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Home » Stars! 2.6/7 » The Academy » Some answers about common MT questions... (long)  () 1 Vote
icon10.gif  Some answers about common MT questions... (long) Wed, 13 August 2003 15:05 Go to previous message
overworked is currently offline overworked

 
Lt. Junior Grade

Messages: 403
Registered: November 2002
Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Trying to collect and organize some information in one place on what the MT does to annoy us so. Smile Will refer people elsewhere for some details, but try to cover the generalities and identify the mysteries (for those who feel like exploring).

(1) What is the Mystery Trader (MT)?
The MT is a random Stars! event. IF the game does not allow random events (comet strikes, artifacts, etc.) then the MT will NEVER appear in that game.

Beyond that the MT is a mysterious vessel that enters the galaxy broadcasting a willingness to trade something to you in exchange for 5000kt of minerals (in a single fleet). Since it's broadcasting you always know where it is on the map (though other things on your scanners might occasionally obscure it.)

(2) When does the MT appear?
Appearance of the MT is a random event for that year. However, it seems that there is a validation check involved as well. This is possibly tied to year (2440 is the earliest I've ever seen an MT appear), and possibly some threshold of technology, resources, or minerals among the races in the galaxy.

The MT will enter from a border traveling at a speed between Warp 8 and Warp 13. Later random events might cause any given MT to change course, speed (faster or slower) or both. Claimed correlations between speed changes and imminent interception by a race are believed to be greatly exaggerated. :~ [Note: a Warp 7 MT has been reported, but is believed to be a Warp 8 or higher MT that slowed down due to another random event.] The MT will cross the galaxy and eventually exit.

Minefields do not affect the MT. Twisted Evil

There is also a random event that will cause a previously exited MT to cross the galaxy again (the "entry" message is different.) This may or may not be lauded depending on what it is carrying and your previous luck in trading with it.

(3) What happens if I try to attack the MT?
It ignores warships. Unless they're carrying/escorting 5000kt of minerals and you haven't traded with that MT yet. In which case it will trade with that fleet (see below). Claimed correlation between annoying MTs and subsequent huge comet strikes on homeworlds are still being investigated. Surprised

(4) How does trading with the MT work?
You have to intercept the MT with a fleet containing 5000kt (or more) minerals. The MT will absorb this fleet (i.e. it is destroyed) and give you something in exchange. MTs move before your fleets do; so the trick is to be in position to get in your move that year where the MT will be *after* it moves. The general rule of thumb is to get ahead of it with enough fuel to move fast enough to catch it even if there is a speed change.

Attempting to intercept the MT with multiple fleets will not work. One will be absorbed, the rest will not be able to trade.

Interception of MT occurs *before* fleet merging. You need to have the 5000kt in one fleet the turn before interception. Intercepting and merging the same turn will not work. (Unless the MT is going slow enough you can keep up with it the next turn.)

(5) What do I get from the MT?
A given MT is giving out one of three things (and this appears to be set when the MT is generated - this is an exception noted below.)

(a) You get a unique part or hull type that you can build and use yourself if you have sufficient technology. There are detailed lists and discussion of these parts elsewhere.

(b) You get some technology levels.
"Some" levels is dependent on some additional factors. First, it *decreases* based on your total number of tech levels. Second, if you bring additional minerals you a bonus technology level per additional 1200kt you bring. This tops out at 9800kt of minerals traded. It is possible for the MT to give you zero tech levels. This also happens if you meet a "technology" MT when you already have max tech.

[Note: Research has not generated a widely accepted set of data on what the exact breakpoints are for the total tech penalty. My opinion is that the initial number you get is random, then the bonu
...



[Updated on: Sun, 17 August 2003 09:35] by Moderator





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