A new feature in Stardew Valley’s 1.5 update, the community message board is a place for NPCs to post requests that are a little more strenuous than the ones on the regular bulletin board. They usually involve collecting a large number of items or a few certain hard-to-find treasures, within a specific timeframe.
Each of these side quests pays handsomely, and most have an additional reward or a cutscene to go along with it. Some add to the game’s atmosphere, while others give the player new items that provide game-changing mechanics. Here’s a ranking of the ten best rewards from these special order quests.
10 Tropical Fish
Excited about the opportunities on Ginger Island, Willy poses a challenge on the notice board. To complete it, the player must catch five stingrays, five blue discus, and five lionfish. After players have proven their island fishing prowess, he rewards them with a huge fish tank to place in their home.
Although this reward is more decorative than practical, lots of players love the atmosphere that it provides. Willy also carries the item in his shop once the quest is complete, allowing players to build huge, beautiful aquariums.
9 Robin’s Resource Rush
Like “Tropical Fish,” this special order is more of a fun challenge. Robin wants to see if the player can collect 1,000 units of either wood or stone in a week. If they can, she’ll teach them how to craft a Stone Chest.
This recipe might not look like much, but it provides flexibility in crafting. For example, if the player is hoarding wood for a project but desperately needs more storage, the Stone Chest recipe is a hugely useful recipe to have at their disposal.
8 Island Ingredients
Caroline wants to experiment with island ingredients and requests 100 of either pineapples, ginger, or taro root. Since these have to be collected while the quest is active (not stockpiled beforehand), it can be a bit of a time crunch, but the player has a month to complete it.
To thank them for their trouble, Caroline sends the player her recipe for crafting solar panels. After seven days in the sun, one of these gadgets produces a battery, ensuring that the player never runs low on this item.
7 Cave Patrol
This request is fairly simple, and the reward is hugely useful. Even though he’s definitely not scared to do it himself, Clint asks someone to go into the mines and slay 50 of a certain monster. The player is rewarded with 6,000 gold (the most out of any special order), and a new crafting recipe: the geode crusher.
This handy gizmo breaks open geodes for the low price of one piece of coal. This cuts down on both trips to the blacksmith and the cost of breaking geodes.
6 Aquatic Overpopulation
Local scientist Demetrius is concerned about the local overabundance of a certain fish. Any seasonal fish may be mentioned in this quest, and the player must catch 10 to bring the population back to a sustainable level.
As thanks, Demetrius sends his crafting recipe for the Farm Computer, which displays useful data about the state of the player’s farm. “Biome Balance” provides the same reward, but this quest is easier to complete as it requires catching fewer fish in a longer span of time.
5 Prismatic Jelly
This request can be a tricky one to complete, but the Wizard makes it worth the player’s time. If they manage to slay the rare Prismatic Slime and collect its jelly, he will teach them his recipe for Monster Musk.
This mysterious cologne attracts more monsters when the player uses it in places like the mines or Skull Cavern. On the surface, this might seem like a bad idea, but it’s great for players who want to complete monster-slaying goals or collect items that these enemies drop.
4 Gifts for George
Grumpy old George thinks everyone’s forgotten him, so Evelyn posts a special order asking her neighbors to donate twelve leeks to show their love. As thanks, Evelyn sends the player a coffee maker, which produces a fresh cup of joe every morning.
Stardew Valley players can never have too much coffee in their inventory. The speed boost it provides allows the player to get so much more out of each day. Evelyn’s gift helps ensure they don’t run low on this essential item.
3 Rock Rejuvenation
Emily wants to hold a crystal therapy session and requests several gems for her idea. Spend enough time in the mines, and players shouldn’t have too much trouble tracking down these stones.
As a reward, Emily will send over a sewing machine just like the one she has at home. The player no longer has to trek all the way to Emily’s house to make or dye their clothes, nor are they limited to the hours when it’s open. Players become much freer to expand their wardrobe.
2 Fragments of the Past
In this order, museum curator Gunther requests 100 bone fragments. These are dropped by skeletons in the Mines, and can be dug up by the dozen at the dig site on Ginger Island. Collecting all 100 in just a week takes some legwork, but isn’t impossible.
After fulfilling this request, players learn to craft a Bone Mill. This incredibly useful item generates various fertilizers, including Speed-Gro, from bone fragments. It allows players to save crafting materials for different projects, that might otherwise go towards fertilizer.
1 A Curious Substance
Another of the Wizard’s requests, he asks the player to bring him some Ectoplasm, which is dropped by ghosts in the mines. It’s not too hard to find, especially considering the player has seven days to do so.
Upon completion, the player receives a crafting recipe for Mini Obelisks, two of which can be placed anywhere on the farm to warp between them. This greatly cuts down on the time that the player spends running back and forth, decreasing a tedious aspect to make the game way more fun.