Planetary Sales everything you need to know
From a game concept point of view (if not currently in the mechanics) Trade Goods are distinct from Life and Drug item types in one fundamental way. They do not change society, insofar as they are not considered an investment into the planetary infrastructure and they do not have any detrimental effect on society.
As it is our intention to change how Life and Drug item types will be dealt with in the not too distant future, this article deals purely with Trade Goods.
Trade Goods are consumable items that are sold to a civilian population through merchandising complexes. The sale, though complex banking transfer mechanics converts payment in local currency into stellars.
It is presumed that the sale of items is based on what the market will tolerate and accounts for all standard methods of ensuring maximum return, i.e. the first batch may be sold for more and the last batch less; there may be loss leaders or bulk discounts and all manner of manipulations. This is a space opera game not a marketing game. While adding all these little features is possible, it is very doubtful it would add anything to the game beyond unnecessary complexity in an already somewhat murky field.
Trade Demand (indicated as Max Income on starbase manifests)
The weekly amount of stellars available to purchase goods is based on the population. The larger the population, the greater the amount of stellars available for the purchase of Trade Goods. The amount is not linear for two reasons:
- Small populations have few means of creating trade goods internal to their society and as such are prepared to put spend a greater proportion of their wealth/wages/income on importing things.
- Large populations have greater reserves of wealth however they also produce many trade goods themselves through markets within the society and as such that civilians have a choice of where to spend their money. In other words as the population grows it internalises more of their commercial transactions.
A population of 100,000 will have a trade demand around 12k while increasing the population to 1M only effectively doubles demand to 25k. There is a slow tapering and by 5M the demand has increased to 70k.
The numbers above are under standard conditions which presume steady colonisation of an unpopulated world by a single species using contemporary technology. As such they are not consistent throughout the Peripheries. There are instances where a small population can have a higher demand than a world with a much greater population. The reasons are manifold though include things such as a large native population or social events for instance recent emancipation or liberation and even environmental factors may play a role. Colonising hi-tech ruins or incorporating and uplifting a native population will skew the above progressions.
Sale price of individual Trade Goods
Now that an idea of how much stellars a world has to spend on a weekly basis is known it is necessary to determine how much they are prepared to spend on individual items. This consists of four elements:
- Base Value of Item
- Population Affluence and Market Tolerance (Trade Multiplier)
- Distance from Trade Goods Origin
- Racial Modifiers
Base Value of Item
Items generally have a unit value between 0.1 and 1.5stellars/mu. There are a few items outside this range, though they are quite unusual. This is in effect the fundamental value of the item when sold between civilians. In the case of Trade Goods produced through resource complexes, it is often related to the yield. For example, resource produced items with a base value of 1stellar/mu generally have yields around 15. For outposts and starbases this equates to roughly breaking even with respect to complex personnel running costs. Profit is therefore dependent on selling items at more than Base Value.
Population Affluence and Market Tolerance (Trade Multiplier)
When a world is colonised, the modest population has to compete with the big worlds and their vast trade demands. Not only are they prepared to pay a greater proportion of their wealth on Trade Goods(as explained in the section above), they are prepared to pay over the odds just to get them. This equates to a starting Trade Multiplier of x2 for newly colonised worlds with populations of around 100,000. As the population grows there is greater internal production of local trade goods and as such the population is able to choose whether to spend their wealth on local goods or purchase from off-world sources. This results in an attenuating decrease in the trade multiplier.
The trade multipliers for the populations in the table below are consistent with the previous section insofar as they are based on colonising a world and ensuring that all technological needs are accounted for as the population has expanded. When a native population is discovered and shown the benefits of trade, it will have a Trade Multiplier of 1. It can be seen that a large technological advanced civilisation is prepared to spend 40% more per person on Trade Goods. This reflects lower living costs and therefore greater disposable income.
|Pop|| Trade Mod|
|Native Population Uplifted to Naplians || 1.25|
|Native Population|| 1.00|
Worlds lacking in certain areas of infrastructure are likely to have reduced trade modifiers as are worlds with cultural slants (xenophobic etc.)
Distance from Trade Goods Origin
In simple terms less accessible items are perceived as more exotic. In basic terms it is presumed that items brought from the other end of the Peripheries are understandably rarer and as such are sold at a higher premium.
The default multipliers are as follows:
|Distance|| Trade Mod|
|Same World|| 1|
|Same System|| 3|
|Same Periphery|| 8|
|Adjacent Periphery|| 12|
|Separated by a Periphery|| 14|
|Separated by 2 Peripheries|| 16|
It is however the case that each system can be independently set with respect to every other system for the purpose of determining its trade multiplier and is capable of being modified both up and down. Generally speaking x16 is considered the maximum trade mod.
Examples of modifying the trade mod include:
- Proving that an affiliation is only selling goods from distant locations (will reduce distance mod for specified system down from x16 to x14 or even x12).
- Proving that a source is not the true source (modify item origin appropriately).
- Selling items brought from warzones or other hostile places (increase mod by one or more steps).
- Heavily advertising goods from a specific system (increase mod by up to one step).
These actions may require agent and operative work to determine trade goods present in a base or interaction with the civilian population (seeing what stuff is available on the street and through which starbase it arrived). There are costs involved in the form of bribes or tech (media for example). The cost is invariably a function of the size of the population. A small population is much easier/cheaper to influence than a big one. Finally the cost is proportional to the current modifier. So increasing a value from x14 to x15 is significantly more expensive than x8 to x9.
It is in the stereotypical nature of specific species to enjoy certain items. As such they are prepared to spend over the base value to attain it. In most circumstances however the base price of the item is such that it is only equivalent to other trade items if it is being sold to a world with a pure population appropriate for the item. For example, grub worms have the same yield and 10% drop are trimple loin though half the base value. They are however flagged as naplian, which means naplians equate them to trimple loins, seeing no obvious difference in their value.
The final value of an item at the location it is being sold determines whether it is classed as high, medium or low value. This means that what may be classed as low value at its source will invariably fall into the high value category when sold at the other end of the Peripheries. The clear benefit of doing so is that more stellars per mu of the Trade Good can be realised.
The threshold between low and medium value is initially set to 4 times the Trade Multiplier. For a newly colonised world this will invariably be 8 stellars. The threshold between medium and high value is double this (8 times the Trade Multiplier). Which equates to 16 stellars for a newly colonised world.
The weekly trade demand for the civilian population is split between high, medium, low and any, each being assigned a quarter of the demand. For example, a newly colonised world with a trade demand of 12,000 stellars will buy 3,000 stellars worth of high value Trade Goods, the same on medium and low. The final 3,000 will be assigned anywhere. What this means is that if there are still items on starbase markets after the 9,000 has been spent, they will be purchased up to a value of 3,000 stellars.
Care should be taken to ensure that a range of items are being sold to ensure that there isnt a shortfall in any category. This can occur when only items from distant origins are being sold. In these cases even low value at source items, when multiplied up due to distance can end up in the high value category.
It is possible to adjust the thresholds though it is far easier to lower them than increase them and changing them by more than a stellar is highly expensive (and proportional to the trade demand). The reason for doing so would be to try to move items from an oversubscribed category. Typical costs for a trade demand of 50,000 stellars is the exhaustive use of a media tech to increase one of the thresholds by 1 stellar. There may also be a cost in modules reflecting improving trade links with the civilian population and reducing their costs.
|Is open for business...
|******Empire Syndicated News Network (ESNN) ******
Welcome to the latest version of ESNN, giving the news and views from the ESNN's reporter and news anchor, Ainsley Moore, making this the peripheries' most favourite unbiased publication in the known universe from our new home in the Heartland,
And so with the news from the last few weeks,
*** Inter Galactic News ***
DEN assault FEL base and get wiped out
CIA Trade fleet caught and destroyed by the DEN
Krell denounce worship of the True One
***** Inter Galactic News *****
Huge fleet skirmish at the London/Crossley wormhole
A large fleet of over 700 DEN warships responded to the EMP action in Crossley, where a 4000 hull DEN platform was destroyed. Reports show the DEN ships caught a group of CIA ships napping and inflicted significant losses on the humans. IMP and GTT fleets moved to assist the CIA, matching DEN fleet numbers, but the arrival of over 1200 Hexamon ships seems to have tipped the battle in favour of the DEN-HEX alliance.
The combined DEN-HEX force pushed through the wormhole into the Heartland area of human space and retaliated, attacking several CIA platforms in response. The outnumbered Empire fleets abandoned the area and fled, they are currently waiting for the larger alien force to make their next move from their hiding places.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
Admiral Lord Simms killed after a long and distinguished service to the Empire.
The Imperial Services have intercepted and serious damaged several DEN ships on the way to the Empire’s home systems. Unfortunately during the action Admiral Lord Simms was injured and reports from the Viceroy indicate he has passed away, fighting the enemies of the Empire like any true Imperial Officer.
The Viceroy has stated that the officers and crew of the DEN ships have been captured and are now awaiting trial at a secret IMP base.
DEN continue to strike at the Empire
Reports are coming in of multiple engagements between the Empire and the Dewiek Elder Nation over the last week. With several battles taking out Empire ships in the Heartland of the CIA.
AFT turn to piracy
The Association of Free Traders have, after a long history of neutrality, turned to piracy this week. AFT Drake boarded an IND ship in the Halo periphery, killing several of the crew in the process.
Independent trader Jarlebanke Langhofdi immediately took to the public communication channel demanding an answer to why supposedly peaceful traders had killed his crew and taken his ship.
The AFT remain silent over the attack.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
Combat Special Edition
Since the DEN started shooting at those lovable FEL fluffballs things have certainly been heating up. So we through it would be prudent to bring you, gentle beings of the peripheries, a special edition in order to keep you updated with all the latest action in regards to who the DEN are shooting and who is shooting them.
Felini strike back at Dewiek
Reports have come in of the FEL striking back at the DEN in the Kallisan system. A huge FEL force supported by the IMP and CIA assaulted DEN positions taking both the platform and base called Lucien. There was much rejoicing in the FEL camp as the Felini proved they were not such lovable fluffballs after all!
GTT get sucked into the war
A passing fleet of GTT warships got caught in the fighting and this saw the GTT enter the war. When asked about this CEO Fox pointed out they are not warships at all, they are trade defence ships. So how they came to be in the DEN system of Kallisan is a mystery to us. But the GTT CEO was clear that they only engaged using support and defend orders to protect allies. Needless to say, the CEO commented “We found ourselves on the Dewiek Nation’s enemy lists pretty soon after.”
Dewiek Nation attacks GTT positions in Orion Spur, breaking DOM system rules
A fleet of DEN warships has engaged and destroyed a significant number of GTT cargo ships and escorts in the DOM system Monument. The GTT immediately took to the public channels to ask why the DOM were not doing something. In reply the DOM issued a statement to stop, which the DEN ignored.
The DEN newssheet "The HOWL" published a completely unbiased review of the attack shortly after.
DOM make a choice
After the above incident and then further raiding by the DEN, taking out a few GTT cargo ships in the DOM system of Coptuv, the DOM seemed to have been faced with a choice of stopping drinking their tea and doing something or just hoping it would go away. Instead they seem to have decided to abandon the whole idea of being an active affiliation and we have since folded. The lengths some people will go to not to have their elevenses disturbed is truly staggering. We asked the DOM for a statement on their new system rules to share with our readers but have received no replies.
DOM positions share out
Just as we were going to press news has come in of various DOM assets being given to other affiliations or sold. Hopefully we will have more on this story in the next issue of your favorite factual newsheet. Yes, that's us at the SSS.
*** Affiliations ***
AFT Association of Free Traders (54) - Marion Tweedy
CIA Combined Intelligence Agency (64) - Laton CIA
DNA Displaced Natives Asylum (66) - DNA people
DTR Detinus Republic (58) - Morley Decker
DEN Dewiek Elder Nation (67) - Urd
DOM Dominion (57) – we believe the DOM are now inactive
FCN Falconian Republic (70) - Bacran
FEL Felini Tyranny (49) - Juris
FLZ Flagritz Republic (47) - Kayxaer
FET Frontier Exploration & Trade (56) - Cu Chulainn
GRC Gracians (13) - HG1
GTT Galactic Trade & Transport (52) - Xavier Fox
GCE Garcia Enterprises (4) - Neil
HEX Hexamon (23) - Ando
IMP Imperial Services (51) - Jack Jones
KRL Krell (30) - Namica
KRT Krell of the Reverence Temple (37) - Kal Torak
KST Kastor Kastorians (12) - Kastor
MZC Mizuchi Combine (86) - Mizuchi
MOH Mohache (73) - Listens
MIC Mohache Independent Commune (76) - Sleeps with Dragons
NLF Naplian Liberation Front (38) - NLFHQ
RIP Regularly Involved in Piracy - Githyanki
RRH Roy Robert Holdings (39) - Roy Roberts
SMS Stellar Mining and Smelting (53) - MikhailM
USN Ulian Stellar Nation (34) - Oeipus Prime
WMB Wimble Nations (25) - zz
* Leader MAY be inactive, affiliation may be active
** Affiliation has no leader but this is the only known contact
NPC / FoC: ARC, CIV, CGT, FRE, HBO, HEF, IND, ISP, JCN, MEK, MRC, PIR, PRV, TCA, TRN, KAS
Inactive: ANT, BHD, COD, HVE, IDC, RIP, RCF, SKW, TAG
*** Submission ***
By private message to The Editor or via Mica if you prefer to remain anonymous.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
New pirate threat rocks Corward Arm.
Several large pirate ships have been spotted in outer rings of Corward systems. Reports forwarded to us at the SSS allow us to exclusively tell readers that traders should keep their wits about them when moving through these areas.
No existing pirate menace has yet claimed ownership.
In a possibly unrelated event one of the FET cartel members claimed nothing was happening in the outer ring of Coptov shortly afterwards. But it could be that they are still trying to catch Empire backed pirates and have nothing to do with the new sightings.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
DEN continue to shoot innocents
The Dewiek have made themselves busy shooting at the peaceful and innocent traders of the SSL. Leader of Solar Spices and Liquors Mr TOAD has been vocal pointing out that the Beast-DEN are being totally unfair. News of a go-fund-me appeal are yet to surface though.
This office is sure that it must have provided the DEN light relief after picking on the equally defenceless Felini. Word is that the DEN faced such an uphill struggle in these recent actions they had to take up Felini inter-breeding to provide some entertainment as the battle reports were rather boring.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
Return of the LiQuans
A close associate of the Baron LiQuan has been haunting the Corewards periphery and like the old Baron it is said he has a meklan connection. It's unclear whether he obtained his meklan nanites via the CIA but there are rumours that the DEN may be helping the Liquan relative in a bid to sow discontent in the Stellar Empire. Exactly why they would start in Corewards is unclear although with DEN allies, the DOM, having strong positions both in the Sol system and the old Harcorp systems of Harlong and Coptuv they may be the linking factor.
***** Inter Galactic News *****
Meklan Unleashed on Mobile Bay
Mad Dewiek scientist Dr Kala released a number of Meklan on the busy world of Mobile Bay in the Yank system. Thousands of civilians have been killed in what is treated by DEN warlords as an amusing practical joke. Rather than take any responsibility for their affiliation’s reckless behaviour, a DEN lord rumoured to be half-meklan himself quipped he would nuke the planet whilst another merely saw it as an opportunity to test some of his greener troops in combat. Surprisingly, the KAS planetary defence force was up to the job of repelling the insidious incursion. Questions remain whether further meklan are stored elsewhere on the planet and whether anybody will challenge the Dewiek’s lack of care for the lives of innocents. Probably not, given how even the mighty IMP are now cowering from a fight with the DEN (see inside this edition).