Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Earning more experience points: Buying exclusive items with Farm
Cash generally earns more experience points than purchasing simi-
lar items with coins. If you're willing to shell out the cash, this can be
an efficient method for earning higher levels. For more on levels, see
Chapter 8.
Spending Real Money on Virtual Goods
Although you can play FarmVille without spending a dime on the game, you
can also spend real money to give yourself a leg up over the competition. You
have several ways to convert your real, legal tender into FarmVille currency,
including making an in-game credit card purchase and buying a Game Card
from a local retailer. If you don't want to spend real money, you can also earn
Farm Cash by participating in advertising offers from third-party vendors.
To spend or not to spend real money?
The idea of exchanging legal tender for
FarmVille's entirely fake currencies is some-
what controversial. Although many players
enjoy FarmVille without shelling out one shiny
red cent for the privilege, Zynga makes hun-
dreds of millions of dollars every year from
players who voluntarily use their hard-earned
money to buy items that exist only as pixels on a
screen and bits in a server.
Many of these paying players spend just a few
dollars a month to buy the occasional limited-
edition item or to hurry along an especially
slow in-game process. But some players take
their FarmVille spending seriously. One pre-
teen in the United Kingdom made headlines
when he used his mom's credit card (without
her permission, needless to say) to purchase
almost $1,400 worth of FarmVille virtual goods.
There are reports of FarmVille V.I.Ps (Very
Important Players) who purchase every special
limited-edition item that FarmVille offers and
a “Platinum Purchase Program” that accepts
wire transfers of $500 and up from those truly
obsessive players.
As with all decisions regarding your money
(except for taxes), what you spend on FarmVille
is entirely up to you. Everyone has different
priorities and tolerances for spending money.
Some people like saving their money for a rainy
day; others prefer burning through it like there's
a hole in their pocket. Whatever decision you
make regarding your FarmVille spending, you
can still have a great time playing the game.
Some food for thought, though: Although a
spendthrift player can always decide to buy
more FarmVille currency later, a player who
invests in a lot of FarmVille currency will never
be able to convert that currency back to real,
legal tender. As the ancient Romans used to
say, caveat agricola — let the farmer beware.
Okay, they probably never said that, but they
would have if they'd have had FarmVille back
then. Trust us.
 
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