Medievia Mudslinger

March 4, 2001

Tak's Detailed Guide to Successful Trade Runs - By Tak

The following article was prepared by the author with only minor advice. There are several aspects that are reliant on his own views and experiences, and thus the accuracy of every point made cannot be guaranteed by the staff here. We suggest that a new trader experiments with the information here to gain experience.

The Mudslinger Staff

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Attitudes
  3. Valuing
  4. The Needs and Wants
  5. During the Run
  6. Catastrophe
  7. Final Note

I. Introduction

There is not a doubt that money is a necessity in the realms of Medievia. It is needed in buying equipment and other costly items. A quick and common way in obtaining a large sum of money is by doing a trade run or TR for short. Basically, a trader will buy goods from one city and sell them in another for profit. This guide will teach you how to do a TR, whether leading or being lead, how to survive in nasty situations, and be a good resource for those that already have a little knowledge on this subject. One last note before we begin, a lot of information you get from this may seem vague but it is because I have never spoken to the coders of Medievia therefore all the information will be derived from my experience. The guide may also seem very general because not every situation is the same. The guide will just give you knowledge but the actual experience is up to you, the trader.

II. Attitudes

As a trader, it is almost imperative that you have a proper attitude in doing a TR. Many times I have lost my form and their freights because I (or one of my form members) did not carry a proper attitude. What is the proper attitude? There are many but the MOST important is PATIENCE. Like life, patience is the key to success. The approximate time to do a good TR is an hour and a bit. This will not always be true because there are many factors that can affect this, for example, there are mob factions, weather, and form members who do not listen for instructions. Besides patience, you will have to be able to execute the form leader's commands. A simple command that is often missed is DON'T WHISK. If you idle and whisk, you will lose your mount and you will not be moving with the form. This is just one of many examples of how you can hinder the form and the run if you don't listen for instructions carefully. Third attitude is the willingness to have fun! Remember that above all else, this is a game meant for fun. It doesn't matter that you encounter nine Troll Captains with an approaching tornado with a form member missing, you are playing for fun! If you don't carry these three attitudes with you, I can guarantee that your TR experience will be a failure more than a success.

III. Valuing

This next part will be for the leader of the run. So you have prepared yourself mentally for the run and you think you have what it takes. Your next step is to value a run. The meaning of this is simply getting to know how much profit you will make on the run. To do this, you will have to get to the DESTINATION trade post. Trade posts in Medievia are shown as a $ symbol. Once there, you will have the buy a freight, any freight is useable for valuing purposes. Hopefully by now, you have an idea of where your run will start from. For this example, I'm going to use the popular city of Riverton. I know Riverton sells grapes, honey, metals, brandy, and fertilizer so I will give the command value grapes. You will receive the price at which that post will buy ONE crate of grapes for. To find out the total profit for grapes depends on what type of freight you will carry the grapes with. There are several types: covered wagons, open wagons, pack horses, and pack mules. The most common one is the covered wagon simply because it can carry the most goods. I know that covered wagons can carry 56 crates of grapes so I multiply 56 by the price of one crate to get the total profit.

Profits will vary on the type of freight and the distance between the two posts. Generally, I like runs that are approximately 800K+ for an hour to an hour and a half. With practice and a little estimation, you will be able to determine if the run is worth the money or not. Some runs may be high priced but the time to complete it is incredibly long. This valuing process may sound difficult with all the math and all the different goods that are out there so I strongly recommend a valuing script for your MUD client. I use one where all I have to do is type gettrade and it will get the prices of all the goods and returns the profits to me in a nice, organized list assuming that I carry the goods with a covered wagon. Many clan pages will have links for scripts like this.

IV. The Needs and The Wants

The title makes this part of the guide obvious. I'm going to begin with the needs of your trip first.

The Needs

There are basically two things you absolutely need on a trade run. You need enough money to buy the freight and the goods. You will also need a bit of extra cash on you for calling dragons. You will need to call on them when you are being followed by the evil wilderness dragons. I suggest no more than 200K gold because wilderness dragons tend to chase the traders with a lot of money on them. That's really about all you need to begin.

A List of Freights

Type Cost Description
Mule 24k Holds more than a pack horse but will not be able to walk in swamps or certain forests.
Wagon Horse 80k These guys are useless because they work the same as covered wagons but they hold less
Covered Wagon 100k The most common type of freight used. Holds the most out of the 4 types. Will only travel on roads and certain paths.
Pack Horse 20k Holds the least but can travel virtually anywhere but the oceans of course!

The Wants

To make your long journey a little more comfortable, you will want to have the following. You do not need all of these to complete the run but it is going to shorten your run considerably.

Form

Trading alone is not difficult at all. It may even be faster than with a form but it is kind of boring and you will encounter tiny problems here and there without certain spells. A form never hurts anyone not to mention you will gain more TR points for your clan if you bring a clan form. So who do you bring in a form? I'd suggest a form of three to four people. One reason is that a trade post only carries five types of goods and you wouldn't want to have a form carrying the same type because it will lower the profits for the last person that sells. Another reason is that the bigger they are, the harder they fall. What I mean is it's hard to control eight other players, making sure they do not whisk and making sure everyone is there. The lag will most probably be terrible and if disaster strikes, you will have to wait on all the members to continue again. The main reason a small form is good is (in my theory) because the game will load a bigger mob faction for big forms. When I say bigger I mean number wise. I have never heard of nine troll captains clobbering a small form.

The level of form members is really not that much of a deal. It is also in my theory that the game will load mob factions that your form can take down. I have traded when I was small with big form members and it was difficult for me to fight the mobs but when I was bigger with small form members, the mob factions were peanuts. So I can say, judging from experience, that the level of the mob faction is the average level of your own form. So, it doesn't really matter who you take.

Mount

A mount will make your run faster. I wouldn't think anyone would want to drag a wagon across the lands of Medievia on foot! The best kind of mount out there are morgans. They are the fastest type of mount that does not wander when you dismount them. They also carry a lot of movement points so you don't have to rest or mass refresh them as much. If you have experienced traders with you, I suggest the appaloosa. These guys are the fastest horses out there. I only suggest using the appaloosa with small, experienced forms because they wander with gleeful abandon. Morgans and appaloosas can be found in the holosections near Med city and some other holosections on the road. I have only been to the ones near Med and Riverton. Appaloosas cost 10K each and morgans costs 5K. A common type of free mount is the warhorse found in City of Medievia stables. These guys are fast and they don't wander at all. The mares at Riverton are also fast and free but they will wander a bit. I can only suggest these four types of mounts because they are simply the best. Usually, if I start from a city that doesn't have these types of mounts near them, I just use what they have in the city stables and when I get near a portal or near Med city, I change mounts. If the city does not have a stable like Ruellia, I would get a mount and just portal to the nearest clan town so I can walk from there.

A little strategy I use is have a form member fly to the post while others get the mounts. After entering the closest clan town, we'd phase that person waiting at the post. I then will dismount for that person waiting and cast word of recall so I can get another mount.

Spells & Skills

Of course attacking spells are great but a lot of support spells come into play here.

Mass Refresh - This will give your mounts more movement points when they get low. Beats tethering them and waiting. Having some form members casting this once in a while can have them stay active.

Mass Invisibility - Being invisible means you don't have to deal with the little wilderness mobs hence you'll move a lot faster but some other mobs can detect invisibility so be careful still. Cast this after every fight.

Shield Room - Used to protect freight from mob faction that will steal them. Spectral-hounds can go through shielded rooms so be sure you know what you're dealing with.

Minor Creation & Trap - Set traps when you encounter trolls or bandits so if they catch you by surprise, they'll be trapped and your freight won't go too far.

Scan and Far Sight - Scan so you know where the mob faction leaders are. Far sight for when it's nighttime and you can't see much.

Mass Quick - For when you decide to go on foot or if you lost mounts. Very handy for when there is a crash or reset.

If you don't have all these skills and spells, there are potions and staves you can buy. You may also want to find form members that have these skills.

Miscellaneous

Some other wants to make your run more enjoyable.

Money - Have everyone carry no more than 200K of gold on them. Reason being is that wilderness dragons tends to attack people with a lot of gold on them.

Macros - Set up some macros on your keypad to save your enter key the pounding and people who use macros tend to be faster.

Better Lag - Have everyone in form have auto exit disabled, compact on, brief on, and brief move on. Form leader should have brief off so he/she can see the road of course.

V. During The Run

Now you should be prepared and everyone has a freight and your form has all the skills and spells ready. I'm sure you've heard there are two sides to everything; you want to complete the run and fate doesn't want you to. The codes will bombard you with mob factions, bad weather, and spam from everywhere. DON'T PANIC! Luckily, all these things are manageable if you have a clear mind and the right skills. But before all the above sets in, your first instruction to your form on your first step is do not whisk. Mentioned somewhere in the previous sections, whisking can cause lost of freight, longer time to complete the run, and everyone will hate you for it. The form leader should designate casters to cast mass refresh every 15 to 30 seconds or so, and the non-casters to check the weather with the weather command. By doing this, everyone will stay active and you eliminate a small problem.

Medievia is made of roads and trails that split off in different directions at times. Don't be afraid of being lost because at these intersections, there will be a navigator to help you. When you arrive at one of these, ask him for directions. For this example we'll use New Ashton as the destination. Give the command "say where new ash" and the navigator will reply with the direction. Sometimes you'll run into an intersection where there is no navigator. This is when you should test all the possible routes first. Your covered wagon should not be able to move onto some dirt roads therefore test all the routes and you'll most probably find only one that works. If there is a choice of roads to take with no navigator, I would do a survey to see if I recognize anything then refer to the Med Web map. It is my theory that the speed of the run determines the number of mob factions.

I'm sure you've heard me say mob factions several times already. What are they? Mob factions, also known as MFs, are the nasties on the road that will tear you and your form apart, rip you up limb from limb and then eat your freight or run away with it. Sounds horrible? Not at all. If you know how to deal with them, they're easy as cake. First rule is don't be afraid of it. Mentioned above somewhere, the game will not load MFs that you cannot handle. It is my theory that if that MF is one of your form's, you will get warnings. The only exception is that with trolls. You can sometimes encounter a troll without warning but not troll captains. I will go through each MF one by one and their warnings.

Rogues

Warnings: A loud *SNAP* of a footfall on a stick just off the road gives you pause.
Your instincts warn you of an ambush up ahead.
You realize this road seems too quiet.
A flock of birds spring into the air just ahead.

Characteristics: These guys don't move and there will be only one leader. BUT, if you bring your freight into the rogue room, all his friends come out of hiding and you're toast. They will walk off with your freight if you run in with your freight.

Process: It's simple really. Locate where the rogue is by using far sight and scan, then hitch your freight one room from him. After that, just kill him off.

Kobolds

Warnings: You spy a multitude of tiny footprints in the dust near the road.
You feel as if you're being watched by many eyes.
You hear the creak of a bowstring as an unseen hand draws it back.
Your scalp prickles at the sibilant sound of leaves rustling.

Characteristics: These guys are cake also. The number of leaders varies to the size of your form. In theory, their underlings don't start with %100 hp but will tick up in time. If you walk into the leader room without taking out the underlings, all of them will come into the room and you'll have to deal with 10+ kobolds. They will walk off with your freight if that is the case.

Process: When you see a warning, advance slowly and with caution. When you get near the leaders, their underlings will shoot arrows at you. Go off and along on one side of the road and pick off the underlings. Do the same with the other side. Once all the underlings are gone, go back to your freight and far sight and scan until you find the leaders. Hitch your freights and go in to take them out. Set a wimpy if you want but your form should be able to take them out. Remember to have all your melee members target kobold at the start and after every death.

Bandits

Warnings: You sense some movement on the side of the road.
You get an uneasy feeling and glance over your shoulder... at nothing.
You glimpse a bandit dash by, just off the road!

Characteristics: The number of leaders varies to the size of your form. Their underlings are mobile and they will take your freight if they defeat your group.

Process: These guys are not that tough. When you get the warning, shield room and tick full. Remember to cast sanctuary before you go also. When you're full and sanced, just run into the leader room and you should be ok. They will not call for help if you walk in with your freight but might walk off with it if they out number your form. If you're the type that likes to play it safe, set some traps before you get into the leader room, hitch your freight, and set a wimpy before taking them on.

Demon Lord

Warnings: Indescribable fear grips you, you struggle just to breath.
Your heart starts pounding as you are overcome by fear, a Demon must be close by!
The loud crack of a dimensional vortex collapsing nearby sets your hairs on end.
You notice that everything is too quiet.
You will hear dogs running at you from a certain number of feet away
Demon lord will shout at your form

Characteristics: Demon Lords don't move but are aggressive meaning they will attack you on sight. They usually send out some spectral-hounds to kill you. If you lose to the hounds, kiss your freight good-bye because these dogs will EAT your freight if unprotected. If you walk into the Demon Lord room with your freights, he will call a blood demon to help him kill you.

Process: When you see the dogs, sanc up and take them out until you come to the demon lord room. Dogs are not that hard and if you want, you can stay near the demon lord and have him throw dogs at you for experience. He will go away eventually. If you want to take him out, sanc up, spell up, and tick full. Have all your melee personnel target Demon Lord and trip and bash him because he will cast shockwave on you. Focus all your spells on the demon lord first then take out the blood demon. I usually just rush in with full ticks, spell ups, and sanc.

Trolls

Warnings: You sense a possible troll attack.
You step on some human remains from a troll attack.
You smell an awful scent of trolls.
You hear the bone chilling war cry of a horde of Trolls.

Characteristics: These are the meanest and nastiest MF in the book. These guys have slaughtered many forms but they are manageable nonetheless. Their underlings have the same four classes as we do, warrior, thief, cleric, and mage. You will probably encounter one of them before you get the warnings. Number of leaders varies to the size of your form. If you walk into the leader room with your freight, they will walk away with it.

Process: They are not impossible but if you encounter 8-9 troll captains, you're virtually dead if you run in. The safest way to do this is shield room, set some traps, and just wait them out. If you're feeling adventurous, have one person go scout and see how many leaders there are. If you decide you can take them down, have one person with the ability to shield room stay with the freights and have some traps handy. The rest of the form should phase the scout and have EVERYONE tick full, spell up, sanced, and set a wimpy of 250. Once you're ready, go in and have your melee personnel target troll at the beginning of fight and after every death. If you see one form member flee, all members should flee and tick up again. Just repeat this process and in several passes, they should go down. I only recommend this if you're experienced enough. Otherwise, just wait!

To end off this section of the guide, there are some general rules to mob factions. Rule one is that they load in between navigators and will not run past them. You can use this to your advantage if you want to be safe. When you see a warning, simply run backwards to the nearest navigator and go one room in the different direction. The mobile underlings will not be able to touch your freight. Then just go and pick off the leaders. Second rule and a critical one is that if you run into the leader room with your freights and one form member dies, THE REST OF THE FORM SHOULD DIE WITH HIM/HER. IT IS CRITICAL THAT YOU DO NOT FLEE AND LET THEM TAKE THE FREIGHTS. Why should we die? If you die and corpse, your freights become invisible to the MFs and other players - therefore the mobs can't take it. Once you corpse, meet up in the leader room and just wait until the leaders sneak away. It will take some time but is better than losing your freight and all that profit. However, if one form member died and the rest of the form has a chance to take out the leaders, do so. Once the leaders are gone, the underlings will sneak away. Then you can resurrect the dead or have him pray at an altar and continue. But I remind you again that it is critical to die together if you have no chance to win.

You should be able to deal with MFs now but there are other things that will hinder your progress. Weather, for one, will be a problem. If you feel brave enough, you can run through the weather. Remember you can always hide in Medlink or wait out the firestorms. Dragons are another factor. If you sense that you are followed, have every link and check whom the dragon is hunting. That person should not be able to link. In this case, have everyone mount up and if you're fast, you can probably out run the dragon but if you hit a MF and can't run any farther, just call a good dragon (when you hear the evil one land) and the good should be able to defeat the evil dragon. If all else fails, just have the person who is being hunted walk off one room from you and let the dragon ice him. When the dragon leaves, you can resurrect that person and go on with the run. Like I mentioned somewhere, dragons tend to hunt the people with gold so don't bring more that 200K with you after you buy your freights. One more disturbance is the forest mobs that can detect invisibility. Ogres, banelars, and moon serpents bug me a lot. If you do find that they are too strong, simply flee from them. They don't take your freights like the mob factions. Be extra careful with these mobs though. The farther you are from the City of Medievia, the tougher these guys are.

VI. Catastrophe

A catastrophe is when a disaster hits a city. Like real life, when disaster strikes, the people that live in the city will need supplies desperately. This is when traders will flock to the city in search for riches. During a catastrophe, the trade post of the city will be closed so unlike regular trade runs, you won't be able to value. All you can do is guess. If you carry a good item, you can make up to 2 to 4 times the norm. This is why everyone online will want to trade. This just makes the roads less safe when you travel with your form because the more forms out there, the many more mob factions the game may load. Besides the basic skills taught earlier, you and your form must battle mobs factions that are of unknown level to you. But fear not because what affects you will affect others. By this I mean if your group runs into a mob faction without warnings, this is probably another form's MF. If the mob faction is easy enough, take it out and be on your way but if you find that you're having difficulty dealing with them, just try to survive until the other form arrives. They will have to help you because the mob faction will stop their freights also. So if the two forms work together, you will probably do ok. You can find out whether there is a catastrophe by buying a paper from the scribe at Med City. When you have done so, simply give the command read catastrophe.

When you get near the post, you will see a difference in the map. Depending on what catastrophe it is (fire, flood, plague) your form will suffer damage so keep those clerics healing. For the floods, you can always cast breathe water. The most feared catastrophe out there is the asteroid showers. If you are unlucky and get hit by an asteroid, you're pretty much dead, even if you have 1000+ hit points with mana shield and sanctuary cast, you're still dead. Be careful of those asteroids.

When you arrive at the post, there will probably be a lot of people there so you will get spammed a lot. The minute the post opens, sell off your freight immediately for maximum profits. The longer you wait, the less you're going to make because others who carry the same type of goods will have sold before you hence lowering your profits. Catastrophe trade posts tend to open around 5-6 hours since it has been reported. You can always be early to beat the people then camp outside the post.

VII. Final Notes

One more final tip before I end off. If you find that you have to log out for whatever reason before your run is complete, you can tether your mount and just camp and quit. When you log back on again you will find your mount and freight still there. There is an exception, of course, to crashes or resets. If you've read through the entire guide, I am extremely thankful. If you found it useful, then my job was not a waste. With practice and perseverance, anyone can be a good trader. Remember to have fun and stay safe! I will end off with a favorite quote that I repeat to myself every time I feel helpless on a trade run.

"I am a great believer of luck. I find the harder I work, the more I have of it!" Stephen B. Leacock

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