Hello everyone! I've noticed that a lot of people are seeming to have problems with this game so I'm here to give you a few pieces of advice that I've picked while playing it... This may not make a lot of sense since I tend to go out of order or on tangents, but I will try to keep it as streamline as possible.
Building your Village
***Star Rating - This is one of your primary goals, getting your star rating up. Every new star rating opens up something new that you can build or do that's important to your Village's growth.
One Star - (Re-arrange) This star is a must-have ASAP. Being able to re-arrange your horribly pre-positioned stuff is crucial. This also makes for lots of fun as you get to actually make your village look pretty.
Two Star - (Town Expansion) Comes at a great time because if you've purchased all the stores and built a few houses for your adventurers you're probably running out of space.
Three Star - (Cauldron) - I think this is at three star, though not 100%. Either way the cauldron opens up the ability to develop new items to sell in your store (or ingredients to upgrade your adventurers and buildings with).
Four Star - (Town Expansion II) Final town size upgrade, but gives you lots of space to have plenty of fun designing your village with.
Five Star - (Kairo Bot and Princess Prin) - These... are cool, but also kinda lame IMHO. They are job upgrades for a hero with 5 medals that basically make them so overpowered compared to everyone else that nobody can compete with them.
***Buildings - The Three basic stats for buildings (except weapon, armor, and accessory shops) are Price, Quality, and Appeal. Of these three Appeal is what I have found to be the absolute most important. Appeal is something you should focus on first. Second comes Price, and Quality is the final piece (and ultimately not all that important).
Appeal brings in customers, plain and simple. The more appeal, the more likely your adventurers will be using them. The Price is obviously how much they pay for using said store. High appeal + High price = tidy profit. Quality is supposed to occasionally raise an adventurer's satisfaction after using a store, that being said my strategy usually makes that a moot point. I have however noticed that high quality does tend to cause people to be repeat customers, although it could just be a coincidence.
Side note on levels - once you finish the game, you get to keep the levels of your buildings making them more popular next time you play.
***Placing Buildings - When placing buildings I will generally prioritize placement around increasing appeal. Buildings provide appeal to other buildings. Shrubbery (for lack of a better term) generally provides a mix of price and quality increase. That being said, with appeal being most important having large quantities of shrubbery is a bit of a waste.
I will generally have two columns of stores surrounded by a path on each side. Once it gets later in the game, you can have some lee-way and increase this to three columns with shrubbery in the middle (or in the case of things like the circus or castle, more stuff surrounding them).
Buildings gain their benefits from each of the items surrounding them (8 in total for a 1 square tile, 10 for a 2, 14 for a 4).
DD is a 4 square store, FF is a 2 square store
A is getting appeal from B, E, F, and the 5 path pieces surrounding it.
Each path is worth 2 appeal, most buildings are worth 10, with some being worth 5.
The weapon shop, armor shop, and accessory shop... These are interesting because they rarely get used. I don't know what it is about them that people hate so much, or why you can't upgrade their appeal - but the fact is they're basically useless and just take up space to provide appeal for other places.
Inn - Max this sucker out ASAP
***Important buildings - Continued!
I value any building that provides multiple stats or multiple of the same stat greater than other buildings. Buildings like the Circus, Castle, Library, Museum, Casino, etc... Which all provide multiple stats and usually 3+'s always get my upgrades first. If your heroes are going to spend money, you might as well make it worth their while.
A side-note, there are only three buildings that provide STR, and one that provides tough (there may be more than 1, but I haven't found it yet). I tend to upgrade these buildings first, and as soon as I get access to them.
STR: Combat School, Archery Ranger, BBQ Shop
Tough: Combat School
After that I tend to focus a great deal on the health increasing stores, because I want my adventurer's to live. Next up comes dex, to improve the number of attacks my guys will make, then lastly I tend to split between spirit and luck. Luck is fun because it gets you more treasure... to upgrade your luck stores with...
so to make a long story short:
Inn > STR/tough places > Health > dex > spirit > luck
There are several items that I put into the 'cauldron only' category. These are:
Cheap Bra, Bat Wing, Light Diamond, Chocolate Bar, and any pink item.
The reasoning for this is simple. Most of the useful recipes require a certain amount of DRK magic, which can only be obtained through the items listed above. Wasting other items in order to try to get more points or knowledge ultimately wastes your items since you end up waiting on the DRK magic a lot anyways. Side-note, there may be other items that provide DRK that I have not verified, this is just my short-list.
Heroes almost NEVER get any stat boosting items from me. By that I mean the 5th tab. Heroes will get presents from me all the time in the form of new (or older, explained later) weapons, armor, and accessories. The exception to this rule is the scrolls that will teach new spells to the heroes.
Buildings get all of my attention. I pick a building - upgrade it to the max, then move onto the next one. I'm sure that I don't do it in the most efficient way - but I haven't spent enough time to figure out what the values are for each building.
Notes: The Choise Herring says that it will upgrade appeal, but will not in most cases (I think it's based on the current level of the building). The Iron Pipe is similar in that it will not upgrade the quality/appeal of already high level buildings. These are not set in stone, but things to look out for.
Work, Work, Work! Seriously I cannot stress enough just how important this stat is over anything else. First off, every 10 work an adventurer has, their stats are boosted by 10%, up to a maximum of 100% of base (i.e. 200%). Secondly, adventurers who have a high work will come running when you offer a quest.
Side-note - First time I played, my work for most people was in the 20-30 range. I had 20 heroes but had problems getting 4 people to go on quests. In the 70-80 range, I would say it's rare that I get less than 7.
The Quickest way to increase an adventurer's Work is to give them presents. Things to remember when doing calculations:
*Medals are worth 10 work every time.
*Building adventurers a house is worth 15 work
Buy a hero a dagger (800g), then purchase them an upgraded weapon that suits them for a low enough price that you can re-do multiple times. I tend to use the fire axe (2700g). For a total of 3500g I can raise most adventurer's work by 5 or 6, and a few by 4. Mind you... Archers like bows, Casters like items that give magic... So it might be worth it to explore what weapon works best for what hero.
Yes, this costs a lot of cash. It's okay though... because if you followed my previous strategy of upgrading all your stores ASAP, you should have lots of cash.
I have found that stacking multiple classes ends up making them more powerful faster. I start everyone at adventurer once I get the chance to upgrade them, then just start going down the list. By the time they get to warrior they're already beastly... and their stats grow exponentially once they get up into the higher classes. I'm sure there's a better way to do this, but I just don't know what it is.
***Hero Quests & Monsters:
I'm pretty sure that there's a relationship between time, the number of quests you've completed, and the difficulty of the monsters. As time passes the monsters just plain get stronger (obviously). But I think that if you complete multiple quests in rapid succession (like I did once), the monsters actually improve even faster. This can be hard on your adventurers and they might not be able to keep up. I found early on that just completing the number of quests necessary, plus any of the boss quests (dragons), keeps it nice and easy for my heroes to kill things.
side-note: I've noticed that heroes tend to level up faster if you're not actually sending them on quests all the time.
For events, I usually use the ones that increase my popularity at first, then once I have a few adventurers I start doing the ones that improve stats. STR and TGH should be avoided if you have multiple mages as they cannot gain any. Health and Dex are excellent choices as everyone uses and gains a bunch from them. Luck is always good because everyone uses it as well, and then spirit falls into that iffy category, since magic isn't good unless you actually have spellcasters.
So I think I missed a few things but...
1. Build stores together, and ignore shrubbery - Appeal is more important.
2. Buy items from Pumpkin store
3. Develop specific items in cauldron (i.e. anything with DRK+)
4. Upgrade town buildings with items.
5. Buy weapon/armor/accessory presents for the sake of increasing Work
6. Repeat steps 2-5 until work is maxed, buildings are maxed, or you just wanna do something else.
7. Medals should be given to increase work as a stop-gap.
8. Do only the necessary quests to increase the town size, plus the occasional until you are strong enough to take them on. Heroes level faster without quests.
9. Use events to increase stats. Health > dex > spi/luck > str/tgh --- for best results.
10. Have Fun!
Anyways, I hope You liked my little rant! If you have any questions or comments please feel free to post below.
As dead as this board is, I found these tips incredibly useful. I managed to 5-star my village by the end of year 7 on my first run. Learned a lot though, and I imagine I could do it much faster my second go around. I'm really enjoying the progression in this game; it's very well-paced.
Someday, someone will best me. But it won't be today, and it won't be you.
thanks for your time posting this, greatly appreciated man