Tex's Tap Farm Strategy


With a "trumpet, trumpet" here, and a "trumpet, trumpet" there.

Old McDonald was never known for his Elephant farming skills, but if you like you can become known for it in Tap Farm.  Yes, you have an array of animals to choose from, including initially cows and chickens.  But after you gain some experience, you can raise pigs, rabbits, and turkeys.  But oddly enough you can also choose to raise dogs, donkeys, cats, horses, and elephants.   The level required to unlock the animals is included in the table below. 

Just as with the trees, your initial assessment of the value of farming animals may be pretty low.  If you calculate the costs involved, and put the numbers in a spreadsheet, most of your choices don't seem to return much in the way of coins, and they don't seem to be better than trees.  For example, unless I'm missing something, there isn't much point in keeping sheep on your tap farm.  (Insert joke about lonely farmers and a sheep here.)  A sheep returns half the coins per hour of even the worst crops, and additionally costs 3,000 coins to purchase.  Unlike trees, you can't fit more than one sheep in the space of a crop patch, and they would take 105 days to even pay back their initial cost.  The only animal you have available at the start that marginally beats cucumber farming for producing coins is the chicken, since you can squeeze sixteen of them into a patch.  But with the 2,000 coin purchase price, and lower experience production, they are clearly not worth it.

But fear not, because the numbers all change when you finally unlock the Black Cat somewhere before Level 26.

      Lvl 12 Lvl 16 Lvl X Lvl X Lvl 26 Lvl 31 Lvl 36 Lvl 39 Lvl 43
Animal Cow Chicken Pig Sheep Donkey Black Cat Dog Rabbit Turkey Horse Elephant
Cost       20,000         2,000        3,000         5,000           30,000        30,000        20,000        30,000        50,000     100,000     200,000
Harvest             750               70              85            100                 500           1,000              800          1,000          1,500          2,000          8,000
Hours to Harvest 48 48 72 96 48 72 48 72 72 72 120
Plants/Square 1 16 1 1 8 16 8 8 4 1 1
Profit/Hour         15.63           1.46          1.18           1.04              10.42           13.89          16.67          13.89          20.83          27.78          66.67
Profit/Hour/Square         15.63         23.33          1.18           1.04              83.33        222.22        133.33        111.11          83.33          27.78          66.67
Reap XP                  5                 4                8               10                    10                   8                  6                  9                11                15                16
XP/Hour            0.10           0.08          0.11           0.10                0.21             0.11            0.13            0.13            0.15            0.21            0.13
XP/Hour/Square            0.10           1.33          0.11           0.10                1.67             1.78            1.00            1.00            0.61            0.21            0.13
Cost to plant Square       20,000       32,000        3,000         5,000         240,000      480,000     160,000     240,000     200,000     100,000     200,000
Days to Payback Cost         53.33         57.14      105.88      200.00           120.00           90.00          50.00          90.00        100.00       150.00       125.00
Days to Beat Farming Cucumber     (121.21)   1,600.00        (5.86)         (9.71)           164.38        100.14          60.15        112.85        136.99       789.47       188.68
Convert profit cash to xp         12.50         18.67          0.94           0.83              66.67        177.78        106.67          88.89          66.67          22.22          53.33
Converted Total xp/hour/square         12.60         20.00          1.06           0.94              68.33        179.56        107.67          89.89          67.28          22.43          53.47
Total XP/H/Sq./Invest*1000            0.63           0.63          0.35           0.19                0.28             0.37            0.67            0.37            0.34            0.22            0.27

Raising Mongrels for Fun and Profit

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Some details on raising dogs changed in the last update, resulting in the deletion of Dog Kennels.  Please read the FAQ if you already have kennels, and read about Black Cats before creating any. 

Ah yes, the Dog.  Not to be confused with the purebred "Jack Russel Terrier" or the "Belgian Sheepdog".   No.  We're talking about just "Dog".  Kind of like you'd say "I'll have half a pound of Dog".  Anyway, Dog is where the money is at in Tap Farm!  I'm not exactly sure why farmers would be raising dogs as a cash crop on a farm.  To be charitable, let's assume that most farms are raising purebred puppies for placement in loving homes as cherished family pets.  Maybe they are breeders who raise pets with exquisite temperaments who are good around children and sell these at a premium price.   Or maybe some farms raise loyal, capable, intelligent border collies to be used on sheep farms herding sheep.  There is one disturbing oddity though... when you want cash from your dogs you can select the "harvest" tool -- a which is a grisly scythe.  And since Tap Farm has no incentive to raise sheep, I fear that investigation might find that dogs are actually being raised in crowded conditions to be sold as dogmeat for export to the restaurant industry.  But, I digress...

If you check the table above, you'll see that Dogs can also be crowded into a Kennel (like an Orchard for trees) of sixteen dogs in the space of one crop patch.  This means that the generous 800 coin harvest price turns into the highest coin rate of return (that I've unlocked so far).  It's two hundred and fifty times as profitable as raising sheep!  It's better than ten times as profitable as raising cucumber!  And if you check out the experience, it brings in a whopping 2.0xp per hour per square, which beats cucumber.  In fact, only two crops bring in more experience (garlic and artichoke), and that's only true if you manage to harvest and plant those constantly.  Thus, Dogs bring in more coins (than even Star Fruit), and at the same time bring in close to the highest rates of experience.

So of course, you'd like to fill up your farm with Dogs instead of crop patches.  Unfortunately, a Kennel of dogs costs a whopping $320,000 coins.  But as soon as you have a spare $320,000 coins and have reached level 27, there's no better investment.  You will earn your coins back in about 50 days, and in the meanwhile will be producing experience at a good rate, with harvests only required every two days.

Dog Kennels

Dogs can be raised in Kennels (groups of 16 Dogs squeezed into a single 4x4 area of grass) in exactly the same fashion as raising trees in Orchards.  Just as with trees, it's difficult to "harvest" the "ripe dogs". You can see the Trees pages for hints on how to plant Kennels in rows and to harvest them with crops to make it easier to harvest them all at once without missing Dogs. 

You can see the Dogs planted in rows of Kennels in the picture on the left.  Notice that their cheery faces look plump and ready for harvest... or do they?

Kennel Indicators

In fact, "ripe" Dogs look no different visually than the Dogs that are not ready for harvest.  This makes it hard to remember every couple days that you should be harvesting them, and tapping them with the arrow tool to check for their timing would result in harvesting one or two in the middle of the Kennel if they are ripe.  Then when you're harvesting, you don't know if you have to keep tapping that get that one Dog left in the middle, or if was one you accidentally harvested before. For this reason I recommend using an indicator for a group of kennels.  To do this, just move an Orange tree or Star Fruit tree (or anything with a 48-hour harvest time) near your Kennels and harvest it on the same schedule as those Kennels.  In the picture above, you can see the unripe indicator, and in the picture to the left, the Orange tree is ripe, indicating that those Kennels of Dogs are ready for Harvest. 

Using this indicator can show at a glance if you have to harvest that set of Kennels, or can just wait until next time you check on your farm.

Magic Beanie Animals

But what about all those other animals that were not listed above?  Well, the February 6th, 2010 update added a slew of new animals that can only be purchased for magic beans.  Those animals are listed below in a separate table because most folks won't obtain enough magic beans to purchase them in any meaningful number.  Instead folks may want to purchase one or two to use as decorations.  Unlike beanie babies, you probably won't want to collect them all.  But there are some pretty dogs and cats that would probably better make a trusted family pet than a hamburger patty.  Although personally, I'm a fan of pate de fois gras and I'm pleased to see that there is now a goose on the menu... er... list I mean.  Now if I can just find a funnel decoration.

If you do find the ability to purchase these in number, they still do not provide better coin returns than the coin-purchased animals, so you can safely stick to them for cash crops.  However, if do have beans to spend, you'll find that the Mallard Duck gives very good coin returns and can be penned into kennels of 16 per square.  The Beagles are a slightly better experience producer than the Mallards, and also produce respectable amounts of coins, so they are definitely my favorite.

Magic Bean Animals Golden Retriever Jack Russel Belgian Sheep Dog Beagle Beehive Pug Goose Lama Mallard Duck Long Haired Cat
Beans Cost                    10                 5                5                 5                    10                   5                  5                10                  5                10
Harvest                  200               50            100               50                 200                 50                60              300                60             250
Hours to Harvest 15 6 12 6 15 6 6 24 5 17
Plants/Square 8 8 5.333333 16 4 8 16 8 16 8
Profit/Hour              13.33           8.33          8.33           8.33              13.33             8.33          10.00          12.50          12.00          14.71
Profit/Hour/Square            106.67         66.67        44.44      133.33              53.33           66.67        160.00        100.00        192.00       117.65
Reap XP                      9               12              10               12                 10                  9                  9
XP/Hour                0.60           2.00          0.83           2.00                     -               1.67            1.50                 -              1.80                 -  
XP/Hour/Square                4.80         16.00          4.44         32.00                     -             13.33          24.00                 -            28.80                 -  
Cost to plant Square                    80               40              27               80                    40                 40                80                80                80                80
Convert profit cash to xp              85.33         53.33        35.56      106.67              42.67           53.33        128.00          80.00        153.60          94.12
Converted Total xp/hour/square              90.13         69.33        40.00      138.67              42.67           66.67        152.00          80.00        182.40          94.12

Let Slip the Dogs of War

Coming soon... my kennels of Dogs have been deleted, 2.7 million coins down the drain.  And the space efficiency of Dogs was cruelly nerfed...  I'm trying out herding cats, which pay back slower, but still allow efficient use of farmland.  Now one has to choose between long investment times, or efficient space use...

Guide for Powerlevelers

This section is still under development:

But...I have to admit... deep at heart I'm a powerleveler who doesn't have the time to properly do it.  But if you do, then this section is for you.

Powerleveling means getting to the goal in the fastest possible fashion -- enjoyment be damned.  After all, what is best in life?  Crush da enemies, see dem driven before you, and hear da lamentations of da women!  Well, there's no specific enemies to crush in Tap Farm, but the goal certainly has to be accumulate coins, levels, and magic beans in vast quantities.  So here's the recipe for your Red-Bull fueled Tap Farm Powerleveling Marathon:

Step 0:  Buy the huge farm.  (That's not a euphamism -- spend 3x $0.99 and buy the largest size farm available.)

Step 1:  Fill up your farmland with crops, spending all your coins on making more patches.  There is no faster return in the game than crops, so fill up your farm with patches.  Choose the crop with the highest coins per hour rate available to your level.  You want to create as many coins as possible so that you can create more patches and increase your coin production rate. 

Step 2: As soon as you fill up your entire farm with patches, switch to the crop that produces the highest rate of experience creation -- you want to get to Level 19 in a hurry.  Every extra coin that is produced by your crops should be immediately converted to experience, even thought it's at a low rate.  Currently, since this is Valentine Hearts, you'll need to intersperse cash crop to fund them.

Step 3: Once you reach Level 19, switch back to the crop with the highest Converted Total xp/hour/square available (currently this is Cucumber) .  This will allow you to produce coin and experience at the maximum rate possible for your farm using only crops.  You'll also be throwing off a small amount of coins with this farming that isn't used in farming.  Don't convert this to experience -- instead...

Step 4:  Invest in the animal or tree with the highest Total XP/H/Sq./Invest*1000.  Currently this means planting Orange Orchards.  Yes, you heard me right....Oranges.  There is no better investment of coins in this game after you fill your farm.  Trust me, this is the fastest way to powerlevel.  Just start converting crop squares to Orange Orchards as you get enough coins.  You can convert as much of your farmland to Orchards as you want -- ideally covering the entire farm with Orange Trees.  This will more than triple your farm's production compared to crops.

Step 5:  So now you're barely above Level 19, with a farm full of Orange Orchards, feeling like some kinda weird Floridian instead of feeling like Conan, right?  Well, here comes the better part -- With the huge income level you have now achieved (over a million coins per day), you can do what you wish.  Today you can convert a million coins to experience.  Do that two or three days in a row, and you'll be level 60.  Or you can spend a million each day replacing two Orange Orchards with Black Cats -- they produce three times as much.  You can ramp up the farm to three million coins per day, or use only one third of it filled with Cats to produce the same amount.  Then you can spend one million per day purchasing and arranging decorations.... and um... declare victory? :-)

Oranges vs. Dogs vs. Black Cats.  Which would win the fight?

A lot of folks are wondering, what's the best item to invest your coins into?  Well, that depends.  If you are just looking to create more coins, then there is no question -- Oranges win the fight hands down every time. 

Don't believe me?  Just look at the numbers.  Imagine that we have say 100,000 coins to invest.  If we invest them in Dogs, we'll buy five Dogs and plant 'em in the ground.  Fifty days later we'll have our Dogs and our 100,000 coins back.  That's 100,000 coins, and 2,000 coins per day income stream.

If we invest them in Oranges, we'll buy about 57 trees and plant 'em in the ground.  Fifteen and a half days later we'll have 100,000 coins back, and about 6400 coins per day income stream.  If you kept putting that back into Oranges every fifteen days, at the end of the same fifty days, we'll have over 230 trees, and 400,000 coins.  That's 400,000 coins (Oranges) versus 100,000 (Dogs) and 25,000 coins per day (Oranges) versus 2000 coins per day (Dogs).

So Oranges are clearly and obviously a better investment of coins.  They pay back their investment over a much shorter time than any other investment (besides crops).  The only other critical difference is in the space it takes to raise them.  In our example, the Dogs investment took only five spaces, whereas the Oranges required multiple Orchards, taking over eleven times as much room.  But if you're not limited in space, then this is not a real issue.  After all, what could you possibly be using that farmland for?  And when we're talking initial investments as you try to grow your fortune, converting a few spaces of cropland to Orchards is well worth it.  If you are bothered by the slight slowdown in production of experience by changing that space from Patches to Orchards, then you can always convert some coins to experience to make it up.

Longer-term, the space consideration is a reasonable issue to swing this consideration away from Oranges towards Dogs (or now to Cats).  This is because you can very quickly fill up large areas of farmland with Orchards, and you'll reduce your ability to plant experience-generating crops.  Since converting coins is tedious and time-consuming, you'll probably want to slow down your Orange Orchard investments after a few million coins.  At that point, you may want to start converting the Orchards to Star Fruit, or Cats by using the huge coin income revenue to purchase the higher-density items.  Let's face it, Cats are dense -- really dense.  They are three times as dense as Orange Trees, so you can get the same production using one-third of the space.  (Or alternatively, three times as much production in the same space).

So if you really want to plant huge Orchards of Star Fruit, or pen in huge Herds of Cats, then the fastest way to do that is to finance it with Orange Orchards.  Even if you plan to remove them all eventually, it's faster to get there with Oranges than any other way.  Take our example again.. say you invest 100,000 in Cats because that's your ultimate goal.  It will take 90 days before you double your investment and get back another 100,000 coins.  Alternatively, in the same 90 days you could invest in Oranges and double your investment over five times -- you could have 3,200,000 coins worth of trees, and 2,400,000 coins in the bank, and 200,000 coins per day of production.  It will take up half of the free small farm, but isn't that worth the space to get rich so quickly?