Food is sometimes referred to as "ham" by the player base due to the icon utilized.
Sources of Food
The primary source of food is farms and the watchtower. Food is generated at a specific rate per hour (detailed on each building's page). Each upgrade increases the amount generated. While farms are the primary source of food, the watchtower—with enough outposts under your command—can provide the equivalent of up to 3 farms worth of food, and thus should not be neglected as a valuable food source.
Completing stages on the world map also proves to be a significant source of food. Stages in later provinces award more food than in earlier provinces.
There is also a quest that awards a great deal of food, appropriately called "Gather Food".
Food Storages and Advanced Food Storages increase the amount of food that one may hold in reserve. Tapping the food icon will show one's current maximum. Upgrading the Food Storage buildings increases maximum possible reserves.
There are currently seven uses for food in Empires & Puzzles:
- Leveling up and ascending heroes
- Cost per hero sacrificed increases with the level of the hero being leveled
- Leveling up troops
- Leveling troops and using/upgrading the barracks is a very food-intensive process
- Upgrading Mines and the Watchtower
- Doing research in the Training Camp, Forge, Hunter's Lodge or Alchemy Lab.
- Notably, the research costs for activities in the newer buildings—the Hunter's Lodge and Alchemy Lab—are much higher than the next highest cost (TC20), meaning that players must be prepared to work a lot on their food storages as well as their Iron Storages to make use of these buildings
- Training heroes in the Training Camp
- Crafting battle items in the Forge
- Rerolling the raid search to find a new opposing team
- Costs 100x one's Stronghold level per reroll
Currently, due to the costs associated with leveling heroes and troops alone, it is generally understood that one can never have 'too much' food, but rather that one should have a plan for leveling up heroes such that no food generation goes to waste.