Offworld Trading Company from Mohawk Games

Actually, why am I not incurring debt from not producing food, oxygen and fuel in the screenshots above?

Robots don’t consume those resources, so you have no unfulfilled demand from which to incur debt.

Oh of course, duh! I’d spent the entire campaign playing nomadic and the last week was a map where there was very little water so I went robotic instead. Thanks Otagan!

Edit: Actually, that may have been the best decision I made in the entire campaign, and just when it mattered.

I’ve been trying an 8 week campaign with Maisie Song on Executive, and losing every time. I’ve been steadily getting better though.

This time I’m feeling good - the first mission was a Mining colony with three (!) mining engineers to contract for the mission, and the minimum mining perk. That bagged me a cool $1M alone, with which I hired an Offworld astronaut. Fingers crossed I can take it home!

Sounds cool!

Do you people even listen to monoliths? Attempt no landing!

Sweet. Always a good thing when there is more Offworld content.

I’m fascinated by this but can’t seem to find a path to competence with it.

I think that’s a quote you could slap on the box. It’s probably the reaction you’d find the most agreement with if you polled people who played it.

Definitely. I love this game and yet I’m really pretty bad at it. I return to this one periodically, there’s just something about it. Just SP too, the AI gives me more than I can handle, god knows what a mess I’d make trying to take on a human, haha.

I don’t mind screwing up Mars, it’s a lifeless rock full of broken robots and potatoes. But Europa!? There’s potential for life in its vast subsurface oceans, and I can’t bring myself to screw up that potential biosphere. I’m sorry, but that moon is simply a bridge too far for me. I’d so much rather mine the shit out of Titan, with a little oxygen it’s a greasefire waiting to happen anyway.

We had a tourney on here and the first game I played, I got rolled. I kept at the AI until I understood the strategy and then never lost a game after that. It wasn’t enough to win the tourney at that point, but I did better than I expected.

The long and short of the basic strategy, if I recall, is to run on cash and not on raw materials.

IE, let’s say your upgrade needs 300 Dirt Bars and 200 Blue Bars. You might be tempted to build the infrastructure and mine those bars. Maybe, in some circumstances, that’s the right strategy. For me most of the time I ran strictly on a cash economy only - ie, autoselling all my production. Also you can make decent money early on if you keep a positive energy balance and sell the difference, since for whatever reason both the AI and players tend to like running negative energy balance.

In other words, I built whatever commodity was most profitable, and cared very little for whatever my faction specific commodity demanded.

Late game is a bit different, with Research and ect.

I think the real tipping of the scales toward cash and not raw materials is that if you build a raw material economy early and then run out of cash for whatever reason you’re literally dead in the water because you won’t have the cash to change your economy. OTOH, if you’re cash flush and buying what you need, it’s not particularly hard to just throw cash at the problem and redirect your economy to the next profitable thing. It doesn’t help that many - not all - of the early raw materials are pretty dead end as far as late game economic value goes.

Smiles mightily :)

I’ll buy the new expansion, even though I suuuuhuuuhuuuck at the game and rarely play it because the AI wipes the walls with me. But I love the game so I’ll buy it. Because more games like this need to exist.

Depends on the map. My experience is that power is either the most profitable, or least profitable, item to build. By mid game it either balloons (on a poor power producing map) or drops to 1. Taking a cautious approach to power, building at most one, until level 4 tends to be the smart play.

“Who sucks the worst” competition and I wipe the floor with you all. I’m embarrassed the whole time I play, apologizing to my computer for being so bad.

The reason everybody loves to run negative energy balance is that you can have a huge debt that way but still have all the cash handy that didn’t get used to pay it. In other words, you can have both a lot of cash and a lot of debt by not paying your electricity bills. It’s a risky proposition, and can be suicide if the energy really spikes forver (which will be the case in a two player game if one of them don’t do anything about it), but I remember some players were really, really good at surfing the debt wave. Personally, winning with a lot of debt felt always that little extra special. May the AI feels it too.

As you say, it depends heavily. You are absolutely right that cash is the correct unit to be thinking in, not resources.

The real trick is developing some judgment about what the future cash value of all those resources are.

If you’re trying to get an upgrade, it might seem more sensible to make a little cash and but the resources based on current prices. But when you’re buying hundreds of a resource - and other players are also buying that resource for their upgrades! - the prices will frequently tip into making it way better to produce your own upgrade resources. Of course, it depends - but this is why it’s quite rare to not manufacturer your own building materials early on, and often for most of the game. There is just so much upcoming demand for that stuff, and starting prices don’t reflect it.

This is especially true when you can take on some debt for even earlier access to those resources (steel mills burn power, for instance). Debt is very powerful, as long as you can convert it to cash (or victory!) faster than its interest rate!

You can pause and give orders in single player, right? If so, is that what you guys do if you don’t have plans to so multiplayer?

Maybe. But a standard opening game build for me is water-food-power and selling all the food and just buying what I need. As a consequence I tend to have 0 debt during the early game, not because I’m avoiding debt but because I just never need to accumulate it.

A big big big reason I like food-water-power builds is no transport costs.

Also never build raw materials if you can avoid it - too often high end things like electronics have values in the upper 400s but the raw materials cost like 40. Shrugs. One thing I almost always have to do is switch my economy around a few times, say from food to fuel. Raw materials also make you transport them - unless you ha e teleportation, let some other sucker ship your Carbon via Mars Prime for you.

But never never go for a steel economy. Oh man that is always a dead end.

In OTC I think in terms of time, not cash or resources. If I’m making 2k a second in cash the cost to upgrade my main is like 25 seconds, The time to produce the raw materials to upgrade for close to free is going to be much longer - usually - than 25 seconds.