Stardew Valley Saves: How Saving Works in Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley is an amazing cozy farm-sim game that helped usher in the modern farm-sim craze and showed that there was indeed a huge demand for relaxing games that you could take at your own pace and focused on a relaxing and often repeating gameplay loop as you progressed. Sometimes with bigger goals, sometimes without. But Stardew also came with something most gamers weren’t used to: no obvious way to save the game.

Stardew Valley works on an auto-save system where the game is saved when a player goes to sleep and/or passes out each night. This happens automatically at 2 a.m. if the player doesn’t manually head back to their bed to go to sleep.

While this Stardew auto-save feature is a great way to save information from day to day without a player having to worry about it, this isn’t the full story behind how saved games works in Stardew Valley.

Let’s dive in further to learn all there is to know about how saves in Stardew Valley work!

stardew valley fix bridge ginger island
I would cry if I lost my insane mega-run, and currently my only saved file with Ginger Island unlocked.

When Does Stardew Valley Save?

The only time the when Stardew Valley saves is when sleeping overnight. Everything is saved from the day before and all random events for the next day (owl statues or meteorite strikes, artifact spots, forage spawning, etc) is determined before the save.

This also means there’s no point to save scumming hoping for a better artifact or forage the next day. Once you wake up, that day is set in stone.

Can you save Stardew Valley without sleeping? The answer is no, in the base game there are only two times when the game saves b/c there are only two times when the player sleeps:

  • After the player goes to bed and hits “Yes” to go to sleep until the next day
  • Automatically at 2 a.m. the player will pass out if they didn’t make it back to bed

This means that your game is always up to date and the work that you’ve done is saved, but while playing Stardew Valley you can’t have multiple saves. You can have multiple farms, but each farm, each game slot, will have just the one save that keeps that file up to progress with the work you’ve done.

How Can You Save in Stardew Valley Without Sleeping?

Sometimes you’re interrupted in the middle of a great day and you don’t want to lose your progress, but you can’t keep your computer on for the day, it would be nice to have a save option. This is why so many beginning players want to know how to save in Stardew Valley in the middle of the day.

Unfortunately, saving without sleeping in Stardew Valley is impossible in the base game. It simply can’t be done. That being said, if you are comfortable with modding, then there’s good news because there’s a mod for that!

The Save Anywhere Mod for Stardew Valley

We need to turn back to our friends at Nexus Mods again to find an excellent mod for Stardew Valley that allows the player to save anywhere, at anytime during the day. The Save Anywhere mod is the only way to save in Stardew Valley in the middle of the day without having to go to bed.

This mod allows you to save by pushing the K button. Great, right?

Related Article: Best Mods to Add to Stardew Valley

How to install the save anywhere Stardew Valley mod

This mod is relatively easy to install and use but it does take a touch of editing work. Here is your step by step guide:

  1. Make sure Stardew Valley is shut off/not running before you begin
  2. Download the most recent version of this SV mod
  3. Unzip the folder and place it in your Stardew Valley/mods folder
  4. Edit theĀ config.jsonĀ file in a text editor to change the key bindings for the K key
  5. Return the edited config.json file to where it belongs, click “Yes” when it asks you if you want to overwrite
  6. Close out the folders
  7. Play Stardew Valley – the mod should work immediately after a game is fired up

Pretty easy if you have the hang of it. If you’ve never installed mods into a game before, take a look at this video on installing mods in Stardew Valley to get an idea of how to do it.

Do You Have to Sleep in Stardew Valley?

Yes. Sleeping in Stardew Valley is necessary because it’s the only way to save your game without modding it, and since the game works on a calendar system, it needs a way to determine new artifact spots, forage, luck, etc for a new day – which it can’t do if you could just stay up all the way through.

That’s why if you don’t go to bed in Stardew Valley you automatically pass out at 2 a.m. and, unless you leveled up a skill that day, you get an energy penalty the next day from not getting enough rest. Plus a monetary penalty for getting medical treatment.

Does Stardew Valley Save If I Quit Without Sleeping?

No. In that situation you revert back to your last save point, which was 6 a.m. that morning. This means any work for the day that you did before quitting is gone and you need to start the day over. This can actually be useful if you’ve been away for a while and forget something important, like wasting most of a day running up to the mines only to find your mining pickaxe isn’t in the chest you built by the mines – but at Clint’s being upgraded, you can start over.

Related Article: What Tools Should I Upgrade First in Stardew Valley

Inconvenient, yes, but possibly better than wasting an entire day. In that type of a situation you may want to quit Stardew Valley without saving so you can start that day over again.

The autosave Stardew uses is tied to sleeping so if you quit in the middle of the day, the game does not autosave your current place in the game. In other words, it’s Groundhog’s Day.

Where Do The Stardew Valley Save Files Go?

Understanding where Stardew Valley save file goes depends on a variety of factors including if you are connected to a cloud online or playing offline, what system you’re playing Stardew Valley on, and more. I’ll go through and answer the most common questions regarding location of Stardew save files, if they can be transferred or not, and provide all the information you need.

Where Are Stardew Valley Saves?

The exact location of local Stardew Valley save files depends on the system being used. Knowing this is important if you are trying to backup a specific save file or looking to transfer a save file from one device to another. Let’s take a look at each location.

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves on Steam?

On Windows:

  1. Press the Windows button + R to bring up a Dialogue Box
  2. In the Dialogue Box Paste: %appdata%\StardewValley\Saves
  3. Then click the OK button to open the folder

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves on GOG

The steps for finding your Stardew Valley saves on GOG (using Windows) is actually the exact same as the instructions for finding it on Steam. Just follow the steps above and you should be able to find them without any problem at all.

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves on Xbox App?

If you’re playing with the Xbox App on Windows, things are a bit more complicated. There are 2-3 potential places where the save files might be, but start with the following steps first:

  1. Press Windows + R to open up a run dialogue box, just as you would if looking for your files in Steam or GOG
  2. Paste the following exact text in the box: %localappdata%\Packages\ConcernedApe.StardewValleyPC_0c8vynj4cqe4e\LocalCache\Roaming\StardewValley\Saves
  3. Click OK to look in the folder and see if you can spot a save file. If you can, you’re done – you’ve located your Stardew Valley save on the Xbox App
  4. If you don’t see your save but have either Steam, GOG, or both on your machine, follow the above steps to look in each of those folders. Sometimes the App will stash the save files in one of those two locations instead.
  5. Search until you find the right save file

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves on Mac?

Mac Users have a few different steps they have to take in order to find their SV save files. If you want to know where your Stardew save files are on a Mac:

  1. Go to Finder
  2. Click “Go” then “Go to Folder”
  3. Enter the following text: ~/.config/StardewValley/Saves
  4. Hit Enter

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves on Linux?

Linux users are going to be much closer to a Mac when it comes to finding the Stardew Valley save files. There are two potential places where these save files could be and we’ll give both potential options.

  1. Head to the Files section
  2. In Files click “Go” Then “Enter Location”
  3. Enter the following text: ~/.config/StardewValley/Saves
  4. Hit submit to open the folder
  5. If you don’t find any files there, repeat steps 1 and 2 and then enter the following text instead: ~/.var/app/com.valvesoftware.Steam/.config/StardewValley/Saves
  6. Hit submit to open the folder

The files should be saved in one of those two locations.

Where Are My Stardew Valley Saves Stored on Mobile?

The exact locations of save files for the game of Stardew Valley on mobile devices tends to depend on the operating system that the cell phone or other mobile device is using. We’ll take a look at the most common places to find these files on each type of device.

On Mobile Android
  • Open the File Explorer App
  • Scan the files until you find Android/data/com.chucklefish.stardewvalley/files/saves
  • You will find the save files in here, which will be named based on the name you used for that save slot/file
  • Look for the subfolders formatted as “JonDoe_123456789” as the Stardew Valley game saves will be marked like this
On Mobile (iOS)
  • Open the Files app
  • Tap the Browse button, which should be located on the bottom-right of your iPhone screen
  • If you are on an iPad tablet tap the top-left button to see the sidebar menu
  • Scroll to the Locations section
  • Tap “On My iPhone/iPad”
  • Find the Stardew Valley folder and then select that
  • Find the subfolders that are labeled the same way as the JonDoe up above in the Mobile Android example

You can also find a lot of information about saves and how the file-level save mechanics work for this game in the Stardew Wiki Save page.

Can You Back Up Stardew Valley Saves?

There are some ways to backup save files to Stardew Valley, but since Stardew overwrites saves day by day if there’s a specific point you want to save the game, you need to back up the save then because if you play several more days the save file will be all the way up to the most recent days.

Here is a great tutorial video from early Unsurpassable Z on how to backup your Stardew Valley save files.

So to answer the question of “Can you back up Stardew Valley saves?” the answer is yes, but it takes a bit more skill and technical knowhow than your average player might have, but that video does a great job of taking you through step by step so you know how to do it.

Stardew Valley Saves FAQ

Does Stardew Valley save every single night?

Yes, Stardew Valley saves every night when the player goes to sleep. It first determines randomly generated items and mechanics for the following day, calculates and profits the player gets, then advances to the next day after saving those settings.

Does Stardew Valley save when exiting?

Stardew Valley doesn’t automatically save when exiting the game. The autosave for this great farm-sim game takes place while sleeping for the night. Only modding the game can change this.

Can I quit Stardew Valley without saving?

Simply quit the game before going to sleep for the night and you will quit Stardew Valley without saving. This only erases the current day. Once the game saves from sleeping overnight, there’s no going back to an earlier day.

How do you save Stardew Valley Mid Day?

To save a Stardew game in the middle of the day you must have a modded version of the game.

Does Stardew Valley save on its own?

Stardew Valley saves on its own because it saves automatically when a player goes to sleep each night.

Does Stardew Valley Save across devices?

Unfortunately, Stardew Valley does not save across devices, which means that if you want to transfer a file from one device to another you need to be able to locate the save file, move it, and transplant it which is possible with some setups and not possible at all with others.

You can read more in our Is Stardew Valley Cross Platform? for more specific information on this topic.

Does Stardew Valley save on the cloud?

If you’re playing on Steam or GOG then your Stardew Valley saves go to the Cloud. To stop this from happening, you need to adjust your Stream or GOG settings to make sure the save files are local.

Stardew Valley Auto-Save: Simple But Effective

The auto-save system in the game is mechanically sound and a smart way to make sure Stardew Valley saves after each day. This is a style that has been copied by many games in the genre including My Time at Portia, Littlewood, Graveyard Keeper, and others. This makes sure that gamers don’t have the shared experience of getting a ton done, but losing it all because you forgot to save or there was a power outage or something after hours of working.

Now you know all there is to know about saves in Stardew Valley! Happy farming, happy gaming, and be sure to take care of your favorite save files!

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