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Bright Hub's Review of Farmville
You may want to check out Bright Hub's review and beginner's guide to Farmville as well.
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You have reached level 12, and the vehicles are unlocked. It seems like it could save you a lot of time- and frustration from when your avatar stands in front of the plot you are trying to work on by hand. If you are like me, there have been numerous times when trying to go into that square didn’t plow it; it opened the avatar popup to let you redesign your farmer.
You can develop strategies for going forward through squares in a distinct order, so you stay ahead of the avatar and can finish what you are trying to do. You may have resorted to trapping your avatar while you work, so they can’t get in your way. That works nicely – but every time you go visit a neighbor and help them out, your farmer is wandering around free when you return home.
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So. To tractor or not to tractor. You chat with friends, and look on the Zygna forum. That tractor will plow four plots at once, and your avatar doesn’t jump in front of it. But that tractor costs money- $5,000 farm coins. You get XP for the purchase; 50 XP for the tractor or the pink tractor. You do have the option, after you buy it, to sell it - for a measly total of $250 coins.
You also need fuel to run the tractor. It comes with a full tank, enough to cover 150 plots or squares. Fuel regenerates for free, but it takes a bit over 6 hours to refill the tank completely. You can also buy Farm Cash and get fuel refills, but they are not cheap- and once the purchased tank is empty, it is gone. You don’t have two you can refill now. Fuel also is used by each piece of machinery you own. Vehicles do not each have their own fuel tank, so if you plow 100 squares and then go to use your seeder, it will only have 50 squares it can seed with fuel from one tank.
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Fuel refills Update *2/9/2010*
Since Christmas 2009, the fuel has become less of a problem. You still share the fuel between however many vehicles you own, but now it is possible to get extra fuel in ways that don’t involve paying real money for Farm Cash. Some of the presents you could get gifted contained fuel tanks. After Christmas, mystery eggs occasionally had fuel tanks inside. And, most usefully, you had the option to give a gift of 1/5 of a fuel tank to a neighbor- and they could gift you. At one point I had 43 fuel tanks. It was a nice secure feeling.
However, if you empty a fuel tank completely, it does disappear. If there is a little left in it, it will be the tank that refills for free. As long as you and your neighbors can send each other 1/5 tanks, you can keep a single tank going for a long time. Leave your gift refills in your gift box until your fuel indicator is almost empty. Then use a 1/5 tank. If you need to keep using your vehicles, keep adding a partial refill until you finish, so your total fuel tanks don’t go down. While you are waiting for the seeds to be ready to harvest, your fuel tank has a chance to refill for free, and you still have a lot of extra tanks left. If you feel like you are getting low, remember every time you level up or get a ribbon, you can publish the information with a personal message. Let your neighbors know you’d appreciate gifts of fuel.
* Note 2/4/2010 * 1/5 fuel tanks are not currently on the gift list. There is a good chance they will be back, and in the meantime, you may get fuel in a mystery box gift or in a special mystery egg. To maximize your chances for this, give gifts and help your neighbors, so they will so the same for you.
* Note 2/9/2010 * 1/5 fuel tanks are back - at least until Valentine's Day. If you send someone a Valentine, you can select the gift with a reward you want. One of the reward's is a 1/5 tank refill. You can send up to 10 Valentines a day. Send them until the 14th! With this action by Zygna, it looks like 1/5 fuel tanks may continue to be gifts or rewards intermittently throughout the year, for holidays. Keep an eye out for the chance to get fuel tanks, or get gifted them.
We will try to keep this article updated about the availability of extra fuel as we find out. If you know of a offering of fuel by Zygna which we haven't listed in this article yet, write a comment, and we'll put it in the article with a thank you.
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So you have a tractor. Why get any other FarmVille vehicles?
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If you have expanded your farm beyond the original 12 x 12 squares and you keep a lot of that ready for seeding, a tractor is very useful. After you purchase it, you access it by clicking on the hand plow icon. It expands, and you have the choice of the hand tool or the tractor. I’m glad I made the decision to get one. It made plowing much faster, and a lot less frustrating. You also begin achieving your goal for a FarmVille ribbon- the Lord of the Plow, with your first yellow ribbon earned after you plow 200 squares.
FarmVille is still in beta testing, even though it has gained over 70,000,000 fans! One problem with this is how slowly FarmVille loads, and how quickly actions take place. Consider going to FamVille.com to play the game, as things will move faster. It is completely integrated with your game on Facebook, so you lose nothing by the option, and can gain speed. There is also additional FarmVille information on the site, as FarmVille.com is an official Zygna site.
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The next piece of machinery I decided to get was the harvester. The harvester is a major purchase- $30,000 farm coins. You get 300 XP when you buy a harvester, and if you sell it, you get just $1,500 back. I waited until my farm was 16 x 16 before I decided to buy it. One of the factors in my decision was the new availability of free fuel.
There are some advantages to buying a harvester beyond the obvious speed and lack of fuss with your farmer. When I added plots of plowed land to my farm, I didn’t line up all of them with the originals. When I filled in, there were some odd skinny areas of greenery left- and I didn’t want to delete vast plots of land from my farm, so I left it like that. Then I planted trees in those skinny strips, because they fit. The problem was that a tree can hide the square just behind it. A row of trees can make you completely unaware of whether a square is plowed, seed, harvested, or ready to plow again- and I lost a number of crops behind those trees to withering. While using machinery, if you hover over a square in front of a tree, because the machinery can handle four squares, it finds things to plow, plant and harvest in those mystery squares behind the trees. Fewer withered crops.
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It took me a while to decide to buy a seeder. It costs another $30,000 coins, gives you 300 more XP and can be sold for $1,500. But it drains the fuel tank, and, most problematically, plants in blocks of four.
One of the pleasures of FarmVille for me is to make a decorative farm. I plant in patterns, sometimes obvious ones that incorporate rice, which fills a square with a pretty blue pool, and sometimes patterns that show when the crops are ready to harvest. I usually make lines that are a single plot wide, and I couldn’t do that easily with a seeder. I have made checker boards, spirals, rings, stripes, and once, during the Christmas season, a very blocky shape I insist was a star.
However, one of the ribbons you can get in FarmVille is an achievement based on how many squares you plant with your harvester. I do want to earn all the ribbon there are in FarmVille, so I bought the seeder after a really lucky day with the daily lottery. It turned out that there were a lot of pots of land that I was not farming because I didn’t see them. That was handy.
I also discovered that a certain amount of patterning was possible while using the seeder. If you hover over the edge of your plowed area, and light up only one row of squares, you can go in a straight line, planting two at a time in a straight line. Go with your seeder to the market and pick a different seed. Rice and cranberries fill a plot with a blue pool. Grapes and raspberries put up a sort of scaffolding or trellis for the plants to twine on as they grow. Most other plants just dot a square with seeds, although some are bigger and yellowish and others tiny and black. When you have bought seeds for your new crop, go back to your original line. Hover over it so that another single row is all that is lit up to plant.
You can make a striped pattern easily. You can also make more complicated patterns by combining hand and machine seeding. So I now have my first yellow ribbon for Seeding- Need for Seed- for seeding 200 squares.
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Special edition FarmVille vehicles
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FarmVille Hot Rod tractor *
Recently a fourth vehicle was made available, the Hot Rod tractor, which can plow nine squares at once. Sounds great! However, the cost of getting the Hot Rod is much higher than other machinery. If you play another Zygna game, Mafia Wars, and reach level 10, you can purchase a Hot Rod tractor for $45,000 farm coins. If you don’t play Mafia Wars, it can only be bought with 55 Farm Cash- an outlay in real money, unless you have saved all of the Farm Cash you get when you level up. Although FarmVille starts you out with a little Farm Cash, you would still need to go up many many levels to have enough Farm Cash for the Hot Rod without spending money. I do play Mafia Wars, intermittently, and have reached level 10, so I was able to buy a Hot Rod tractor for $45,000. Plowing nine squares at once is wonderful when you have a large farm. A Hot Rod tractor also gives you more XP when you buy it, or if you sell it. If you buy it with farm coins, you get 450 XP and can sell it for $2,250. If you purchase the Hot Rod with Farm Cash, you get 2000 XP, and you can sell your tractor for 10,000 farm coins.
You might consider playing Mafia Wars soon if you want one and don’t want to purchase Farm Cash. You actually do not have to fight others actively unless you want to, because you get more experience through doing jobs. If you are squeamish you might not want to pay too much attention to the names of the jobs. I offer one caution if you are playing Mafia wars solely to get to the point where you can purchase a Hot Rod tractor. Put your money into the bank frequently. As long as you are actively on Facebook, people will see your name in a list of people they can fight, and if they win, they take a portion of your cash. You need cash to purchase weapons, armor and vehicles to do jobs in Mafia wars, and owning those items causes a small amount of maintenance money to be taken from you each day. Don’t let unscrupulous thugs who want to pick a fight with a Mafia group of two take your hard earned money.
* Note- 2/2/2010 * The Hot Rod Tractor is currently shown as being available for only a limited time. I suggest you get it in the next week, or you will have to wait and see if FarmVille will offer it again.
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More on FarmVille
is a guide to all the ribbons currently available in the FarmVille game and the achievements necessary to get each color, or level, of each ribbon.
More on FarmVille Ribbons This guide does not cover all ribbons, but it does give some detailed hints on getting some of them.
The FarmViller is a new Wiki established by fans with articles about different aspects of FarmVille.