing Level 6, you have a 50% chance of hooking the Glacierfish when your bobber is four tiles away from land. They may be harder to catch, but they’re a whole lot easier to find, provided you’re on the right spot.
How to Catch the Legend
Finally, there’s the Legend, who (according to lore) has never been caught. However, he won’t stay that way forever. It’s not too much of a surprise that he’s evaded capture for so long, as he can only be found in the Mountain Lake near the log on a rainy day. On top of that, you’ll need to be Fishing Level 10 (naturally or with buffs) before he’ll appear. As long as you’re five tiles away from land, you’ll have a 10% chance that he’ll bite under all of these conditions. You’ll want to make sure you’re taking advantage of everything, from using the best bobbers to boosting your Fishing Level with buffs. It may take awhile, but eventually, you’ll catch the king of fish who’s never been caught.
How to Catch the Legendary Fish II
Now, you can only catch each legendary fish once. But if you ever want to do it again, you just need to do the Qi’s Extended Family quest, which you can start from Qi’s Walnut Room. With this quest, you get to catch the relatives of the legendary fish, which includes Ms. Angler, Glacierfish Jr, Son of Crimsonfish, Radioactive Carp, and Legend II. You can find each of these fish in the same locations as their relatives. They also have the same requirements and difficulty. They’re basically the same fish. The only difference is that they appear in any season or weather. You can also catch them as many times as you want! So if you ever want a little more challenge or are in it for the rewards, put your fishing skills to the test and give this quest a go.
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