Big Ol’ Trading Spreadsheet – Objects in Space

Big Ol’ Trading Spreadsheet – Objects in Space 1 -
Big Ol’ Trading Spreadsheet – Objects in Space 1 -

Profit and fun can be had by deciphering the trading_xxx.txt files. If you have any thoughts about the file contents, please comment!


Big Ol' Trading Spreadsheet - Objects in Space - The Spreadsheet - 1AD73CB
For each station
This spreadsheet – [] 
This section describes the station's forecast price for each commodity, as well as how much it sells. If there is no number next the commodity's price it means that the station does not sell that commodity. If you wish to purchase gold, search for stations that have both in stock. It should not be sold at a low price. Look for gold-selling stations that have high prices.

The Files

Big Ol' Trading Spreadsheet - Objects in Space - The Files - 3BA9E54
Okay, now that's what it is. What We know all about the stations. But How Is it what we know? And what are the things we need to learn? If you are interested, please read on and comment if your thoughts about what the files might mean.
This topic was raised in the past few decades.
This thread – [] 
. Many thanks to Dr_Bicinium & davecortesi who figured out how commodities are encoded and how prices can be calculated. davecortesi created a Python program that turned the data into a usable format, but I couldn’t find it so he wrote it.
My Python program [] 
to do it. It also extracted data about a number of one-off, contract-specific commodity, which I manually removed because they're not part of the dynamic currency.
Here's the summary of our progress so far
The trading data of every station, organized by star system, is stored in files called "trading_leo.txt" and kept in the same directory with most other game data. The format of the data for each tradable product at each station is as follows:

  • The first section tells you which commodity is being described. Illegal items can be labeled as "wirecommodity", although the rest are in the same format.
  • The item's predicted value is the second component multiplied with 5 and can be viewed in the comms panels by talking with a station. This is the default price for the item. A random amount is added or subtracted from it to get the actual price. This random amount is recalculated every time you save or visit a station. Sometimes the base number that the price fluctuates around is different. This happens when you sell so many items that the station lowers their price. I'm not sure if the station data, market forces, or actions of merchant ships that aren't players determine the base price.
  • I don’t know the meaning or purpose of the third. Dr_Bicinium speculated that the middle numbers might be some kind of multiplier, or percentage, since it tends be 100.
  • Although I have no idea what the fourth section is, it seems like it refers to a dice rolling.
  • The fifth section is the number of items that the station has for purchase. It's a roll of dice, described in a format commonly used in dice-based games like Dungeons & Dragons. "3d6+5" is an example of this. It means "use a 6-sided Die, roll it 3x, and add 5 to that sum", so the result can be any number 8 to 23. The result can be one, two, or four. This value refers to the fact that most items at each station have "0d0+0", which means they sell 0 of this item (they don’t).

If the station has an item in its cargo that it also sells, the price it pays for your item is usually 5c lower. Selling a lot of an item will decrease the station's demand for it and reduce its price. Because the selling and purchasing prices are linked, the price at which you purchase that item will be lower. It may make it profitable to sell a bunch of it again at a station where the price is higher.
The trading terminal can show you how many items you sell at one station and how you'll get less money each time you do so (also known as diminishing returns). Since increasing the station’s supply will decrease its demand, it's easier to sell more. This pattern was documented in the "Singlestation notes" sheet. The prices decreased steadily, at about 90% of their previous price. Each price required the same number items to bring it down, except the highest price which required a different amount of items. For example, sand can be sold for 110c four times, 100c five times, 90c five times, and so forth until it reaches 70c, when I have only one left to sell. Because of the conspicuous 90 in Adari’s data on sand, I suspect that the third part (the one formatted as "2_90_7") is related to this. More experimentation may help me clarify this.


Written by fishfritters

Here we come to an end for the Big Ol’ Trading Spreadsheet – Objects in Space guide. I hope this guide has helped you with your gameplay. If you have something to add to this guide or believe we forgot some information to add, please let us know via comment! We check each comment manually by approving them!

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