Returning player question about ... traders



as I got (mis)lured back to the game (as stated in the topic about the subscription overhaul) I have decided to create a free account and create a … trader as my main/first character there because … I have never had a trader character. The last time I actively played the game was in 2009 (paid sub at that time).
I found some ancient info about traders but I still do not know WHAT IS THE MAIN GOAL OF THAT CLASS :slight_smile:
so I would like your help here - if you could, explain that along the choice of a breed and all hints you can toss into that pool. Can a trader solo this game (free content) as I see by your posts that the game population is non existent anymore?
As far as I know - traders are supposed to be mezzers (or was it bureaucrats?) with shotguns that cast drains, roots? So a nanomage sounds like a viable choice here? Why not?
I would like my toon to be an efficient tradeskiller also, as I find that field interesting one.

Any info/hints/guides are welcome (I went through some of Carloss2’ u2be videos to get some overview on the state of the game).


hey hey :blush:

Traders are a fun profession, I have several myself and really enjoy playing them. I have a 220, 179 froob and tl3 froob. Their main goal is a bit harder to state, since they’re not like enforcers who tank or doctors who heal, but more of a well-rounded prof that can do many things. They can indeed calm and root, but they also have heals, wrangles, debuffs and an evade buff and they can tradeskill.

The main way traders are different from other professions is easier to answer though. Traders use skill drains to significantly boost their skills, which give them access to nano’s and weapons far above their level. It’s not uncommon to be able to use Ql200 NCU’s, a Ql200 weapon and some of the top RK nano’s around level 85.

This makes traders a very good soloing profession at the early levels, but from levels 110-165 other professions start to catch up and traders lose their advantage. Traders will still have their well-rounded tool set, but generally they’re not the best in any particular skill anymore.

From 165 you start to get more IP than you need, so if you’re interested in tradeskilling this is a good level to start with that. A tl5 froob trader can have high enough tradeskills to make useful things like Ql200 implants (including some, but not all, jobe clusters), VTE’s and nano crystals. Also Arul Saba bracers and Ql150ish Combined Armour, if you wish to do so for non-froobs.

As for weapons, shotgun is indeed the default option for traders, but not the only one. It is the cheapest skill to raise, but other skills like 1HB, MA, Pistol, SMG and Grenade will be equal in how much you can raise them. A friend of me leveled a froob MA trader and did great damage with it, and my own 220 trader uses grenade. Dog of War pistols, maybe with a Solar-Powered Engineer Pistol if you’re going to be a tradeskiller, would be a good choice too.

For breed I’m not going to comment, because I have 35 alts and only 1 isn’t a solitus :wink: Looks > stats.


You’re support that can do a LOT of DD.

Especially with the AAD/AAO drains you can make yourself and anyone else hitting a target crit almost every hit.

So you slap on 2 home defenders and enjoy strings of 3k+ crits constantly :smiley:


In combat and leveling traders are a support class that gets in damage mostly through shotgun crits. Bonus AR and crit chance from drains allows them to reach a high static crit chance. They are very nano dependent casting drains all the time, so nanomage is arguably the best option. However, any breed can work as a trader. they uniquely have area roots, as well as single target mezz and roots. a lot of their defense comes from weakening their opponents. Traders are able to solo due to their mezzes and strong single target capabilities. In teams they can be healers as well as deal good damage and have useful crowd control. Their kryptonite is having having your nanos resisted and running out of nano, because without their casting, traders become useless.

if you like pvp and tradeskilling, play a trader.


crats have area roots too and you wouldn’t be able to pvp and tradeskill on the same froob build :stuck_out_tongue:


I do not know what I am doing wrong but my trader should be nicknamed as “die a lot, miss a lot”. C’mon she even dies from wind blows! I am not able to finish all missions in a new player’s area because of that… Her heals are actually self drains (she looses 40 hp to heal 23 hp…), she does not crit, c’mon she misses a lot with a shotgun! How can anyone miss with a shotgun if a foe is 5 yards away?!? What is wrong with her? or that class? or I do not know what…
I did create a bureaucrat and she just breezed through the area unscratched, rooting and calming (mezzing) foes on the fly…


they’re a bit iffy in the starting zone but as soon as you can get some decent implants in to drain you can get a really high ql weapon on and OD pretty much any prof


Thank you for your quick response. I will grit my teeth then and log her in, as I really would like her to be my main character here :slight_smile:


Dont get sucked into thinking you have to use shotguns , Pistols are a far better option for freeplayers, Customized IMI Desert Reet 1000 and Dog of war , for the specials and The Original Electronicum, enginer pistol, Summer Shells SMP in offhand, Or simply duel the guns with specials.


missile raid pistols are the shizniz


Uuk? :slight_smile: Sorry, but … I just felt in a new player’s trap aka choosing a weapon (and its skill) my char started with.
I just think I will re-roll her as she is still in the beginners area and I know where/what/whom there :slight_smile:


No need to reroll. Shotgun is fine, and you can always just reset the skill if you want.

I can trade you a Pump Master once you leave Arete. Hit me up on Collected if you are interested.


yeah once you get a pump trainee/master the early levels of trader become much easier


Ill post more in a bit, so check back :drooling_face:

Whatever you do, get the Halloween gear now - preferably QL100ish at least. Beg a veteran for help! shoulder patches, BBQ pillow and the shades and the shotgun/pistol mod glove? pants? Whatever. Look through the stuff

I think Opifex may serve you better than other breeds. They’re the athletes of AO. You’ll want to be dodging/evading mob attacks from day one. Opi have a noticeable advantage in AGI/Sense, evades, weapons handling, and ME/EE trade skills over all other breeds. You’ll have high AGI - which is very useful when implanting since many of the custom implants traders use are AGI requirement based (especially when laddering.) That right there will get you past some of the early problems with AGI based implants. And you’ll be using custom implants from right NOW until L200. You can’t just level to
30-40-50 with L10 implants in only half of your implant slots. It. Won’t. Do.

I’m not talking about exotic twinking here. You may get away with using some premades from the implant shop terminals, but you’ll need to design some custom sets, too. I’m not a hardcore twinking expert. I’m not leading you astray! hah!

Froob Trader is tricky. There’s no holy grail template build. You’ll need to enjoy the character development aspect of the game or you’ll end up hating your trader. Seriously. That’s the most important aspect here. Traders need lots of fine tuning. You can’t just slap a pistol(s) or shotty on them and expect to easily defeat Yellow con mobs much less RED cons. And Orange-RED cons are what you need to be gaining experiencing on because that’s just the way the game is played. One example would be just entering foreman’s and going against deep orange con Bloaters and Floaters. If your not tuning that Trader, then be prepared to visit reclaim often. I do know what it takes to keep a trader on their feet when going against orange-red con mobs.

You’ll need to do a lot of 4-6 slot Belt and NCU chip twinking early on because you need to ladder ransack/deprive while in combat and at the same time stacking two trader nano point leech nano’s (a nano pool drain.) All of that takes a lot of NCU space. Have room for the NT nano increasing buff. it’s crashcart for us traders!

I’d probably go pistols. Dog of War/Engy pistol is just too nice to ignore. Even if you’re stuck using the dreary electroicum, 000 pistol or home defenders at lower levels. I’ve never been happy with the Krutt and other low level shotguns. I made a piercing improved tango dirk trader and she did just fine - because I was twinking her like a madman.

Matter Creation based nano’s are a pass until L100-130. The heals kinda blow until you can get that improved heal via the bronto burger bunch in holes in the wall. High QL first aid stims are your BFF.

You need to spent a fair amount of IP in evade close combat every level. Half that in Dodge Ranged andcompletetly ignore duck explosion. Very few RK mobs use shotguns and grenade launchers A few use shotty in TOTW, but just suck it up!

I’d not recommend nanomage. If you actually do get to L190+ and want to be a hardcore crafter, then buy a breed change. But that’s the only reason I’d roll a NM. And even that involves a lot of extra -and somewhat rare/expensive trade skill gear - The love /hate /rancor SL HUD items. Good luck getting that Froob useable stuff for cheap nowadays!


I find that traders are one of the best froob classes to play atm.
Personally I wouldn’t use shotguns because they are very crit reliant.
Pistols as mentioned above are very good choice
Another option at very high level would be skawt if you can manage the fullauto req.

What I use atm and is probably my favorite froob:
The martial artist trader with parry sticks .
Made a vid about just how op they can be.
This is the last part of the YouTube link since I can’t post links .
Or just type trader 154 trader vs 205 dynaboss.


Here’s mega’s link:

Should a newcomer froob, without benefit of deeper game experience, single-wield a parry stick until title level four or five and not worry about raising skill multi-melee? Or should they go ahead and suffer the IP drain levels 1-200?


Thanks for posting link.
What I did was get the highest parry stick on and dual wielded a lower ql , in vid i had a ql 200 and a 167 in offhand. Around lvl 140 I had a 200 and a 123 or something in that range. (Not sure it’s the best way but it worked pretty well)

Plus parry sticks are easy to get .
Arrete landing has some in shops
You can roll them in mission.
If you’re fortunate to have paid buddy’s they can buy them in sl.

Edit: I prioritised evades martial arts and pm+ts, when I has a bit left over I dumped I multi.