Keeping Up With the FarmVillians: The reality of staying happy on the farm
This week, I had to make an important decision regarding my DVR. The season finale of True Blood and The Real Housewives of New Jersey were conflicting with Keeping Up With the Kardashians ... again. But wait, didn't this just happen last week, and the week before that as well? Since the vampires of True Blood are always victorious over reality stars, I'm left with both reality shows fighting for my viewership, and I can't help but think this would be an awesome brawl if the RHONJ actually threw down with the Kardashian clan.
Anyways, it occurred to me that due to my favorite Sunday night shows' scheduling conflicts, and the little time I have to commit to watching them, mixed in with full-time FarmVille coverage and my 2-year-old son, I was no longer keeping up with the Kardashians. At all. In fact, I was dangerously close to the point of no return when it comes to leaving a TV series behind for good. A few missed episodes become seasons and then seasons turn into my Grey's Anatomy. (Is McDreamy still around? I'm forever lost in Season 4 limbo).
One of the most common complaints I hear from FarmVille players is that too much is happening in FarmVille. Farmers who aren't able to visit the farm daily are finding that a lot happens in a matter of 24 hours. Here are just a few of the big releases from the past week:
Space Out with Crops
Aside from the usual FarmVille Market updates of new Limited Edition items, there were 10 brand new Space-themed crops to plant. Before you get caught up in Mercury Melons and Moon Flowers, note that you'll need to Master them in succession. In other words, each crop has a specific mastery prerequisite in place where you will need to master one crop before you can unlock the next tier.
Good thing that FarmVille made it an unexpected Double Mastery week where you can earn double Mastery Points on crops (and trees) if you found the time to take advantage of planting any of the new Space crops. It takes will power to ignore those quest crops, but it's much easier when the quest is asking you to plant Eggplants for the 100th time despite mastering this crop three years ago. Hello, can we at least get some Super Eggplants over here?
Note: Destination farms' unique Crafting Buildings count towards the three-building limit. For example, if you have an English Pub on your English Countryside farm, then you can have two additional Crafting Buildings and make your choice from the Bakery, Spar, or Winery, but you may not have all four. FarmVille sweetened the deal by releasing new crafting recipes to help you get started in your new endeavors as a baker, spa specialist or winemaker. Add it to the list of your FarmVille accomplishments.
Turn your Coins into Farm Cash
High Roller Spending & Hawaiian Paradise Surprise
Toward the end of the week everyone was surprised to see a new series of quests added to Hawaiian Paradise farm. Occasionally, FarmVille likes to keep us on our toes when most of us think it's safe to casually forget a farm. The new series of Hawaiian Paradise quests is unusually long with difficult requirements that include high crop harvests and triple the recipe crafting and if that wasn't bad enough, the rewards are not that great, to say the least. In fact, most of them are old re-released prizes. Blah.
Drive To End Hunger
Once you send a friend the Tractor Pig gift, you will receive a Grocery Tree for yourself as a bonus. All of the proceeds will go to Drive To End Hunger. Outside the virtual farming world, FarmVille and NASCAR fans were treated to another surprise this weekend when #24 Jeff Gordon's car raced this weekend decked out in a special FarmVille + Drive To End Hunger paint job. A FarmVille first for sure.
For die-hard FarmVille players who play daily, this may prove to be more difficult than keeping up with FarmVille (or the Kardashians). It is often these players who strive to complete every quest, challenge, voting event, construction project, and still work on new masteries or hobby breeding. Doing it all is a lot of work and can become quite time consuming.
Trying to keep up can be overwhelming for some players, who may feel defeated when attempting to do everything in FarmVille, especially when it takes the enjoyment out of playing. I hear this a lot, "FarmVille is becoming WorkVille".
If this is true for you, maybe it's a good time to reconsider the way you play and instead, focus on the things that are important to you. Consider skipping certain quests if you don't like the rewards. If you find that planting rice or bell peppers for the millionth time is annoying because you mastered these crops years ago, then, consider skipping the quest. Instead, plant a crop you've been dying to master. Get back to the basics.
The mere idea of skipping something may make some players cringe, but if you find yourself not enjoying an aspect of the game, just remember everything is optional -- do something for yourself and for your own enjoyment.
Kardashians image courtesy of E!