Buddy Fan Club member
I think what would help is that new cities are put next to really active cities in those empty spaces. Those of us who visit everyone at least once weekly (I try for three in my Khel city because that is my biggest most advanced city) would help with the growing pains of new players. They could designate volunteers to be like helper cities. I know when I started, that would have helped me a great deal. It took a few years before I was in a neighborhood with really great people who were wonderful trading partners and AW contributors. Then, of course, they all got moved away except for one, but we are still AW partners. People give up on games because they don't spark interest right away or they can't seem to get ahead.