These notes are aimed mostly at newer players. One of the top issues for new players is not enough of anything. Crime City will let you visit up to 25 mafia in your family per day to get experience, money, and steel for your buildings. If you are a new player building your mafia, click for everyone in the materials thread for $$ and potential new mafia members. Also, protect other family members’ buildings to collect $$ and get a random collection item drop.
Visit other player’s walls when they post announcements of reaching new levels, win a fight or announce an area mastery to collect xp, respect and diamonds. You will need a lot so it may not seem like a lot per click but it can add up quickly. When you need a lot, every bit helps!
To get energy boosts, start building your coffee shop and health clubs as soon as you can. These will not give you dollars but the energy boosts can be a big help and should be an early purchase. Banks are another early must for obvious reasons.
After you buy these buildings, you will have a big hole in the ground and you'll need to ask your mafia for materials to finish them. You can't get the materials until you have paid for the building. You would then go to Upgrades and click on the materials needed and post your daily request for each material needed. At this time, they can only be bought with gold. The circular saw is the only item which can be gifted. Everything else is limited to 6 per day per item.
(I will not be addressing buildings that provide daily attack, defense, mafia boosts, etc. since these are recommended only when you gain the income to buy them. The building levels operate very much the same way as the bank, fitness club and coffee shop.)
Buildings are a good source of income but you will need steel, often in addition to what you get from daily visits. Try to build the steel mill early also. (There is now a foundry also but it costs a lot more than the steel mill.) Again, there will be no income but you will get several pieces of steel, which can be collected several times a day.
When you have limited income, anything you build should be maximum bang for the buck. Buildings that have rackets are your best buy. The starter level for rackets is the basketball court. Buildings with rackets have collection times of 5 min, 30 min, 2 hours, 4 hours, 8 hours and 12 hours. The highest yields per hour come with 5 minute collection times. You must collect every 5 minutes for the maximum yield that is published. Lowest payoffs come with clicking every 12 hours. Only do the 5 minute pickups if you have the time and patience--it is a good return, but not for everyone.
Here is an example, using basketball court at level one:
3 card monte---$21/5 minutes= $252 hour
Sell bootlegs--------$80/hour= $ 160 hour
Stolen goods--------$180/2hrs= $90 hour
Fake IDs----------$250/4 hrs=$62.50/hour
Rig horse race-----$365/8 hrs=$45.62/hour
Fix sports game-$465/12 hrs = $38.75 hour
Note that the highest time lag equals the lowest payout. Highest payout is always 5 minutes then declines. If you don't collect in a timely way, the effective income per hour goes down because you won't get more $$ until you reset the timer. If you get robbed, naturally, the income declines. Leave it too long and a game generated police raid will cut your income back.
Buildings can be leveled up (some more than others.) The steel mill, health club, bank and coffee shop are all capped when you hit a certain level. Each level will require more materials for these and the other specialty buildings. If the building is primarily for income, it will need more $$ and steel to reach another level. The leveling to increase income will help you if you have limited space for expansion.
Keep in mind that collections add value to your building since you will have a chance to get random items, diamonds or respect, and maybe steel or dollars. Things to know about collections: the items can be stolen when other players rob you. The time it will take you to get the drop is unpredictable. On the plus side, the payoff from the drop, whenever it happens can be quite good.
Selling your buildings--the time may come when you will want to trade up. If you do, you will lose 1/2 of your initial investment in the building. So, if you bought a laundromat for $250, you'll get $125 when you cash out. Buildings bought for gold will convert to dollars. Steel used to buy the buildings is also lost when you sell.
Best practices for friend requests: Don't send so many friend requests that you forget to invite someone into your mafia--or at least accept their invite. Include the words "Crime City" in your friend request so they know why you are inviting them.
Everyone needs a good mafia. Not everyone likes a mooch. If you want a gift, give one first. Don't add someone just to request gifts. Help other players by protecting their buildings and returning items when they have been nice enough to send you something.
Feel free to add anything I may have left out. All of this is likely to change anyway since the game is in beta.