We've been paying gold to produce some food... and getting the food back from the farm... but we have never seen who is working on the farms! Who, you ask? Dragons, of course!
I suggest to add a slot on each farm to which a dragon is assigned. The level and the elements of the dragon would then determine a benefit it gives to the farm. A dragon with multiple elements gives multiple benefits. A dragon is marked busy and cannot be reassigned while the farm is producing.
Here is an example list of bonuses I came up with:
- Terra: grants bonus experience to the player, 1% per level (i.e. 40% at level 40)
- Flame: has a chance to reset the cooldown on a random tower (Midarian, Jewelem, ...), 0.25% per level per day (i.e. 10% at level 40)
- Sea: reduces the cost of the farming, 1% per level (i.e. 40% off at level 40)
- Nature: increases the amount of food produced, 1% per level (i.e. 40% more food at level 40)
- Electric: reduces the time for the farming, 1% per level (i.e. 40% off at level 40)
- Ice: increases the time for the farming 2.5% per level and increases the amount of food 5% per level (i.e. food growing takes twice (+100%) longer but brings three times (+200%) as much food food at level 40) - think "winter crops"
- Metal: Increases gold production in habitats during farming, 0.05% per level (i.e. 2% at level 40)
- Dark: has a chance to immediately complete a random breeding (Sanctuary, Mountain, Tree), 0.25% per level per day (i.e. 10% at level 40)
- Light: has a chance to immediately complete a random hatching, 0.25% per level per day (i.e. 10% at level 40)
- War: a chance to add more fights to the Arenas, even temporarily exceeding the limit of 6 fights; 0.5% chance per level per day (i.e. 100% to add a fight on a "Super Producer" farming job with level 20 dragon). A chance that exceeds 100% means it guarantees one fight and has a chance to add a second, e.g. level 30 on a "Super Producer" would guarantee one extra fight and would have a 50% chance of providing two extra fights.
- Pure: a chance to obtain chest with 20 random tokens, 0.5% per level per day (i.e. 20% per day on level 40)
- Primal: a chance to obtain a chest with 20 orbs of any random non-heroic, non-VIP dragon, 0.5% per level per day (i.e. 20% per day on level 40); the chest could have common orbs (30% probability), rare (25%), very rare (20%), epic (15%), legendary (10%).
- Legendary: a chance to obtain gems when farming, 0.5% per level per day (i.e. 20% per day on level 40)
- Ancient elements (Chaos, Dream, ...): could provide bonus platinum/ancient gems (rubies, saphires...) but who cares? the ancient world is all but forgotten.
This enhancement would mitigate the shortage of food that we have with more and more dragons and slightly speed up upgrades of the habitats to levels 3+. It would also encourage specific uses for the dragons we leveled up for specific events/arenas. It also encourages creative strategies during events such as heroic races or breeding events, as in - do you time your food collection for a chance to hatch some dragons and save the time on a node? or do you hoard up some extra arena fights to quickly sail through the next node? or if your alliance doesn't need the extra food right away, maybe you should take the extra time and grow even more food for a later node which needs it?
I don't think the rewards are too excessive - for example the legend-element bonus would only provide an average of ~3 gems per day with a 40 level dragon with a legend element (0.2 gems per farm, 14 farms = 2.8 gems/day on average). But of course, the probabilities I gave above are just examples - they could be tweaked as needed.