July 31, 2010

Huge Nerf to Job Energy:XP Ratios

As I am sure you will notice as soon as you log in, jobs in all cities now pay out less experience points for the same energy cost. On a few jobs the EXP:Energy got better, but the vast majority, including the two best jobs in game, suffered a big hit. Settle a Beef Permanently now pays out 69 XP (old: 73) and Battle Your Way Through The Temple pays out 379 XP (old: 403):



Now, this is the second time we've seen this nerf. About a month ago, Top Mafia Wheelman and Mastermind bonuses dropped from 11% to 10%.

There was a forum post on the official Zynga forums back when they first tried to implement the huge nerf with the changes to Top Mafia. XP:Energy ratios dropped to somewhere around 1.7-1.8 even for the best jobs. Players complained and their daily annual users dropped significantly.

They ultimately reversed it, but I noticed one curious post. One player recommended that they slowly nerf it over time, nicking a little here and there, until it was reduced to their desired level. One of the developers (who rarely posts) replied that he thought it was a great idea. And that is what it looks like they're doing.

Now, this is the second time they've done this, so they are sure to do it again. However, this is the real first nerf where players will start to feel it. Losing a few energy and experience points here and there did not really effect anyone greatly, especially when there were still a lot of repeatable jobs in game which paid over 2 XP:Energy.

Now however, there are no non-consumable jobs which have a high XP:Energy ratio. Energy account leveling is effectively dead, and no new players will be able to level up energy accounts. No new players will be able to reach end-game in any decent amount of time, and naturally players will quit Mafia Wars (just like any game) and move onto greener pastures. In my opinion, this is the beginning of the end of Mafia Wars.

Looking at the Monthly Annual User count, it experienced a huge spike yesterday:

http://www.appdata.com/apps/facebook/10979261223

but the Daily Annual Users (DAU) barely budged. Not sure what exactly caused the huge spike, but it seems they may have timed whatever the reason for this to coincide with this nerf as if the players wouldn't notice.

I think that the DAU will continue to drop over the next few days. Mafia Wars is far to old to be making all of these changes. It's a sinking ship (its a text-based game over 2 years old), so I think it's getting to be time to prepare to cut their losses and launch Mafia Wars 2.

Here are some things to think about for a future Mafia Wars:

- Level Cap

  • Would stop exploiters from reaching level 5983 if you could only hit level 100)
  • Would prevent it becoming "too late" for new players to join and reach the top
  • Would make new expansions much more exciting

- Automatic Stat Distribution
  • This would allow developers to actually balance a game since everyone has the same stats. You wouldn't have to tune the game to "punish" energy account or fighting account players. Everyone would have the same account.
  • Would keep players from breaking the game by stacking one stat exclusively
  • Customization of stats could be offered by small ways to gain points, like the Chop Shop
  • Would make players put points in stats like HP which are typically referred to as worthless
- Each expansion (new city), raise the level cap.
  • Raising level caps makes new cities more exciting. It's not "just another city" but a way to notice a significant increase in your character's strength while doing new content
  • The new levels would offer significant stat point bonuses
  • Raising the level cap would remove the barrier for entry for new players. By offering significant bonuses to stat points for new levels, everyone gets reset to roughly the same skill level. Older players enjoy some bonus skill points from daily activities and having better loot, but newer players won't struggle to reach the top
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Any other ideas for a new Mafia Wars? It is inevitable after all. Imagine yourself as a new player competing against other accounts that are level 2,000+. How would these new players ever even think about finishing Bangkok, which requires nearly 200 energy for some jobs? Not going to happen in this lifetime without an energy account.
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July 30, 2010

Fight Club Now Live - Loot and Info

"Fight Club" is now live - players are able to participate in this new game function. By that I mean you don't really have a choice, now when you fight, you are automatically entered into this fight club.

Now, when you fight, you will see this mastery bar (much like in robbing):


Each time you win a fight, you gain some mastery. I believe you have to win about 150 fights to advance to level 2, and it moves up from there. It does not seem to matter whether or not the enemy is alive or iced; both seem to give fight mastery points.

Sometimes when you win a fight, you will get a Victory Coin. Victory coins can be turned in to buy items at the Marketplace under the "Fight Club" tab. Here is the loot list:








Okay, so that is a lot of items! Here is the general gist of it:

- Earn Victory Tokens in Fighting and Tournaments.

- Unlock levels of Fight Mastery to access better rewards

- Buy things with your Victory Tokens in the Marketplace.

Based on the achievements, it will take about:

- 16,000 fighting wins to reach level 12
- 34,000 fighting wins to reach level 15
- 61,000 fighting wins to reach level 18
- 100,000 fighting wins to reach level 21

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Based off the sheer number of Victory Token requirements, it will take literally forever to get the 1,000 Tokens needed to buy something like the Nile Crocodile (57 attack, 37 defense animal). In short, we won't be getting much loot from the new Fight Club feature, unless you really want to use tons and tons of stamina.

Personally, I get bored of clicking "fight" and "attack again"; I don't think I'll be spending the few thousand stamina per day to fight people individually just for a single item.

There is one thing that interests me though! At level 20, it looks like players can purchase energy packs for 100 Victory Coins. Now that sounds like a good change to me!
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July 28, 2010

Mafia Wars Las Vegas Loot List

In Mafia Wars Las Vegas, the loot system is a little bit different. All of the new armor, weapon, animal, and vehicle pieces drop randomly from jobs in each district.

In other words, there is a set of about 5-10 items (I will refer to this as the "loot pool" for ease of reference), and by doing any job you randomly have a chance to get any of those 5-10 items.

With that said, here are the loot pools for each district (big thanks to Steven for putting this together!):

District 1

Moving Truck (vehicle; 12 attack, 20 defense)

Carver (weapon; 24 attack, 16 defense)

24k Chainsaw (weapon; 29 attack, 15 defense)

Football Jersey (armor; 10 attack, 28 defense)


District 2

Sand Storm (vehicle; 29 attack, 15 defense)

Bison (animal; 23 attack, 40 defense)

Road Tractor (vehicle; 25 attack, 33 defense)

Highrise Sport (vehicle; 29 attack, 38 defense)

Reinforced Boots (armor; 27 attack, 19 defense)

El Escorpion (armor; 40 attack, 30 defense)

Reinforced Tuxedo (armor; 28 attack, 34 defense)

Biohazard (weapon; 18 attack, 28 defense)


District 3

Pump Shotgun (weapon; 32 attack, 22 defense)

Classic Convertible (armor; 30 attack, 35 defense)

Motorcycle Helmet (armor; 22 attack, 32 defense)

El Escorpion (weapon; 40 attack, 30 defense)

District 4

Two Pair (weapon; 31 attack, 44 defense)

High Society (vehicle; 37 attack, 29 defense)

Femme Fatale (armor; 45 attack, 28 defense)

Ventilated Blast Cap (armor; 32 attack, 24 defense)

Belt Fed Shotgun (weapon; 27 attack, 36 defense)

Hard Four (vehicle; 30 attack, 50 defense)

Bark Scorpion (animal; 50 attack, 30 defense)

District 5

Dune Buggy (vehicle; 41 attack, 35 defense)

Set of Biker Leathers (armor; 30 attack, 48 defense)

Bighorn Ram (animal; 37 attack, 42 defense)

Precision SMG (weapon; 42 attack, 30 defense)

Range Finder Rifle (weapon; 37 attack, 54 defense)

Mojave Mike (vehicle; 40 attack, 53 defense)

---

I think this list is incomplete; if you have anything to add, please post in the comments. The best three pieces I have seen so far are the Bark Scorpion (animal; 50 attack, 30 defense), the Range Finder Rifle (weapon; 37 attack, 54 defense) and the Mojave Mike (vehicle; 40 attack, 53 defense).

I have seen the Bark Scorpion in District 4 and the Mojave Mike and Range Finder Rifle randomly in District 5. Players are claiming to have found pieces in all cities, but I have not been able to confirm this or noticed this myself. Anyone have any pictures?

Mafia Wars Las Vegas is also now live for all players!
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July 25, 2010

Las Vegas District 2: Paradise City

In this post, I will be discussing jobs, loot, progression, and strategies for working through District 2 of Mafia Wars Las Vegas: Paradise City.

Will start out the discussion with job tiers!

Jobs


In District 2: Paradise City, there are once again two job tiers: energy and fighting. You can use each path to independently access the property job and the boss, but once again you must complete both paths to get your mastery to the next level.

Fighting Jobs

Fighting jobs have changed a bit since the implementation of beta. Players can now choose between 3 people to fight (more chance of their being a weaker player) rather than only having 1 enemy to fight.


The strength of your opponent does not seem to matter as far as % job mastery goes - I always get the same % of mastery regardless of whether or not I win versus the strongest player on the list or the weakest player of the list. As a result, always attack the player with the smallest mafia when doing fighting jobs. In the picture above, I would be attacking "DON AIKEN".

In addition to now having 3 enemies for you to choose from, you now get some job mastery from losing these missions. You get half of what you would have gotten if you had won.

All in all, this change has made progressing through much easier. Despite that, these new missions require significant amounts of stamina. For example, the second fighting job on the 4th level of mastery for Paradise City requires 64 stamina per attempt and offers 4% for a job win and 2% for a loss. Players will need to spend 1,600 stamina to complete master the 4th level of mastery, and that is assuming they win every time. You will need about 5,000 to finish off Episode 2 alone!

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Job Loot:

Help a Bookie Out Of A Jam - Drops "Hot Tip". This is a consumable used for the "Clean Up At A Rigged Table" job.

Recruit A Table Game Dealer - This job is supposed to drop a "Casino Dealer" but at the time of this posting it seems to be broken.

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Boss

The Boss of District 2: Paradise City is Jimmy "Big Time" Mancuso. For defeating him, players will earn Mancuso's Shades:


Here are the stats:

Bronze Mastery: 62 attack, 80 defense
Silver Mastery: 64 attack, 90 defense
Gold Mastery: 68 attack, 105 defense
Ruby Mastery: 76 attack, 125 defense

Beating this guy the 4th time around was pretty tough for my energy character. He has a ton of HP and I imagine he is even quite tough on Level 4 for fighting-based accounts. Here is how I beat him, and you can apply a similar strategy to other accounts:

- Made sure I had 10 Shivs, Grenades, and Stun Guns

- Engaged the boss, used all my consumables, got defeated (don't run away, you have to lose if you can't kill him outright)

- Immediately went to New York where I spent tons of energy on Associate level jobs to quickly
farm up 10 more Stun Guns really quickly by spam-clicking "Do Job Again" over and over again.

- As soon as I got 10 Stun Guns, I healed and re-engaged the boss. If you are quick about this, he still still be injured from your last encounter.

- Used all my Stun Guns again and barely finished him off by the last use.

You can do this on all of the later bosses it would seem and do it repetitively. It might take 2-3 attempts, slowly whittling their HP total down each attempt.

It is truly a real pain though and I imagine they will eventually nerf some of these bosses HP totals (we are still in beta after all). There is no way even a good fighting account is going to take out a boss with 10,000+ HP and minions!
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July 24, 2010

Fight Club Tournaments

Even though I mostly play an energy account, I decided to investigate the new Mafia Wars Fight Club Tournaments.


The general gist of these tournaments are that you enter against other random opponents and fight in a bracket-style fight (single elimination) in order to see who the winner is. The winner then ends up with a collection piece, some $V, experience points, and Victory tokens (can be used to purchase items in the Marketplace under the "Fight Club" tab).

You can also bet $V on players (either yourself or others), which pay out odds based on their chance of winning.

However, it is a bit more complicated than that. On the next screen, you will see something like this:


So, apparently there are a ton of "weight classes", which are ranked below from easiest to hardest. At every "weight class" aside from heavyweight, there is a cap on your combined attack and defense (stat points) score and the number of members in your mafia.

Flyweight - capped at 10 attack and defense combined along with 5 maia members.
Bantamweight
Featherweight
Lightweight
Welterweight
Middleweight
Cruiserweight
Heavyweight - No Cap


However, in order to go to the higher brackets, you have to win in the previous rounds first! As far as I can tell, it is completely luck who wins in the early matches, given that everyone has at least 5 mafia and 10 attack/defense! That is the cap after all, so you can't go past that.

At any rate, within each weight class, there are three rankings: regional, national, and worlds. Each one seems to be more competitive (or at least you have a higher chance to lose). I'm not sure exactly how this works given the low cap (everyone should be at the cap in at least the first few matches).

I entered the regional championship and won. Here is what I got:


40 XP
10 "Fans" (determines your "Fame" and Rank - not sure what this does yet)
+5 Victory Tokens
+8,000 Tokens

I also bet the max on myself and won $V 300,000 back, which was pretty nice.

As far as Victory Tokens go, here is what the Fight Club screen reveals in the marketplace:


These items have some pretty good stats, but this is clearly very, very old. Who knows what the Marketplace will look like once they revamp this section (still has the old Top Mafia that appeared for a day or two!).



After winning at the regional level, the next match was nationals (still within the Flyweight bracket):


A little more expensive to enter... and I lost in the first round.

In between each loss, you must wait for 4 hours before you can enter again (or spend 8 Reward points!).

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How to Win Fight Club Tournaments

I think I may have stumbled upon the answer of how to win capped fight-club tournaments:

First off, obvi0usly you want "Your Entry" (total mafia number and combined attack and defense skill) to be equal to whatever the cap is for the bracket you are trying to enter. Take a look at the picture below:

"Your fighting score is determined by your attack and defense skills plus the combined attack and defensive strengths of one weapon, armor, and vehicle item for each mafia member that you bring to fight."

So, it looks like we are going back to the old system where the maximum attack and defense of a single item does not matter but rather the important number is the combined offensive and defensive score.

With that said, for best chances of winning, try to collect 1 of the following items for the class you are entering in:

Weapon: Plasma Rifle (created in the Weapons Depot). Combined score of 87.

Titanium Katar (drops in episode 7 of Bangkok). Combined score of 85

Armor: Royal Thai Marine or Ninja (drops on Bangkok Episode 7 and 6, respectively). Combined score of 82.

Vehicle: Day Rider 2K (built in the Chop Shop). Combined score of 95.

Lamang Motorcycle (drops in Episode 7 of Bangkok). Combined Score of 83.

Animal: Bark Scorpion (random drop from doing jobs in Las Vegas). Combined score of 82.

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I believe those are the 4 pieces best combined pieces that you can get multiple copies of without spending Reward points. I have included alternates for the Chop Shop and Weapons Depot categories as it will hard to get 500 of each of those pieces.

It is kind of funny after everyone (myself included) whined about how bad the Day Rider 2K was, but now it actually seems to have a use.

There are certainly better pieces out there, such as the Poison Dart Frog (animal with combined score of 96), which is a reward from the bonus spin of the slots. It seems that for the small brackets, having these items will go a long, long way.
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"Feds are Watching" Job put on Hold

Since some of you are asking about it, the Beat the Feds limited time event has been put on hold.

The gist of the event was that there were a group of 4 bosses that you could fight, upon winning you received an item with decent stats.

After you beat each boss once, you got an item which offered +1% to chip drops from Vegas fights. You then completed the Bronze level of mastery and could move on to level 2 and fight each boss again.

On Level 2, each boss got more HP and was tougher, just in Mafia Wars Las Vegas. After beating the bosses a second time, your weapon that you got from the first fight got upgraded in stats.

However, this job was pulled since it was really buggy and crashing the servers. Here is the official response:

"Hey all,

Just to clarify - this [the Feds job] has been delayed, not canceled. I do not have an official time frame for when the feds will return, but all players should be able to participate in this event in the future. I'll try to keep you updated when I get more information. Thanks for your patience!"

Will cover this event along with loot when it comes back to the game. Not likely to come back within the next few days I'd imagine.
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July 23, 2010

Lucky Stash - info and the story of one lucky bro

So, I logged in tonight to Mafia Wars and saw this message for the "all-new Lucky Stash progressive slot machine".


Okay, so basically this is a slot machine that you bet reward points on with a chance to win reward points. There are a bunch of different options, but basically in order to win the Jackpot you have to bet 3 Reward Points and hit one red Mafia Wars tag, one gray Mafia Wars tag, and one black Mafia Wars tag.

By hitting the Jackpot, you win thousands of reward points.. and it looks like the odds to hit the jackpot aren't all that bad, given there's been over 20 winners in the past few hours:


Now there are going to be some real sharks out there. Imagine if you won 20,000 Reward Points! That would be quite a few +stat points!

At any rate, when you win a pot, you get this message:


So by looking out for that message you can get more free spins in a day. You can also get free spins if your friends play and win, though I posted up that notice and am still waiting for free spins.

Each time you place a bet, you gain a small amount of mastery on the "bonus meter". It doesn't matter if you bet 1 or 3 Reward Points, it seems to increase by 1 block every time you spin the wheel.

When the bar gets full, you can click "Collect Bonus" and play another slots mini-game:


I spun the wheel and got "Loot". I ended up with a Poison Dart Frog (28 attack, 68 defense). Pretty high stat points:


At any rate, I had spent all 40 of my Reward Points trying to get the bonus to see what it was. I was just about to write off the slots, and literally with my last spin (I had 3 reward points left and bet 3) I hit it big:


240 reward points! Not bad at all! I decided to keep spinning.. and what do you know:



One more time! The question is.. do I spend them all again hoping to hit the Jackpot or walk away a winner?
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July 21, 2010

Mafia Wars Las Vegas Casino

In this post, I will try to get together all of the information for the Mafia Wars Las Vegas Casino. There are a lot of parts to the casino, so this post will be continually updated as I get more information. Any contributions via comments or e-mail are most welcome!

About the Casino

In Mafia Wars Las Vegas, players are able to build their own casino. Essentially, the player's Casino replaces properties/businesses for Mafia Wars Las Vegas entirely. The Casino is actually a mix of several different properties:

Slots
Table Games
Restaurant
Poker Room
Hotel
Vault

Each one of these properties is upgradeable much in the way the Chop Shop and Weapons Depot are, however, they only seem to produce $V.

Upgrades

Your Casino's individual properties are ranked on a star system, just like Casinos are in real life. Each property you build starts out with .5 stars (level 1), and each time you upgrade it, it raises by .5 stars. Your overall Casino's ranking is based off an average of the ranking of all your individual properties.

The max is currently for the entire casino and individual properties is 5 stars, which is equivalent to level 10. Each time you upgrade your property, it produces more $V and it occasionally it will a different graphic. Will have an example of this shortly.

Each property within your Casino needs pieces to be upgraded with special items just like the Chop Shop and Weapons Depot. Each Casino part seems to follow this pattern:

Specialty Item: 2 + Current Level * 2 (4 for the first upgrade, 6 for the second upgrade, and so on). This includes things like the Poker Tables or Chefs and also one item from the list below.

Cinder Block, Steel Girder, Concrete, Construction Tool: 1 + Current Level (2 for the first upgrade, 3 for the third upgrade, and so on). Note that each property requires extra of a certain item on the list. For example, the Restaurant requires extra Steel Girders, while the Table Games property requires extra Cinder Blocks.

Essentially, each building has its own specialty item (like Poker Tables for the Poker Room) which drop from specific jobs (listed under each property down below) along with the same other 4 materials listed above.

Cinder Blocks, Steel Girder, Concrete, and Construction Tools drop randomly from jobs (not sure if they are dropping outside of Vegas yet). You can also "ask for more" parts once every 24 hours just like with the Chop Shop or Weapons Depot.

Below I will cover each individual piece of the Casino.

Slots

The Slots property is unlocked by mastering the "Steal a Truckload of Slots" job in District 1 of Mafia Wars Las Vegas. You only have to master it in the Bronze tier to have access to the property. Once you have access to it, you can build it for free, and it starts out as a .5 star property.

To upgrade the slots, you will need the Slot Machine item, which drops from the "Steal a Truckload of Slots" job in District 1. Here are the Slot levels and payouts:

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Produces V$600 every 4 hours.
1 Star (Level 2) - Produces V$700 every 4 hours.
1.5 Stars (Level 3) - Produces V$800 every 4 hours


Table Games

The Table Games property is unlocked by mastering the "Recruit a Table Game Dealer" job in District 2 of Mafia Wars Las Vegas.

This property requires the "Casino Dealer" to upgrade. This item is supposed to drop from the "Recruit a Table Game Dealer" job, but I have not yet had it drop for me for some reason (bug I believe).

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Produces V$2,800 every 8 hours.
1 Star (Level 2) - Produces $V3,600 every 8 hours.
1.5 Stars (Level 3) - Produces $V4,400 every 8 hours.


Restaurant

The Restaurant is unlocked by completing the "Convince A Restaurateur To Leave Town" job in District 3.

The same "Convince A Restaurateur To Leave Town" job also drops the "Chef" needed to upgrade the Restaurant.

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Produces $V7,500 every 12 hours.

1 Star (Level 2) - Produces $V10,000 every 12 hours.

1.5 Stars (Level 3) - Produces $V12,500 every 12 hours.

2 Stars (level 4) - Produces $V15,000 every 12 hours.

2.5 Stars (level 5) - Produces $V27,500 every 12 hours.

3 Stars (level 6) - Produces $V32,500 every 12 hours.


Poker Room

The Poker Room is unlocked by completing "Hijack a Poker Table Delivery" in District 4.

This job also drops Poker Tables, which are needed to upgrade your Poker Room.

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Produces V$ 17,500 every 24 hours
1 Star (Level 2) - Produces V$ 25,000 every 24 hours


Hotel

The Hotel is unlocked by completing the "" job in District 5.

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Produces V$ 40,000 every 48 hours
1 Star (Level 2) - Produces V$ 55,000 every 48 hours

Vault

The Vault is a completely different property. At the Vault, you can store your $V, much like the bank. However, the Vault is different in that it has a limit (default is only $V100,000, which is very easy to get).

You can upgrade the Vault by collecting the following pieces:

Security Camera
Reinforced Steel
Deposit Box
Motion Sensor
Magnetic Lock

These items drop randomly from jobs and you may have some already from an old event. Level 1 requires 3 of each item and the cost goes up 1 item every half star upgraded (1 Star to 1.5 Stars requires 4 of each item, 1.5 Stars to 2 Stars requires 5 of each item, and so on).

In addition to holding your money, your Vault can convert your worthless New York dollars into valuable $V. Before you get too excited, note that this feature can only be used every 24 hours.

As you upgrade your site, the capacity of your Vault to convert and store $V increases. Here are the levels:

.5 Stars (Level 1) - Holds V$100,000 and converts $500,000 into V$1,000.

1 Star (Level 2) - Holds V$200,000 and converts $1,000,000 into V$2,000.

1.5 Star (Level 3) - Holds V$400,000 and converts $1,000,000 into V$2,000 and B$10,000 into V$2,000.

2 Star (level 4) - Holds V$800,000 and converts $1,000,000 into V$2,000, B$10,000 into V$2,000, and C$50,000 into V$2,000.

2.5 Star (level 5) - Holds V$1,500,000 and converts $2,000,000 into V$4,000, B$10,000 into V$2,000, and C$50,000 into V$2,000.

3 Star (Level 6) Holds V$3,000,000 and converts $2,000,000 into V$4,000, B$10,000 into V$2,000, C$50,000 into V$2,000, and $R50,000,000 into $V4,000.

3.5 Star (Level 7) - Holds V$5,000,000 and converts $4,000,000 into V$8,000, B$10,000 into V$2,000, C$50,000 into V$2,000, and R$50,000,000 into V$4,000.

4 Star (Level 8) - Holds V$10,000,000 and converts $8,000,000 into V$16,000, B$10,000 into V$5,000, C$250,000 into V$10,000, and R$50,000,000 into V$4,000.

4.5 Star (Level 9) - Holds V$20,000,000 and converts $12,000,000 into V$20,000, B$10,000 into V$2,000, C$250,000 into V$10,000, and R$200,000,000 into V$20,000.

5 Star (Level 10 ) - Holds V$50,000,000 and converts $24,000,000 into V$40,000, B$200,000 into V$40,000, C$1,000,000 into V$40,000, and R$400,000,000 into V$40,000.

Thanks Sachiko Yakusa for the info!

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At any rate, the list is definitely still very much under construction. Feel free to contribute any information you might get! I am currently now unable to play due to the lag since I'm sure a lot more people than normal are online and messing around either in Vegas or trying to get into Vegas!
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Mafia Wars Las Vegas District 1: North Las Vegas

In this series of posts on Mafia Wars Las Vegas, I will be discussing each district, loot info, and progression information. This first post about District 1: North Las Vegas will be a bit extended as I will be explaining some of the game mechanics that go along with the new chapters.

With that said, let's start with jobs!

North Las Vegas Jobs

As mentioned in an earlier posts, there are two ways to finish off a District's chapters in Mafia Wars Las Vegas. Here is a look at North Las Vegas' job tiers:



In the first picture, the "energy" pathway is highlighted. You will need to complete all the jobs highlighted in red to access the boss without spending stamina.

In the second picture, the "fighting" pathway is highlighted. You will need to complete the jobs in red in order to fight the boss.

The whole thing is weird because in order to progress to level 2 mastery, players have to master both tiers.

So rather than giving fighting-heavy characters a way around spending tons of energy to get tiers done, you actually still have to spend energy and now you have to spend stamina too. In the "ideal world" I suppose this is oriented in trying to make characters more balanced. In practice, it seems to still encourage energy (and now high stamina) accounts as you still have to spend tons of energy to finish content.

Fighting Jobs

Fighting jobs seem to cost quite a bit of Stamina (48 per job attempt on the final level of mastery on "Roll a Bingo Parlor" job.

Here's the thing: you can see who you are fighting before you actually click fight. You can then avoid tough-looking opponents and go for the easy targets. For example, when I go to the fight screen I might see something like this:


I can see "DON RON" has a full mafia and is almost level 700. He could have a lot of +defense, plus he typed his name in all capital letters, so that must mean he is a pretty tough guy. I can elect not to fight DON RON by refreshing the screen after about 15 seconds. Most of the time the target will change:


This guy only has a Mafia of 136. I know I can win easily, so I'll take that bet and be sure not to waste my 24 stamina.

If you lose the fight, you lose your stamina and gain no Job Progress. If you lose to a person and keep clicking fight, you will fight the same person repeatedly, so be sure to switch it up by refreshing the page rather than wasting all your stamina on the same target.

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Job Loot:

Blackmail a Car Dealer - Drops "Car Key". This is a consumable used for the "Secure Some Wheels" job, which is also in District 1 (energy pathway).

Steal a Truckload of Slots - Drops "Slot Machine". These are used to build your Casino.

That is it for job loot for North Las Vegas. Nothing to exciting on that front.

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Boss:

The new boss fight concept is a lot different than the old one. You appear to do damage now based off of your attack scores and take damage based on your defense scores.

Players and bosses both seem to do a lot of damage, so be careful. The boss starts off with just 500 HP and this increases over time.

Mastery Level 1 - 500 HP
Mastery Level 2 - 1000 HP
Mastery Level 3 - 1500 HP
Mastery Level 4 - 2500 HP

I was able to kill the first boss in one hit on the first time around. (noted earlier I thought it was a bug but rather it is working as intended).

Also, each level of mastery, I dealt less and less damage each hit and was taking more and more damage each hit (his defense and attack also went up from level to level).

By the third level of mastery, the boss was killing ME in one hit, but you are able to get around this pretty easily. Just use the Stun Gun every round for a free hit. I used 7 Stun Guns to kill him on the final level of mastery without taking a hit. Seems kind of silly but that is how the game works, at least for now.

Each time you beat the boss, the mastery item (Alves' Muscle Car) increases in value:



Here are the reward's stats throughout the levels:

Bronze level mastery: 55 attack, 73 defense
Silver level mastery: 61 attack, 83 defense
Gold level mastery: 73 attack, 94 defense
Platinum level mastery: 81 attack, 105 defense

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That is all for District 1. More information tonight!
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Mafia Wars Las Vegas Beta Now Live

Players can now head over to Mafia Wars Las Vegas!


New Jobs

First up, let's talk jobs. There are 6 new episodes, which are now called "Districts" and they are much different than before.

First, note the new pathing system:


Out of these, any job that has an energy icon requires energy, and a gun requires stamina. The Person icon is a boss fight, and the loudspeaker icon is a "social" job (did not seem to have any interaction yet when I used it, but it is in beta).

Here is an example of the fighting job:


The game pulls up a random person off the fight list and you fight them; if you win the fight, you complete the job. Not sure what happens as you lose as I haven't yet. One good thing is that you don't lose health for spending stamina for these jobs.

At the end of the chapter, you get to fight a boss:


I hope the feature was not working properly, because as soon as I clicked "attack" I got a notice saying that I won and that was the end of it.


For taking down the boss of the North District, I received this item: Alves' Muscle Car with 55 attack and 73 defense. I think I saw a message saying something about that this item gets better if you master more tiers.

Casino

The other new cool thing is the Casino.


Basically, there are 5 different properties + a vault that all make up your casino, and you will have to upgrade each one individually. You also have to unlock the buildings via jobs. For example,


"Steal a Truckload of Slots" lets you build the Slots casino property. You build the parts of your casino just like you do with the Chop Shop.

Racks of Chips


You can exchange these on the inventory page, 1 at a time. They are worth 200-700 $V each.

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I have to head off work now, but will be updating this a lot over the next few days!
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July 19, 2010

Mafia Wars Las Vegas Beta "Almost Here"

I don't know if anyone has checked the official Facebook fan page lately, but it was just posted a few hours ago with the following comment:

"Vegas Beta is almost here! More jobs, more properties, and more fights coming your way. Are you ready for Sin City?"

See the original post here.

Looks like Mafia Wars Las Vegas is not too far off. South Africa and Jimmy Vegas events over, I figure we will have Beta access to Las Vegas very shortly. We have to, after all, because normal Vegas was supposed to be "coming late July" and it is already July 19th!

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I am sure some of you have seen this Mafia Wars "Feds are Watching" banner. Not exactly sure what this event is, but it starts in 2 days and 6 hours. Will find out soon enough!
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July 16, 2010

Vegas Jackpot Weekend

So, as many of you have pointed, our new Mafia Wars Las Vegas "Jackpot Weekend" is actually the same thing as our previous Las Vegas loot weekend!

You can collect 7 items between fighting and doing jobs (the same items as before):


Stage Show Tiger (animal; 28 attack, 50 defense)

Casino Guard (armor; 48 attack, 28 defense)

Suit of Suits (armor; 46 attack, 24 defense)

High Roller (vehicle; 46 attack, 23 defense)

Royal Flush (weapon; 48 attack, 25 defense)

Big Blind (weapon; 52 attack, 25 defense)

Viva Las Vegas (weapon; 27 attack, 50 defense)

and the reward for collecting the 7 items:

Jackpot (weapon; 30 attack, 54 defense)

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You can only get 10 of each item it seems, so if you hit the Las Vegas loot item cap before, you cannot collect new items.. foiled again!

In other news, this weekend for the third weekend in a row is a double fighting loot / double job mastery weekend. Players will earn twice as much loot in fights and they will earn twice as much mastery on jobs.

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In another news note, Mafia Wars South Africa has been extended by a day. Players now have 2 more days to finish up.
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July 14, 2010

Las Vegas Jackpot Weekend Starting Friday

Looks like we are in for another round of double job mastery, double fight loot, and a "special bonus" where we will be able to collect Mafia Wars Las Vegas loot. I am going to go out on a limb and assume this will be different from the Whack the Rat Jimmy Vegas mission.

We will find out shortly. It starts Friday (guessing Friday night). Looks like they are really pushing players to finish Bangkok with all this double loot. I will not be surprised if we end up with a bunch of free $B, since that is the real bottleneck rather than Job Mastery.
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July 13, 2010

Challenge Mission South Africa Chapter 3

Chapter 3 of Challenge Mission South Africa is now live.

Job List / Cost:

Insert Your Crooked Refs: 10% job mastery per attempt, 3/4/5 Counfeit Ticket Cost

Push The Favorite: 9% job mastery per attempt, 4/5/6 Counfeit Ticket Cost

Flip The Switch On The Final: 8% job mastery per attempt, 5/6/7 Counfeit Ticket Cost

Collect From The Bookmakers: 7% job mastery per attempt, 6/7/8 Counfeit Ticket Cost

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You will get an extra 60 Counterfeit Tickets for adding 2 people to your Mafia. Also, the collection rate is now 40 Counterfeit Tickets every 24 hours.

The reward for finishing off Challenge Mission South Africa Chapter 3 is the Penalty Kick (vehicle; 110 attack, 59 defense).
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July 10, 2010

Las Vegas - Whack the Rat Jimmy Vegas Event

The Mafia Wars Las Vegas limited time job, "Whack the Rat Jimmy Vegas", is now live in game. The standard format is being used: choose between a 5 minute, 8 hour, and 24 hour job, complete a collection, and get an achievement.

1. Master Jimmy Vegas event to 100%.

Pretty straight-forward - do the limited-time jobs! Here is the job list:


The 5 minute job will provide you a lot of mastery points if repeated regularly, but it will cost you the most energy. The 24 hour job has a low energy cost and pays a lot of EXP, but only provides 20% mastery. It is a good idea to do at least some 5 minute and 8 hour wjobs prior to switching over to the 24 hour job.

Each job can also drop loot pieces:

Hack Into Hotel Records - Padded Heavy Jacket (armor; 28 attack, 24 defense)
Bribe A Guard For Roof Access - Trio Berella (vehicle; 32 attack, 23 defense)
Position A Sniper - Field Rifle (weapon; 28 attack, 38 defense)

For mastering the job to 100%, you get Jimmy's 220 Sunset (vehicle; 48 attack, 23 defense)

2. Complete the Slots Collection

Just like with other similar events, the Slots Collection is spread between the limited time job, normal jobs, fighting, and gifting. Here is the item list and where they can be found:


Liberty Bell and Lucky 7: Jimmy Vegas Job
Plum and Lime: Normal Jobs (any)
Triple Bar and Cherry: Fights (any city)
Orange: Received as a free gift

The best way to get the Jimmy Vegas collection pieces is to do the 5-minute job. That way, you will earn on average 2-3 items per hour (you only earn an average of .06 items per hour with the 8-hour job and .04 items per hour with the 24-hour job! Don't rely on the slow jobs to get both of your collection pieces.


The Reward for vaulting the Slots Collection is the One-Armed Bandit, an armor with 28 attack and 50 defense.

3. "What happens in Vegas" Achievement

This automatically completes once you finish the previous two requirements.

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Also, it looks like this weekend is another double mastery / double fighting loot weekend. Looks like they are really trying to speed players through content so everyone can get to Las Vegas. Unfortunately, I think most players are bottle-necked by $B rather than energy.

Oh, I got Las Vegas VIP Access, doesn't seem to do anything though.


Will update when it does!
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July 9, 2010

Las Vegas Early VIP Status

Players now have a chance to compete in order to get early access to Mafia Wars Las Vegas (called "VIP Status"). On the travel menu, you will notice the option to fly to Las Vegas is now available. After doing that, you end up on this screen:


By clicking on "Try for VIP Access", you have a chance to get into Mafia Wars Las Vegas a bit early. Here is how it works:

1. Click the "Try For VIP Access" link on the Mafia Wars Las Vegas homepage.

2. This screen will be brought up:


3. Based on the amount of poker chips you have, you will automatically default to this screen. You can then click the "Try for Access" button to see if you luck into getting into Mafia Wars Las Vegas early.


4. As you can see from the picture above, I was not selected. Your chips do not get used up for trying this. You can try again every 22 hours.

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Note that the more Racks of Poker Chips you have, the better your chance to get in is. However, this caps at 50+ Racks; once you are that high, adding additional racks will not improve your chances. Additional racks will be converted to Vegas Poker Chips (Las Vegas currency) once the game goes live though, so there is no harm in collecting more than 50 stacks of chips.

You can only accept 10 Racks of Poker Chips per day, so it may take you a few days to hit the 50+ Racks of Chip limit.

Some new information about Mafia Wars Las Vegas has also been posted up:


The first thing I see is that we now have a release date for Mafia Wars Las Vegas: Late July 2010. Considering its already over a week into July, that means are are liable to see Las Vegas released in less than 3 weeks. Not bad at all!

Additionally, under the Choose your path category, we can see that there seems to be a more of a Tiered system of jobs that is quite different from from what we have seen in the past. Rather than choosing between similar jobs, its seems players will have an option of picking either stamina or energy jobs. As I predicted, it looks like we will see some jobs that use stamina rather than energy. Very interesting!

Additionally, there is a bit more info about the Vegas Casino - seems it will be producing Vegas Chips. Additionally, the Fight Club feature allows players to compete and "place bets" on fights.

It looks like currency will once again be pretty important. I hope this means that we will be able to buy loot with Vegas Chips rather than them saying we need a lot of chips to complete the jobs.
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