FarmVille Thanksgiving Basket: Everything you need to know

Just this afternoon, we took a look at the mysterious Fruitcake in FarmVille, that has been appearing out of farmers' Turkey Roosts, but seemingly had no purpose - until now, that is.

In a very slow rollout, the Thanksgiving Basket has begun showing up on players' farms. This collection feature will have you sending and receiving dishes to and from friends over the next few weeks, with six different (base) prizes being available to earn.

Meet us behind the break for all of the details about this exciting new feature.

When the Thanksgiving Basket update is available for your farm, you will alerted that you have received your free Thanksgiving Basket, and you can place it, again, for free, onto your farm. This event is locked to users under level 5, so new players will need to plant a few extra crops to boost themselves to level 5 in order to participate.

Once the Thanksgiving Basket has been placed on your farm, you'll learn that in this holiday's collection event, you'll be responsible for collecting "Dishes." You can track your progress by clicking on the Basket (or table, as that's how it appears), and clicking "Look Inside," where you will see a menu like the following:

You'll be able to redeem your gathered dishes for six different prizes:

Mystery Box - 10 Dishes
Thank Ewe - 25 Dishes
Pilgrim Gnome - 45 Dishes
Harvest Fountain - 70 Dishes
Baby Bourbon - 100 Dishes
Mayflower (yes, the ship) - 145 Dishes

As for gathering Dishes, you'll be able to do so in a variety of ways. The easiest way to earn dishes will be to ask for them from your friends directly by clicking on the "Ask for Dishes" button from within the Thanksgiving Feast table. This allows you to send an gift request to individual friends, asking them to send you a dish for your basket.

Other methods include the ability to earn Dishes by opening Special Delivery Boxes, or receiving them as a bonus from harvesting your Turkey Roost (like with the Fruitcake that we've had sitting in our gift boxes for days). You can also purchase Dishes in groups of five for 5 Farm Cash from within the Basket by clicking the "Buy Dishes" button.

Finally, your friends can send you Dishes voluntarily from the free gifts page. This brings in the group of five holiday food items we brought you news of earlier this month: the Fruit Cake, Stuffing, Spiced Cider, Casserole, and Leaf Candle. We're not quite sure how a "Leaf Candle" qualifies as a food item, but we'll give Zynga the benefit of the doubt with this one.

As you collect Dishes, your Thanksgiving Basket will change in appearance, becoming more complex and decorated. You will also earn various stage titles, like "Gathering" and "Preparing" as you fill the table with Dishes. The different stages are met when you've gathered 30, 60, 90, 120, and finally 150 Dishes. You can continue to collect dishes after this point, and you will still earn points that can be used to redeem for the six prizes in this event, but your table will stop changing in appearance at this point.

Once you finish filling the Basket, Zynga says that we'll earn a very special surprise that our avatars will love. We're guessing this is a new piece of clothing (perhaps a costume), but we aren't sure exactly what this prize is, as of this writing.

While this new feature does seem to be roilling out to users at an especially slow rate, you'll want to start collecting Dishes as quickly as you can, as once the month ends (or on December 1), you will no longer be able to gift new Dishes to friends, ask for anymore Dishes, or purchase Dishes with Farm Cash from the market. In addition, the Dishes will also be removed from the Special Delivery Box at the same time.

[Image Credit: Zynga]

Check out the rest of our Thanksgiving 2010 coverage right here.

Have you received the Thanksgiving Basket in FarmVille? How many Fruitcakes have you saved up for when you do receive it? Like any of these prizes? Share all of your thoughts about this new feature with us in the comments!

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