LM Overhaul- Blacklists, Whitelists, Corp trades, bulk shipping, direct personal trades, refunds?

As I’m sure most of us are aware, the Local Market system as it is now is one that is… functional, but with many restrictions. Most players have learned a few ways to get around some of the more limiting aspects of the LM (Such as posting ads selling 1 DW for 100,000 or vice versa), but these solutions are clunky at best, and at worst can be preyed upon by bad actors. I’ve thought of a few ways to solve/mitigate some of the issues which I’ve noticed which should be purely Quality of Life changes.

  1. Blacklists/Whitelists. Most of the time players are fine with their LM ads being accessible to anyone from the public (with the requisite rating, ofc), but sometimes you may want to make an exception to that. Perhaps there’s a specific player that you want to take the ad in order to fulfill a deal that you’ve made with them, or there’s a group of players that you have good relationships with that you’re willing to offer discounts for that you don’t wish to offer the general public. With a whitelist, you can add qualifiers to your LM ad that only the person(s) you designate may see the ad so that it doesn’t get taken by somebody else. Or perhaps there’s people you’d rather NOT have access to your ads. Perhaps there’s people you’ve interacted with who frequently fulfill their sides of the contracts at the very last minute (if at all!) and after a few instances of it happening, you just don’t want to have to deal with them anymore. A blacklist is the opposite of a whitelist- you add qualifiers to your LM ad so that the person(s) you designate may NOT see the ad, so that it doesn’t get taken by them.

  2. Corporation options. In order to function properly, corporations require the ability to use the local market. However, since the market is very much public, there is always the threat of corporate ads getting taken either by a random player outside of the corporation unknowingly, or by a member of a ‘hostile’ corporation to intentional sabotage their operations. Many corps have skirted this by posting 1 currency ads so that it isn’t desirable to do this, but this does add an extra degree of complexity to the game as most corps don’t have an internal market where the goods they’re selling are actually on valued at 1 unit of currency, which often results in multiple ads being needed for singular transfers of goods, or internal tallying to see who has traded what. With corporate markets, this could all be alleviated, and corp members could feel free to post whatever for what it’s actually worth without worrying about the ad being sniped out from under them. Potentially corporations could be added into the blacklist/whitelist system, as I feel like this would be the more intuitive option for players, as well as probably being easier to code (And would also allow for edge-case scenarios such as when a corporation power structure has a member who is effectively a part of the corporation but technically is a member of another, which happens most often with governors).

  3. The ability to save ‘default settings’ for the 2 prior suggestions. To put it simply, if you’ve got 3 people who you really don’t want to trade with, or if the vast majority of your LM trades involve your corp or your friends, then you won’t want to have to type that in again every time you make a LM ad.

  4. The ability to ‘rent cargo space’ when doing shipping contracts. As it is now, if you have multiple goods you want to ship to the same destination, you have to make 1 ad for each different type of good being shipped, which is time-consuming first of all, but additionally forces you to pay the LM fee multiple times and also clutters up your active contracts. With renting cargo space, you’d simply tally up how much space/tonnage you need to take up with all of your items together, and then make an ad for however much you’d need. Maybe you’re given a separate inventory buffer which you could then place items into in the meantime, with the inventory buffer having as much size as the space you requested. Then you’re given an item (Similar to the ‘locked’ items you get after you’ve provisioned your shipment but before it’s been picked up) that changes in size based on how much you’ve put into the new buffer (so that the space in your normal inventory is still taking up just as much room as before to prevent people from cheesing this feature to get free temporary inventory space?). Might be hard to code but I’d love an idea similar to this.

  5. More direct trade options? This one is lower on the priority list, but if it’s not too difficult to code in, maybe there could be functionality for simply GIVING people stuff without needing at least 1 unit of currency or 1 good in exchange. Additionally, it’d be nice if you could directly trade goods for goods or currency for currency.

  6. Maybe also ad the ability to issue refunds on contract cancellations. I don’t know how many times it’s happened to me where I put up what I thought was a ‘buy’ ad but was actually a ‘sell’ ad and somebody took it and immediately paid me for something I didn’t have, or gave me items I didn’t actually want. I’d love to have the ability to say “Oops, I’m sorry that was an accident, here I’ll give you your stuff/money back” or alternatively cancel the contract completely if the other party hasn’t fulfilled any step by that point. If implemented, there should probably still be SOME rating hit (maybe 1/10 of a what you would’ve been given had you simply breached the contract) to avoid people intentionally cheesing with this.

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i like this list, and would like to add that shipping contracts should be for a delivery deadline, not for a window of days for pickup that is restarted as the same window of days for delivery.

just set the deadline date/time for delivery, and offer an amount that makes sense for the speed required. this gives shippers the confidence to pay for shipping more often, and i imagine we’d see some pretty ridiculous prices offered for one-off max burn deliveries. this has the added side benefit of making shipping for income more lucrative and exciting; racing around the galaxy to make max-profit deadlines as a shipper sounds fun to me.

i would also recommend making the shipper take a reliability reputation hit for missing deadline, regardless of whether the contract is extended. this could help make reliability rating / rating restrictions on contracts be more meaningful.

The problem with a deadline based system is that while the advert stays up, the time available to fulfill the contract is shrinking, but the contract amount stays the same. So what might have been a reasonable offer when you posted the contract has become a losing proposition due to increased fuel requirements by the time someone sees it, or even impossible to fulfill at all during the advert’s last few hours.

that puts the risk on the person placing the ad though, which imo is fine. should make for more lucrative contracts for the shipper, as when placing an ad you must consider that it might not be picked up immediately and price accordingly, or understand your window may run out and you may either lose your opportunity or have to list for a higher price

Reject List and Allow List.

Rather than having a corporate market, I would rather the effort just go into direct transactions. It is safe to assume that if you’re placing corporate orders that the details are being worked out either in COM, COMG, or Discord. This also solves the problem of the planetary governorship issue you describe at the end of this point.

An interesting proposition. What about replacing this with recurring contracts?

This is an interesting take on the shipping issue and I like it. My idea was to sell pre-sized cubes that you would have to fill and then lock, turning them into blocked goods… but I think I like this better. How to code it is questionable, but the concept is sound.

The problem with opening the door to GIVE is that you simultaneously open the door to EXPLOIT. More advanced contracts (read: flexible contracts) are something the community has been asking for but no one seems able to solve the exploitation problem. Locking it behind PRO <-> PRO exchanges is an option.


As Ficks pointed out, the issue is all about the time tables.

What about a middle ground where you can set separately the amount of time from ad acceptance to pickup and pickup to delivery?

This type of system would allow you to basically decide whether or not you are okay with “carpooling” your shipment or if you want “direct service.” Up to shippers to then decide what to do.