Lumberjack or Tapper: Which is Helpful and More Cost-Effective

Do you want to save your precious time testing out Lumberjack or Tapper in the game? Are you in trouble picking which profession you should take in Stardew Valley? Read this complete guide to know everything about the two foraging talents to know which will work out for you. 

Choosing between Lumberjack or Tapper will depend if the player likes hardwood or maple syrup.
Lumberjack helps you get early-game hardwood while Tapper makes Maple Syrups more valuable.

Trees in Stardew Valley are best known for two things: wood and maple syrup. These two are what every player considers when choosing between Lumberjack or Tapper. Although a single tree can yield sap, seed, and other artisan goods, let’s exclude them for a while to weigh which profession is more favorable.

Indeed, trees are jack-of-all-trades in the game: it helps in crafting items, constructing farm buildings, and fuel. It’s one of the most common resources you’ll see in the valley, that even below the ground where no light can reach, trees are thriving.

But let’s not go deeper toward the mines. Instead, let’s talk about what’s in it for you when selecting the two professions, how you can optimize your gameplay with them, and which stands out the most.

Forester in a Nutshell

An in-game prompt of professions popping up in the screen where the player have to choose between Forester or Gather. Reaching Level 10 will result on choosing between Lumberjack or Tapper.
Here’s the level-up screen once you reach Level 5 Foraging in Stardew Valley.

Before we advance further to the comparison, knowing Forester first is crucial. Surprisingly, a large portion of the Stardew Valley community doesn’t pick this profession. Instead, they always go for its counterpart – the Gatherer.

Gatherer can give you higher gain, although most forage items sell low. For instance, if you want to get along with Kent, you need Fiddlehead Ferns – a rare type of wild forage found in the Secret Woods and Jungle. Instead of picking one, there’s a good chance of getting double quantities.

The more ingredients you have, the more Fiddlehead Risotto you can make for the veteran soldier and more friendship points you’ll get. If it sounds unrewarding, you’ve just unlocked another cooking recipe (generous enough) that will help complete a collection!

Forester, on the other hand, lets you get 25% more wood or 15-20 pieces to be precise. On top of that, the increased drop chance applies to stumps and logs as well. 

Unfortunately, our previous guide concludes Forester is for beginners and early-game only. But hey, since your decision matters, let’s take a look at what’s coming next as you progress your foraging skills to level 10.

Lumberjack or Tapper: Benefits Comparison

Here’s a simple table showing the benefits of each profession:

Chance to drop hardwood on normal trees.Syrup costs 25% more.

Unlocking the access for either Lumberjack or Tapper depends on your gameplay. If you scale your foraging skills fast, you can expect to reach level 10 in 2-3 weeks. Things like chopping down trees and collecting wild fruits and vegetables can help you the most!

Both Professions Have Minor Drawbacks

It usually takes nine days for a tapper to extract maple syrup. However, heavy tappers can significantly reduce the time to four in-game days. But despite all these promising benefits, there are more materials spent for crafting the equipment than selling the produce. 

The Tapper profession is extremely underwhelming with its price boost – you only get 50g as a bonus. Not to mention all the ingredients you’ll need to extract the sweet syrup out of maple trees. Unless we double the price (which is too demanding), that would be worth the wait and all the trouble of getting resources.

It will never make you tons of money, but good news, they’re perfect for late-game. Unfortunately, don’t expect the same thing with the Lumberjack profession once you’ve reached year three onwards. That’s because many Stardew Valley players have already discovered Ginger Island – which has hardwood-producing Mahoganies!

Utility-wise, these two professions may have little impact on your gameplay. Let alone distinguishing the usefulness of Forester against Gatherer – especially if you’re starting. But still, a small piece of help can make a difference, right?

The Early-Game Winner: Lumberjack

The player chopping down trees for hardwood.
Chopping regular trees sometimes drop hardwood.

This conclusion may not come as a surprise, but if it’s your first year in the game, Lumberjack will come in handy. Combining the perk of getting extra pieces of wood and chances of hardwood drops will make crafting more accessible.

For most machines and building upgrades in Stardew Valley, you’ll need the rare hardwood. Chopping down stumps and logs are the only ways to get them, plus you’ll need an expensive axe upgrade. With Lumberjack, you can save up random pieces falling from a tree for crafting an oil maker, worm bin, house upgrade, and so much more!

Of course, relying on this profession is only for the short-term because of Mahogany trees. This new type of tree yields pure hardwood and seed when chopped down. Although it’s the best solution for material shortages (and even turning it into regular wood), Ginger Island is another puzzle to solve. 

But don’t worry, if it’s all things quest and unlocking the serene island, we’ve got you in this guide.

For Extra Profits, Tapper Wins

The in-game screen for selling maple syrup in Stardew Valley.
Although a single maple syrup costs little, it’s still great for side profits.

About 20% of my income comes from selling raw Maple Syrups on my latest save file. It’s more profitable than Oak Resin and Pine Tar, but it’s not much in comparison to making wines. However, it’s still worth mentioning because of the side profit you’ll make. 

Many players mistake maple syrup for getting the Artisan boost, but it’s the opposite. The fixed additional 50g remains, but it stops there. So is it another underwhelming profession? The answer is yes and no.

Stardew Valley is all about investing upfront materials and effort in return for stable money. It’s similar to the concept of passive income, where your wealth grows exponentially with little worry, except price depreciation happens in real life.

Instead, you might want to use heavy tappers to get the most produce. All you need to do is complete Qi’s Special Orders, get the gems, buy the blueprint, and craft the item.

Should I Pick Lumberjack or Tapper?

Choosing between Lumberjack or Tapper shouldn’t be troubling enough. Deciding between professions should always be objective to get the best results. In short, it’s a matter of factors by asking yourself, “Why should I pick this in the first place?

For example, you’re planning on building a lovely farm. You’ll need tons of materials. Using the Lumberjack profession will give you easy hardwood in the early game. However, don’t hesitate to switch to Tapper if you need additional gold.

Lumberjack and Tapper are equally unpopular choices among Stardew Valley players. The majority pick Gatherer and proceed to research whether Botanist or Tracker is better. If you’re in the same situation, you can read this helpful and powerful guide to spice up your experience.

Meet the author

Stardew Valley is perhaps the most chill game out there. If you're a new player and hoping to join Pelican Town, we've got your back with all the basics.

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