Fun but flawed sci-fi business sim
As the name suggests, this is a business sim with a twist, and while it retains the complexity and depth of the best of its Earth-bound kin, like Ports of Call, A-Train and the like, it is also highly accessible thanks to its humorous take on things. Traders plays very similarly to the classic M.U.L.E., with up to four players in competition with one another in a galactic game of business management. Players choose their species, then receive their allotted resources, with the game then proceeding in a turn-based fashion. Each turn is divided into several sections, where players can allocate resources, compete for land grants and engage in activities like mining. At the end of each round comes the auction section, where players can buy and sell commodities from one another, while random events like earthquakes and acid rain storms also pop up to keep you on your toes. In most respects, Traders is a reasonably successful trading sim, and is particularly fun when experienced with other human players, with all the appeal of classic board games like Monopoly. However, when played against computer opponents, the game's faults become apparent, as the AI is woefully predictable and which thus reduces the challenge and enjoyment. While there are a number of options, buildings and commodities to trade in, many of them are very similar and add little to the game, instead just bogging things down with unnecessary details and impacting on the pace. Traders is certainly fun for a while, especially when played with other people, but its novelty soon wears off due to these niggles and M.U.L.E. or Subtrade: Return to Irata are better bets.