Rancher Or Tiller – Stardew Valley – Which Is Better?

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(Last Updated On: June 19, 2023)

Stardew Valley is a behemoth in the gaming scenario and dismisses introduction, but we’ll do it anyways since it’s our job! Stardew Valley is a farming simulation game with roleplay elements developed by ConcernedApe’s singlehandedly hero, Eric Barone. It swept people off its feet and, to this day, is still winning hearts and making a whole lot of people out there as fabulous digital farmers.

However, as cozy as Stardew Valley is, farming life can be challenging. You love your animals despite their yields not being profitable enough, or you may hate plowing and harvesting repeatedly, but you do so because the profit is real. While you can still do both on your farm, there comes a time when a choice has to be made: are you going to follow the Rancher’s path or the Tiller’s career? This article here will show you which is better: Rancher or Tiller?

The Farming Skill

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Our character in Stardew Valley has 5 skills: Farming, Foraging, Mining, Fishing, and Combat. Each skill has a maximum of ten levels, and at level 5 and level 10, you can choose a profession that confers several bonuses based on your preference.

The professions in question here, Rancher or Tiller, are derived from the Farming skill. Upon reaching level 5 in Farming, you can specialize in one of these two. Rancher focuses on livestock, and Tiller on harvesting crops.

To level up Farming, you need to harvest crops and tend to animals to earn experience. Every level unlocks a new, very beneficial recipe and increases proficiency with the Hoe and Watering Can, reducing the energy cost of these tools. 

Rancher and Tiller Bonuses

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After hitting Farming level 5 and going to sleep, a pop-up will prompt you to choose between Rancher or Tiller profession.

  • The Rancher is for animal lovers. The profession offers a bonus where all animal products will sell for 20% more gold.
  • The Tiller favors harvesting. Professionals in this career will sell crops for 10% more gold.

There’s also a significant difference when you hit Farming Level 10 according to your chosen profession at Level 5. The Rancher evolves into Coopmaster or Sheperd, while the Tiller can become an Artisan or Agriculturist.

The Rancher

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Here we will show you the bonuses and downsides of picking a Rancher. First of all, you may hit Farming level 5 before you have many animals on your farm compared to your crops, making Rancher less appealing.

Secondly, while selling animal products will be a significant stream of profit for a while, later on in the game, it’s better if you opt for Artisan goods. Most Artisan goods require Animal products, such as cheese, milk, or wool.

But once you hit level 10, two new choices are available for you: Coopmaster and Shepherd. Both have three different bonuses.

The Coopmaster befriends coop animals quicker, i.e., chickens, ducks, rabbits, and dinosaurs; coop animal products’ quality are increased, and eggs incubate in half the usual time.

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The Shepherd is a friend of bigger animals, the ones you find at the barn, like cows, goats, sheep, pigs, and ostriches. Barn animals become friendly quicker with the Shepherd, sheep produce wool faster, and every barn animal product has better quality.

One of Shepherd’s plus points is that befriending pigs more quickly allows them to find higher quality truffles, guaranteeing you a good bit of extra cash.

We know those bonuses sound pretty neat. However, to acquire them, you have to forfeit the Tiller and its upgrades benefits, which we will show now.

The Tiller

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Tiller is your go-to profession if you don’t feel like tending to your animals is profitable or love to see that perfectly designed grid-by-grid crop flourishing like abstract art.

While the 10% bonus gold for crops isn’t that expressive, you’ll undoubtedly have a larger crop than herds or flocks by Level 5, which ultimately provides a better profit.

However, honestly, you won’t pick the Tiller for its bonuses, but for the future professions it unlocks at level 10: the Artisan or the Agriculturist.

The Artisan sells artisan goods for 40% more gold, which is a massive bonus. Since artisan goods are already quite expensive and are easy to insert into a supply chain routine, that’s a no-brainer.

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Creating a wine factory on your farm is the most profitable and practical way to achieve wealth on your property, and the Artisan profession will speed up the process even more.

The Agriculturist makes crops grow 10% faster. It’s pretty basic and suitable for those who really enjoy plowing and planting seeds rather than creating an industry on the farm. However, profit-wise, the Artisan is your best choice.

Rancher VS Tiller

The general context of the article has already given you an idea of which one we prefer, but let’s summarize it for you.

The Rancher, and its evolutions, are focused directly on the animals on your farm. If you are a player who likes to tend to your animal companions, then this is not even an option; choose Rancher. No arguments regarding personal taste.

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But if we are talking about maximizing your profit efficiency, Rancher is not suggested, even considering the profits from pig truffles. Animal products are best used to produce artisan goods.

Conversely, Tiller has the beautiful potential to increase the value of your crops and artisan goods. As stated before, producing a wine factory is manageable. The commodity for wine is fruits, readily collected in many ways – including farming – which raises your farm’s efficiency to the maximum output ever when talking about profit.

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Wrap Up

In the end, Tiller is the best choice. Not that Rancher is bad, but it is less advantageous compared to Tiller and returns less revenue.

Of course, after all, you are the player and decide which path you will take on your farm. We hope these tips and insight can improve your experience in what is considered one of the best farming simulators in the gaming industry.

Should you regret your profession choice, don’t worry; you can reset your picks. First, you need the Rust Key, an item acquired after donating 60 items to the Museum.

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Then you must go to The Sewers, south of Pelican Town, via a sewer cover. Inside you will find The Statue Of Uncertainty, which allows you to change professions for the sum of 10,000 gold. On the evening of the same day, the pop-up will reappear, and you can switch your choices.

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