You may already have noticed when your new farmville neighbors became your friends that they can publish things they find on their farm for you to collect and the other way round. It is always a good idea to keep your neighbors happy by at least trying to publish everything you find, such as mystery eggs, collectibles, lost animals and ribbon and mastery notifications. Your neighbors will be able to collect bonuses from that, just as you can collect from them. At the start of my farmville career, I went round to every neighbor’s profile several times a day to try to collect bonuses. This will also show you a bit more about your new friends, so if you like this method of collecting bonuses just do it like that. It isn’t very practical though and as soon as you have your 50 or more neighbors it will probably take you a long time collecting bonuses that way. A much easier way is going to your facebook home page and switching the messages by friends to “most recent”. This will show you everything your friends have published on their profiles chronologically and you can go back to the point when you went offline the last time and try to take the things you like.
This is still going to take some time, but it is a lot faster than visiting every profile individually. If you can’t see any farmville posts now, there is probably a bug at work that facebook has created two months ago and you can get around it by going to your game feed, where the game requests are. Just click on game requests and scroll down. You will see everything your neighbors published in your games and you can choose particular games to filter it. There is one more method to collect from the feed, and this is the way I use and that I can only recommend. You can install a so-called snag-bar on your firefox or internet explorer. Some of you might be shocked now, because they might have heard rumors that this is a cheat. Relax, it isn’t. It’s just a much more comfortable way to collect bonuses off the feed without having to stare at it all day. You can install the snag bar if you have 5 or more friends who like gamers unite. If you followed my advice on how to find neighbors and went to their forum to find friends, you already have. All you have to do now to get the snag bar is go to gamers unite http://gamersunite.coolchaser.com/toolbar/get and choose to install the snag bar. It is neither a cheat nor a spy tool, I have used it for 7 months now and cannot report any problems with it. If you have heard rumors that this is a cheat and will get you banned, by farmville or by facebook, this is just malicious rumor. Neither Zynga nor facebook have announced that they are going to do anything about snagbar users. The rumors are spread by a small but very vocal minority who by and large rely on spreading rumors to start a witchhunt on snagbar users. If you are in a neighborhood already where rumors like this are spread, I can only recommend you use your own judgment. All the snagbar does is take things off the feed once a minute. This is more than 20 times slower than a user might be by hand! You can try to reload the home page of facebook as often as you can to look for new posts and count the times you can do it in a minute. This was actually one reason why I didn’t get the snagbar earlier. It is a lot slower than a player reloading the feed manually. That means that you won’t be able to get absolutely everything your neighbors publish. But it will allow you to do other things that are a lot more fun like visiting farms and helping your neighbors while the snagbar mechanically collects every new item off the feed once a minute, if it is still there. You can still be a considerate neighbor and friend and thank people properly for special calves and foals by posting your comments.
The only valid reason not to use the snag bar, in my opinion, is if you consider hunting the feed the most fun thing about farmville. If it gives you a rush to stare at the screen and reload the home page time and again for a new post and you feel elated at getting a foal, mystery egg or calf that way, then do it like this. All I ask is that you don’t judge others for the way they prefer to play the game or at least let them go in a friendly manner. A former neighbor who unfriended me just because I had become a member of gamers unite, not because I was using the snagbar, which at first I wasn’t, still sent me mystery gifts for months.
Back to what you should collect: At the start of the game, almost everything will make sense to collect. The wandering stallion and pig slop don’t make sense until you have buildings to keep them in. You can’t use all the other items right away, but since your gift-box has a limit of 500 it is still worth collecting things for later. Free money is always great, especially at the start when you’re still trying to make ends meet to fill your farm with plots. And adopting animals is one achievement that will give you extra XP and coins in addition to some nice animals on your farm. Placing perfect bunches of flowers is one achievement too, so this is why I haven’t told you to leave those on the feed. You will get 425 XP in total for placing 50 perfect bunches of flowers on your farm. You can place them along the edge and around your farmer to trap it. But even if you had to place them instead of 4 plots, you would probably still get more experience from the achievement than from growing crops alone for the 14 days it takes until they wilt. Then you can remove them by choosing “delete” when you click on them. Before, while they are still nice, you don’t get the delete option but you can still delete them by using the recycle tool. Just go with what you prefer here. Having the super-productive farm isn’t always the way that is most enjoyable for everyone. I recommend to treat yourself to a few things that you like, even if they don’t make economic sense. Otherwise you might discover at level 30 that your sleek, very efficient farm is too much work and not enough fun and leave farmville behind like a lot of people do. If you should be considering that, I recommend to change your farm so you like it better, I’ve had friends who removed all their plots and just placed decorations, buildings, animals and trees for some time.
You might wonder what animals you should keep and which ones you should rather sell. The next section of the guide is going to deal with that.
If you have collected the 10 collectibles that you can put into each collection, you can stop taking those off the feed and give other people a chance, too. You can store things in your gift-box, but it isn’t nice to take rare collectibles off the feed and sell them for 5 coins. If you find decorations or buildings in mystery eggs you can either display them on your farm, save them for later in your gift-box or sell them right away. Putting many buildings and decorations on your farm will limit the space for your plots, so it is better to wait a little until the farm has expanded to a mighty plantation to use some of the larger decorations and buildings. I am going to talk about that again in the parts about buildings and decorations.
One last word on what to avoid on the feed: you might see all sorts of posts by neighbors that sound like they are too good to be true, like getting puppies that cost 65 farmcash for free or a free money tree that you can harvest for 100,000 coins. The rule here is: if it sounds too good to be true, it’s usually fake. There are quite a number of sites on facebook that are trying to make money off unsuspecting players by selling their profile information and spaming them with adds. If a site tells you that you must like it and tell all your friends about it to get a goodie for free it is fake and should be reported to facebook as spam or worse, depending on the content. (see http://farmvillefanatic.com/scam-guide and http://farmvillefanatic.com/like-scamville-lately-avoid-scams-guide) If you click on something by mistake, always try to remove it as soon as possible because there might even be trojan horses and other spyware connected to it that infect your computer and if you like sites such as the “free black stallion” you might not be accepted as a neighbor by people because they think your account is spreading spam.
5 Animals – which to buy and collect off the feed
© Conny Streit, 2011