Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip BUFFS

Buffs are items that are produced in the Provision House to allow you to temporarily boost output of a production house (either your own or a friends). Your buff works at 150% of normal time on a friend's work yard (normal being twice regular production rate).

Why would someone buff another's fish hut??
Probably because they are lazy or just trying to waste a buff. Who needs more fish ever!!!

The Provision House has no upkeep cost and can be built in quantity on any island. It requires no road and can be placed almost anywhere provided there is sufficient green space for its 5x4 footprint. It can be rotated with the use of the “r” key.

Buffs can be made with several materials, take different times to produce and boost production for various times as noted next. Fried fish are made with 30 fish, take 10 minutes to make and normal boost time is 30 minutes. Cake is made with 12 flour, takes 40 minutes to make and normal boost time is 2 hours. Salads are made with 17 spices, take 2 hours to make and normal boost time is 6 hours. Roasts are made with 10 cattle, take 4 hours to make and normal boost time is 12 hours.

To apply a buff, you must open your inventory bag and select one boost and then apply it to the production building using the fist tool that appears. Any building that can be boosted will light up and will end up with a showery effect after the boost has taken. Positioning of the fist is important so you want to see the production building name when doing that. Mines are usually easier to select when you position the cursor over the mountain face and not the deposit square, for example.

Other buffs are available in the shop and during events.

If you have any doubt as to what to buff, it always better to buff the material that is first in any production chain which are also known as raw goods. Wheat is a raw good in the Bread production chain. Buffing Flour, for example, will use up wheat at the increased buff rate. Generally, speaking the highest goods in any player's current production mix are a good option if they are not available to provide you with their advice.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

What is Wrong with Government Representation Today

“No one in government, R(epublican) or D(emocrat), looks to the Constitution anymore when making laws and spending money. It is all about agendas and personal power.”

Once again someone’s post in Facebook provides the trigger for yet another writing topic for me. First let me start by saying that I am Canadian and am trying to understand what is going on in the United States now with the closing of all kinds of things that the American public has every right to visit and restricting access to them is bordering on the edge of “treason” or at least “insanity” (in my opinion) since no businessperson would even consider such an act for fear of losing all of its’ customer base.

And a lot of Americans will say that is none of my business, since I am not a resident but the actions taking place there have the possibility of providing ideas for my own countries’ political nuthouse. And the Internet is drawing the world ever closer so it is important to have an understanding of what takes part outside of your own backyard.

I have to agree that the idea behind why there is regional representation in a nation’s capital has gone wildly astray. In days of yore, it was necessary to have that approach to government since not everyone could find the means of travel to that location in a reasonable length of time. And the representatives actually lived a rather normal life within their jurisdiction and were known by most of the folks that lived there. Their agendas were a match to those people and the personal power was not really why they took the job in the first place. They were usually the best person for the job and nothing more.

The selfish approach that the representatives on both sides are taking cannot make their mothers very proud I would think especially in how they are dealing with the veterans’ memorial in that nation’s capital (Million Vet March). I think we are seeing a new emergence of a way of expressing ones’ opinion of how the current political bodies are representing ones’ overall interests.

And I have to believe it is only the beginning of a very ugly battle between a countries’ populace and the governing body (right and wrong). I am waiting to see how it may make its ugly shape known in my country, but I am sure the political folks in Ottawa are waiting anxiously to see what will take place south of the border.

I think I need to take out a copy of an old Chicago (the band) tune that started with a crowd chanting “The whole world’s watching” and listen to it again, because I have to believe that their eyes and political representatives all over the world are firmly planted on the United States to see what will happen next.

The song title is very appropriate for sure: It Better End Soon.

Political Humour
The only good politician is...
Oh that's right those really only exist in history books and Tom Clancy novels.Well most of them are just lawyers trying for more exposure to go back to practicing law to up their hourly fee for stalling stuff from completing. Politics is good practice for that now isn't it.

Have you ever met a lawyer or doctor who does more than just practice? Some do exist but they are mostly tied up by the really wealthy.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip ISLAND HUNTING

Since Newport is missing needed fertility to make hemp for linen, you will need to expand your islands at the 1500 vassal level, so in order to do that you will need a small discovery ship with a sailor as the captain. It is in your best interests to do that as soon as it becomes available to you.

Since the most common island sequence seems to be “Newport, Hemp, Herb, Wheat, Grape, Beeswax” it makes sense that you should be looking for a hemp island and the vast majority of players take this approach since linen increases the income from vassals as soon as you begin supplying it to Newport which is done by transporting.

The next island you will need is herb to make beer for Merchants 250. To discover this island you need small discovery ship with capable sailor. The regular sailor cannot find an herb island or medium islands. To see all the island icons and what the different sailors find, view island types in so you can figure out what size the island you just discovered is in Island Overview. There are more details in that section of ultrafine that cover the numbers and features of islands in greater depth.

The next island is usually wheat and to do that you really need to acquire the ruby island slot in the upper left of Island Overview. Normally you can gain enough rubies through levelling up and other event rewards to get that one or you can get the necessary rubies in the anno homepage shop by clicking on the ruby icon in the upper left of the game screen next to the quest book.

At this point in the game, you are likely running low on space on Newport and moving the wheat production to another island that has wheat fertility is your only option really. If you have medium sized herb or hemp, you undoubtedly have been switching out goat and sheep farms since they are not fertility items.

Grape and Beeswax can only be found by the experienced sailor in a discovery ship. At this point, it is worth noting that the actual ship size of a discovery ship is irrelevant unless you are extremely impatient and want the extra slots for sails. What the discovery ship finds is totally dependent on the captain type so a small ship captained with the appropriate sailor is the least costly way to go.

What is most important to understand is that the deposit make up of all islands combined is what really matters. Island hunting is really all about luck and you cannot wait for the “perfect” island since they do not exist. For example, large islands do not have stone or iron deposits. So when you find a new island, examine the deposits in Island Overview by clicking on the mining cart and then the newly discovered island and decide how they will work with your upcoming needs. Lots of gold deposits are only useful when you have achieved 4000 Imperials since you can do nothing with them until then, for example, so current and near future needs are more important in that decision.

So you may have to learn how to be creative in your trading to make up for shortfalls in the perfect mix of deposits and islands which changes as your grow your population.

There are other approaches to island selection and that is more about how much you can work with trade and how willing you are to acquire ruby island slots. Some players will abandon the hemp island and replace it before getting to Imperials 500 and replace it with wheat. They then buy linen in trade as their exclusive method of supplying that material.

You could also forego a grape island later and not get the benefit of wine for your Imperials or do the same with Beeswax and forego candlesticks for the time being. You can still ascend population by buying the necessary materials on the trade market and pay whatever is being asked at the time.

In Island Hunting, you never really know what you are going to find in the next discovery run, so it is probably best to colonize what you need next no matter what the size and get familiar with how to abandon an island and then replace it with a better one.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip TRADE

The first step in the process for trade is to achieve a population of 250 Merchants on Newport.

You will need to build a new pier on Newport on the beachfront adjacent to the harbourmaster. Always build those piers tight to the harbourmaster since piers are not movable after placement. Following this procedure will let you build 5 base piers on Newport with the deletion of the naval shipyard which you would build on another island or two or more.

You must then cap the pier with the trade storehouse which then provides you with one trade slot. Unlike transport where ships will line up for available slots, trade requires one slot for each separate transaction.

You will need at least one trade ship to buy goods in trade. Selling goods requires no ship for that process since the buyer fulfils that part of the transaction.

Trade works in several ways in the game. As a bare minimum you will need it to trade for oriental goods such as spices. Generally, you will always buy them from Northburgh but occasionally other players’ pricing is lower than offered by him especially at the high end of the range. As an example, I have seen lows of 187 and a high of 426 for spices and prices change every 40 minutes.

Many players also use a trade slot as a supplemental warehouse of sorts and “hide” materials in that slot at a very high price. Personally, I do not favour this action since it has a hidden cost called the opportunity cost which is difficult to measure since it depends on what you would do with the coin that is available by selling those extra goods for coin.

So selling goods is my preferred strategy and you need to overproduce certain materials to have a surplus to sell so you need to buff production buildings often and/or add more production chains than calculator in suggests.

How long it takes for a sale to finish is totally dependent on the capacity of the buyer's ship and how much of the total offer they decided to trade for, so the actual time is not that easy to figure out. Just note that each shipload will take a little over 40 minutes for each return trip and obviously a 40 capacity ship will take much longer than a 190 capacity ship to pick up an order of say 400 units. Payment is made for each shipload pickup.

So that part of trade is not for everyone since it is unpredictable just like the real world stock and mutual fund markets.

To enter into a trade or place an offer, you must access that feature in the harbourmaster office on an island that also has piers capped with trade storehouses. Clicking on the harbourmaster will provide a menu called select landing that provides the trade slots. An available slot is noted by the brown house. Clicking on that house will start the procedure of buying or selling.

You should always access buy first to determine what the current pricing is for the material you are trying to buy or sell. You will be presented with a listing of that island’s warehouse inventory and you would select the material icon that you want to view current trade pricing and offers.

If you were buying, you would just continue on and make the purchase providing you have an available trade ship. You can buy part or all of the offer providing you have the coin to do so. Larger than shipload buys will just cycle until the order is complete. If the order overloads the warehouse limit, it will just sit on your pier until there is warehouse space. The trade slot stays locked but the trade ship is released upon return to your island.

To determine how good or bad a trade offer price is, use production costs as a benchmark which is useful for non-buffed costing. If you do a lot of buffing, you must consider that cost into the overall price of your material and that can be difficult to actually calculate if you buff in spurts and change the buffing type since they all have different costs associated with building them.

Obviously, if you are going to get serious about trade, you want to be buying low and selling higher to make profits. I choose to trade heavily since you can generate coin faster than with just regular cash flow but that requires a heavy investment in pier space and to some extent trade ships. You would never need as many trade ships as you have trade slots.

A cash flow of 1.5K will generate in the neighbourhood of 1.5M coin overnight while smart trading can double or triple that number if you know how to sell properly.  You can also improve your cash flow by purchasing materials that are trading below cost and turn off those production chains for a period of time until you need more production to feed your population. Or you could also resell those at a later date when and if pricing rises. Weekends are often a better time to buy than sell since players who only play then have excess stock and often sell well below cost.

And you should check your offers periodically since there are players that will make a partial trade and leave 1 unit in your slot so it ties up that storehouse until you manually delete that offer. Some people seem to think this is a clever tactic for some silly reason. I guess they think it provides them with some sort of an advantage in a game that has no overall winner. Perhaps they are just future lawyers or politicians in training.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip COLONIZATION

The first requirement is that you have a colonization ship built or the free one you get when you discover your first island. You need to activate it from the inventory bag at the lower right.

Now click on Island Overview (Palm Trees, lower right) and then click on the Ship icon in the upper right of that screen.

Scroll down and locate your colonization ship from that list which looks like a house and will have the status of idle. Click on that ship.

Now click on the island that you want to colonize. Ensure that you have an island slot marked Discover in your 3x3 Island listing.

You then click on the colonize button at the bottom of the Islands listing. The timer under that island will change to 5 hours and count down from there.

When the colonizing ship arrives at the island it will appear in your Islands 3x3 matrix and now be available for development. Make at least one lumberjack hut right away.

The colonizing ship is consumed in the process of that act so you will need to build one for each future colonizing event. You will get a harbourmaster complete with the “dock” aka transport storehouse. Make sure you have one on Newport as well or you cannot do transports.

Build a warehouse as soon as possible and upgrade it as soon as those become available and you have the appropriate resources. A Distribution House is optional for a new island since the harbourmaster is one as well. Click on the harbourmaster to view that coverage range. As you open sectors, they will be added. If there is any doubt as to whether you have proper coverage, double click the harbourmaster to see your island distribution network. Any building that is red has a problem and needs to be corrected. Often the problem is a bad road connection or DH out of range.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip USEFUL BASIC TIPS

3 Fertilities and 2 Newports???

While there are several ways you can play this game, there are many basic things that will help improve overall game performance. Consider the following as suggestions that can help you better achieve that goal.

  • ·       SEPARATE PRODUCTION AND HOUSING—initially that is not a simple task in Newport since you will have few sectors and limited space but improves with more sectors and additional islands.
  • ·        ROAD CONSTRUCTION FOR HOUSING—a good guide for efficient housing placement is “road-house-house-road” in long runs with few crossroads. Try to place crossroads nearer to the end of those long runs.
  • ·       VISIT FRIENDS ISLANDS—in order to do this you will need to make friends with someone, so ask in help or global chat for permission to do so of that person. Right click their name and select add friend. Since most every player will be more advanced than you at this early stage, you can see some things that you do not have in place yet in action.
  • ·       USE ULTRAFINE CALCULATOR—the game requires a proper balance between current population and overall production so load the calculator (basic version for now) and then input just your current population numbers. It will spit back the necessary number of buildings to do that but only that. Any additional materials you need for sector reveals, for example, are not included. Revisit calc anytime you make significant population changes.
  • ·      ASCEND RESIDENCES SLOWLY—if you continue to ascend too quickly and get caught up in the initial income rush, you will soon find yourself chasing your tail to get cash flow back under control. Keep production growth in balance with ascension pace. More mouths will mean more food and clothing to keep income flowing properly.
  • ·       AREA OF INFLUENCE—double click the harbourmaster (does double duty as a DH) to see the area that the carts there cover to avoid over building distribution houses in sector 1, for example. Likewise, marketplaces and services have this effect as well (range varies by building) and best placement for them is to surround them with houses so they are positioned much like the hub of a wheel.
  • ·      EXPLORE NEW AREAS—Click on the nearest cloudy area to find out what is required to open that area on Newport and the time it takes for completion. Generally new areas have deposits and more forests for the creation of wood.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Anno Online Game Tip TRANSPORT

This feature is not available until the player has 1500 Vassals on Newport.

You will need to upgrade the harbourmaster to level 2 which is done by clicking on the harbourmaster and fulfilling the requirements as outlined in the sold green arrow to the left with a mouse over move.

The pre-existing pier that extends from the harbourmaster into the water then needs to be capped with the “dock” which is a construction item in the Infrastructure group in the vassals’ subgroup. The dock is not a dock at all in the true sense since it is really the "transport storehouse" in this game. The translation to English from German is not as good as it could be, in my opinion. Any island you colonize will "convert" the colonizing ship into a harbourmaster complete with the “dock” for all intents and purposes, so that end of the cycle is already ready to handle transport.

You must also build at least one transport ship via the shipyard with parts that you made in the naval engineer. Always activate ships while viewing Newport which simplifies ship management when it comes time to abandon another island.

You set up a transport route in the Island Overview menu with the Routes tab that looks like 4 crates. Click on the + button to add a route. You then first double click the start island and then double click the destination island. You will then be presented with a list of available ships to transport which will later include trade ships that also can transport goods but at a slightly slower speed (also with an added upkeep cost and captain cost).

Double click on the available ship and you will be shown the warehouse menu of materials for the start island where you select what you want to send to the other island. Then click the next button to take you to the destination island.

If there is still ship capacity available, you may select what is left for return to the start island from the destination island. Click next and you will be presented with a summary page where you can optionally name the route and select continuous if you want the ship to do an endless loop between the two islands that can be stopped at any time by you by clicking the x button in routes later. The ship must continue its loop until it completes the current one.

Ship capacity is total for both directions so do not attempt to ship 40 to the destination island return with 40 to the start island (assuming a ship capacity of 40). You could split the shipment to be 20/20, 30/10, 35/5 but the sum of both directions must add up to no more than total capacity.

You can use the route name to help define trips duty which makes dealing with multiple cargos much simpler. I use something like paper110n+++z which lets me know that this ship is shipping paper, has a capacity of 110 and is going from Newport to an island starting with the letter “z”. The 3 plus signs are a code that lets me quickly locate routes that are continuous but that I want to cut off after a number of hours (or at least review the transport progress by checking the destination island for paper inventory). More + signs just denote that I should cut it off sooner than others.

Continuous routes cannot be viewed for current progress while active.

I use the default "My Route" strictly for single loop transports.

Anno Online Game Tip NOT MOVING IN

There are at least two major reasons why population will not move into a residence of any type in the game.  Clicking on one of the residences with that message will tell you what the possible problem is. A bar that is not fully green will likely signify the problem.

The first one is that the population must have a necessary service to allow new population to move into that residence. Some examples of services are the Carpenter’s Workshop and Chapel which first appear in the early stage of the game.  All services can be located in the Construction tab under the Public group at the very end of that menu.

Services do not add to income, they are just a necessary building that provides “permits” to allow new population to move into those residences. Click on any service to see the range it covers. It is wise to surround all services and marketplaces with houses to make the best use of them. Building the missing service will fix that issue.

The second major reason is that there is a missing supply material that the population needs to be fully satisfied and then would produce income for that item. If any of those materials are undersupplied, no new pop will move in until that is corrected. Usually adding one production chain for that material will resolve the problem.

Services, community, faith and entertainment all require 100% compliance while supply materials vary by population type. See Requirements Residences in ultrafine for details.

You should also check your road connections carefully to ensure that there are no missing road fragments. Holding down the spacebar while either creating or deleting roads will make buildings and trees semi-transparent which makes that task simpler. 

Anno Quick Tips - Online Game

These are the items I use in help to provide quick information in the Help Chat window. They are in short form on purpose to avoid overflowing the chat limits for text.

Stay tuned here for future updates and I will expand the explanations. Any topic that starts with a coloured highlighted title is in fact the link to the detailed page.

USEFUL BASIC TIPS…Google "anno quick tips-online game" (bitsbyBozoplay) and locate the coloured link titled USEFUL BASIC TIPS. These tips are basic strategy and tactics that can make your island perform better.

COLONIZATION...Google "anno quick tips-online game" (bitsbyBozoplay) and locate the coloured link titled COLONIZATION which is a detailed explanation of the procedure.

TRANSPORT...First time transport requires vassals 1500, upgrade harbourmaster to level 2, cap that pier with "dock", transport ship. Cargo is shared both ways--40/0, 30/10, 20/20, etc.

TRADE...First time trade requires merchants 250, trade ship for purchases, pier capped with trade storehouse. Go to harbourmaster office to start trade. Use production costs as benchmark for pricing.

ORIENTAL GOODS PRICING…Spice ranges from 187 to 426 and changes price every 40 minutes. Indigo ranges from 135-172, Silk is 2.8K-4.5K.

NOT MOVING IN...New population will not move in if services and materials are not fully satisfied. Click on a residence and look for black bars and build the missing service and/or supply the missing materials. Check road connections as well. Carpenters workshop is the first service required.

UPGRADE RESIDENCE...Achieve 250 pioneers. Click on one and mouse over the solid green arrow to see cost. All needs must be met to start any ascension. All bars must be fully green.

MOVING IN SPEED...Pioneers move in at 1 minute per person, 17 min for Vassals, 24 min for Merchants, 32 min for Imperials as long as needs are met.

GRAPHICS GLITCH FOR SERVICES...On non-Newport islands, vassals and higher can have all black bars but this is just a graphics glitch and the services work fine. Click on the small icon on the black bar and look above for the check-marks to confirm

WIKI...Load in another browser tab. Use calculator to determine what buildings you need for your current population. Timeline will show you all the population levels, upgrades and events.

VISITATION ETIQUETTE…If you have the ability to make buffs, then it is considered a courteous gesture to leave a gift upon visiting a friend’s island(s). Your buff works at 150% of normal time on a friend's work yard.

HOUSING UPGRADES...Look in Island Population (Upper Right) at the Ascension Rights Table. Build the number of Pioneer Residences in the far right column. Make sure all needs are met. When in doubt build more pioneers to ascend anything but keep pace with additional production buildings.

GOODS DELIVERY…Items requested to be delivered in quests will do so automatically if they are in stock on Newport. Just click OK or checkmark to accept.

CONSTRUCTION HELP QUEST…You must buy the wood with rubies which they forgot to tell you.

HERB ISLAND…To discover this island you need small discovery ship with capable sailor. Regular sailor cannot find an herb island or medium islands.

START A TREASURE HUNT…Activate your treasure ship from inventory and locate it next to the lighthouse located offshore of the harbourmaster to the southeast. Click on the ship and then the treasure button.

DELETING SHIPS...Go to the lighthouse and pickaxe the idle ships you no longer require.

GUILDS…They only allow for mail and chat at this point so they are not worth very much yet.

ONLINE HELP... Use the anno forum, and also google "Anno Quick Tips-Online Game" or "bitsbyBozoplay" which is my blog containing links to the specific page.

DISTRIBUTION TROUBLESHOOTING...Double-click the harbourmaster on any island to see if all production buildings light up green. Any red building denotes a problem; either road connection or no DH in range.

STORAGE FULL...Either your warehouse is full of that item or the local building is loaded and carts are busy collecting more needed items. Time will adjust that problem or move/build a DH closer.

MOST COMMON ISLAND SEQUENCE...Newport, Hemp, Herb, Wheat, Grape, Beeswax. (see details in "Anno Online Game Tip ISLAND HUNTING" in bitsbybozoplay)

ISLAND SECTOR COSTS...These are located in islands sector research costs (google "Anno Quick Tips - Online Game (bitsbyBozoplay) for the actual link)

RUBY PIT...Build it on any 3x3 square of build-able land. Converts uncut rubies into normal rubies. Pit can be upgraded with 2900 rubies to improve rate to 1:1 instead of 2:1 uncut to normal. Load uncut from inventory bag to start process.

I am just another game player and do not have any affiliation with Ubisoft, BlueByte or anno. This blog and all stuff about anno online are my personal observations and are meant to be a supplement to the forum and which is a terrific game assistant for all the facts and figures of the game. I highly recommend the calculator in the game to help you with the production/population balance.

Personally, I can't stand online forums because finding stuff there is like looking through the bulletin boards at big grocery stores--the stuff is there but you have to hunt forever to find it. This blog is formatted in Blogger which offers so much more flexibility than chat or forums can ever provide such as including proper links. I use photoshop with screen captures and edit them accordingly to focus on topics.