1) In the beginning put all your points in energy to level faster. I would say 300 minimum if you want to be a fighter. Some ppl put 500, or even thousands. Its up to you. Just remember every point you spend on energy is a point you didn't spend on attack/defense, at the same time energy means you level faster to get more points. It's a tradeoff.Pro-tip
: As of this writing, I recommend 700-1000 energy and completing New York before starting to convert to a Fighter. I recommend about 700 energy for Moguls before converting. I recommend 1000 energy for Maniacs and Fearless before converting over to a fighter.
2) The conventional wisdom in attack/defense is 2 points per level. If you are level 1000 you should have 2000 in attack and 2000 in defense.Pro-tip
: Do not feel the need to do this too early. 2 points per level attack/defense is a LONG TERM GOAL, not something you should focus on in the beginning as it will hinder you.
3) Don't bank money in New York. The max you can lose is 100k per fight, which is cheaper than the %10 bank fee.
4) Stamina now costs 1 point each for everybody. This is a good investment as fights give average of 2.4 exp each and also a good way to gather loot. It also allows you to fully utilize the stamina timer in addition to the energy timer.
5) If you have racketeering feature, I would invest some points in this, about 100. The energy boosts are very handy.
6) In fights, you use up to 501 members of your mafia to help you, it does not matter what level they are. Each member uses 1 weapon, 1 vehicle and 1 armor that must be in your possession. That means if you have access to only NY one of your goals should be 501 chain guns, 501 town cars and 501 body armor.
7) If you have access to Cuba or Moscow, spend your stam there. The gear you can purchase there is better than the gear in NY, and you can earn money to buy that gear from fighting.
Come back to NY to heal. It's cheaper and NY money is plentiful. Airfare is free.
9) Extra pair of eyes boost you can buy in NY is worth it. They only cost 20k each and even if you win only 1 fight because of them, hey it's free exp. Hot coffee is worth it too for the same reason.
10) Become comfortable with gifting extra stuff you find to your mafia family. They will gift back stuff you need. This results in everybody vaulting things faster for the bonuses. Also if you see the "send energy pack" icon, click it to send your friends energy (don't worry, it doesn't come out of your energy, it's free.)
11) Don't take attacking or being attacked personally. It's part of the game, ppl need to burn off stamina to earn exp.
12) Don't publish "You iced XXX" messages to Facebook. It's spam.
13) Always get help on jobs if you see the "ask your mafia for help" button. Both you and your mafia get exp for this.
14) Try to use up all your energy before you level. Because the energy bar gets a full refill.
15) Time the use of your energy packs, so you don't end up with a full energy bar and close to level. Sometimes its best to wait a couple of hours.
16) Don't use Godfather points on money. In fact don't use it on anything except name change, energy refill or +4 skillpoints.
17) In the beginning cash is hard to come by. Look on the "hitlist." You won't win most of the fights, but if you can do enough damage to get the killing blow, you'll get the bounty. It's not worth it for the $8000 jobs, but the $16 million hitlist targets are worth it.
18) Ask your friends to put you in their top mafia slots, like Mastermind or Wheelman. Fill up your own top mafia slots at your earliest convenience. If you are a "Fearless" character type make absolutely sure someone makes you their Wheelman.
19) In order to avoid getting beatdown often, when you burn your stam, fight 1 person on the list each time. Go down the list. There is no need to snuff people and make them lose 6 exp when there is no benefit to you. All this makes them do is hitlist you, or call their mafia on you. Then you lose 6 exp.
20) Of course in the late game if you have godlike Defense, you can snuff people on purpose to "ride the hitlist." Tons of ppl attack you, and lose, and give you free exp.
21) While you are working on completing New York, start expanding your Cuba and Moscow businesses. It will take you weeks/months but the income flow will allow you to buy equipment upgrades and have an easier time when you finally start working on these areas.
22) If you are a Mogul, invest in attack/defense and make more of your exp from fighting. This is how you level the playing field with the other 2 classes. Also by investing in Influence and producing energy boosts. Racketeering can produce for you 360 energy every 4 hours.
**** MOGUL STRATEGY SECTION ****
Mogul theory can be summed up in a nutshell by the following paragraph;
Max Maniac regen = 1152 energy per 24h
Max Mogul regen = 640 energy per 24h
= 512 skillpoints leftover for the Mogul @ level 230
Early Game (level 1 to 230)
Strategy : Use your energy to complete NY asap. In the meantime collect 501 mafia. Use your 300 stamina only on weak mafias. Use your 112 influence to produce truck drivers and taxicabs. Logout below 20 health as much as possible.
Conversion : (level 230 to 400)
Energy : 1 point per level
Attack : 1 point per level
Defense: 1 point per level
Health : 1 point per level
Influence : 1 point per level
Stamina : stays at 300
Getting Ready for Sharktank (level 400+)
Energy : Add 1 point per level
Attack : Add 2 point per level
Defens : Add 2 point per level
Health : stays at 300
Influence : stays at 160
Stamina : stays at 300
Strategy : By now you should be finished with NY and working on Cuba or Moscow. Your businesses in Cuba and Moscow should be fully expanded. Spend your energy as usual, do your 300 fights, collect money from your businesses, upgrade equipment, and when your defense gets over 500 start riding the hitlist. Use all Godfather points on +4 skillpoints, and add them to attack/defense to catch up. Use all achievement and mastery points on attack/defense.
You will be leveling up about 1x per day and not depending on energy regen anymore which was initially your weak point. Now you will be relying on energy packs to level up 1x per day. Eventually it will take even longer to level up. By that time your character should be strong enough to be kicking serious bootay all over the place and levels won't matter anymore.
credits goes to -MM
Thanks to Odin6616 for correction in #21.