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Map Runs

There have been some great guides written about using maps including
You should read those first.

But I haven't seen a comprehensive guide on how to make the most of maps - any kind of maps whether it's adventure maps, space maps or alliance maps. Long time players call these "map runs".

But first a primary on the standard map types

When you activate a map, it's only active for a limited time. For example, a map to Tollan is only active for 6 hours. But the flight takes 6 hours.

Note: The Spirit of Adventure bonus triples the amount of time a map is active for. However, with the smaller planes it's easy enough to complete map runs with some planning and this bonus should not be necessary. Since they are pretty hard to obtain, you may want to save them for the longer, more difficult map runs.

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So, if you had 10 owls and sent them all out to Tollan, they would return only after the map had expired. So you would eventually have to get 10 maps to Tollan and fly the 10 flights to make 3 stars on the destination.

But stars are the least of the benefits to flying any maps (although I really like collecting stars). We really fly maps for the collection items they drop and the rewards from those collections. As @VdW mentioned, the reason for flying to Tollan is to ultimately get the Aztec Pyramid. And you have to get each of the items in the collection 6 times to collect one pyramid - 6 items from 5 destinations.
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But you won't get 10 obsidian knives from 10 flights to Tollan. The drop rate isn't that great. Out of those 10 flights, you might be lucky if you got 2.

And you want to have 6 Aztec Pyramids in your city because of the bonuses - increases maximum population by 50 and drops a collectible item every day. So to get 6 pyramids, you actually want to get 36 obsidian knives, and 36 of the items from each of the other destinations. Oh, and the Large Bronze Chests are a great side benefit

So ... let's talk about how to do that - get all stars and 36 or more of each item - all at once. Yes, from just one map. This means you will have to speed up flights with fuel to bring it back before the map expires so you can send it out again.

The first thing you need to do is figure out how much fuel and passengers you will need for the flights needed to get 3 stars.
  • Tollan requires 100 flights to get 3 stars
  • Each Tollan flight requires 38 passengers so 100 of them will require 3,800 passengers.
  • Each Tollan flight requires 20 fuel and 40 fuel to speed up so 100 of them requires 6,000 fuel

Fuel
Seems like a lot of fuel. But this could all come from your inventory. 6,000 fuel is 120 Fuel 50 units. But you can't store more than 100 so that's not enough - it only equals 5000 units. You could use some Fuel 20 as well and maybe you have done some launches and have Fuel 150 and Fuel 300 in inventory. But this strategy will deplete your warehouse of fuel. There is a better way.
  • You get gifts from your friends and you don't have to collect them immediately. In fact, save those gifts to help with map runs. If you have 30 friends, and they all send you F20 for 7 days, you will have 4200 fuel ready to be collected when you do a map run. That's a good chunk of what you need.
  • You also produce fuel at a rate of 1 unit per minute. So while the map is active, you will produce 360 units. You can double the fuel produced by activating the secret faucet bonus so you will produce 720 units instead. So now you have 5120 units.
  • And then you have the fuel in your meter. If, for example, you have 150 maximum fuel, and use the bottomless barrel bonus before going to bed, you will have 300 fuel units ready when you wake up. That puts you at 5420. (Note that the increased fuel should be used within 8 hours. If you don't get to the increased fuel with the time of the bonus, the added fuel may disappear)
  • Now you can use a little bit of fuel from your warehouse to complete the 100 flights
I highly recommend investing in a Small Oil Refinery and Powerful Oil Refinery because it will increase the maximum fuel you can produce. So if you have level 1 of the small oil refinery and the powerful oil refinery, you increase your maximum fuel supply by 40 and then using the bottomless barrel increases that to 80.

One other thing - the gold subscription increases your maximum fuel and increases the fuel you produce from 1 unit per minute to 3 units per minute. And when you add the secret faucet bonus, it's now 4 units each minute. So the fuel produced over 6 hours will be 1,440. It's not a cheap option, but needed to be mentioned here.

Passengers
Most people don't have a terminal that can hold 3,800 passengers so this is the next thing you need to plan for.
  • Max out on fast producing passenger buildings like cottages, side wings, mansions, manors and smart houses. Just having 6 of these buildings will produce 8208 passengers in 6 hours. This is more than enough for map runs with smaller planes.
  • Use the Matryoshka Doll bonus to double your terminal capacity. If your terminal holds 1000 passengers, this bonus will allow you allow your terminal to temporarily hold 2000 passengers. You have to activate it long before you map run so you can fill up your terminal to 2000. I usually do this the night before.
  • Use bonus buildings. A tree, a lake or an angel monument can be purchase in the store for a very small amount of coins. These boost production of your passenger buildings. A tree impacts the buildings from the first point like this
    • Cottage usually produces 1 passenger/minute. 5% bonus would be 1.05 passengers but the game rounds up so a cottage produces 2 passengers per minute
    • Side Wings go from 2 passengers/2 minutes to 3 passengers
    • Mansions go from 18 to 19 passengers
    • Manors go from 9 to 10 passengers
  • Combine bonus buildings to further boost passengers. Putting three 5% buildings near a cottage will have no additional benefit. Increasing 1 by 15% is 1.15 and round up is still 2. But a 15% increase on a mansion makes the building produce an additional 3 passengers. In fact, you could surround a single mansion with enough trees, lakes and angel monuments to increase production by 55% so it would produce an additional 10 passengers. (But that's not the most effective use of these bonus buildings ... and deserves a post all on it's own).
  • Use Family Ticket bonus to double production of passengers from buildings. Instead of collecting 18 passengers from a mansion, you will collect 36 passengers for the duration of the bonus
  • Use Alarm Clock bonus to wake people up and make all passenger buildings ready to collect instantly
  • Build a Visa Center and run contracts in advance to fill it with passengers
The first point above is a must for every map run and may be enough for map runs with the smaller planes (owls and hawks). The other points will become necessary as you do map runs with larger planes.
As I write this post, I can do map runs with eagles, requiring 28,000 passengers and not use any bonuses or Visa Centers.

Collection Item Drops
This is why we do these map runs. You can do all the planning for fuel and passengers, but if you don't do this last part you will have to do several map runs. The key here is to increase the drop rate for collection items from each flight. Here are the bonuses that will increase the drop rates
  • Dice - 50% increase
  • Golden Dice - 100% increase
  • Spy Glass - 150% increase
  • Junior Pilot - 50% increase
  • Sky Captain - 100% increase
  • Gold Subscription - 50% increase
These bonuses can be combined to increase the drop rate for the items you are chasing. So activating the Spy Glass, Golden Dice and Sky Captain is a 300% increase in drop rate. This should be enough to get 36 obsidian knives (or whatever item you are chasing) from your 100 flights.

Final Tips
  • Some map destinations require flight items. So check the wiki for details on what you may need to stock up on.
  • If needed, activate the Matryoska Doll well in advance of your map run so you have time to fill the terminal to double the capacity
  • Activate the bottomless barrel well in advance as well to let your fuel meter fill up
  • Activate all the other required bonuses right after activating map - passenger bonuses, fuel bonuses, drop rate bonuses
  • Since you're going to be doing a lot of flights, you might as well activate the Business Class bonus to double the income from all the flights you will be doing
  • And since you will be active in the game for a while (at least an hour but probably a few hours), you may as well activate the Inconvertible Coin to increase production from your commercial buildings.
  • Use one plane and fly it out/speed up with fuel. It's much easier to manage this way.
  • Fly only one map destination at a time until you have all the items and 3 stars. Then STOP flying to that destination
    • Because you planned properly, activate the map you have the least of (e.g. if you have 1 map for Tollan but 3 for all other locations, activate Tollan)
    • If you have leftover fuel and passengers, take advantage of having the bonuses running and activate another map (the one you have the most of) to make a dent in the flights/items for that destination

The single easiest map run to do is green space maps. So probably, this is a good place to start. However, each flight also needs landing lamps so make sure you have enough before you start.
  • 92 flights for 3 stars
  • 4692 fuel
  • 3496 passengers
  • Each map drops all items for the collection
  • Try for 18 of each item for the collection (green maps drop more than adventure maps)
  • When you have done a map run to all 5 locations, you will have lots of buildings (including 6 emergency spaceports that will increase population by 50 each) plus 18 Quantum Leap bonuses
 

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DexCare

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Funny - I'm on an ipad. It has always behaved this way. The only ones I can combine are dice/golden dice. I can't combine the ones I mentioned BB/LFT, SC/JP etc
oh, I try on my iPad too. If you use BB then don't close the Bonuses tab, you can use EFC too, but if you close Bonuses tab, then the "USE" button of EFC will change to "INFO" like in your photo
 

LimSky

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@Chloe11111

1. I also was able to combine JP + SC some four weeks ago without problems. I'm on Android as well.

2. Regarding Bottomless Barrell, the thing with extra fuel vanishing after expire time seems not to be a bug, but the very functionality of this bonus...
To avoid that, you need to put some extra fuel into the fuel bar, for example from Fuel Station contract, by landing a plane that leaves fuel or by adding fuel from gifts. The best scenario is if the bar is already full and within the last hour of the duration of this bonus. This way you are able to keep all the extra fuel produced, while adding fuel by all the above mentioned methods shortly after activating the bonus leads to keeping the extra fuel added, but the refreshed extra amount is gone. These seem to be the results of thorough testing of this bonus.
 

Chloe11111

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@Chloe11111

1. I also was able to combine JP + SC some four weeks ago without problems. I'm on Android as well.

2. Regarding Bottomless Barrell, the thing with extra fuel vanishing after expire time seems not to be a bug, but the very functionality of this bonus...
To avoid that, you need to put some extra fuel into the fuel bar, for example from Fuel Station contract, by landing a plane that leaves fuel or by adding fuel from gifts. The best scenario is if the bar is already full and within the last hour of the duration of this bonus. This way you are able to keep all the extra fuel produced, while adding fuel by all the above mentioned methods shortly after activating the bonus leads to keeping the extra fuel added, but the refreshed extra amount is gone. These seem to be the results of thorough testing of this bonus.
Yes, it's a bug. I emailed support about this recently and mentioned I had lost about 5 this way. They sent my 5 bottomless barrels
 

Chloe11111

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Really?! Good to know. They will owe me many :D
Indeed it has been consistently working like I described above, at least on both Android and Windows.
Me too. If I sleep for 8 hours and 1 minute, all the fuel disappears. Hope they fix it soon. I would rather have the fuel in the morning than some bottomless barrels in storage
 
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