Merchant caravans, camps, and the merchant life

Hey people, I have an idea, and an issue. The idea is one I’m not entirely sure exists in the game (I’m getting better at CDDA, but I’ve still got a lot to learn) and that’s merchant caravans that move throughout the game, and a way to attract them to your base. The problem however, is that as cool as I think something like this sounds, I’ve no idea of the programming implications required, but I’d at least like to pitch my idea.What I was thinking is the addition (if it is not already there) of groups of NPCs that roam around the map and serve to buy and sell goods from you. I know you can do this with the other friendly NPCs in the game, but I find that most often they either don’t have what I need/want, or if I’m trying to sell things, they do not have any money. I would love to be walking or driving down a road to spot a merchant camp right on the side, or stumble into a group of peddlers just trying to get what they need through the power of economics. I think the addition of travelling merchants and merchant camps full of traders would be a great addition, as well as possibly the addition of a questline you can complete to be able to crash at the camps or travel with the groups. This could add an entirely new method of approaching the apocalypse, as well as be a fun new section of this already amazing survival game, and would create a playstyle that I, as well as others, may enjoy. But for those of us who like to wait out the apocalypse in their fully armored bases, I’d like to introduce another idea, beacons. With a good bit of electrical equipment, and skills, you could create a beacon that will identify your base as a trading post, or if you wanted to, you could establish it as a camp. Your base will have to meet certain requirements before placing the beacon (I’m still thinking about this part, maybe a certain amount of beds, away from the city, but not too far from a road and body of drinkable water, etc.) After all those requirements are met, you can then place the beacon at your base, and if any travelling groups are within a certain radius at any time the beacon is on, they’ll have a certain percent chance that they’ll be interested and go to your base.
The beacon could be upgraded, becoming more durable, requiring less power, having a bigger radius, and increasing the chance of attraction. The beacon must also be defended, as it (work with me here) creates a sound that some creatures may hear and also be attracted to (this is to encourage keeping your base healthy and fortified.) Merchants who like you enough could become companions and stay to defend your base, go looking for supplies you want (at a slightly elevated cost) and even join your caravan (I feel like that could also be a cool addition.)The caravans don’t just spawn with this loot however, they would start similarly to the player (random stats, professions, etc.) and would have to search for the goods themselves. With that I feel there could be a new profession added that is suited for this playstyle, maybe a profession with clothes suited for long trips being outside, some gear for carrying a lot of equipment, but near bear minimum in terms of weaponry. It would also give a bonus to skills that correlate with buying and selling goods, and maybe even like a +1 to survival and cooking?
I know nothing of programming, so I’m really only serving a a creative figure, and a feature similar to this might already exist, but I would love to see this, or at least making the already existing features more prevalent. This was just an open idea, feel free to critique and add different or better ideas, I’m simply interested in seeing this game grow even further.


My hardest read ever :frowning: or maybe its my phone.

Are you referring to the content or the format? I’m not sure why it was formatted the way it was lol

Yea the format. Maybe copy paste made it look that way.

No I typed that whole thing out, that’s really weird lol, I’ll see if I can fix it

I think it’s a cool idea, but should be careful not to make it overpowered. The base requirements should be fairly steep for the best items / features, but scale nicely so that you can get some benefits without too much trouble earlyish in the game.

It would give a badly needed reason to have a static base and spend time kitting it out. Suggest adding some cool convenience items that are more easily available through high level merchant contacts acquired through base building / advancement in quest line, but not make them exclusive to them because it would be forcing a playstyle on people.

As for programming, I’m in the same boat…

Easiest way to not *uck up with this idea? Static and random…well that is an oxymoron normally but read on!

Reality bubble prevents you from making this. So you have to adjust to make it appear normal. To do so. make a building design. Then make it appear all caravan/gypsy like. Add it to the side of a road or something so mobs don’t eat everyone and to make coding it easier. Make sure to add a few trees in case it spawns near a forest. You don’t want it looking out of place. Something similar maybe to Homeless Camp, with fewer trees.

Add some security and maybe stuffem inside a tent. Maybe a dog at the entrance. If you aggravate them, the dog can bite or whatever.

Just be mindful of the reality bubble. Pretty sure once you leave the area and the locale is outside the bubble they get a reset of their items. Which is unrealistic. But not 100% sure here.

That would work for roadside traders. It would be cool. I’d make them super rare so it would always be nice to stumble on them. I’d also give them heavy (relatively speaking) security. This is a rough world, anyone out there trading with random, probably insane, survivors would need to be grizzled and armed to the teeth. You could give them some nice backstory like a cultish type group with a shady leader who are trying to restore order or whatnot, preferably who boil alive anyone who reneges on a deal or offends their principles. A bunch of hobos trading stuff would all be killed fast in this scenario, you’d need to give some other motivation for their trading.

For the base beacon idea that might be easier to code. You could do it mostly abstractly to start with. Just a trade interface. You could populate the area with a few traders or human activity whenever they show up.