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To Swap, or to 1.9, that is the question ...

This is a moderate to advanced level (with a Black Magic tip) analysis on the virtues of 1.9 channel vs the swap channels. I apologize for my dense writing done while slightly intoxicated.

The basic conclusion is (if you don't want to suffer my super dense analysis) that: 1.9 offers guaranteed consistent return while Swap is more of a casino when you are in a shitty guild. Swapping would only work (way...) better in one scenario.
  1. Moderate: Regardless of whether you have an Arc 80 or not, you should always use 1.9 channel to level your GB for at least its higher positions. The rule of thumb is, so long the # of FPs you need to self-contribute for the said position is greater than its 1.9 channel returns. Then you should always use 1.9 for those high positions (P1-3 usually).
  2. Advanced: For those positions (usually P4 and P5) that have a lower than 1:1 return from 1.9 thread. Meaning, if you need to put in 37 FPs to secure the P4 so in 1.9 channel, your guildie could fill it up with 17 FPs (37:17 is lower than 1:1).
    1. Then, if you have high daily FP harvest or reserve, swap MIGHT get you more return immediately. But you need to be in a good guild with many trustworthy guildies to do so.
    2. If you don't have a high daily FP harvest or reserve, swap probably wouldn't get your more return even with 1.9's return is sub 1:1. I'd still recommend you to stick to 1.9 channels.
  3. Advanced: When it comes to taking Positions in the 1.9 channel vs Swap channels:
    1. If you have Arc 80, then you should always pick up the 1.9 positions. As the return is guaranteed. However, there is a very rare scenario where Swap could offer you a much higher return than 1.9. Please see another more controversial write-up here.
    2. If you don't have Arc, then you still might get a safer return from 1.9 channel positions. While the sub 1:1 return ration is less than 100%, you are still looking at a 50% return which should still be better than you trying to gamble on swap channels against your many senior guildies.
  4. Black Magic: Once you have Arc 80 and CF 80, then you should self contribute together with doing the recurring quest (add X # of FP specifically) of your age. With the rewards from the quest, now your self-contributions can also come with a return. Detail see the following video: How to Make Unlimited Goods in Forge Of Empires - Using Recurring Quests, Chateau, and Arc in FoE (created by FoElite, aka. iPenguinPat)



1.9 channel might seem to be a way reserved for the Arc 80 crowd of leveling one's GB.

I'm going to quote one of the replies here to quickly demonstrate the main differences between swap and 1.9 channels (written by Cursedveggie):

"Reward spots on GBs give fp, BP and medal returns - we will concentrate on the fp aspect for now

So, imagine the reward for first place on a GB is 100fp, donating at 1.9 means adding the reward + 90% so you would have to put 190fp on this GB.

The Arc GB gives a % increase to your rewards from GBs you have donated to and at level 80 this is 90%

So with a level 80 arc you can put 190fp on a 100fp spot and when it levels you get the 190fp back so it costs you nothing!

1.9 threads are different to swaps, the owner puts enough fp onto their own gb so that different positions can be taken by other people at 1.9 without fear of someone else jumping over them.

Everyone who donates gets their fp back and the owner gets to level their gb really quickly and cheaply.

The Arc bonus also works on the medals and blueprints "

Many low Arc owners might feel that they can't afford to participate in such a Capitalistic fat cats' game.

FatCats.jpg


After all, if you don't have Arc 80, you won't get the "fair" reward of the full 190% FP returns by filling up 1.9 channel's positions. Say in an extreme case, and you don't have Arc at all. If you contribute to a 1.9 channel position, you'd only get 1 out of each 1.9 FP back. How is that a good deal?!!

Instead, many prefer to use Swap channels. On the surface, it seems to be fair. "One for you and one for me!" you might think. Of course, it beats the lonely self-leveling most of the time as the both of you might get FPs, BPs, and Medals rewards if both of you ended up locking a position on each other's leveling GBs.

communist-party-t-shirt.gif


However, just like living with Communism, using Swap Channels has many hidden costs. If you look under the lid, they might not be what it is promising on the surface. Of course, there would be cases where Swap Channels make sense. But in most of the cases, 1.9 offers a safer and better return for casual FoE players.

Before I dive into the case by case analysis, here's two things you should know. For each position, you could offer on 1.9 channel, as the owner of the GB, you need to self contribute to secure the position. See the following example from FoE tools' Cape Canaveral leveling guide from 15-16 using 1.9 channel.

CC level 15 -> 16​
PositionsWithout Arc 90% FP rewardFP to put by the owner to secure the placeAdditional FP for each position from the ownerFP Rewards with Arc80 90% RewardFP Losses if Arc0 Contributors to fill the position
1170375375323-153
2853750162-77
3304224757-27
4104593719-9
504691000
Total FP Investment from the owner460
Total Leveling FP Cost1021

If you understand 1.9 Channel, you could see that the Owner of such CC to use 1.9 channel (with or without Arc 80). You'd have a guaranteed saving of: Total Leveling FP Cost (1021) - Total FP Self-investment (460) = 561 (FP saved from using 1.9).

Concept 1) Nothing good goes on forever!

Here's the thing I want you to look a little deeper. Column #4 shows you, as an owner how many ADDITIONAL FPs you need to put in to secure the next position. And Column #5 is how many FP in return you'd get for securing each position. So basically, these two columns show your Return in FPs ("RiF") for each position.

P1 and P2's RiF is awesome, you put in 375 in total for those 2 positions, and you'd get 323+162 = 485 in total FPs back. This gives you a RiF ratio of 1 : 1.3. Or combine with your own 375 FPs, your CC would get 860 FPs in total by just securing the P1 and P2 via 1.9 channel. That is a whopping 130% return for your CC. That my friend is significant for any kind of investment.

In fact, in between level 30 - 60 for most of the GBs (the GB leveling Sweet Spots), your RiFs for these 2 spots would be infinite! Meaning you don't need to invest any FPs, the P1 and P2 are auto secured for other Arc 80 guildies to fill them up. However, because of it, you should NEVER unlock the GB levels during those 30 levels ahead of time. Sniper(s) could come in and profit handsomely if you do so. I would only open them up once you have secured 1-3 guildies to take these spots right away.

P3's RiF is decent at about 47:57, or a rough RiF of 1 : 1.21 or a 121% return ratio.

P4's RiF went significantly lower, at 37:19, or a rough RiF or 1 : 0.51, or a 51% return ratio.

P5's went to 0% return.

This folks is actually a real-world phenomenon, called "the law of Diminishing (Marginal) Return". Now, now don't run away just yet (I didn't even mention first-order derivatives yet). All it means is as, in real life, your first and 2nd coffee of the day would give you the most awakening effect. but your 3rd or 4th cup would give you less and less of a kick. And your 5th cup might not do you any good anymore.

Concept 2) The devil is in the details (or should we say in the margins)
Since each levels' 5 positions all suffer from this law of Diminishing Return. The basis of my analysis would be based on the diminishing marginal return in FPs as the position gets lower. So unlike most of the 1.9 channel lovers out there, I won't argue against the virtue of using 1.9 for literally everything here. But I would argue about there would be some limited cases of using Swap, ONLY for some players.

To explain these cases clearly, and for simplicity's sake, I'll assume you either have Arc 80 or have no Arc at all. I know most of the readers here might have a low or medium Arc. But understand the extreme cases, might give you a hint on when to Swap, if at all.

Scenario 1: You have Arc 80
I'd assume that you have a decent daily FP harvest already? And I assume you'd be in a decent guild as well? If both are true, then please always use 1.9 for positions (usually P1-3) that has an above 100% return ratio. Meaning so long you can get more FPs in return of the FPs you invest in securing said position. You should NOT EVER use Swap channel.

Because let's look at using Swap to level CC from 15 ->16 (the sample I just showed) instead of using 1.9.

You would need to swap using 860 FP through your guild's Swap Channels to get to the same level of using 1.9 channel with P1 and P2 (which you'd only need 375 FPs). Sure you MIGHT get a return if you secure a position on the swapping GBs of your fellow guildies. But how often do you see a 1:1 return? Meaning, how often you'd see 860 fps coming back from the swap channels? However, let's assume you are the luckiest bastard under the sun in FoE (without cheating your guildies by over swapping). You can get exactly 860 FPs back from all of the positions. What would be your return here? It'd be a 100% return in such a rare situation. Most likely, you'd have 50%-80% back if you are in a decent guild full of honest people (so they don't cheat you out of your positions).

You should still use 1.9 channel for your P3 here, as it still gives you a 121% return vs a really good and rare 100% return using Swap.

However, P4 is where you could consider using Swap. But even then you should know this is still a gamble. But on average, if you play often enough, then getting a greater than 50% return from a swap shouldn't be hard.

Of course, P5 would be even more obvious. You should definitely use Swap. As you are just self-leveling then.


Now, since you do have Arc80, you should be taking positions in 1.9 channel as much as possible vs using Swap. As you'd reap the full benefit of 1.9 channel. So all of the return by investing in other guildies' GB would be 100% and you'd get the BPs, Medals along the way for sure! And of course, this is the best way to bank your daily harvests into FP packs.

Scenario 2: You don't have Arc 80

The same analysis should still apply to you as a GB owner. Since using 1.9 channel to level your GB doesn't require you to have an Arc. As an owner, you'd still get the same return by leveling your GB using 1.9 channel.

However, for a lower position, say P4 in the CC 15-16 case, you need to know you are in a less favorable phase of the game to gamble on Swaps. If you don't have an Arc, I can only assume you are new in this world. And you won't have a very high FP daily harvest yet. Meaning to jokey for positions on your guildies' GB in the Swaps, you simply don't have the FP reserve or harvest that your senior guildies would have. They are more likely secure a higher position than you. So would P4 be worth using the Swaps in your case? I really don't know. Maybe always stick to 1.9 is a better policy yet.

Now what's tricky is taking the Positions on the 1.9 channel when you don't have an Arc. Is it worth it?


FP you need to fill the positionsFP Rewards without Arc80 90% RewardFP you'd lose if you don't have Arc80 in 1.9
323170-152
16285-77
5730-27
1910-9
000

Here you can see if you fill-up the 1.9 positions without an Arc 80. While you'd lose, but you'd at least have a guaranteed sub 100% return yet. In this case,
P1, you'd only get 170/323 = 52% in return while losing 152 FPs in the transaction.
P2, 85/162 = 52% while loosing 77 FPs
P3, 30/57 = 52% while loosing 27 FPs
P4, 10/19 = 52% while loosing 9 FPs

Again, I'm not sure you'd have enough FPs harvest to win more than 52% in the Swap channel. If you are truly a newbie in this world. I'd say, your chance of getting a greater than 52% return on the Swap is pretty low.

So I'd still advocate using the 1.9 channels if you are low on FPs. BUT only taking the lower positions though, say p3-5. So you don't lose as many FPs in such trade. And you'd be able to find your BPs that way faster.

However, if you are a lucky gambler or you just enjoy the thrill of it. Then, by all means, be my guest.
 
Last edited:
@Matt the Melancholic

Reward spots on GBs give fp, BP and medal returns - we will concentrate on the fp aspect for now

So, imagine the reward for first place on a GB is 100fp, donating at 1.9 means adding the reward + 90% so you would have to put 190fp on this GB.

The Arc GB gives a % increase to your rewards from GBs you have donated to and at level 80 this is 90%

So with a level 80 arc you can put 190fp on a 100fp spot and when it levels you get the 190fp back so it costs you nothing!

1.9 threads are different to swaps, the owner puts enough fp onto their own gb so that different positions can be taken by other people at 1.9 without fear of someone else jumping over them.

Everyone who donates gets their fp back and the owner gets to level their gb really quickly and cheaply.

The Arc bonus also works on the medals and blueprints