handling trade as a side action

Azal

Mongoose
Hi,

I am about to start a campaign where my players will get a used Free Trader for a start.
I know there are a ton of rules trying to cover how much you can buy and sell on which world and what price... but actually we don't want to immerse into a detailed trading simulation.

what I am looking for is a system how to handle trade by the side.
I want to give it a tonnage, maybe enter some kind of world-code and the broker-skill and get a profit value. Reduce it by maintenance and mortgage and that's it.
it doesn't need to be 100% accurate...
We don't want do calculate which goods bring the most @what distance...

is there an easy-to-use trading-by-the-side system out there somewhere?
 

Arkathan

Cosmic Mongoose
Azal said:
Hi,

I am about to start a campaign where my players will get a used Free Trader for a start.
I know there are a ton of rules trying to cover how much you can buy and sell on which world and what price... but actually we don't want to immerse into a detailed trading simulation.

what I am looking for is a system how to handle trade by the side.
I want to give it a tonnage, maybe enter some kind of world-code and the broker-skill and get a profit value. Reduce it by maintenance and mortgage and that's it.
it doesn't need to be 100% accurate...
We don't want do calculate which goods bring the most @what distance...

is there an easy-to-use trading-by-the-side system out there somewhere?
Bulk Freight and mail. Adjust it by how well liked your travellers are by the faction if you want, or bump up the standard bulk rate to a profitable rather than bay filler level.
 

PsiTraveller

Cosmic Mongoose
If the players do not want to get involved in spec trading and just focus on freight you can make things very easy. They could have a Patron with a shipping operation, offices in several systems.

When the players decide to head to system X they contact the local office and get a few tons of cargo freight to move. This pays 1000 credits a ton for Jump 1. They travel and make the delivery and are paid. You tell them the Patron's Brokers handle all the paperwork and the players just get a credit to their account.

This can also be used to steer the players to certain systems as a favour to the Patron. The party is contacted and asked if they can make a rush delivery to system B and get paid to go to that system. Once their you as the GM can have them start the next adventure.
 

ottarrus

Cosmic Mongoose
I've played too many games as a PC where a couple players had merchant characters with a narrow Trade and Commerce focus, while the rest of us were more generic Travellers... some Scouts, a Merc, a Drifter /Rogue /Belter, etc. The Merchant dudes resented any adventure where they didn't make a profit and the rest of us were bored spitless while they poured over the T & C tables trying to min/max for the next world on the route.
Since I was starting a campaign, I decided to use trade as a plot hook, but not as a main focus.
The PC's ship is owned free and clear, and trade enters the equation when I don't have anything in particular planned for the next adventure. After all, even if you don't have a huge bank payment to service you still have monthly maintenance, annual maintenance, and salaries to pay for. None of that is cheap.
What I do is have the players looking for a cargo about every 3rd adventure or so, just remind them that they're merchants and not The A Team :lol:
 

Condottiere

Emperor Mongoose
Smuggling.

If that's too hot a potato, speculative trading could require the rest of the group to keep their ear to the ground, and collect gossip of economic, cultural and political trends of nearby systems.
 

paltrysum

Cosmic Mongoose
If you’re going to use the spec trade rules, you have to be involved. Your job isn’t to be a killjoy, but to ensure that a dose of realism gets infused into the process. Otherwise, your players are likely to get rich a bit too quickly.

Some cargoes should turn out to be not quite what was expected. Sometimes another merchant should snap the goods away before the players get a hold of them. It seems like a lot of work, but let your players earn their money. The game will ultimately be better and more rewarding for it.
 

Rikki Tikki Traveller

Cosmic Mongoose
IF they REALLY don't want to get into the details, just have a simple 2D table.

Roll every trip, with 6 being break even... Allow DMs for Broker or the Trade Codes, but keep it really simple...
 
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