Stardew Valley: Making Friends
Gifts to Build Hearts and Make Relationships
Making friends in Stardew Valley is primarily a matter of talking to and giving gifts to the residents of Pelican Town and elsewhere in the game world. Making friends will teach your character new recipes and villagers will send gifts in the mail once they like you well enough. This can also lead to your character marrying a villager and them becoming your husband or wife. Stardew Valley does allow for same-sex marriage, for those interested.
When you talk to a character, you can hover over the icon in the bottom right corner to see the amount of hearts you've built with them. Building hearts up takes time, due to the delays on gift giving and the fact that there is a little decay each day if you don't talk to them (or can't find them!). The heart meter will freeze at 10 if you can max it out - that villager will be a best friend and no longer need such attention. NPCs who are eligible for marriage - bachelors and bachelorettes - will have the meter freeze after 8 hearts and require a bouquet (engagement) to go further.
How to Make Friends in Stardew Valley: Talking and Gifts
Each villager in Stardew Valley can be given one gift per day, up to two per week (with birthdays as an exception and a chance at 3 gifts in one week). To give a gift simply put it on the bar and use the item while hovering over the villager. When they like what you've given them, you will build a portion of a heart, which indicates how well they like you. If they hate that item, it will result in a reduction, and not talking to them for a long time may also see those relationships decay. Talking to them one time per ten days will stop any decay and get the relationship back to where it was. By interacting with them more frequently, you can make gains by just talking to the villager on a regular basis.
Each of the NPCs in Stardew Valley have likes and dislikes, and gifts may be received in five ways: horrible, bad, neutral, good, and great, with dialog to go along with that reception. A neutral gift is worth about the same amount as talking to them each day, so it's not worthless, while a good or great one is worth over 2 or 4 days worth of visits. Just don't give them things they hate. These gifts give different point values, but so long as you stick to good or great (the best) gifts for that villager, you'll make progress and build up the friendship. Every heart level takes the same amount of effort, so it is not like leveling a skill.
Quests from the job board by Pierre's, gifting on birthdays, and gifts on holidays like the Feast of the Winter Star, where you are assigned a Secret Santa, give far more progress on building hearts so take advantage of those opportunities. Look at the calendar next to Pierre's to see when an NPC's birthday is during that season, and in the list of best gifts below.
The Social Tab
Press ESC to access the inventory screen. Head to the social tab (the heart) and note that it helps you keep track of who you've given gifts to each week (resets on Sunday). Up to two boxes may be checked, this helps you manage your gift-giving and keeps count. It will also show your current heart level with that villager. It's very handy when you want to build friendships with several NPCs at once for achievements or Grandpa's Evaluation at the start of the third year.
Marriage in Stardew Valley
Getting Married means getting to 10 hearts with one of the bachelors or bachelorettes below. You must first give them a bouquet, bought at Pierre's, once you reach 8 hearts with them - this unlocks the 9th and 10th hearts. You may give a bouquet to more than one NPC, as long as you are not yet married.
Getting Engaged means buying a Mermaid's Pendant for 5,000g and giving it to the villager once you've hit 10 hearts. Buying the pendant means going to the beach while it's raining and paying 5,000G to the old Mariner. To access the area you must have repaired the bridge for 500 wood. He only appears on rainy days, not snowy, and you can't buy it until you're eligible to propose so you can't snag it early to use for later. Since you need a double bed to propose, you have to upgrade the house at least once.
Marriage takes place 3 days after giving them the Mermaid's Pendant. If you continue to build relations with your spouse, you can have kids (with the final house upgrade). Your spouse will help out a little around the farm, and passing 12 hearts will result in your spouse giving you a Stardrop sometime at random, which increases maximum energy. This is easy to achieve, as you can give your husband or wife a gift every day as opposed to twice a week.
|Male Villagers you can Marry||Females You Can Marry|
See below for things your potential spouse likes and dislikes in order to build the heart requirements to get married!
Summing it Up: Be Consistent
Because of how all of this works, it is good to start earlier rather than later if you want your character to get married, or to have many friends who teach them cooking recipes. It takes time and some dedication to get a character to 10 hearts, but mercifully you can stop at that point. Talk to them every day regardless of you having a gift for them. Learn where you normally find each NPC, and they'll usually be around there though everyone has a schedule. Sometimes it's best to catch them early when you know where they live. Farming up a favorite type of produce is one of the most reliable ways to build relationships, as you can have a gift they love and give it 2x every week. Given there are 16 weeks in a year and one birthday, you could have a good gift twice a week for each villager by making 32 of something like like and regularly delivering it.
List of Gifts Most NPCs Like
A villager may 'love' these items, but should not hate them. Some love them and are noted in the bigger list below. This isn't perfect but should set you in a direction. Look for the name of the NPC you're trying to befriend with Control + F to see if they appear below in the list of generally liked items as well as their main entry in the big list.
- Artisan Goods - the majority will go over well. A few dislike specific kinds: Penny and Sebastian with Pale Ale/Wine (Beer man), some dislike Mayo, Jas and Vincent hate all Artisan Goods.
- Coffee - Everyone seems to like it!
- Cooked Items - Except Bread, Hops, Fried Eggs, Sashimi, and Wheat. Krobus hates cooking, and Willy only likes fish dishes. A few (Emily, Kent, Evelyn) dislike Sashimi
- Flowers - Most NPCs like flowers, a few dislike all (George) or specific flowers (Elliot with Poppies, Jody, Sebastian, and Maru with Daffodil, and Sebastian with Dandelion)
- Minerals and Gems - Except Quartz. Leah dislikes all Gems. Elliot dislikes Limestone/Tigerseye.
- Fruit Tree Produce - Except Pierre (Hates Apples).
List of Gifts Each Villager Likes and Loves
|Villager||Birthday||Good Gifts||Best Gifts|
|Abigail||Fal 13||Likes Blueberry, Crocus, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Amethyst, Blackberry Cobbler, Chocolate Cake, Pufferfish, Pumpkin, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Spicy Eel|
|Alex||Sum 13||Likes Corn, Crocus, Eggs (not Void Egg) Green Bean, Kale, Sweet Pea, Parsnip, Potato, Tulip||Loves Complete Breakfast, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Salmon Dinner|
|Caroline||Win 7||Likes Blue Jazz, Corn, Crocus, Eggplant, Fairy Rose, Parsnip, Radish, Tomato||Loves Fish Taco, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Summer Spangle|
|Clint||Win 26||Likes Copper Bar, Iron Bar, Parsnip, Tomato||Loves Aquamarine, Artichoke Dip, Emerald, Fiddlehead Risotto, Gold Bar, Iridium Bar, Omni Geode, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Ruby|
|Demetrius||Sum 19||Likes Corn, Hot Pepper, Parsnip, Purple Mushroom||Loves Bean Hotpot, Ice Cream, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Rice Pudding, Strawberry|
|Dwarf||Sum 22||Likes Dwarf Scroll I-IV, Dwarvish Helm, Dwarf Gadget||Loves Amethyst, Aquamarine, Emerald, Jade, Omni Geode, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Ruby, Topaz|
|Elliott||Fal 5||Likes Octopus, Parsnip, Squid, Tulip||Loves Crab Cakes, Duck Feather, Lobster, Pomegranate, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Tom Kha Soup|
|Emily||Spr 27||Likes Crocus, Daffodil, Parsnip||Loves Amethyst, Aquamarine, Cloth, Emerald, Jade, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Ruby, Survival Burger, Wool|
|Evelyn||Win 20||Likes Baked Fish, Crocus, Daffodil, Summer Spangle, Sweet Pea||Loves Beets, Chocolate Cake, Diamond, Fairy Rose, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Stuffing, Tulip|
|George||Fal 24||Likes Daffodil||Loves Fried Mushroom, Lee, Rabbit's Foot|
|Gus||Sum 8||Likes Cauliflower, Kale, Parsnip, Potato, Tulip||Loves Diamond, Escargot, Fish Taco, Orange, Rabbit's Foot|
|Haley||Spr 14||Likes Crocus, Daffodil, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Coconut, Fruit Salad, Pink Cake, Rabbit's Foot, Sunflower|
|Harvey||Win 14||Likes Blackberry, Blueberry, Bok Choy, Corn, Daffodil, Duck Egg, Duck Feather, Goat Milk, Grape, Melon, Parsnip, Potato, Purple Mushroom, Strawberry, Wild Plum||Loves Coffee, Lobster Bisque, Pickles, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Super Meal, Truffle Oil, Wine|
|Jas||Sum 4||Likes Coconut, Crocus, Daffodil, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Fairy Rose, Pink Cake, Plum Pudding, Rabbit's Foot|
|Jodi||Fal 11||Likes Eggs, Milk, Fruits (not Spice Berry), Parsnip, Sweet Pea||Loves Chocolate Cake, Crispy Bass, Diamond, Eggplant Parmesan, Fried Eel, Pancakes, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Vegetable Medley|
|Kent||Spr 4||Likes Daffodil, Eggs (not void), Fruits, Parsnip, Sweet Pea||Loves Fiddlehead Risotto, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Roasted Hazelnuts|
|Krobus||Win 1||Likes Gold Bars (never cooked foods)||Loves Diamond, Iridium Bars, Pumpkin, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Void Eggs, Wild Horseradish|
|Leah||Win 23||Likes Chanterelle, Cheese, Common Mushroom, Crocus, Holly, Morel||Loves Goat Cheese, Poppyseed Muffin, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Salad, Stir Fry, Vegetable Medley, Wine|
|Lewis||Spr 7||Likes Blueberry, Cactus Fruit, Coconut, Corn, Parsnip||Loves Autumn's Bounty, Glazed Yams, Hot Pepper, Rabbit's Foot|
|Linus||Win 3||Likes Chanterelle, Common Mushroom, Corn, Eggs, Fruits, Milk, Vegetables||Loves Blueberry Tart, Cactus Fruit, Coconut, Dish of the Sea, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Yam|
|Marnie||Fal 18||Likes Blue Jazz, Eggs (not Void), Corn, Garlic, Milk, Parsnip, Sweet Pea||Loves Diamond, Farmer's Lunch, Pink Cake, Pumpkin Pie, Rabbit's Foot|
|Maru||Sum 10||Likes Amaranth, Copper Bar, Crocus, Eggplant, Iron Bar, Parsnip, Sweet Pea, Yam||Loves Battery Pack, Cauliflower, Cheese Cauliflower, Diamond, Gold Bar, Iridium Bar, Miner's Treat, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Rhubarb Pie, Strawberry|
|Pam||Spr 18||Likes Blackberry, Crocus, Milk, Sweet Pea||Loves Beer, Cactus Fruit, Glazed Yams, Pale Ale, Parsnip Soup, Parsnip, Rabbit's Foot|
|Penny||Fal 2||Likes Corn, Dandelion, Leek, Parsnip, Sweet Pea, Sunflower, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Diamond, Emerald, Melon, Poppy, Red Plate, Roots Platter, Sandfish, Tom Kha Soup|
|Pierre||Spr 26||Likes Blue Jazz, Cauliflower, Eggs, Eggplant, Green Beans, Parsnip, Potato, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Fried Calamari, Rabbit's Foot|
|Robin||Fal 21||Likes Blue Jazz, Crocus, Sweet Pea, Tulip||Loves Goat Cheese, Peach, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Spaghetti|
|Sam||Sum 17||Likes Joja Cola, Egg||Loves Cactus Fruit, Maple Bar, Pizza, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Tigerseye|
|Sandy||Fal 15||Fruit||Loves Crocus, Daffodil, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Sweet Pea|
|Sebastian||Win 10||Likes Cauliflower, Parsnip, Potato, Pumpkin, Tomato||Loves Frozen Tear, Obsidian, Pumpkin Soup, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Sashimi, Void Eggs|
|Shane||Spr 20||Likes Blue Jazz, Corn, Eggs, Fairy Rose, Fruit, Green Bean, Sweet Pea||Loves Beer, Hot Pepper, Pepper Poppers, Pizza, Rabbit's Foot|
|Vincent||Spr 10||Likes Clam, Coconut, Crocus, Daffodil||Loves Cranberry Candy, Grape, Pink Cake, Rabbit's Foot|
|Willy||Sum 24||Likes Gold Bar, Green Bean, Kale, Lingcod, Parsnip, Potato, Sweet Pea, Tiger Trout, Tulip||Loves Catfish, Diamond, Iridium Bar, Octopus, Pumpkin, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Sea Cucumber, Sturgeon|
|Wizard||Win 17||Likes Amaranth, Blue Jazz, Esperite, Parsnip, Thunder Egg||Loves Purple Mushroom, Prismatic Shard, Rabbit's Foot, Solar Essence, Void Essence|