As soon as you reach level 20 in farmville, co-op farming will become available to you and you can use the new co-op button over your gift-box to take a look at the co-ops running in your neighborhood at the moment and all the available co-ops that you can start. In order to get a special object as a reward in addition to the XP and coins you can see when you look at the basic co-ops, the team needs to finish harvesting all the crops required in time for gold. If the co-op runs out of time for gold, more time can be bought with farmcash but this is a waste of money, in my opinion. You can always do the co-op again and with some planning ahead you should be able to do it in time for gold. There are overviews of co-op rewards when you check your farmville planner or you can use the farmville wiki. The first co-ops that you probably want to join to get the gold rewards are the “bakery delivery” that will get you a truck seeder that seeds 3*3 plots and the “Very berry field trip” which will get you a school bus plow that plows 3*3 plots and both can be upgraded in the garage. The “Peanut butter and jelly” co-op will give you the plane that lets you instant-grow your crops. You can use that for free once so it is definitely worth getting and using on less profitable 4-day-crops that you just planted on the largest possible field if you want all the masteries or on the most profitable crops or the ones that get you most XP, whisky peat or electric lilies for example.
You can approach co-ops by working your way up:
Step 1. help your friends: at first it is probably a good idea not to start your own co-op right away but join one that a friend has started. You can already see how much still needs to be seeded when you join, although you can’t see what exactly you still need to plant if the co-op needs different kinds of crops. If you join one that you can’t do, the polite thing to do is leave it, since friends usually don’t like people to stay in the co-op if they can’t contribute. Some will even delete you as friend and neighbor if you do, so don’t join co-ops if you can’t help. If things go wrong, people might blame you since a co-op can only take up to 10 people. Don’t take away the space of someone who can help on the job. If you have found a co-op that you can help and if the timing suits you, you can let the starter know what you can plant once you join. It is important that you try to help the co-op get gold for it to count as one of the gold jobs that you helped on for the “Employee of the month” achievement. To get all the ribbons and 425 XP and 18,500 coins you have to help on 100 co-ops that finish with gold.
Step 2. Plan ahead: it is possible to have crops count for a co-op if you harvest them while the co-op is running and if you have planted the same amount of crops while you were on the co-op. This makes it possible to plant crops ahead of time, getting you much better chances to finish harvesting the crops for the co-op in time for gold. For this option it is important to know how much was planted ahead for the starter, since the crops in the co-op window will look like less was planted than there actually is. One example: You join a “town greening” co-op and you have a field of 460 morning glories ready to harvest. Once you have joined, you harvest 96 plots (6*16) of morning glories that won’t count for the co-op. Now you plow and plant 96 plots of morning glories. These will count as seeded in the co-op window. Now you can harvest another 96 plots of morning glories, these will count as harvested for the co-op. If you continue with this, you have 364 plots harvested and 460 plots seeded when you’re done. 12 hours later you can harvest the next 96 plots that already count for the co-op and after that plow and seed them again for your other plots to count in too. That way you can grow 824 morning glories for the co-op in a little over 12 hours, which will usually let the co-op finish in time for gold and with you as MVP (if the other members don’t make any big mistakes). Receiving MVP on 40 co-ops will get you the “best of the rest” achievement that will give you another 425 XP and 18,500 coins altogether. If you have your combine already, planting ahead for co-ops becomes even easier. Since it harvests, plows and plants in one go, all you have to do is find a co-op that needs the crops you have, grapes for example, and start harvesting grapes while planting new ones. Every plot of grapes you harvest after the first batch will count for the co-op without switching between vehicles and keeping count how many plots you just planted, harvested or seeded.
Step 3. Ask your friends in advance: if you want to start your first own co-op it might be a good idea to ask 2 or 3 friends who you’ve already helped on their co-ops whether they can join you for this or that co-op tomorrow or post on your profile that you would like to start that co-op and ask who could join you when. This will help you find people who are able and willing to join your co-op and co-ordinate things in advance. Success is almost guaranteed that way. And it is much better to ask friends and maybe join another one of their co-ops before you start your own than be frustrated once you have started the co-op and nobody joins you because the timing isn’t right for others.
It is also worth thinking about which co-ops offer the best rewards and which ones are the easiest to do in order to be successful at co-ops. If you want to plant ahead, co-ops that ask for only one type of crop are best, such as Bakery delivery, Rice paper, Town greening, Tossing tomatoes, Pumpkin-pie O’plenty, Frantic for flowers, Fashion bug, and A pack of pickled pattypan.
1-Day crops are usually easier to plant for people who work during the day, so you might find more neighbors willing to help on the Fashion bug job than on Town greening. The coin and XP rewards for the Fashion bug job are also more tempting, so you can probably motivate more neighbors for it for that reason, too. The jobs with even better bonuses make you grow less profitable crops.
If you manage to complete 20 of your own co-ops in time for gold you get the “Fabulous foreman” achievement that gives you 425 XP and 18,500 coins once again.
Co-op farming will give you additional rewards for growing certain crops and you can also get three achievements by doing co-ops. So it is definitely worth trying. If you have been frustrated by co-ops before because you didn’t find enough people to help you, you can try the three steps again, hopefully you’ll find more helpers that way.
There are also crafting co-ops for recipes, which ones you can start will depend on the kind and level of your crafting building. The starter of these always gets the recipe ingredients as an automatic reward, whereas contributors may decide which recipe they want. If the co-op finishes in time for gold, there are 3 recipes to choose from, 2 for silver and one for bronze. You can also choose the same recipe every time and will get bushels accordingly if you click on the recipe. Don’t forget to choose your reward, otherwise you will just end up with the same ingredients as the starter that you might not be able to use if you have joined the co-op for a different craft than your own or for a higher level recipe that you can’t make in your building yet. This means that you can also join spa co-ops for example and contribute to them, even if you have a bakery or winery yourself. This allows you to master crops that you don’t need for your own crafting while earning bushels, XP and coin rewards that you can use at the same time.
There are also a few basic co-ops on the English countryside, 2 of them have to be done in order to complete a quest and it seems likely that the same is true for the other co-op, once the appropriate quest has been released. Since the flowers that you need to grow for the compulsory co-ops aren’t really worth planting because their profit is below 3 coins per hour I recommend you plan ahead especially for these and try to get friends to help you since doing the co-op over means losing even more profit. But it is enough to finish the jobs at all. The gold rewards are not spectacular, so it’s not necessary to repeat the co-ops once you have mastered the flowers and passed the quest in my opinion.
7 Crop, crafting and tree mastery and orchards – signs and even more XP
© Conny Streit, 2011