There’s a lot to learn in Stardew Valley, and while most discoveries are a joy as a player, sometimes you’ll find yourself running up against something that isn’t. One of the most common questions that comes from relatively new players is some form of “Why do I keep waking up with only half my energy when I play Stardew?”
This is a very good question and in fairness, with the way most people play and level up, they might not have known there are some very common penalties that cause this problem but might get covered up in early game.
In Stardew Valley there are three main reasons why you might wake up with half energy or no energy the next day:
- Not getting back to bed until midnight (and especially penalized for after 1 a.m.) or passing out at 2 a.m. out of bed
- You pushed your character to exhaustion the day before
- You were knocked out due to damage/injuries
These are all reasons why your character might wake up the next day (or in Harvey’s Clinic) with half energy the next day. Let’s dive further into the energy mechanics of Stardew Valley so you can avoid the “I only have half energy for everything I have to do” Stardew Valley Blues.
Why Did Stardew Valley Give You an Energy Penalty?
For the most part Stardew Valley’s energy mechanics are pretty simple, but there are a few important caveats to understand. The most common two being exhaustion and the midnight vs 2 a.m. bedtime.
Why does this matter?
Because in Stardew Valley for every 10 minutes after midnight a player stays up during a day without going to bed, they are penalized a percentage of energy when they wake up the next morning. This mechanic mimics the issue of sleep deprivation.
Don’t get enough rest, and your energy for the next day suffers.
The sleep deprivation mechanic in Stardew is a rough percentage per 10 minute increment after midnight. So whether you have 100 total energy or 300+ from eating several Stardrop Fruits, you will still be around 1/2 energy if you pass out at 2 a.m. or 3/4 energy if you get to bed by 1 a.m.
Even if you can’t get back home and into bed by midnight, the closer to midnight your character is, the less energy is lost the next day.
Wait, I’ve Stayed Up Late with No Energy Penalty Before – What Gives?
You’re not mistaken. There’s actually a very good chance that you worked until passing out at 2 a.m. and still had full energy the next day. So if Stardew Valley penalizes you for staying up past midnight, how can this be?
There is one very important exception to the Stardew Valley energy rule: when you level up a skill during the day.
If you level up one of your five skills (farming, mining, fishing, combat, or foraging) during the day, no matter when you go to bed or even if you push your character to exhaustion, you will wake up with new energy.
It’s like the accomplishment of learning a new skill is enough to fire up and rejuvenate your farmer even over the lack of sleep or exhaustion from the day before.
This is why many new players miss this energy mechanic right away – because in those early days it’s very easy to be leveling up almost every day during that first spring of year one.
While you don’t get informed of the level up until sleeping, the moment you get enough experience to level up, you can pause and look at your levels. It will show the next notch filled in.
You Were Exhausted the Day Before
When you work yourself to exhaustion, unless you leveled up a skill that day, you will also wake up the next day with half energy. This happens when you go down to 0 energy and then take another action or several actions.
When this happens a blue face icon will appear over the empty energy bar indicating that you have become exhausted.
You will also receive a little message when it happens informing you that you have become exhausted from over-exertion. That is your “You done f’ed up” warning.
If you end up exhausted, you will not only move extremely slowly for the rest of that day, but you will also only wake up with half energy the next day.
If you continue to work when exhausted, eventually you will pass out, and then wake up the next day with only partial energy. Avoiding any actions that consume energy once you’re down to 0 is crucial to avoid that next-day energy penalty.
You Were Injured/Knocked Out from Damage
You wake up in Harvey’s Clinic quite often when this happens in the day, and sometimes at your home with a medical bill in the mail if it happens late at night, but many times you will wake up with 1 HP and possibly incredibly low or even almost empty energy.
This is an obvious cause when messed up, but it is something that can cause energy issues the next day – or whenever you wake up.
How to Save Energy Stardew Valley
While the best way to avoid the problems that come in Stardew Valley with waking up with half energy is to avoid going to bed too late to begin with, there are other things you can do throughout your playthrough of Stardew to save energy throughout the day so those late nights aren’t quite as disastrous as they otherwise might be.
When tools are upgraded it takes less actions to complete what that tool does, which means using less energy to get more resources. That’s a winning combination and something I cover extensively in the Stardew Valley Tool Upgrade Guide.
Level Up Skills
Along with upgraded tools, upgrading skills can often reduce the amount of energy it takes to do certain actions. When combined with upgraded tools, this is how you can drastically expand your farm, what you can do in a day in Stardew, and managed all of that without having to chomp down 10 salads a day.
Get More Energy
Stardrop fruit are relatively rare, and some are extremely hard to acquire, but others can be pretty easy to get. Eating even a couple of stardrop fruit can make a huge difference to your energy levels, and if you’re good at getting a lot of stardrop fruit early, that can make a huge difference.
Avoid Waking Up with 1/2 Energy in Stardew Valley
Now you know everything you need to know about how energy works in the game of Stardew Valley and why a lot of us believe in loading up on the food once we have an upgraded house…because a lot of experienced players are not very good about getting back to bed right around midnight.
In the early game you can track in-day leveling up to know when you can push it right to the limits and right to 2 a.m. without any fear of penalty, and once those easy level ups are over, then you will be able to stack up the food supplies or make sure to duck in back home and into the bed before it gets too late so you’re not dealing with those 1/2 energy Stardew Valley blues 🙂
Other Stardew Valley Articles You May Love
- How to get ectoplasm in Stardew Valley
- How do lightning rods work in Stardew Valley
- Energy Fruit in Stardew Valley
- Where can I find gold star void salmon Stardew Valley
- How to raise chickens Stardew Valley
- Is Stardew Valley Worth It?
Proud to embrace the locally created moniker of “Corrupt Overlord” from one of the all time great Lords of Waterdeep runs, Shane is one member of the Assorted Meeples crew and will be hard at work creating awesome content for the website. He is a long-time player of board games, one time semi-professional poker player, and tends to run to the quirky or RPG side of things when it comes to playing video games. He loves tabletop roleplaying systems like Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, Werewolf, Fate, and others, and not only has been a player but has run games as DM for years. You can find his other work in publications like Level Skip or Hobby Lark.