Your friends list (FL) is a strategic part of the game, and you ought to utilize it as such. Before you can do that though you need to know what kind of a strategy you want to employ, and that’s going to be based on how you play the game. While these certainly aren’t the only ways you can utilize your FL, I’m going to go through what I consider to be the more common ways: Sniping, Aiding, Tavern Visits, Trading, and Truce Tower.
First and foremost, the number one thing to remember is you can only send out invites to be your friend (the Friend Request or FR for short) if you have 79 or less people on your FL at the given moment. You can however accept up to 140 friends to be on your FL. This means once you have 80+ friends that you can only accept FRs, and cannot send them out unless you remove folks from your list to get back down under 80. It is wise to cull your FL from time-to-time to keep only active players on there, but chances are you will eventually get to the point where you cannot send out any more invites. It is also for this reason that many players do not have Guild Mates on their FL, because they can already assist you with everything except tavern visits via your mutual membership in the same guild. In this way one can maximize the use of their FL, and they should!
So, lets get into some of the different builds I mentioned above. Again, these aren’t the only way you can cultivate your FL, but they are what I feel are the most common ways.
To snipe [a GB] means to spend less FPs on it than you ultimately will receive back. This can be done with or without Arc, but it is much easier to do with a leveled-up Arc. The standard lock rates are 1.8, 1.85, and 1.9. Anything below this would be considered a snipe if someone is using locks to level up their GBs.
If you are a person who is avidly sniping and uses this to bring in a lot of FP income, then you will want to consider outfitting your FL to facilitate this. You will want to send out FRs to folks who seem to be self-levelers and fairly active, or who are just don’t care as much about their GBs being sniped, so that you can consistently farm their GBs for FPs. They may not be the best aiders, and they may not be higher-era for use with a Truce Tower, but if you want FPs from sniping as a constant then this is a sure-fire bet.
As these folks stop leveling their buildings as quickly, or get to where they have no more benefit to you, it’d be wise to drop them in favor of someone who does.
Keeping your productions going efficiently, at least as far as event buildings go, often requires them to be motivated with aid. The higher era you end up in with more space and more buildings, the more aid you’re going to require and thus the more active aiders you will want in your FL. Ideally what you’re looking for are folks that aid you 3x or more a week, better if they’re a daily aider. You can check this using the event log in your town hall, which you can filter down to social interactions. It keeps a log of the past six days time, which allows you to really see who is helpful and who isn’t. In addition by returning aid via this list you can easily see who isn’t aiding you at all by the lack of the aid button below them not changing to a timer after you’re done. Consider tossing these individuals in an effort to get better aiders onto your FL if your city is starting to struggle and you’re using Self-Aid Kits frequently.
Tavern Visits Build
Similar to the Aid build, a Tavern Visit build prioritizes having folks who sit in your tavern. Depending on how much you rely on your tavern silver for boosts will determine how valuable this build is for you. One thing to remember with this particular build though is that you also need to be on fairly regularly to empty your tavern when it gets full so that more folks can sit. If you aren’t able to do this, then it’s not going to be as efficient. Since you can’t really tell who is and isn’t visiting your tavern by visiting theirs in return (since it might be full or you could still be sitting there), the best way is to aid those who have sat in your tavern (using the event log again) and then seeing who you haven’t aided. Like the Aid build, if you aren’t getting any tavern sits from someone in the last six days it’s probably safe to remove them from your FL and make room for someone who will sit in your tavern. The trick is finding those who will, because the only way to know for sure is to add them and see. Usually though it’s a safe bet that if they’re aiding you, they’d sit in your tavern as most do those two actions simultaneously.
If you are someone who likes to do a lot of negotiations and you have goods to trade with, then optimizing your FL to facilitate trading is going to be important. Your guild can likely only support so much of what you need, or you’re trying to perhaps trade goods down to dump into the treasury, so you’ll need an outside source in the form of friends. While you can trade with your neighborhood, keep in mind that it’s hit-or-miss and they’ll only be the same era (or close) as you. To trade down higher era goods you’ll need to cultivate a FL that’s good for handling that by getting higher-era players on it. Chances are if you aid regularly, they’ll be willing to add you in because they need the motivation for their buildings, and it’s a win-win situation. As you age up your needs here will change, and at that time you may see fit to change up your FL.
Truce Tower Build
Truce Tower (TT) is a GB that gives 1 good per aid equal in era to the building or decoration that you successfully motivated or polished, respectively. Using Truce Tower effectively is a long game with goods, but it can be a powerful game since you’re getting them for free. Your FL will need to be developed to have folks in the eras which suit your needs, whether this is gathering lower era goods for some unknown purpose or gathering higher era goods to trade down into tons of stuff that you (or others) need. Either way, the goal here is to add folks to your FL in eras that you want goods for. Similarly, as you age up or they do you may find it’s time to recycle them off the FL and get fresh meat on it.
As you may be noticing with some of these builds it is easy to combine them together in some cases. For example, a TT Build will go well with both a Trading and an Aiding build. Aid and Tavern can go hand-in-hand. You can use Aid with Sniping to help see if folks are active (to an extent). So on and so forth. So don’t feel like you have to pigeon-hole yourself with just one build, you can mix and match for sure! Just keep in mind that you will want to note what your main goal is if you want to optimize your FL effectively. So if your main goal is getting Aid, but sometimes you snipe, then a person who aids regularly is more important on your FL than one whom you are able to snipe regularly, for example. Ultimately the choice is yours, but this is just another tool you can use to further your abilities in FoE.