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Feeding Florg

by applebella


     Before I get started in my discussion of the game that is the current bane of my existence, I’d like to point out my feelings of empathy for Florg. This poor little Chia, who, to be quite honest, unfortunately resembles a mutant brussel sprout, didn’t grow up with the desire to consume Petpets and send Neopians into a tizzy when he demanded breakfast, lunch, and dinner. He grew up a normal Chia, playing Gormball with his friends while drinking Neocola and snacking on Moon Crunch Cereal, until he signed up for scientific studies at the lab as an after-school job. It was Dr. Sloth through his experiments on poor Florg that condemned him to his fate. That being said, I cannot fully blame Florg for the frustration and impatience that surrounds me when trying to feed him, but that does not stop me from nearly throwing my laptop in rage when that last Petpet falls off the table.

     The point of Feed Florg is to, erm, feed Florg. This mutant Chia is hungry for Petpets, and it is our job to provide him with food. You’ll see some familiar Petpet faces, all visibly terrified and running for their lives; Pink Warfs, Yellow Hasees, Kookiths, Red Tennas, Yellow Spyders, and Purple Slorgs are all in for a dismal fate. The controls are simple: either use your keyboard or mouse (but you have way better precise control with the keyboard, so I recommend using that instead) to move the hand around the table. Use the right arrow key to move your hand clockwise, and the left arrow key to move counterclockwise, keeping the Petpets around for whenever Florg decides to magically eat one of them. I use the word ‘magically’ because I am unconvinced there is any sort of rhyme or reason to his decision to eat a Petpet. Does he choose to eat the one that’s been around on the table the longest? Nope. How about showing a clear preference for the Hasees, his notoriously favorite food? Nope. Does he stay away from his least favorite, Slorgs? Nope again! As far as I’m concerned, it seems to be random, which brings about a frustrating part of this game: you never can be sure which Petpet to aim for or which to let go if faced with the choice, because there is no pattern to which Florg will eat a Petpet.

     You earn one point for every time your hand keeps a Petpet on the table. ONE. POINT. This is absolutely mind-boggling to me, as the work it takes to keep these Petpets from falling off SURELY counts for more than one measly point. Dashing from one side of the table all the way around to another, narrowly bumping that Petpet to keep your lives in check takes more work than Florg slurping one of them up, which, by the way, earns you 10 lovely points (and also a sigh of relief, as it’s one less Petpet to worry about for the time being!). The points grow slowly at first, but then more Petpets start being delivered to your table by a mysterious package delivery service, and chaos ensues. As if keeping one or two Petpets on the table seemed difficult enough, now you’re frantically juggling three or four, visibly sweating, probably yelling, at which point you’re faced with a choice: which do I let fall off, because I surely cannot save all of them? You make a quick decision, and BAM! One falls off, a life is lost, and the one you were going to save was EATEN UP BY FLORG. It’s maddening!

     So why do I play this game if it brings me so much frustration? The answer is simple - the coveted avatar! To be able to boast this avatar on the Neoboards, you need to earn a whopping 250 points. In my 10 years on Neopets, I have come close, but never have gotten quite lucky enough in my decisions of which Petpets to save. To earn this score, you must become proficient at keeping multiple Petpets in check at the same time, even 5 at a time in some cases, but the luck factor also comes into play - it is much easier when several Petpets are on a similar path, so that bumping each does not take much traveling by your hand! Practice does make perfect, and it gets a bit easier the more you play, but those 5 lives never seem to be enough!

     Unfortunately, there are no “cheat” codes for this game, like there are with many others, so the five lives you start with are all you’re getting. Each Petpet that falls off the table costs you one life, meaning you can lose several in the course of just seconds! Many guides suggest that, if you’re going for the avatar, don’t even bother continuing if you’ve lost a life prior to earning 50 points. I have definitely found this to be true, and it is a good metric to see how well you’re doing. In the early stages of the game, it’s much easier to keep one or two Petpets on the table, so you’ll need to save as many lives as possible for when multiple Petpets come into play, as it is rarely possible to juggle them all! When the time comes in the game where you must decide which Petpet to save and which to lose, since there is no chance of bumping them both, there are a few things to consider:

     If one is clearly easier to get to, go with that one! There’s nothing more upsetting than racing to get the harder one and missing them both.

     If you have multiple Petpets on the table, save the one on a similar path to another existing Petpet. This creates an easier path for saving those two for future bumps, because then you’ll have them clumped together.

     If one is clearly running faster than another, save the slower one - chances are, it will be much easier to save on the next bump as well due to it’s lower speed.

     The satisfaction that comes with doing better each time does make the game worth it. With the simple gameplay and the excitement of the luck factor, it can become a very riveting game! Let me know if my tips work for you - they have definitely improved my score since employing these tactics! Good luck to everyone working toward the avatar. It is definitely in reach - high scores for this game are in the 270s right now, and will only continue to go up as the month continues. Let me know if you find any other tricks or strategies that work for you!

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