Long un-awaited Cosmic Bootlegger (download) has arrived.
You have recently inherited a coveted interstellar merchant’s license from your cousin’s mother’s sister’s husband. After managing to secure a small ship you are now ready to become the local star cluster’s most (in)famous trader. Unfortunately there’s only 26 weeks before the Merchant of the Millennium awards, and you have a lot of hard work to do if you’re going to win the jumbonium tiara.
Current interstellar drives are incapable of directly taking you anywhere in the cluster; so, you can only travel to other systems connected to your present location by starlanes. Much to the surprise of those who originally discovered the starlanes and chagrin of speeders, it takes exactly one week to traverse a starlane regardless of the distance between systems, and there are no rest stops; so, bring plenty of toilet paper. Fortunately this keeps the galactic police service out of the starlanes as they stay near the ends where the donuts are.
When visiting a system you have the option of going through the customs checkpoint, where your ship will be searched for contraband. Your ship has a variety of locations to conceal contraband from the initial cursory inspection. If unconcealed contraband is found it will trigger a thorough inspection of your ship, all contraband will be confiscated and you’ll face a hefty fine. Alternately you can attempt to sneak into the system by navigating an asteroid field – but keep in mind that spaceships don’t react well to asteroid hits.
The local cluster consists of a group of 5-10 star systems connected by starlanes. Each system has passed laws making some of the cluster’s 12 commodity goods illegal; the illegal goods in each system will vary from game to game. In each system you are able to trade any of the commodities regardless of legality because, well, everyone needs 200 Proof Slurm to party, and you always happen to know a guy who knows a guy who knows a giant worm. Similar to a well known game from the historical archives the prices of goods change every time you move, vary wildly and often make no sense as everyone and their cousin’s mother’s sister’s son smuggles illicit goods into the system. You’ll start with 5000 credits and a ‘short cylinder’ class ship. It has a cargo hold with 30 spaces – 5 of which double as smuggling compartments.
The commodities that can be traded in the local cluster:
- Spice – Sometimes called Melange. It’s the only substance that will get space navigators high enough to plot new trade routes.
- Pentainum Ore – It’s like tri-tainium ore except two better.
- All Beef Patties – As cows are an endangered species, beef can fetch a hefty premium on the black angus market, also good for greasing palms and emergency rations.
- Soilent Green – Yep, it’s still made out of people.
- Antimatter Rods – It’s the fuel of the future and incredibly explosive: handle with caution.
- Bending Robots – They can bend a girder to any angle you want.
- Sonic Actuators – Used in sonic screwdrivers and wrenches and hammers – oh my.
- Intestinal Parasites – The future’s diet drug of choice because we’d rather have disgusting worms in our bowels than exert self control.
- 200 Proof Slurm – Space’s most rockin’ adult-beverage.
- Food Replicators – Tea, Earl Grey, HOT!
- Plot Hole Navigators – They make all of storyline flaws in our favorite scifi and anime shows make sense.
- Tribbles – The hamster of the future. Just don’t let them touch.