Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Fusing Lieutenants

Fusing LT's is a good feature, but it's not as easy to use as one might hope. Here are some guidelines.

First, you choose the LT that you wish to upgrade, or "star up." Let's say you choose a 2* Blink.
Second, you choose two other LT's to fuse into your new cool higher LT from step 1. They must be the same type (common, uncommon, rare, epic) as the first LT, and have the same number of stars. For example, do fuse a 2* Blink into a 3* Blink, you'd need 2 LT's who were 2* uncommon.
Third, you fuse them. This consumes a recombinator, and the 2nd and 3rd LT.

As easy as 1-2-3, right? But sometimes you get an error - "You don't have enough Lieutenants" even when you do, right?

The following LT's cannot be fused away:

  • Kate
  • Fox
  • Caine
  • Tagg
  • Blink
  • Lucas
  • Hector
  • Michael
  • Blade
  • Cesar
  • Charmaine
  • Penelope
  • Fang
  • Mia
  • AK
  • John
You can't fuse your last one. If you have a 2* and a 1* you can fuse one of them, but not both. 

When I suspect that I might have some fusing possibilities, I just pick any LT with the stars and type I want, and choose to fuse them. If I can see more than one LT on the next screen, I know that fusing is an option - that I have a recombinator and enough LT's. It won't show you LT's that you can't fuse away. Then I cancel out and start over if I want to actually complete a fusing, using the specific LT that I want to build up.

Whether fusing is wise or not is a different matter. I seldom buy crates, so I'm often willing to fuse the crate LT's away, since they won't ever be strong enough to seat. 

Or will they? If you have Centurion, or Victoria, you might want their skills, and be willing to wait to fuse them up. I would like to have a 6* Eve Armstrong, that's a rolling ball of butcher knives right there.

A common guideline is never to fuse away the last of any LT. That keeps the number of LT's high. I kind of agree with Voodoo though - if you're not using it, you're wasting it. When are you using an LT that you never seat? Um, boss jobs. They can give you LT criticals. So think carefully before you fuse - then try the old 1-2-3. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Evaluating Promotional Offers, part 2

I think I might have been a bit strict when I wrote a post about evaluating promotional offers.

Truth be told, all of the promotional offers include getting something for free if you buy FP at the regular price. Sometimes you can get a minimum amount of FP, other times you might have to spend $20.

But the offers all include something that you get for free when you buy FP. So, if you were planning to buy FP anyway, you could say that ALL of the promos have some value to you.

In particular, there are some "level promos." These include the beginner package, and another offer at levels 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180. There has been talk on the forums about a level 210 promo, but we haven't seen it yet. These promos provide LT's, refills, and some even include crate rolls. Some include Class Coins. There are several beginner packs out there, and you might not get the one everyone wants. That deal costs $20, but includes 8 crates and 20 of each kind of refill and 10 scratchers! Most people get a $5 offer that has no crates and no scratchers, but your next account might be one of the lucky ones!

There are also occasional promos such as the recent one to get a free crate with any purchase. Think about that - a crate is 30 FP - and if you buy 30 FP you'd be getting 30 FP and a crate - equivalent to 60 FP altogether. We had one at valentine's day, but I forget what it was. They put Sara in a different dress, so they had that going for them.

If you're a player who is trying to minimize her spending, you might be as critical in your evaluation of promos as I was in my previous post. But if you are dumping an allowance, think about buying as many as you like.

If you bought all of the level promos, you'd spend about $85, and you'd have like 9 lieutenants, more than a hundred refills, and more than 1000 Class coins. If I remember to do it, I'll list the level promos. The problem with listing any promo or reward is that there is a tendency for them to change over time, and then you start getting historical perspective here instead of tips on the basics.

Happy tapping!

Zombies, no longer our friends

I wrote a previous about about chaining executions. This was a great tactic for weaker players to get good scores, and to sharpen up their execution skills.

No more.

Now, the first time you execute a player, and your health is below 200, it reduces his health by half. For example, if he has 318 health, and you execute him, he will have 159 health.

But if you execute him a second time, he'll go straight to zero. That's it. You gotta find yourself another target.

The more likely target for weaker players now are hitting buildings - for which you get 110 battle points and suffer no health reduction. If your team's game conditions allow weaker players to get a bunch of 20-point shots on a building, that is. Sometimes your team will be in a big hurry to get the building down. Your shots will be welcome, but you'll need to do it quickly. Imagine how long it takes to get a safehouse down, with the kids nicking it for 20 points a shot (something like 170 shots needed - that's 5 or 6 squishies shooting for the whole game).

Zombies are still our friends, but we don't have zombies left in these parts.

Android, my android

Right after the MegaBoss event, PA released the app on Android - roughly 8-July. There have been a few complaints on the forums about problems putting money into the bank, taking money out of the bank, and the like. Others have been anxious to transfer their iOS character to Android - and except for certain cases, you can't. But I've been playing it, and loving it.

I have two android devices at my house - a 2012 version of the Google (Asus) Nexus 7, and a Kindle HD.


I was able to install the app on my wife's Kindle HD, by sideloading it. That's a process where you put the APK file on your computer, copy it to your kindle while connected, and then install it using a file explorer (I used the free ES Explorer). Sadly, the Kindle doesn't work with Google Play services. That means that you can't buy anything. Since you basically only buy FP, that's the main thing I'm saying that you can't buy.

It's not so bad. Having spent nothing, my wife's alt is up to level 60, and has accumulated 75 FP just from in-game achievements. I have to figure that PA will want to make this work, but my guess it that it's going to be a while.


I tried to use an android simulator, Bluepipes, to install the game on my laptop. You can install it, but you can't run it. This, I'm guessing, will work sooner than the commerce on the Kindle, because KABAM has a section on how to get their android games to run on Bluepipes. Since they have acquired PA, I expect that they will support the app on that platform someday. Users on the forums think that having the game on Android or the web would result in rampant hacking. I don't understand the argument. I'm sure that they have some reasons for worrying about it, and I'll just suggest that you ask them about it. It's over my head.


This is what's so much fun for me. I started a toon the day the app came out, and I've had no problems running him up to level 150. He's a squishy heavy - you know that they don't need any skills, right? It's just fun to play. I played him for a month before I added a second account.

I already had a second account on my nexus, because I share it with my son. I had tried to set up the app on his account and got a server error. I read up on the error, and decided that I needed to delete the google account from a certain place on my nexus and then re-enter the same account. Much to my surprise, this worked. I was able to download the app, install it, and do anything with it that I can do with my iPhone (except for the minor differences in the two apps).

The Nexus supports up to 8 accounts, but I was already seeing some lag switching from one account to the other. I did set up a 3rd account, and once in a while when things went just right, I could cycle through the three accounts without much more trouble than using three different devices.


I should mention that this isn't going to make you a great player on a Legend Empire. The time it takes to switch from one account to another, and then back again, takes a while. This doesn't bother me. I take about 5-10 minutes with each account, leave them for an hour or so, then come back and dump the rest of their tokens in turn. I have been able to get 4000 battle points on each account, which gets them 50-60 CC's if my team wins. But this isn't something that I do competitively, and I can't tell you how to be competitive doing it. I just like to build things, sort of the like little criminal version of ships in a bottle.

Which Nexus do you have?

There are two versions of the Nexus 7. Some people call them Gen1 and Gen2, some people call them 2012 and 2013. Mine is a 2012 version, 1st gen. That device is a poor little brother to the 2013 model, which has better graphics, a faster processor, a rear camera ... and more RAM. That's the thing that keeps people from enjoying multi-user activities on the 2012 Nexus 7. It's got 1 GB, the 2013 Nexus 7 has 2 GB. That single Gigabyte gets used up pretty quickly, and people don't like the resulting lag. Including me. I found myself spending 10 minutes trying to switch from one user to the other to get to another toon!

One thing I tried was turning off auto-sync. That helped a bit, but I wasn't running anything but UE and having Facebook stop updating didn't provide that much help with UE.

Until a couple of days ago, I thought that perhaps it just wasn't operationally feasible. Then I discovered two tricks that helped. The first one was a well-documented clearing of cache, that made the battery charge faster, discharge slower, and lag a lot less. Having it hold a charge was great - it had been discharging so quickly that I was afraid I'd never be able to fully charge it.

But I still had a problem with lag. Until I stumbled over the second trick. There are 3 buttons on the bottom row of the Nexus - back, home, and a "recent app list." Displaying that doesn't automatically work like the iOS list of running apps - but in the case of UWE it does. When I am finished with a character, I press the RECENT button and swipe the UE app (it's the only one ever running on my nexus) to the right, which produces a FORCE STOP (thank you PA developers).

If I have even ONE of the other toons running, I get a visible lag. Tolerable, but irritating. If have have TWO of them, I'm running in surf. But if I have the other accounts stopped, I can switch from one account to another in a few seconds. It's wonderful. I don't use it to try to gang up in EvE, but it's a good way to level my guys up. I do visit each account 2-3 times during a game, but these squishy beginners can't beat anybody and wouldn't tip the scales in a contest anyhow. Someday I'll have a lot of demo tho.

I'm saving my allowance so I can buy a refurbed 2013 Nexus 7. There are rumors that Google will announce a nexus 8 this month, and I'm not excited about the Apple-like prices I have heard. But I can't wait to try out the Nexus 7 2nd generation as a platform for a nursery for little toons.

If you have an android device, you ought to be able to enjoy UWE. More power to you!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Evaluating Promotional Offers

Evaluating Promotional Offers

If you read the forums, or the comments on Facebook (and I suggest that everyone should at least glance at them), you will see a constant clamor for “a promo.” Yet, when one happens, there is grousing about how it’s not a good promo, and within a couple of days the din continues.

Promos are discount sales. If a company is happy with their income, they ignore the clamor, and there are no discounts offered. But when you see them, you can rest assured that the company believes that they will make more money than if they didn’t offer a promo.


There is out out there today (12 June 2014). Let’s look at it. The offer claims to be a 320 FP Value Pack, including the following:

  • 2 crate rolls (those would cost 30 FP each if you bought them on the favor page)
  • 500 class coins (there is no price for these, because you can’t buy them). I’m arbitrarily assigning them a value of 60 FP, but you might think they are worth 100 FP. I wouldn’t argue over it.
  • 4 recombinators. In theory, you get 1 of each level (common, uncommon, rare, and epic). It would be great if we could buy recombinators. They are worth 1/3 of an LT, if you think that you can get an LT to level up by adding one. So I’ll give them the arbitrary value of 10 FP each, and call this 4. In truth, if you already have 20 of them and can’t use them, they are worthless to you. But for this exercise, I’m saying 40.
  • 10 FP. Pretty easy to convert THIS one to equivalent FP, no?
  • 1x “Ariel” LT. I like Ariel. At Level 1, I think she adds 5% to your property income. You can get her from a 30FP crate roll (except you might get someone else). I put 30 FP on the LT in the promo, but you could make a case for 40 or 50 since you know which one you’ll get.
  • 5x Income property. I give these a zero value. They never represent much property income, and you can’t buy the 6th, 7th, and so on.
  • 3x Energy Pack. Energy refills are 10 FP each, so this is 30.
  • 3x Stamina Pack. Also 30 FP.
  • 50 Chat tokens. I’ve never bought a chat token. I think you can use them to create a private chat room, and to post your army code in World Chat. I put a value of zero on these. Perhaps you like them more. You can’t possibly like them less.
  • $6.4 million in game money. I also put a zero on money. I know that you can buy money with FP, but I get money with Property and by doing Jobs. At level 500, 10 FP will buy you $1 million, so they might be evaluating it at 60 or 100 FP. I use …. Zero.

When I add those numbers up, I get between 150-200 FP. To get that extra value, you have to buy 125 FP, at a cost of $20 US. You’d get 137 FP or so, because they give you a 10% bonus for FP purchases.

The bottom line on this offer is 300 FP for $20 US. Is that a good deal, or a bad deal? In general, if the “free stuff” is worth less than the stuff you have to pay for, I think it’s a bad promo. In this case, 150 > 125 so it is better than the minimum. But is it good enough? Maybe. Between 100% and 200% you have to think about it. Above 200%, it’s a really nice deal, and I’d put a BUY on it. So, how about this one? Yes or no?

If you are really hurting for CC, it might be great. I can get the CC in 3-4 days of empire games. I can get the cash in a day, but lower level players will need more than a week to get $6.4 million. If you don’t have much property income, Ariel won’t be worth as much to you as if you have a lot.

Remember that you can fuse Ariel up, and that the benefit is even greater if you have a 2* or 3* LT. At 6 stars, she gives a 17% bump to property income – when she’s seated. If she’s not seated, you get … zip. Bupkis. Nada. Rien. Ze-ro. Nothing.


If you don’t have a lot of property income, I think this offer is probably not for you. I have a lot of property income (more than $250,000 per hour) and I can live without it.

There are properties that do what Ariel does – they are the Stock Markets that you can buy after you get a Fortress. Admittedly, a Stock Market increases property income by 1% for each Stock Market you get, up to 10 of them – less than Ariel gives if you star her up. But Stock Markets work all the time. Ariel works when she’s seated. If she’s not one of your 5 strongest LT’s, you’ll have to weaken your toon in order to use her. I like to seat her overnight, but sometimes I don’t remember. Truth be told, swapping LT’s is a huge pain in the neck for me. I forget, it takes time, some of my devices time out or take a long time … I get an attitude. But every day that you don’t use Ariel is a day that you get no benefit from the featured LT in this promo. (Someday, they’ll give you a quick way to switch LT sets. That will be a great day. The sun will shine and everyone will say please and thank you. The lamb will lie with the lion. All wars will cease, and hunger will not be found on earth.)

This time I’m passing, but maybe it’s just the promotion you’ve been looking for. I hope this exercise helps you evaluate a promo next time.

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Daily Player

The Daily Player

Some people don’t have the opportunity or the inclination to play the game more than 1 session a day. Here is a short guide to becoming a Daily Player.


The game gives you several resources based on the passing of time. They are:
  • 1 Energy every 5 minutes. That’s 288 per day.
  • 1 Stamina every 5 minutes. That’s 288 per day.
  • Hourly property income. You get 24 of these a day.

If any of those resources won’t fit into your “bucket” it will be wasted, and will not help you. It’s like throwing away food or money, your parents will yell at you. Your friends will look at you like they think that you are not to be trusted to borrow their car. Don’t waste resources, in the game or real life, so you can be likable and live a long and happy life.


Many players advise beginners to get their E and S up to 100. That’s fine advice, if you’re going to check in every 8 hours and burn down these supplies. “Burn down” is a slang term, meaning to use them up, preferably in some constructive manner. But if you’re a Daily Player, you will only get 100 of the 288 available stam every day. The other 188 will splash out of your bucket and trickle down the street. Don’t be that guy.

Get E and S to 300. Waste not, want not. If you do this to start the game, it will take you until about level 125, which takes frequent players about 3 weeks. Whether you want to be strong and level up slowly, or weak and level up quickly, you should wait to act on this decision until you have a bucket big enough to match your playing style. The daily player needs a big bucket.


Once your property fills your safehouse, you only get 10% of your property income until you collect it. Let’s say that you get $10,000 per hour in property income. In 24 hours, you’d get $240,000. But if your safehouse only holds $150,000, you’d stop getting $10,000 at that point, and only get $1000 for the next 9 hours, or $159,000. That’s a loss of $81,000 (or 1/3 of the potential cash for the day).

Get a 25-hour safehouse. Or a 30-hour safehouse. You have to do some math. Some milestones:

Income of $5,000 / hour requires Safehouse Lvl 3, which costs $240,000 and protects $150,000. You should buy this just as soon as you can afford it. When you reach $5,000, start working on Safehouse Level 4, which costs $960,000 and protects $320,000.


Some empires want you to play several games a day. But there are plenty that don’t stress it if you are playing at least once a day. Look around for an empire that suits your playing style, once you know what your playing style is.


How hard would it be for you to send out gifts once a day? You’re gonna want to start a Skull King boss someday. Wouldn't it be nice if you had friends who sent you gifts? Gifting is broken, but it still helps to try.


  1. Join an empire battle. When you’re out of ammo, leave the battle and …
  2. Burn down your energy. You may need to shuffle your LT’s, to level up the right ones, get the benefit of their skills, etc.
  3. Burn down your stamina. I do boss jobs, but you can battle if that’s your thing.
  4. If you level up, return to step 2.
  5. Collect your property income.
  6. Donate to your empire. If you have Victoria, seat her first.
  7. Buy new property, if you have the money.
  8. Buy lots of FP, use it on Crates, Scratchers, and Refills. I skip this step.
  9. Put the balance in the bank. If it’s more than a million dollars, seat Charmaine first.
  10. Pay respect to the faction of your choice.
  11. Set up your LT’s for battle. Return to the empire battle. Use up all your tokens.
  12. Return to your happy Real Life.

There isn't anything the Constant Player does that a Daily Player can’t do. You might get there slower, but Daily Players are nothing if not patient.  

Friday, April 18, 2014

Update 1.75

This week there was an update. The main changes, according to the app store:

  • Game Center
  • LT Skins coming soon
  • Properties page polishes
  • Lots of minor improvements and bug fixes
  • As always, more FREE updates to come!
A bit more information based on a day of play and some forum posts:

The apple GameCenter is now used to transfer characters. You can switch from one character to another, for up to 5 characters on a single device. There is a 2-hour cool-down period. This doesn't mean that you can create many characters on a device. You can't have more characters than devices. But once you've created them, There is apparently a way to play multiple characters on a single device. I want to know a lot more details, and I'll write about it as soon as I know the relationship between a character, a game-center account, an appleID, and an email address. 

LT Skins is curious - apparently you can change the appearance of your LT's. Are we going to be dressing them in matching clothes?

Properties page polishes refers to a change in the top of the page. Some people think that it's not underworld enough, that it looks too clean. A briefcase shows up and fills with money. Kind of cartoony. But I can say this - if you're playing on an iPhone 4, it's way faster than before. 

Which brings me to my favorite change - they added settings to support turning off some graphics and animations. Overall, that really helps on the older iPhones. I turned it off on everything, because after I've seen the cool graphics and effects a couple of dozen times, I'm only interested in how it plays, not how it looks. 

But that's not all. There are two new "secret jobs" in the Westside district. Financial Center and The Docks will each give you a crate roll for completing them. And in the process, you get 40 SP from each one. These are "cheap" SP, too. In some parts of the game, a star costs 1000 energy. In this area, there are stars for 200 SP and less!

On 13-March, PA mentioned an upcoming event (an "Ultimate Boss"), new LT's, items, and bosses. Some of the LT's are from the newest district, Mexico. But there are other LT's pictured that we haven't seen in the game yet. Speculation about the timing of this event has been constant. I predicted it would be two weeks, so I'm almost a month past my guess. Others suggested "Tax Day" which has also passed. Perhaps, this big holiday weekend, we'll have some kind of promo / event starting up. 

I can't wait!