Trade Empire-class Commercial Transport Review

The latest release from Independence Games, the Trade Empire-class Commercial Transport supplement is available from DriveThru RPG for $5.99 as a PDF and contains 38 pages. It is also available from the Independence Games web store for the same price. The book has been released to support the publishers ‘Earth Sector’ Cepheus Engine-compatible setting, though the book could be used in any other 2D6 SF RPG background.

The ship class is one of the larger types available, being 4500 tons in size; from the excellent illustrations provided by Ian Stead and Michael Johnson, you really get a sense of scale from how big this ship is. Its specifications include a cargo carrying capacity of 2670 tons, 79 crew, 2 ships boats, 20 dual lasers and missile launchers for self-defence. Built following the developments in the area of gravitic propulsion systems, this allowed the design of a ship which more than doubled the size of the Hercules-class. The ship ‘shape’ reminds me of the ‘Liberty Ship’ by Stellagama Publishing or the USS Saratoga from the TV series ‘Space Above and Beyond’; a long rectangular vessel with main drive right at the back and command deck on top near the rear, giving full view of the front of the ship. Most of the front portion of the ship is dedicated to cargo space; so much so that to maximise the carrying capacity, there is no personnel access to the turrets from within the ship. Access is only available via the outside, so a spacewalk would be needed if there is a turret problem.

The book follows the now-familiar format of Independence Games spacecraft books with a description and background of the design of the ship and a detailed look at its specifications and game stats. These descriptions provide a real breakdown almost foot-by-foot of the hull and interior. To help give you an idea of the layout of the ship, there are plenty of side and plan view deck plans. There are also a number of colour side views showing variations of the paint schemes of various operators of the Trade Empire-class, plus ‘blueprint style’ isometric views. As the bulk of the book is taken up by a breakdown of the deck plans with some floors stretching across three pages, there aren’t any detailed breakdowns of variants of the ship (like some other Independence Games ship book releases), though these are mentioned briefly on page 13 in both the commercial and military sectors. Rounding off the book are a couple of pages describing one of the operators of the Trade Empire-class, the ‘British Interstellar Company’.

I’ve always been a fan of the Independence Games ‘ship’ books and the Trade Empire-class doesn’t disappoint. Filled with detail and gorgeous illustrations, this is a worthwhile purchase whether you are plying the spacelanes of the Earth Sector or not. I would like to thank John Watts of Independence Games for kindly sending me a copy to review.

On another small note, its the eleventh birthday of this blog, having being started on this day in 2011! 🎂 I want to thank everyone (all 32k+ of you!) who have visited, commented, liked my blog posts and the publishers who have kindly sent in copies of their books for me to review over the years. Its very much appreciated! Best wishes, Steve.

About AlegisDownport

Musings on the Traveller RPG world, technology, astronomy and digital art.
This entry was posted in Cepheus Engine, Earth Sector, Independence Games and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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