Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Good Neighbours in the English Countryside

There are some peculiarities in Farmville now with the advent of the English Countryside option. The fact that only the farm on which your Character physically is present is subject to the power of Father Time is one of those peculiarities. The farm where you are not present is 'paused' in every respect but, in addition to this, any Bushels sold at the Market Stalls there no longer will be available to your Friends and Neighbours until you return. Sad to say, time appears to run still for the Market Stalls and upon your return, you may find all of your Stalls empty if the time allotted to each Crop displayed has run out.

Farmers who need Bushels from your Market Stalls in one location therefore may follow your footsteps rather like a Royal entourage... There is an icon now at the bottom of the page in the Neighbours' bar to show where each Character currently is located. The icon of the Union Jack indicates England while the icon of a simple Monopoly-style house indicates the 'Home Farm'. I for one am pleased that Zynga did not become overly political by giving the Home Farm a flag owned by any nation on this earth... after all, 'Home' to each player may be different. 'Good show, Zynga!' as the nameless Duke would declare in his undoubtedly plummy voice. (When he is called 'Duke' in the game, it makes me feel that he is a dog rather than a member of the peerage... after all, no real Duke would be addressed as 'Duke'. He should have a Christian name attached to his Character like all the other residents of the Village. Still, that is a minor point. I think Zynga has done remarkably well in creating the English Countryside landscape.)

To address the actual point of this post, however, ways in which one can be a 'Good Neighbour' now include:

1. Visit both the English Countryside and the Home Farm each time you log into Farmville. Players obviously will spend more time on the Farm where time-ruled actions need to be conmpleted, such as growing Crops or bringing Orchards, Chicken Coops and Crafting Items to 'readiness', but for the benefit of ALL players, it would be a good idea to make certain that some Bushels are available for more than a moment or two at EACH of the Farms.

2. There are actions that only can be undertaken in the English Countryside and these take only a few seconds of a player's time but can benefit Neighbours enormously.

The first of these is a Request for Love Potions to breed Sheep. Although a Player can breed Sheep without the benefit of any Potions, chances of successful breeding are slim and with 5 Potions, any Player can breed two Sheep instantly. One can post a Request for Love Potions every 4 Hours, which would give every Player sufficient Potions to breed a new Lamb once each day at least.

Another way in which to help your Neighbours is by not using the option to feed 10 Bottles to any newborn Lamb instantly. The reason for this is that an announcement will be published at one point in the middle of the feeding process to tell Friends and Neighbours that a new Lamb is growing fast and offering to share Bottles in celebration. If you feed 10 Bottles instantly to your Lamb by choosing the 'Feed Bottles' option after clicking directly on the Lamb, only one notice will be published to the effect that an Adult Ram or Ewe has been bred with an offer to share bottles in celebration. I believe that, should a player hand-feed even one bottle to the Lamb initially and then only feed the Lamb 9 instantly, the notice that the Lamb is growing fast MAY appear before the final announcement that the Lamb has become an adult. This needs to be confirmed, however.

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