More dragons please

Please don’t fish

I’ve noticed that a lot of players have begun placing orders in buildings where I posted gone fishing signs. The point of those signs is that I am trying to get numbers for you guys on rent return. Every time you place an order is time that I can’t get numbers to other players.

This week it took me a week to finally complete the numbers of the labyrinth, even though I had eight available in the main kingdom. I’ve even started putting “gone fishing” signs on every side of the test items, and when that didn’t work I started covering them in trees.

Four different times this week I was within two or three hours of getting those numbers on the labyrinth only to have someone place an order, which means that even after I rejected them, the counter reset.

Please, please don’t get greedy and order at buildings I’ve placed off limits. I will still reject your order and other players will wait even longer. As soon as I’ve collected the numbers, I will put the building into play (if it’s really of value to customers).

Missed opportunities

I loved the new Chinese dragon ngmoco:) released last week, so when I saw the new Sun Temple Tuesday I thought to myself, “All right, this week we’re going to get Quetzalcoatl.” But, no, we got a Jaguar woman and priest instead. Cute, but boring in comparison.

It may show up with the ball court that’s supposed to come as a reward for the King’s Court goal, but I’m not keeping my fingers crossed.

Dragons don’t get much cooler than Quetzalcoatl, the winged serpent. He actually is depicted in many forms, from snakelike to almost human to a version of Ouroboros. Any one of them would have looked great in We Rule (although this one is the coolest), but now we have to wait for another round of Mayan crap.

Image courtesy of techpin.com

You can also get Machu Picchu from the boosted gifts, but it’s huge. Really huge. Just about the biggest We Rule building I can remember. I also noticed a new kind of tree in about three different shades on the splash screen. The question is, when will it show up?

Should vendors buy the jaguar temple?

In Thursday’s analysis update I mentioned that vendors might not be so willing to invest in the jaguar temple since the vendor return is so low (about half that of the minotaur’s labyrinth), even though the customer payoff is high. I discovered that the rent return is exceptionally high, but, once again, vendors will lose money as soon as the order is placed. So you might not see too many until even more lucrative shops open.

Inspiration, perspiration or plagiarism?

I couldn’t help but wonder if the game designers haven’t been playing other games on ngmoco:)’s dime. I noticed that the Sun Temple bears a striking resemblance to the Sun Temple in Bloons. The more I compare the two, the more I can’t help but think ngmoco:) may have been trolling for ideas while playing games on company time. If so, ngmoco:) may have to pony up some royalties.

What do you think? To the right we have the We Rule Sun Temple released last Tuesday.

Click image to see full size

To the left we have the sun temple in Bloons, which is a fun game. Kind of like Plants vs. Zombies on speed. Take away the monkey face, and they look like the same item.

You may not be concerned that game designers are slacking on the job. It is DeNA’s dime, right?

But think about this. We’ve undergone a lot of building inflation, which means ngmoco:) is pushing harder than ever to get us to cough up mojo. Why? Probably to pay for more designers and developers. But if these guys would work on the company dime instead of playing games, then maybe the company could hire fewer designers and hold down the cost to us.

Let’s face it. Free enterprise isn’t really free when the customers pay for it.

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Magic orbs, magic harvests

It should have been a milestone for me this week. Clocking in at 200 million lifetime experience points. Who wouldn’t be excited. And then I realized the game leaders earned almost that much in a couple of weeks.

I admit, I chose to stop competing once I passed into the top hundred (which had been my goal all along). And my timing couldn’t have been better. I just don’t have the time to stay competitive with nine realms, much less five.

This is America, after all. And in America you’re no longer good enough unless you win it all. And sometimes, if you’re Black and born in Hawaii and your name sounds suspiciously Moslem, even that’s not good enough for some people.

But the game is still seductively fun, isn’t it?

The great product dump

I actually wrote this column late Thursday night figuring I could get the work done early only to log in late Friday night and discover even more crap, including levels, minotaur and labyrinth, and the new emerald castle, or fortress. I’m no longer sure how they differentiate between castles, citadels and fortresses.

The emerald fortress is huge. It completely blocked a place of worship from view. I’ve been asking for emerald themed items for a while, and even predicted an emerald castle (diamond and gold still to come; all gold at L100?). Maybe we’ll get some emerald groves, too.

The new emerald castle is enormous. It may completely hide objects you already have in place. The perspective in the friend’s map is a little skewed because your kingdom is always bigger than the others

Corporate farming comes to We Rule

In addition to the usual buttload (or boatload, if you prefer) of crap that ngmoco:) usually dumps on players, this week saw the introduction of one of the most innovative, and probably controversial additions to the game: the harvest orb.

So let’s get the downside over with. You get one free harvest orb. After that they cost 75 mojo apiece. They also cost 2 mojo, every time you use one. You can install more than one in each realm, but that would be a waste of mojo since the minute you use the first orb, the other is useless.

Obviously, and this was my first reaction (as well as others), ngmoco:) has either:

  1. once again come up with a way to soak the mojo out of unsuspecting players, or
  2. given players with money to burn a huge advantage over poorer players, or
  3. All of the above.

Not only was this my first reaction, I haven’t changed my opinion one whit. Players who have loaded up their realms with stack after stack of high-priced, high-yield items can boost everything they harvest by fifteen percent. The result? Two billion experience points is right around the corner. And for only two mojo they can harvest everything in that realm that’s ready to harvest all at once.

The new harvest orb will harvest every ripe grove, crop and fount in your realm with one touch. Well, one touch and two mojo.

Click image to see full size

Look at all those experience points and coins. That’s usually ten to fifteen minutes worth of harvest work and a sore finger to boot.

This is the genius of the harvest orb. A lot of players have abandoned the game because they were tired of clicking on those damned groves. I found myself experiencing Carpal Tunnel in my index finger. The magic orb will save lots of harvest time, making the game a lot less painful and a hell of a lot less tedious.

If you can afford it.

That being said, if you already spend mojo, this is the item I would invest in. Forget boosting gifts. Yes, if you harvest every realm three times daily you will be out 54 mojo (or 1600 a month, which is pretty damn close to $80 monthly on mojo). But if you only do it once a day, players with heavily stacked realms can save an hour or more of harvest time.

It does change the game metaphor a little. After all, when we’re no longer harvesting crops one at a time like real farmers, we’ve become corporate farmers. It’s tempting to say there were no corporate farmers in medieval times, but let’s be real. Back then they just called them Lords and Kings.

Sadly, the game shuts down completely every time I use the orb, which shouldn’t be a surprise. Let’s face it, when has ngmoco:) ever come up with an innovation that ran smoothly? And the game crashes three times as often on launch all of a sudden.

The bottom line? You don’t have to use it, but it’s there and it’s one of the few items that’s worth the investment should you choose to make it. But use some restraint, eighty bucks a month is a lot to piss away on a game.

The Shogun syndrome

One and a half billion experience points. How is that possible? Shepul18 has more than one and a half billion experience points and barblaw isn’t far behind. I’m not even close to that and I already feel like this game is sucking the life out of me sometimes.

Carol blithely announced that she was getting tired of We Rule. But she still plays all the other games that I abandoned because I was spending so much time with We Rule.

Congratulations leaders, seriously. But don’t let your family know because mine has already threatened me with interventions three times and I lied and promised to never play again three times. Carol supported me because my family still thinks jennymanytoes is actually a fan of my iPad blog. If they knew it was Carol….Never mind, they would never believe Carol would play We Rule. She’s the responsible one who should have married someone better than their own son (and/or brother).

I’ve been away for a couple of weeks. I intended to be back last week but evidently a certain cat (who already makes too many guest appearances in my iPad Envy column) erased the post I slaved over all weekend and replaced it with a plea for cats in We Rule.

Now I love Jenny, I love all of our foster cats and especially the ones we adopted (sometimes because we realized no one else would), so I don’t need any more damn cats in We Rule.

Then, one of my readers posted a comment that cats came with the witch’s cauldron, so Jenny scratched at my shoulder and then the iPad screen until I went ahead and added several. No go, no cats. Then she was pissed at me because she thinks it’s my fault the cats didn’t show up.

She sits on the bedroom dresser, in the middle of our TV screen and stares at me, meowing at the top of her voice during the middle of our favorite shows, making sure I know she’s not happy about the cats. Or absence of them. Or total lack of concern whether We Rule has cats or not. My feeling? We’ll end up taking them in when irresponsible players abandon them.

I didn’t have the heart to tell her that three cats showed up later, slinking around behind Valhalla. I’m not sure I will tell her. Siamese don’t have a high opinion of black cats because they’re always stealing her food. And I don’t want to have to put three cauldrons in every realm so I will have the maximum number of cats.

The China connection

As many players guessed when the Chinese monastery appeared on our splash screens Thursday, this was the weekend ngmoco:) went crazy with Chinese stuff. Players who looked for gifts may have even found foo dogs without spending mojo.

But don’t expect it to end. I’m sure they will announce Chinese gifts early next week, and then gold Chinese gifts, both of which will probably need mojo. Maybe we’ll even get jade groves (almost as good as emerald) and jade Chinese gifts in celebration of the orient.

Don’t forget oriental goals. Between gold and jade Chinese gifts and two or three oriental goals, they can rake in another half million in mojo sales. We Rule is one of the highest grossing all time apps for a reason.

Does this mean the orient will take control of We Rule? After all DeNA, who now owns ngmoco:), is a Japanese company.

I doubt it. I’m sure we’ll be off to Uncle Remus items with fox lairs and tar baby pits and briar patches, or maybe Winnie the Poo. After all, the game designers seem to have the attention spans of middle school boys. And it’s too early to return to Alice in Wonderland (or Disney may have already filed suit).

The new Chinese dragons both fly and slither through your kingdom, making a great addition to your dragon collection. The temple they come with takes up a lot of room, however. Maybe because it takes more space to rid yourself of bad dragon karma.

Maybe it’s time for Jules Verne with undersea realms and the Nautilus/Mysterious Island objects. Or Around the World in 80 Days with balloons and elephants. Or even, now that I’m riffing off the Nautilus, maybe Atlantis and a sinking island? If they can make Chinese dragons slither and fly, they can make an island sink.

Cheap Chinese goods

In some respects it was like shopping at Walmart this weekend. The oriental residences are 18k coins and deliver 160cp every hour. This is almost as much in one hour as the rubies deliver in six hours. The catch is that they ripen every hour. Still, they’re cheaper than 90k for founts, or 190k for wisdom groves so that’s a pretty good deal.

You can install fifty of each residence in each realm, and provide a great way to run up points in a weekend marathon.

The new oriental residences crank out coins and xp every hour, which means they can really bring revenue into your kingdom if you want to take the time to keep up with them.

And for a few more days you can get the dragon temples for $2, and that’s a cool dragon. Yes, it’s a lot for virtual crap but considering how much I spent for the Betty Page figurine posing in her leopard bikini (the one Carol makes me keep in the closet), it’s a decent price. And that dragon is awesome.

we rule needz more kittys

this iz jenny manytoes.

philip couldn’t write today so i desided to instead. Sinse ima cat im still lerning to type and spel.

why no butiful cats in we rule? philip told me theres a lion now but still no cats. real cats that kurl up and pur and make u feel good.

philp wants sum thing called tilz. he sayz there are sand tilz and snow tilz and scorch tilz but no rubt tilz or dimund or gold tilz and he hates dealing with all those roads cauz there so small and get in the way of buildings.

but i want cats. trade nations has two cute cats gabbo and lily and thats why i don’t understand why philip doesnt play trade nations more and we rule less. he can put in lotz of cats but doesnt cauz he sayz they cost 2 much mojo. we farm has butiful barn cat and we rule came furst.

make sense? stupid humans never make sense. don’t even eat yummy mice or catch birds. no suprise no cats in we rule.

xept carol and philip who feed me and pet me. especially carol who feeds me and changes my litter, altho i like when philip pets me which he never duz when he plays we rule.

or trade nations but i forgive him cauz he takes less time and it has gabbo and lily even tho they just sit there and don’t chase mice either. don’t even bunch their tails when i play with them on ipad which pisses philip off cauz i shoodnt use claws on it.

trade nations has gabbo and lily. we farm has butiful barn cat. no kittys in we rule. stupid humans never think what important.

cats are wurth all the mojo he can spend and i think there should be more cats in we rule 2 even if u use mojo. cute cats that pur and rub against wizzerds and make u feel good.

mommy carol has a we rule kingdom named after me but without the space. jennymanytoes. u shood order frum her 2 but i no u would order more if she had cats.

I wood.

so rite ngmoko and say ‘i wont cats.’

reely. rite now.

and say lotz of cats not just 1 or 2

want tabbys and calicos and torteez and simeze like me. seel point, blu point, flame point.

and then burmeez and purrsians and balineez and tucksedos with there cute black and white furz.

send my picktur 2. they can make a cat that lookz like me. that wood be so kool.

this iz what i look lik. woodnt i be cute in we rule?