Use the boost whenever possible, especially at the beginning of the level. Use it to quickly position yourself behind the herds for quick movement right at the start of the level. Also, remember to let go of the button when you run out of juice. Letting it recharge for a second and using it again is ultimately better than just using it at half speed.
Be very deliberate with your movements. Flock requires careful action in many levels. If you start to rush things, your flock is probably going to split apart and ruin your score. Staying deliberate with your movements helps tremendously. Use short nudges and slow pushes to get them moving in the right direction. Anything else will just scare them off of a cliff.
Stop the clock as quickly as you can in Flock. The clock locks in at whatever time you finish your quota. For any level, just focus on matching your quota. You can always go back and round up the leftover animals once the pressure is off.
Always take advantage of the crop circles if they are in a level. Ignore them at first. Just go about your business as usual. Once the clock has run down a bit, go back and go the challenge to give the clock a full refill.
Know Your Animals
The most important part of Flock! is understanding your animals and the things you can do to get them into your UFO. Read these tips to see the best ways to handle your herd.
Sheep are your bread and butter. They are easy to move. They form flocks well. They try to naturally avoid ledges. Sheep in general are fairly easy to control. The only trick is shrinking them. Getting them wet will cause them to shrink. These little sheep are more erratic in movement, but they can squeeze under fences. Nothing too special about sheep though.
Cows are an interesting bunch. Their main ability is to charge when pushed. Keeping them pressured will cause them to rush forward and knock over all the fences in their paths. They will also naturally knock down any fence that gets in their way. This is useful, and in fact required, for several puzzles. The only annoyance is that they are very sluggish. The cows in Flock seem to move and turn fairly slowly, making deliberate control very trick. If you ever accidentally pass them up, you will have a heck of a time repositioning yourself.
Pigs are somewhat annoying. They are the pinballs of the game. The biggest problem is that they start to roll really quickly when pushed for any amount of time. If they hit a level bumper, then they will ricochet off in another direction. It takes very careful control to get them where you want. They have a natural tendency to roll toward the piles of manure in the game field. This is useful in a few puzzles. They will stop to roll around in it though, which can hurt your time.
Chickens are another interesting group. They are very quick and form really tight flocks usually. Most of the puzzles with chickens are very simple. You usually just need to take advantage of their ability to glide. If you push a chicken off of a cliff, they will fly forward for awhile. This is quite useful in a number of puzzles, as it allows you to take shortcuts and get a little creative with pathfinding. It also lets them hop over pits (usually).
All of the species have a baby that sometimes comes into play. The baby is usually just a small and quick version of the larger one. They scare a bit easier, but tend to flock very well around an adult figure. The general danger is that it is quite easier to accidentally scramble the flock.
All of the species also have a female. This figure is usually pink with bows. Males will form a line behind the female and follow her right up to the abduction beam. The only problem is that any break in the line will cause all of the others to stop following. This means that you’ll need to limit your line to roughly 5 animals. The female can also breed with a male on certain love squares in the game. This produces a flock of babies and is often a key part of the puzzle.
Know Your Obstacles
Fences will be one of your biggest challenges. There’s a few ways to get around them. If there is a geyser nearby, you can just shrink your sheep and squeeze under quickly. If cows are around, then they can knock them over. You can also use the abduction beam to move a loose gate and knock a standard fence down. You can then throw it into the sea to clear a path.
The sea requires a bit of careful action. Your animals will try to stay out of the water, but they can easily be startled into it. If they get near the edge, then you have to swing around to the seaside to push them back to the middle ground.
Fields are recipes for disaster. Sheep and chickens get lost inside fields. The only solution is to use an object, a cow, a pig, or the depressor beam to clear a path for them. If they get lost in the field, then you will probably have to restart the level. It just takes too much time for you to get them back out of the field.
The beastie is a rather annoying obstacle. He’s in play for any nighttime level. The trick is speed and observation. The first step is to just take an overview of the level to find all the groups of animals. You then need to get the obscure groups to the relative safety of the others. If they are close together, then you can use the light of the ship to scare the beastie. You can also just try and fail a few times. He usually attacks the same group each time, so you can just drive him off the first time and take the next 10 second break to gather your flock.
Pits are particularly bad. You obviously need to avoid them, but that’s easier said than done. Chickens can usually fly over them, but you are taking a risk when you do it. Only do it if you are running out of time.
Piles of poo are pretty annoying too. Chickens and sheep refuse to move through them. The only solution is to have cows trample the piles or have pigs roll around in it. This takes time, so remember to get it started early. There are a few levels where the levels don’t block it perfectly, so you might be able to push them around the pile.
The swing gate is probably one of the worst obstacles. You need to hit it with a boulder or fence piece, and then quickly move your flock through. This is incredibly annoying and often takes sheer luck rather than skill.
Give It Some Time
There are several levels that are just going to take a few tries. The nighttime levels in particular will take a few tries as you memorize the favorite attack paths of the beastie. Some things also just take luck. If you accidentally split a flock, then you are probably going to have to try again.
Another thing to keep in mind is that some of the earlier levels are much easier if you wait until you get more tools. The abduction beam makes it much easier to remove fences.