Saturday, March 6, 2010

Shipping Value Tutorial and Values of Processed Dairy Products

In Sunshine Islands, the same Bottle of Milk when processed into Butter, Cheese or Yogurt will have different shipping values. When writing Guides for Sunshine Islands as well as Island of Happiness, it is rather difficult to give precise shipping values for items as they depend on Rank, Quality, Size and Freshness. Although the correct Base values appear in my General Guide, for some reason, I made an error in the value of Cheese in my Items and Shipping List Guide.

An average bottle of Milk, when processed, will be most valuable when made into Cheese and least valuable when made into Yogurt. Here are the values when I used Milk that was Rank A, Quality 10, Size 5, Freshness 10. Incidentally, this is the Milk one receives from a Cow at 10 Hearts who has NOT been entered in the Cow Festival and thus never won a Prize.

The Milk if shipped would have a value of 250G.

Yogurt: 375G

Butter: 500G

Cheese: 750G

The prices in my Guide refer to the Base Values and should conform to my General Guide, which quotes them as:

Yogurt: 150G

Butter: 200G

Cheese: 300G

Actually, I believe this reflects the usual hierarchy of values in Harvest Moon. Cheese tends to be the most valuable processed dairy product, while Yogurt is the least valuable.

You must obtain ALL the Makers in Sunshine Islands and use each 100 times in order to obtain the Sun Stones that each can yield, but if you wish to make the greatest profit as early as you can, you should buy the Cheese Maker first. Another reason to buy the Cheese Maker before you buy the other two is because there are Recipes for Butter and Yogurt, allowing them to be made in your Kitchen. There are no Recipes that allow you to make Cheese.

In Island of Happiness, you had to ship 100 of each processed product but by some quirk in the programming, the game recognised products made in your Kitchen. This was corrected obviously in Sunshine Islands by causing the Sun Stones emerge directly FROM the Makers. Unlike Island of Happiness, therefore, it is not by shipping 100 items but by using the makers themselves 100 times each that the Sun Stones will be 'earned'.

Incidentally, cooking the Milk to make Hot Milk would be less profitable than processing the Milk.

Hot Milk: 275G

You still would make a profit of 25G by cooking the Milk rather than shipping it 'raw', but very little compared to the processed dairy products.

Actually, what is rather sad is that, if you take 2 Milk, make one into Yogurt and then add the other to the Yogurt to make Lassi, you still would make less of a profit than by using the Cheese Maker to make 1 Milk into Cheese.

Lassi: 650G

Another example that compares values of two different Cooked Dishes that use the same ingredient is between Strawberry Jam and Strawberry Milk.

Having shipped 100 Strawberries to complete the total needed to unlock a new Crop, I had 40 B Rank Strawberries I wanted to ship. If I had shipped them as raw Crops, each would have had a value of 66G.

If I cooked them into Strawberry Jam (a single ingredient Recipe), the shipping value of each would be: 124G

If I added Milk to the Strawberry to make Strawberry Milk, the shipping value would be: 349G.

On the surface, the Strawberry Milk may look more profitable, but this is not the case. The Milk I would have to use would ship for 250G which means that the added value 'brought' by the Strawberry would be 99G. On the basis of financial consideration alone, it would be better to make Strawberry Jam and ship that, while making Cheese with the Milk... Remember, however, that shipping values are only part of the equation. Strawberry Jam is not particularly high in energy.

Here are the Energy Values for each:

Strawberry Jam: Energy Value: +8SR +8FL
Strawberry Milk: Energy Value: +36 SR +22 FL
Cheese: Energy Value: Energy Value: 4 SR 2 FL

You gain Skill Points each time you cook, so there are valid reasons for making Dishes in your Kitchen and shipping them but in this case, it depends on how much you are in need of funds. For sheer profit, few single item conversions can be more profitable in financial terms than making Cheese.

One could drive oneself mad with calculations concerning shipping values in either Island of Happiness or Sunshine Islands.

For example, to descend into the truly arcane advanced shipping value considerations, take three different Vegetables that, when combined with the same Milk, could make a Vegetable Smoothie.

Here are the details:

Cucumber: Rank A, Quality 10, Size 5 1/2, Freshness 9: 135G

Turnip: Rank B, Quality 9 1/2, Size 5 1/2, Freshness 9: 132G

Onion: Rank B, Quality 9, Size 5 1/2, Freshness 9 1/2: 175G

Vegetable Smoothie made with the Cucumber: Rank A, Quality 10, Size 7 1/2, Freshness 9 1/2: 495G

Vegetable Smoothie made with the Turnip: Rank B, Quality 9 ½ Size 5, Freshness 9 ½: 446G

Vegetable Smoothie made with the Onion: Rank B, Quality 9 ½ Size 5, Freshness 9 ½: 445G

Vegetable Smoothie made with BOTH the Turnip and the Onion: Rank A, Quality 9 ½, Size 7, Freshness 9 ½: 476G

As you can see, the Vegetable Smoothie made with 2 Vegetables in the form of a B Rank Turnip and Onion had a lower shipping value than the Vegetable Smoothie made with a single Cucumber. It did have a higher Energy Value, however, both in terms of Stamina Recovery and Fullness.

It may be worthwhile to mention Vegetable Juice here as some rather peculiar facts will emerge when you experiment with it in the Kitchen. The shipping value of Vegetable Juice is rather low, making it a poor choice if you are looking for income-raising Dishes. It is an odd Dish in terms of Cooking, as the order in which Optional Ingredients are added affect the result, which can be either Vegetable Juice (improved) or a Failed Dish, depending on the order in which you attempted to add another Vegetable to the mix. For example, if you begin with a Turnip and attempt to add a Carrot, the result will be a Failed Dish. If, however, you begin with a Carrot, you may be able to add a Turnip as the next ingredient in the sequence. All the Vegetables listed as Optional Ingredients CAN be added, but you must be careful as to the sequence you use in any case.

When you add more than one Vegetable to the mixture to create Vegetable Juice, the shipping value may remain far lower than the value of a single Vegetable used to create a specific juice such as Carrot Juice or Tomato Juice. The Energy Value, on the other hand, will be much higher. For example:

Carrot Juice: 560G
Ingredients: Carrot
Obtain with 1st Carrot from Haila at Cafe
Energy Value: +22 SR +6 FL
Optional Ingredients: Carrot Juice

Vegetable Juice: 345G
Ingredients: Bell Pepper/Cabbage/Carrot/Cucumber/Onion/Spinach/Tomato/Turnip
Obtain with 2nd Carrot from Haila at Cafe
Energy Value: +36 SR +16 FL
Optional Ingredients: Bell Pepper, Cabbage, Carrot, Corn, Eggplant, Onion, Pumpkin, Spinach, Tomato, Turnip, Vegetable Juice, All Jams

If you intend to ship the Dish, it is better to use the Carrot to create Carrot Juice. If you intend to use it as a Recovery Item, it is much better to use the Carrot to create Vegetable Juice. Adding another Vegetable, such as Spinach, to the Vegetable Juice, will improve its Energy Value but in terms of Shipping profits, you would be better advised to create Boiled Spinach with the Spinach and Carrot Juice with the Carrot.

Finally, if you make Vegetable Juice as a single-ingredient Recipe, it does not matter which Vegetable you choose in terms of Energy Values. The amount of Stamina and Fullness will remain constant. Neither the identity of the Vegetable nor its Rank will affect Stamina and Fullness values of the resulting Vegetable Juice. Shipping values will change according to the Vegetable you choose but the increase or decrease is not significant enough to make it worth shipping the result. It is when you add a second Vegetable that the boost in the amount of Stamina and Fullness will depend on the actual Vegetable chosen

So there you have it. Make of the data what you will... Note that the game gives you the ability to gauge the potential value of any Cooked Dish when, after the ingredients are chosen, you see a display on the top screen that shows precise details of the finished product with Rank, Quality, Size and Freshness and a prompt to the effect that: 'It will turn out like this. Make it like this?' You only have this option if you choose 'Make some Alterations' when you prepare the Dish. If you use one of the quicker menu options, you will not see the result in terms of Rank, Quality, Size and Freshness until the Dish actually has been completed. What is displayed on the top screen instead is the BEST version of the Dish that you ever made in terms of Rank, Quality, Size and Freshness.

The most valuable Ranch Products are obtained from Sheep but even ordinary Sheep cannot be sheared daily. One has to weigh the intrinsic value of an Animal who yields product daily (Your Cow) with one who yields product less frequently (Jersey Cow, Sheep and Suffolk Sheep). The values of the products that Sheep of any variety can offer are rather impressive:

S Rank Yarn: 3750G

S Rank Superb Yarn: 9375G

Even inferior Superb Yarn yields a nice price. For example, one B Rank Superb Yarn, Quality 5 1/2, Size 5, Freshness 10 had a value of 6437G.

You cannot obtain S Rank Ranch Products in the ordinary course of Events from any Animal who has not won 1st prize in an Animal Contest, but with Livestock, the Touchsceen Mini-Game, when the option appears, will allow you to obtain it on that day. Note that, although the Ranch Products that a 'rare' breed of Chicken, Cow or Sheep yields is more valuable than those given by ordinary Animals, you can win the Animal Contests with ordinary Animals as easily. It is all a matter of heart levels, not of the intrinsic value of the Products. Nonetheless, when given the opportunity, it certainly is worth investing in animals who can give you Products that ship for almost 10,000G! The Jersey Cow is unlocked by shipping 1 S Milk and the Suffolk Sheep by shipping 1 S Wool. To unlock the Silkie Hen, ship 1 S Rank Egg.

Finally, I do not have time to test every item comprehensively in this fashion, but any player can do it himself/herself using the following tactic:

Save your game at 4.30 p.m. Now stand about until 5.00 p.m. when all your items have been shipped and note your income total. Now reload to 4.30 p.m. or thereabouts. I suggest 4.30 p.m. only to give your character sufficient time if he/she needs to run to the Maker Shed to process an ingredient for a Recipe. Now ship one item... whether it is a raw 'ingredient' or an item that you cook in your Kitchen. DO NOT SAVE YOUR GAME but simply stand about until 5.00 p.m. when the total representing the original with the addition of the one item you added will be displayed in your Assets. Subtract the total that includes the item from the original total and you have the shipping value of the item. Hardly elegant or complex but it will give you valid totals for individual items. Remember, however, that the value will be completely accurate only for THAT specific item. Any variation in Rank, Quality, Size or Freshness or variations in the ingredients used to create the item may result in a different shipping value... which is why my Guides for Island of Happiness and Sunshine Islands only give approximate or average values.

Only an insane person would perform these calculations endlessly. All the time spent in discovering the precise value for a single item could be used more effectively to plant, water and harvest MORE Crops and participate in LIFE on Sunny Island or the islands of Sunshine Islands.

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