Angler or Pirate: Which Is The Best Option?

If you’re a fishing enthusiast, you might be nearing the time to choose between being an Angler or a Pirate. This choice occurs if you picked the Fisher profession at level five. Stuck, and wondering which profession is the right choice? We’ve got your back!

A screenshot from Stardew Valley in which the farmer is sitting on a bench and thinking about whether they should choose the Angler or Pirate profession.

What Are Professions?

Each skill in Stardew Valley has six unique professions associated with them. These professions are unlocked at levels five and ten. If you choose skill A at level five, you can then pick between two other choices at level ten. If you chose B at level five, you choose between another unique set of professions. Professions alter gameplay and profits significantly, so you’ll need to be sure you’re making the right choice!

The skill tree in Stardew Valley! The rectangles represent professions.

When it comes to fishing, you’ll be given the choice between Fisher and Trapper at level five. If you’ve chosen Fisher, then at level ten you’ll be able to become either an Angler or Pirate.

SkillLevel Five Profession #1Level Ten Profession OptionsLevel Five Profession #2Level Ten Profession Options
FarmingRancherCoopmaster / ShepherdTillerArtisan / Agriculturist
MiningMinerBlacksmith / ProspectorGeologistExcavator / Gemologist
ForagingForesterLumberjack / TapperGathererBotanist / Tracker
FishingFisherAngler / PirateTrapperMariner / Luremaster
CombatFighterBrute / DefenderScoutAcrobat / Desperado

How To Level Up In Fishing

There are two main ways to gain experience in the fishing skill:

  1. Harvesting fish from Crab Pots
  2. Fishing

Harvesting fish from Crab Pots yields merely five points of experience each time. However, it requires very little time and effort, as you won’t need to do the fishing mini-game to gain any experience.

On the other hand, fishing with a fishing pole can yield a considerable amount of experience, depending on the type of fish you’ve caught. Generally speaking, fish that are worth more gold are also worth more experience. To illustrate, a single Carp of regular quality is worth 30g, and catching one gives you eight points of experience. On the other hand, the Lava Eel fish, which is worth 700g even at base quality, will grant you 33 points of experience.

A perfect catch in Stardew Valley.

As you can see, even the least valuable fish still grants you more experience than harvesting from a Crab Pot. In order to get from level one to level two, you’ll either need to catch 13 Carps, or harvest from a Crab Pot 20 times. However, the gap between these two widens as you continue to level up. It’s a lot easier to level up by fishing than by harvesting Crab Pots. To get from level zero to level 10, you’ll need to harvest from a Crab Pot 3.000 times. Whereas, if you’re catching fish of higher value and of higher quality, you’ll only need to catch around 1.000 fish.

Your goal when leveling in fishing is not just to catch much fish. You’ll want to be catching high-quality fish in particular, as these grant more experience. To level up faster in fishing, you should:

  • Increase your fishing skill – A higher fishing skill guarantees that you’ll be able to catch more valuable fish, and more valuable fish give you more experience in turn!
  • Eat +Fishing Food – You can temporarily increase your fishing skill by eating food that grants a +Fishing buff. Willy sells one of these dishes – Trout Soup – in the Fish Shop for 250g. To unlock more of these, befriend Willy and he’ll send you recipes in the mail.
  • Equip the best fishing rod – Grab the Iridium Rod for the best results. This rod will let you equip various baits and tackles.
  • Use bait and tackle – Just regular ol’ Bait will allow you to catch fish faster, thereby making the leveling process faster. Wild Bait, on the other hand, is even more valuable, as you’ll be able to catch two fish at once. As for tackles, there are many that could be of help. We suggest trying the Quality Bobber, as this tackle will increase the quality of fish by one.
  • Cast far from the shore – You’ll get higher quality fish by casting your hook far off the shore. Always try to go for the maximum distance possible to ensure the best catch.
  • Achieve a “Perfect Catch” – A perfect catch requires you to cast the hook at max distance, and also always keep the fish on your bar. This can take some practice, but achieving the perfect catch is the key to getting the best fish.

Level Five Profession

In order to gain the opportunity to choose between Angler and Pirate, you must first select the Fisher profession at level five of fishing. This profession increases the value of the fish you sell by 25%. If you’re seriously planning on making a living off of fishing in Stardew Valley, this is a must-have!

Angler Breakdown

The Angler profession does the same thing as the Fisher profession – just better. Instead of increasing the value of the fish you sell by 25%, it increases their price by 50%. To illustrate, a Gold Quality Sturgeon normally costs 300g. With the Fisher profession, that price bumps up to 375g, but with the Angler profession, the price is set at 450g.

Anglers earn way more money by fishing!

This doesn’t affect the price of Roe, Caviar, or Aged Roe. The price of these goods is affected by the Artisan profession instead, which you can get by reaching level ten in Farming.

Is Angler Worth It?

Angler is a fantastic choice for you if you enjoy fishing and plan to continue to catch and sell fish. There are no drawbacks to this profession, it just makes you earn more cash for doing this activity.

Pirate Breakdown

Pirate, on the other hand, is a much more niche profession. A farmer in the Pirate profession has twice the chance to find treasure when fishing. The base chance to find a chest is 15%, so, with the Pirate profession you’ll be reaching a 30% chance, or one-in-three fishing mini-games will have a treasure chest. You can further increase these odds by using the Magnet bait and Treasure Hunter tackle and reach 50% with relative ease.

Pirates have an easier time finding treasure.

Is Pirate Worth It?

Treasure chests vary in usefulness. You may get Bait, a Rice Shoot, Mixed Seeds, or a few pieces of Copper Ore. On the other hand, there’s the tiniest chance you can get a Prismatic Shard or unique and valuable pieces of gear such as Genie Shoes and Iridium Bands. If you’re looking to fill up Gunther’s Museum, treasure chests are a great way to find gems, geodes, and artifacts.

So, are treasure chests a good thing? Definitely. But, do you need to be a Pirate? Not really! Whether or not you’re a Pirate, you’ll be able to find Treasure Chests. With just a Magnet and the Treasure Hunter tackle, your chance to find a treasure chest can reach a 35% chance to find it.

The Verdict

The Angler profession increases the price of fish you sell. If you’re a big fan of fishing and plan to make money doing it, it’s a must-have!

The Pirate profession increases the odds of finding treasure chests while fishing. Treasure chests contain unique pieces of gear, valuable gems, and possibly rare artifacts you can donate ot the museum.

While treasure chests are undeniably useful, we recommend the Angler profession for all you level ten fishermen. This is because treasure chests can be found whether you’re a Pirate or not. try attaching a Magnet and some Treasure Hunter tackles to your rod to improve your odds, while still keeping the excellent 50% increase in fish price!

Meet the author

I'm a content writer and an avid video game player whose favourites are either chill RPGs or super competitive shooters with no in-between! If anyone is still reading this please help, Joja has trapped me in a guide-writing factory and I'm so tired of drinking Joja Cola.

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