Over the many years that I have played Trade Wars, I have used tactics that have made other players absolutely furious. I’ve had them call me cheater, liar, bug user, and even a downright asshole. But oh well huh?

Now in my own enemy’s defense, I can see how some of these low-blow tactics of mine can cause anyone but a total expert to go hysterical. They don’t know how I do it, so natural logic would suggest foul play. But it isn’t….. here are the tricks that I have used, and have held in such secret that only now have I decided to share them…..

The Tricks

Corbomite, Death at a Discount – One of the greatest things about Trade Wars is corbomite. If you are known to carry it, other players will always think twice about poppin’ you. The disadvantage of corbomite would be if you got your ship captured with lots of corbo on it, because that is going to translate into bonus wealth for the player who sells your ship. But there is a way to use corbomite effectively without having too much risk of being captured and still getting all the benefit of blowing your enemy to hell with little money.

corbo1.gif (2994 bytes) Ok, so here you found an easy target…it’s that damn evil guy who has eluded you for weeks!
Adrenaline is flowing, your heart is pumping like mad!!! corbo2.gif (2855 bytes)


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Here we have AlcaPhunK tricking the ISS-armed trader into firing on him. There are several things that the evil player did before provoking an attack. First, the Colonial Transport was armed with an odd number of fighters and shields. There is a reason for this. This makes it hard for capture-savvy players to quickly calculate what it takes to capture the ship in one to two shots. Second, the evil player is flying around in a ship that is too big for his experience. This is to make the good guy think he is somewhat ignorant of the game and would be an easy target.

It takes 1.5 million credits to buy 1500 corbomite, which in turn does 30,000 battle points of damage to any ship. 1.5 million would buy only 7500 fighters, and 7500 would never outgun 23K+, so this was a good buy.

ADVANCED – A few things to note. First is that if the good guy were to try and capture your ship, the way to make capturing backfire is to power-up your own weapons and let them rip. Macros would be best, rapidly pound on a macro that would launch 20 at a time, for example. If the good guy sets to capture a ship armed with 156 when he starts to attack, but the ships ends up with only 20 by the time he finally launches…guess what? BOOM! Second, if possible, designate a corp member to your corp’s “pod clean-up crew” and have him waiting nearby. After the good guy is turned to total nav haz, lock on a twarp tow and get the hell out.

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The Name Game – One of the easiest tricks to pull off is duplicating names of planets, ports, even players (more on this later). If you have an armada of planets that are named the same, it wreaks havoc on an opposing enemy’s strategy.

namegame.gif (3130 bytes) So you scan and this is what you see..easy enough, right? Two Mountainous planets, so their quasar blasts would sure to be run down and out soon enough….

Wrong. What if you wore the planets down until they started blasting for 30 damage points? Then what if you warped in and got HAMMERED anyways?!?!

Ouch! This doesn’t make sense, how can it blast like this? You’ve been working on it for 20 minutes, it’s just not possible!! namegame2.gif (5453 bytes)

Well it makes perfect sense. Because your opponent just warped in two EXACT planets with the same name and level right under your nose, and warped the two you were working with out! There is absolutely no way for you to tell when something like this has happened. I have used this trick on numerous occassions, always effectively.

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The Name Game, players – This speaks for itself…how confusing would this be? Could you quickly tell which gamer belongs to which handle?

newgameplayer.gif (1531 bytes) Imagine the possibilities….use this with corbo, attacking…. the confusion is key.

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The Quick-warpin’ Colonial – Well, not exactly…. It’s a little realized fact that the game favors the attacker. When you launch waves of fighters at someone, your ship will be ready to fire again BEFORE your victim fully receives all the computer messages. Try it out with a corpmate. Have them quit the corp for a moment, and launch 100 waves of single fighter attacks. Then page him, go to the bathroom, wash your hands and come back. You’ll notice no response. Why? Because while your end of the game is ready to resume, his end is still dealing with the attack.

fastattack.gif (6345 bytes) This is me, pecking at Hosem.
This is Hosem, getting pecked. fastattack2.gif (4041 bytes)

Now let’s put this in a situation…let’s say you ARE in a Colonial Transport and Hosem comes along looking for fresh prey. Obviously the CT can’t outrun, or outgun much of anything. So what do you do? Hit Hosem fast and furious with 1 fighter for as many times as you can, and run! By the time the game lets Hosem move again, you can be 20 sectors away and long gone.

NOTE – on some BBS’s that aren’t poweful enough, this quick-attack-then-run feature could cause the WHOLE BBS to lag except you, even people not in the game will experience huge lag. I would say go ahead and try it until a sysop scolds you.

ADVANCED – Turn the tables…if you find a player that is known for corbo and you want to capture his ship, quick attack him for 100, then take your sweet time capturing while the game keeps him locked up.

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On Sale, mass experience for only 35K – If you can sucker someone into this, awesome. Because it is one of those things that makes people hate you, yet gives you great joy. For the price of an atomic detonator plus genesis torp, you can kill anyone if you can find a way to get them to land on the planet…and while they are down there, blow the planet and them up!

Here are some starting storylines and tricks I used to make the land….

“The Tough, but Underpowered New Guy” – I once entered in a game, warped over to Stardock, bought my needed tools and immediately started making threats. I was brand new, and I called the top-dawg every name in the book and he thought I was hilarious. I mean, who am I to just walk right on in and tell him how its going to be from now on? So I said to him, “Capt Kirk, I can blow you up with just 30 fighters, versus your 50,000!” He was very doubtful, so I told him, “I’ll make a planet right here, you put down the 30 fighters and I’ll kick your ass!” So I made the planet, he went down to deploy and a few seconds later KA-FREAKIN-BOOM!! Then I mashed his pod as well. I ended my first 24 turns of that game with 15,000 experience.

“The Greedy Bastards” – Another easy, and more likely to be effective, way is to go around and trade all your turns, then head back to Stardock and make a planet. Put down 3 or 5 of your own fighters. Wait till some jerk comes along, sees the planet and fighters, and goes down to get them (as if 3 OR 5 is a lot), and quickly go down and destroy him.

“This Planet is for You” – Make a planet with some player’s handle on it, such as naming a planet “Saluki gets beat by his wife” and then wait for Saluki to come and erase this atrocity. When he tries, take him out.