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(X3AP, Terran Commander) Am I missing something here?
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comraderichard





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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 02:37    Post subject: (X3AP, Terran Commander) Am I missing something here? Reply with quote Print

So after many tries I've finally gotten deep into this game to the point I can't put it down for very long. I imagine that's how it usually goes; you start out overwhelmed and ready to write a big rant about the game then something just clicks right.

However the advice I followed seems to be incorrect. While selling the Katana you start with and acquiring a Valkyrie for taxi and sector revealing was sound, the specific point about taxis eventually turning out millions seems to be false. I was told that mission rewards scale based on reputation and eventually you can start making 7 digits from quick transport missions?

Is that right or am I wrong?

I still have about 6 million in the bank from selling the Katana and at this point I'm wondering if I should just hire an NPC TL ship to plop down silicon mines, protein paste factories, and carbo cake plants..

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ajime





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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 03:59    Post subject: Re: (X3AP, Terran Commander) Am I missing something here? Reply with quote Print

comraderichard wrote:
So after many tries I've finally gotten deep into this game to the point I can't put it down for very long. I imagine that's how it usually goes; you start out overwhelmed and ready to write a big rant about the game then something just clicks right.

However the advice I followed seems to be incorrect. While selling the Katana you start with and acquiring a Valkyrie for taxi and sector revealing was sound, the specific point about taxis eventually turning out millions seems to be false. I was told that mission rewards scale based on reputation and eventually you can start making 7 digits from quick transport missions?

Is that right or am I wrong?

I still have about 6 million in the bank from selling the Katana and at this point I'm wondering if I should just hire an NPC TL ship to plop down silicon mines, protein paste factories, and carbo cake plants..
whats the trade rank level?

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comraderichard





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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 04:26    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

My combat rank and trade rank haven't budged. I wasn't aware I was supposed to focus on those, the advice made no mention of getting those upgraded, only being a taxi and saving up for an MMBS.

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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 05:18    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

That is weird advice, where did you find it? Usually I see people recommending escaping terran space and working in the commonwealth to earn money.


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RAVEN.myst





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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 05:52    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Personally, I'd be wary of following specific "how-tos" - these games more than most others are all about discovery and making your own choices, finding your own way. Granted, I normally (when playing the Terran start) DO sell my Katana and move into a Valkyrie, but I also buy a freighter or two and a factory or two, and start building up my industrial-economic empire while I salvage dropped missiles from the battlefields to make early money and build up trade rank and Terran reputation - then I get a Toukon (TM-class ship) as quickly as possible (once I have sufficient Terran reputation) and take it from there. However, on at least a couple of occasions I went another route: I used the Katana, actively participating in the battlefield from the start. One thing I never do is "escape Terran space", because the way I play I stick with the faction I start with - but that's simply a perfect example of the "different strokes for different folks" aspect of the game. Smile

Terran is the notoriously more demanding start: the economy is initially somewhat stunted, and profit margins are thinner. Also, you have a major challenge in the fact that a small but important portion of your market (the "inner worlds" Mars, Venus, Mercury, and Luna) are essentially cut off from the rest of the Sol system by the battlefield, which presents some unique challenges. However, a more challenging scenario can be more satisfying to break into (at least, that's how it is for me.)

I would strongly advise against silicon mines: the only initial natural (NPC) Terran customer you would have, theoretically, is the Keris factory in Mars (there may be another somewhere like Jupiter? I forget) - that's not enough for viability. Furthermore, the Keris factory is in Mars, but there are no asteroids in the inner sectors - you'd have to set up in the warzone or beyond it; the first option would be disastrous, while the second would require you to babysit each shipment of the ore personally - not viable.

If you want to set up an industrial economy as a "patriotic" Terran, I find there are two main approaches: the harder one is to set up food and water in Venus (nice central location at the "hub" between Mars, Mercury, and the Moon) - the market here is quite limited, and the ice can only be bought for average price, approximately halving your income from water. The other, more lucrative approach is to set up a waterworks in the outer worlds as the foundation for a food and water business. The water market out past the warzone is considerable. You can then add C-Ration and MRE to your repertoire as you grow your complex.

Best of luck! Smile


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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 19:05    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

@ comraderichard :

Trading between the 'inner' and 'outer' sectors in Terran space isn't all that difficult. There's a jump beacon in Venus and another in Saturn (and another further out that I'll let you discover yourself) that you can use to go between the two areas while avoiding the battlegrounds. And ore is a good starter to trade. The various warehouses in the inner sectors are starved for it and there are several producing ore mines in the outer sectors. I always start off with a few 'MORTS' (Manually Operated Remote Traders) when I do the AP Terran start.

Good luck. Smile


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RAVEN.myst





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PostPosted: Thu, 15. Jun 17, 20:08    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Nanook wrote:
@ comraderichard :

Trading between the 'inner' and 'outer' sectors in Terran space isn't all that difficult. There's a jump beacon in Venus and another in Saturn (and another further out that I'll let you discover yourself) that you can use to go between the two areas while avoiding the battlegrounds. And ore is a good starter to trade. The various warehouses in the inner sectors are starved for it and there are several producing ore mines in the outer sectors. I always start off with a few 'MORTS' (Manually Operated Remote Traders) when I do the AP Terran start.

Good luck. Smile

Actually, the jump beacons get randomly generated with every new game - I've had times when they have been in VERY crappy places. If you DO get one in Venus AND Saturn, that's pretty much the best-case scenario - has happened to me VERY rarely, though usually if I don't have one in Saturn I can count on one in Uranus. There seem to always be about 2 in InnerSol, sometimes as many as 3, but occasionally they can be very crappily placed - while one in The Moon is great to have, one in Mercury is not so great, especially when it spawns behind the Military Base and combined with one in Mars but none in Venus and Luna. I also find it REALLY useful to have one in the last sector of the region beyond Oort Cloud, and it almost always is. I'm almost always annoyed when I get one in Neptune, as that one has a gate, so the beacon is almost redundant, especially given that they are a limited resource. I have found 6 in total in almost all my games, though once I only found 5 (I may have missed one, somehow, it's not impossible) and once I had 7 (I was quite happy, though I have the vague feeling that it wasn't a perfect spawn despite the extra chance - I think I had one in Saturn and in The Moon, but not in Venus.)

EDIT: As a consequence of the potentially awful JB disposition, I used to even scout first thing before investing any real effort into a Terran playthrough, to determine where the JBs were, in order to determine whether it would be a worthwhile start. (I've since stopped doing that, accepting whatever I get as an added challenge to the game - although it doesn't so much add difficulty as tedium, really...) /end_EDIT

Jump beacons are OK for manually operated traders, but they don't work with vanilla CAG and CLS, which to me limits their usefulness VASTLY. However, TCS Mk.3 does use them (but I don't use ST/LT/UT, sigh-lol....)


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comraderichard





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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 02:22    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

So I gave it a bit more time and bothered to plop down an advanced satellite in every Terran sector with the exception of the conflict zones because that'd be a waste of credits. Being able to remotely buy ships has really helped with the ship delivery missions to the point I'm actually hesitant to go to the Commonwealth now due to the convenience.

However I've currently got 13 million in the bank and my water complex ( ice mine l+water purification l in Saturn 3, put it on an ice asteroid that was yield 78 ) is just sitting there because I haven't decided whether it's worth it to put down money on freight crew for it because it didn't seem to turn much of a profit. On top of that apparently player-owned MRE and C-Ration complexes *don't* require water.

Maybe I'm doing this wrong. I priced the water at 1 credit less than average. What's the best way to get a stable income of 10s of millions so I can actually start salvaging the Terran economy and equipping my ships reasonably?

I'm really sick of running out of missiles and not being able to equip Baldrics with full shields. x.x

Would Sector traders be a better choice for someone who frankly doesn't want to micromanage anymore than they have to? Or is their return on investment lackluster?

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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 05:13    Post subject: LTs in Terran Space Reply with quote Print

Welcome comraderichard!

I find Local Traders work just fine in Terran space. I usually have $ by the time I'm there so I use Spring Blossoms for their speed. With JBs any good TS will do. I usually give an LT a radius of 1 and make sure there's a source of E. Aldrin is the perfect place to train an LT up a few levels. Level 6 lets you have that 1 square radius. If Aldrin isn't available just start one and see. Nothing to lose.

Just a note. You've really limited yourself with your choice of a Game Start. The others are all much more interesting.


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Imgran





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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 05:55    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

comraderichard wrote:
So I gave it a bit more time and bothered to plop down an advanced satellite in every Terran sector with the exception of the conflict zones because that'd be a waste of credits. Being able to remotely buy ships has really helped with the ship delivery missions to the point I'm actually hesitant to go to the Commonwealth now due to the convenience.

However I've currently got 13 million in the bank and my water complex ( ice mine l+water purification l in Saturn 3, put it on an ice asteroid that was yield 78 ) is just sitting there because I haven't decided whether it's worth it to put down money on freight crew for it because it didn't seem to turn much of a profit. On top of that apparently player-owned MRE and C-Ration complexes *don't* require water.

Maybe I'm doing this wrong. I priced the water at 1 credit less than average. What's the best way to get a stable income of 10s of millions so I can actually start salvaging the Terran economy and equipping my ships reasonably?

I'm really sick of running out of missiles and not being able to equip Baldrics with full shields. x.x

Would Sector traders be a better choice for someone who frankly doesn't want to micromanage anymore than they have to? Or is their return on investment lackluster?


Any station can yield profit if handled well. The issue with setting up in AP is the war zones. The simplest (not the best, just the easiest for a new player to understand) way to set up a resource plex is with Trader MkII, and MkII traders are notorious for not having much of a sense of self preservation. If CLS isn't going to work in Terran space, either sector trading (if there's water demand in your sector) or Mark 2 trading are your only options beyond manual trading which IS going to get tedious. If there's no water demand actually in your sector, until you've trained a sector trader up to level 6 you're kind of stuck with MkII trading.

To use a MkII trader, you need to assign a trade ship to your plex as a home base, option in the command menu. If you have mark 2 trade command software that will allow you to order the ship to either buy or sell one resource. If your plex is self sufficient you should only need the one ship, to sell your water for best price. If you buy energy cells, a seperate trader to do that is required using MkII trading.

Unfortunately mark II software can only handle trading 1 good per trading ship, but fortunately, in a long game, the profit margin still pays off with the added cost of multiple freighters factoried in. It takes a long time to pay for itself but buying energy for 16 that the Mark II trader can get for 12 or 13 WILL pay you back eventually if you play the game long enough (and you aren't getting your traders constantly blown up). That method may not be the most efficient, but since it automatically seeks out the best available price within your station's selected range, it will always make money IF you keep the idiots out of war zones.

You can manually limit the number sectors your traders will go to look for bargains, if you are not too close to trouble that can be enough to keep your mkII traders out of trouble. I can keep my mark 2 traders out of harm's way that way. But I play TC and pick my plexing sectors carefully to be way out of the line of fire, I always place them in core sectors and usually in sectors that have a lot of heavy ship defense, such as Argon Prime and Legend's Home. Having to navigate a war zone plonk in the middle of the area I'm trying to operate in is enough to cause me to seek another place to make my money.

if you must operate in dangerous territory and have to use MkII traders I recommend making sure any traders you assign to Mk2 trading are fully shielded and have emergency jump activated the moment they take any damage. Hopefully if your trader gets jump happy and winds up under fire, the first thing to intercept them will be a light fighter that will convince them to hit the panic button and get out alive. That should be enough in the early game at least.


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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 10:12    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

The critical thing to remember about stations is that you'll not see a positive return on investment (e.g. the profits the station has earned has exceeded the capital cost of setting it up in the first place) for at least 70-80 in-game hours, and that's best case scenario. Stations are a really long-term method of money making and it *will* seem at first like you're getting nowhere with them, but keep at it and eventually you'll be earning money so fast you won't know what to do with it!

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comraderichard





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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 14:13    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I understand the Terrans have a reputation for being a frustrating start but I really prefer them to the Argons. Though aesthetically I'm indifferent between the two human groups, I just don't like how the story is framed with the whole Torus getting suicide bombed.

Also thank you for the welcome!

I'm happy to report I'm actually making progress now. Instead of saving up for a TL I decided to hire an Ice Miner. I now have a food complex in Venus and Saturn (protein paste factory l+carbo cake factory l+usc food supply l+food preparation l) on top of the water complex in Saturn 3. I'm on my way to getting a silicon and ore mine up next to cover the last resources Terrans lack as I kind of want my traders to be able to even get Keris drones.

I think once the facilities are finished being set up I'll focus on farming to equip at least 5 Baldrics fully and slap CLS onto them.

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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 15:17    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

pjknibbs wrote:
The critical thing to remember about stations is that you'll not see a positive return on investment (e.g. the profits the station has earned has exceeded the capital cost of setting it up in the first place) for at least 70-80 in-game hours, and that's best case scenario. Stations are a really long-term method of money making and it *will* seem at first like you're getting nowhere with them, but keep at it and eventually you'll be earning money so fast you won't know what to do with it!


Nonsense. 70-80 in game hours? Seriously? No, no, no. Maybe if you're trying to do it with nothing but price bar management, but doing it properly with supporting traders using CAG or even Mark II? You ought to be able to make your money back way faster than that.

Set up your supporting traders in a good place to find a lot of options to dump your product and you'll be productive and recoup your investment in much less time than that if you've made your choice of business well. If you're building massive plexes to produce nothing but intermediate goods, and insist on bundling all the raw materials into the plex (seriously, don't do that unless you have to, it's a massive waste of capital expenses, "perfect" plexes are an absolute money trap unless you can't source raw materials locally) that's one thing, that can take awhile to recoup, but 70-80 hours for weapon plexes? Come on, man. A PAC factory can pretty much print money if you support it properly, even if you factor in the cost of dedicated freighters. Especially if there's reliable sources of raw materials available within a few jumps of your plex, which there should be if you're going to bother with this stuff.

If you have your satnet up and use mark 2, your traders will always buy raw materials for lower than you can set the price point in your factory, and your traders will always sell for higher than you can set the price point in your factory.The extra profit margin is more than worth the outlay of the extra freight ships. Basically there's no excuse to leave your station's profitability to the vagueries of "the economy" when you can recruit some salesmen and easily get a better deal.

I know some people look down their noses at mark 2 freighters because there's other much more hands-on options that feel better to use, but I've recoupled my investment on plexes using mark 2 trading in a whole hell of a lot less than 70 hours.

Besides, if you're smart about it you'll have set up stations that give you the equipment you need to complete quests and grind money in the meantime, which redresses your bank balance long before the factory pays off. One of the first factories I build is always for Wasp missiles to help with the grind of the early combat missions hunting down those pesky M5's. Those things can be tough to source in the wild and a personal factory can produce a lot of them pretty quickly.

(one trick that amuses me to do when I'm using mark 2 -- i make a lot of factories that sell goods with a lot of value but little mass. Fighter weapons, satellites, microchips, light missiles. So instead of going to the expense of a whole freighter to sell like 5 tons of goods at a time, I buy an M5 like the Discoverer Hauler with mark 2 trading software and use that as a sales courier. It's perfect when you're dealing in top of the line goods rather than bulk sales. I also use Discoverer Haulers to buy crystals when I'm running solar power plants -- anything with a very high value-to-mass ratio probably shouldn't be assigned to a freighter anyway if you can use something nimbler, I'd expect most pirates and enemy warships to fail to intercept my M5 couriers on their way to deliver the payload to the customer)


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comraderichard





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PostPosted: Sat, 17. Jun 17, 23:23    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I got a CLS Baldric on both food complexes and things are progressing, albeit slowly, I'm taking the time to see how much money they generate by exploring the rest of the universe for that one achievement. Not that I particularly care about achievements, it's just something to do in order to fill time. Plus it'll make all sorts of missions easier in the long-run.

Thus far they've both generated over 100k credits on their own. Once I get a TS assigned to each station I might double up so we can actually keep energy cells in stock.

I think once the ore mine is generating I'll actually be able to go about turning my trade empire into a financed military company.

Do you think I should just keep using Baldrics due to the better speed even if the only have 4500 cargo or should I spring for Hayabusas to upgrade them to in the long run due to the 14,000 space but 30 less speed? It seems like volume matters more than speed with factory traders. I could be wrong.

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PostPosted: Sun, 18. Jun 17, 00:33    Post subject: Ts Reply with quote Print

Very good, comraderichard, doing TC your own way!

If you could sell full loads, you'd be ahead. But my usual experience is that traders wait a lot and many times don't have full loads. A slower freighter would lose many contests with an NP trader too. That could happen even selling your own production, if an NP trader delivered a load just before you arrived. My guess would be that the smaller faster TS would make you more $.

You're right about Sats. It's a smart move to put them everywhere you can. It'll pay off too.

Good Luck.


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