[Top 5] Stardew Valley Best Early Weapons (And How To Get Them)

Marlon will give a weapon when you first enter the mines, but you'll need to upgrade sooner or later
It's dangerous to go alone...

Combat isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think about Stardew Valley. But venture out from the peaceful town and you’ll have to be prepared to defend yourself. Early game, this mostly takes the form of exploring the Mines whilst seeking out ores and gems, which are used to upgrade your tools and complete the Museum and Community Centre. This guide should help you identify the most useful weapons that are available before you have the Community Centre completed.


5. Kudgel (Best for Knockback)

Going clubbing.

The club weapons of Stardew Valley are characterized as slow-hitters, which can be off-putting for some. However, their secondary attack is the only weapon capable of delivering area of effect knockbacks, allowing for excellent control with a little bit of planning. The Kudgel is one of the most powerful clubs available early game, with a boosted Weight stat for even greater knockback. It is slow though - so be strategic, or bring a friend with a faster weapon along!

What makes the Kudgel Great:

  • Good balance of reasonably high damage and excellent knockback
  • Can knock back multiple enemies with its secondary attack

How to Get the Kudgel: Drops by breaking crates or barrels on level 100+ of the Mines. Also obtained from a reward chest at level 80 if ‘remixed’ mine rewards was selected on game creation.

Kudgel details



4. Yeti Tooth (Best for Defense)

Icy death.

Ah, swords. It’s a fantasy game, so it’s hardly surprising that there are a lot of them, and that they are the most balanced weapons in the game. The Yeti Tooth can be a bit elusive but can be a great boon if you’re struggling to avoid getting hit, as it's one of the few early-game weapons which adds to your defense stat, and of these, it gives one of the more notable boosts. The secondary attack of the swords also allows you to block incoming damage, so practice your timing!

What makes the Yeti Tooth Great:

  • Reasonably high damage for the point it is obtainable
  • Decent crit power boost
  • Defense boost

How to Get the Yeti Tooth: Drops from breaking boxes and barrels in level 60-120 of the Mines.

Yeti Tooth details



3. Burglar’s Shank or Wicked Kris (Best for Crit damage)

Stick 'em with the sharp end.

Daggers are fast-attacking weapons, with a secondary attack that allows you to hit the enemy four times in quick succession whilst they are immobilized - making them great at dealing with enemies one on one. They are also some of the most critical-focused weapons in the game, and early on the Burglar’s Shank has the potent balance of damage and crit-boosing stats. Whilst the Crystal Dagger is easier to obtain, being a chest reward, and has a higher crit damage-booster, its base damage is lower and it has a slightly lower critical chance, pushing the Burglar’s Shank ahead.

If you selected the remixed mine rewards at the start of the game, you actually have access to an even better dagger at this stage! The Wicked Kris is normally only available after you have access to the Skull Caverns, but remixers will receive it as a chest reward on the 90th floor of the mines. The Wicked Kris outstrips or equals the Burglar’s Shank in every way, so is a great addition to your arsenal at this point.

What makes the Burglar’s Shank and Wicked Kris Great: 

  • Best compromise of damage, critical chance, and critical damage at this level for a critical focused build
  • Like all daggers, great for speedy attack setups

How to Get the Burglar’s Shank: Drops from breaking boxes and barrels in the Mines from floor 81+. Can also be obtained in the Skull Caverns and as an alternative chest reward if the remixed mine rewards were selected at game creation.  

How to Get the Wicked Kris: Obtained in the Skull Caverns by breaking boxes and barrels, or from monster drops on level 40+. It is dropped by the Haunted Skulls in the Quarry Mine. If remixed rewards were selected, it will be in the level 90 reward chest.

Burglar’s Shank details

Wicked Kris’ details



2. Master Slingshot (Best for Range)

Not everyone wants to get up close and personal.

The Slingshot and Master Slingshot are the only truly ranged weapons in the game, with the Master Slingshot having double the damage output of the Slingshot. These weapons require the use of ammo, and the items used for ammo will determine the damage. This is a weapon that really shines if you prepare. Iron ore is probably your best option at this point - whilst gold ore is obtainable, you probably have other uses for it. Explosive ammo, which you can craft with an iron bar and two pieces of coal, can also be used to do area damage comparable to iron ore’s single-target damage. It’s expensive early on, but it’s a good way to use ore that is hogging up inventory space when you’re trying to pick up a prismatic shard!

What makes the Master Slingshot Great:

  • Ranged attacks
  • Damage output is dependent on ammo used, so this weapon continues to be relevant throughout the game

How to Get the Master Slingshot: Obtained from the chest reward on floor 70 of the Mines.

Master Slingshot details


1. Lava Katana (Best All-rounder)

Feel the burn.

Before you get to the desert, you won’t find a better weapon than the Lava Katana. It has the highest damage stat of the weapons available to you without completing any parts of the Community Centre! It adds to defense, and can block because it’s a sword! it has decent knockback and high critical damage! The only downside to it is that you do have to pay for it and get all the way through the Mines to have a chance of doing so - but it is well worth the investment, and will be a great help at starting to get through later sections of the game before you access more powerful weapons.

What makes the Lava Katana Great:

  • High damage output
  • Defense boost and sword blocking ability
  • High criticals
  • Good knockback due to high Weight

How to Get the Lava Katana: Can be purchased at the Adventurers’ Guild for 25000g after reaching floor 120 of the Mines. 

Lava Katana details

When not seeking nutrition, resting, or gaming, Erica shows a preference for roleplaying with their friends, trying to convince them to read Umineko, and knitting.
Gamer Since: 1995
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker
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