So, you're wanting to get into the wonderful game that mixes up the wonderful up the Marvel Universe with a Battle System of Pokemon and the social aspect of Face book? Well you should look no further then the Avengers Alliance!
All joking aside, a great game with an addiction nature, there are a LOT of things a newbie should learn and have under their belt if they're going to be any good at the game, much less stand along side the sides of Titans of the lv 300 min-maxers at the top of the game. While I don't know everything and I'm still learning myself, I will do my best to show off what I DO know and help you all progress in the game!
Started the Game, What do?
When you first get into the game, there are a lot of things you need to understand. While the tutorial does a half decent job of explaining what you need to know, there are things that I really think should be made out clear as a bell to new players, so you know better and thus don't waste time/money going through things like a lot of the rest of us have.
The first thing you should familiarize yourself with is the resources of the game, of which there are five: Silver, Gold, Command Points, Shield Points, and Unstable ISO. The sixth icon is Lockboxes, but that's not exactly a resource and we'll get to it eventually.
Silver is the most basic of the resources, the easiest to farm for, and the one spent on most things. Most importantly, you'll need a hefty chunk of coin for leveling your Heroes, as the price for them grows with each level, Maxing out at 300,000 to get to lv 12. You can also use silver for research, buying items from the store, and upgrading your Flight Decks, but we'll get to that in a bit.
Gold is basically the resource that is, more or less, what real money equates to. You CAN pay for Silver, but it's so easy to gain so why bother? Most of the gold you'll get if you're not paying for the game will be from Leveling up, the occasional daily spin, and a few events here and there. A LOT of the things in this game can be bypassed by gold, and if you're willing to lay down the money, you can easily gain high power for little effort, but otherwise, Gold should be saved and horded. The reasons? We'll get to that in a bit.
Command Points are the resource that are used to buy the Heroes in the game. They can and should be farmed for (more on that later) though if you want to, gold can be turned into Command Points at a rate of 1 gold for 2 command points. General consensus is that while it's ok to turn gold into Command Points, it should only be done if you haven't unlocked the areas that allow you to farm for them easily.
Shield Points are the other resource, along side Silver, that is used for your Heroes to level them up. This resource is mostly obtained from going to your allies cities and clicking on their buildings, gifting them to each other, and clicking the 'Get Bonus' option when you see your friends post accomplishments from the game on their walls. You can also use them for research, but again, we'll get to that in a bit.
Lockboxes, though not a resource, are something special. Given out as rewards during events such as the Special Ops and PVP, occasionally obtained as a daily gift reward, Lockboxes are there to give you the chance at comic book covers. These covers, when you've collected 8 of them, will unlock a special hero, all of which have been/are villains of the Marvel Universe/the game itself. Lockboxes have a 7% chance to hold a cover if you open one, a 100% chance to open a cover if you open 10, can duplicate previous covers that you have (in which case they'll give you a 10,000 silver if that does happen), and can also carry pretty much anything else in the game including weapons, socketable iso, and one time use items.
The Golden Touch
Let put this out on the table right now. Marvel: Avengers Alliance, especially in pvp, has MAJOR Pay-to-win problems. If you're willing to put out the money, which turns into gold, you pretty much can buy power, especially at the lower levels of play. At higher levels, it balances out a bit, but there's still a clear advantage to those who are willing to hock up the cash. That said, for the vast majority of us, we don't have the green to turn to gold, so instead, we've got to take what we earn through leveling up. As such, Gold is a much more finite resource, and needs to be spent carefully.
That means, in the end, a LOT of the things the game tries to sell you is there mainly to charge as much as they can from you. It IS a Facebook game. Really, you should be quite miserly with your gold, spending it ONLY when you feel it necessary. My own personal opinion on them is that they should be saved for Lockboxes, SpecOp Tasks, and CP in a pinch.
R&D Is a Load of Bunk
Pretty much as the title says, while the game is all about researching stuff and using the items to boost you up, in the end it's actually all pretty useless. Why do you ask? Well, because of your level.
You see, it's actually quite easy to level up in this game, especially if you focus on it. As such, all those items you unlock, be they weapons, suits, one use items, or even ISO-8 are effectively useless to you as you'll outstrip their usefulness almost immediately. And considering you'll still get those items, weapons and ISO-8 off of bosses, Deploys, and the like, youll be fine till lv 125.
Why Lv 125? Because that's when you can research the Reactive ISO-8 and the Trenchcoats, both of which are pretty much the peak of their respective items. The Trench coats are what you'll most likely be using for your agent from that point onward, and Reactive ISO-8s, which change their stats determining on your level, need to be replaced every so often or so and they both costs Silver And Shield Points, so this is where a majority of them will go towards.
Really, the only time you should ever really be researching anything else is when you are in the middle of a PVP season, where every advantage helps.
Flying Sky High
One of the best ways to get silver in the game is the Flight Deck. Right now, the best way to earn money fast is to send your heroes out on 20 minute flights, though since you're going to be both few heroes and few ships, this will be a bit constrained. As you level, though, both will grow to be an extremely viable source of Silver in the game. It's also the major reason why you'll be want to level your heroes, outside of the hefty pvp they'll give, as a lv 12 hero (The max level for heroes) will give a 90% bonus to the amount of silver you get from a flight mission. And since you're saving your silver for Heroes and Higher level ISO-8, this means you'll have lots and lots to spend when it really maters.
And speaking of PVP...
How come only one hero get's to join me?
One of the rewards you get for unlocking PVP is getting a free hero out of a selection of five: She-hulk, Iron Fist, Ms Marvel, Invisible Woman, and Cyclops. At the exact moment of this writing, Cyclops is by FAR the best hero, thanks to his recent buffs to make him the 'I attack all the time, every time hero'. Seriously, between allowing your entire party to get an additional attack off AND counter attack, and negating the enemies class specializations, Cyc's an asset to ANY team.
If you really don't want Cyc, though, I'd suggest Iron Fist or Invisible woman. Fist will help round out your team, giving you your first scrapper, and he's a very useful one at that, being able to hit hard, heal, and has a forever stacking buff in his lv 9 skill. He also has a new alternate suit coming up which is sure to make him even more useful. Invisible woman's also a fantastic supporting hero, with powerful shields that can protect your entire party.
Facebook allies are actually USEFUL?
Ok, while it is a little mean to say that they're completely useless in other Facebook games, here, having allies really helps you towards getting stuff in the game. Not only does having a lot of allies help you pilot your Flight Deck ships (which is needed to help level them up), but you can also get Shield points from their towns, useful items like the Lost Pages, and when SpecOps rolls around, additional ISO-8. This is on top of their Distress Calls, which with higher level agents on your team, can easily lead to them one shoting the guys you might be fighting. On this particular site, the Find Allies page is one of the best places to go to fill out your friend list!
And since I have mentioned it a few times, let's get to the Unstable ISO-8 and SpecOps.
Special Ops: Because their Special
SpecOps are a special event that take place in the game that give the players a series of tasks for some pretty neat rewards. These rewards are items that you can only obtain from these tasks, special weapons and gadgets and eventually a brand new hero who is usually the focus of these SpecOps. Every Hero that you see in the Team List that says 'Expired' on it was a SpecOps hero.
To do these tasks, you've got to spend Unstable ISO-8, usually colored specificity for the mission, to go through and fight the creatures of these special missions. You're usually given about four to five hundred to start the tasks, but the rest must be gotten from either your allies, either through their towns or their gifts.
These heroes, considering their more or less free as long as you do each task given to you, should be priority ONE on your list. While these heroes are made available again on sale, it's usually for a large number of command points (Most commonly 200) and are there for an extremely limited time. This is also perhaps the best place to spend your gold, as it can be a bit time consuming/expensive to do tasks, seeing as the final one ALWAYS requires you to have a certain number of heroes deployed to fight a special boss. Seeing as one of those heroes is, by my research, almost always a PVP hero (which runs at 135 CP), it might be easier to try and simply pay out the gold to finish that task over trying to get the heroes. Again, use your best judgment here.
Five out of Five Stars
Probably the last thing that must really be known before heading into the game proper is the Mastery/Star ratings for chapters. As you complete the threats, deploys and bosses in each mission, you're given a certain amount of points. These points will give you a Mastery Star, with more stars showing you've done that mission lots. Master star bonuses include the following:
One Star: 250 silver
Two Stars: 1000 Silver
Three Stars: 100 Xp
Four Stars: 1 Gold
Five Stars: 5 Command points.
Now before you go off five staring every mission there is a bit of a penalty for doing so. You see, once you've five star a mission, the game will level the Mission to be equal to your own level. Which means, for example instead of being able to easily stomp the otherwise simply Lv 1 enemies while you're lv 50, you're fighting them at lv 50 as well. This can be quite time consuming, especially if you five star one of the missions that you could otherwise use to farm Command points. That said, if you five star EVERY single mission (Including the premium ones that require specific heroes), you'll get a golden weapon from the game, which will actually level WITH your agent and never weaken in power as your other weapons do. It's best to do your research when it comes to what to max and what to avoid.
I hope you all enjoyed my little beginners guide to Marvel: Avengers Alliance. If I was able to help just one of you in the game, I'm glad. If you've got any suggestions for the guide or places where I should Improve, please don't be afraid to point it out! Till then, This is your friendly neighborhood Pokeprof saying Adios!