In the far future, humanity is ruled by The Ministry of Accounts, an oppressive bureaucracy that tracks, records and taxes every transaction of daily life. From the depths of Red Tape, a new breed of marketeer arises to challenge the authority and make a profit: the Space Trader is born!
User reviews:
Mixed (542 reviews) - 50% of the 542 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 23, 2008

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GameFocus — 89%

"One of the best indie games of 2008. An innovative and addictive experience. Addictive, very fun and innovative are the best words to describe the game and the bottom line is this is a welcome addition to any gamer's library so buy this game and enjoy it." Read the full review

GenerationGamerz — 84%

"If you loved the old BBS trading games and love FPS games then you will probably love this game as well. It's all great fun, well-balanced and has a good deal of replayability." Read the full review

About This Game

In the far future, humanity is ruled by The Ministry of Accounts, an oppressive bureaucracy that tracks, records and taxes every transaction of daily life. From the depths of Red Tape, a new breed of marketeer arises to challenge the authority and make a profit: the Space Trader is born!

As a Trader, you will attempt to amass a fortune beyond your wildest imagination, buying and selling commodities and taking up arms against the oppressors or even accepting bounty missions, hunting down crime bosses and their thugs.

  • Trader Campaign: Start as a rookie trader and earn your way to Master Trader using shrewd trades, back alley deals, bribes, a well placed bullet and more through a challenging 5-level single-player campaign.
  • Three Ways to Challenge: Master your trading skills in three unique challenge missions; Moon Madness, Free Trade and Red Eye Trader.
  • From Iron Ore to Organs: Turn misfortune to profit. Buy low, sell high. Over 40 different commodities to supply the demand.
  • Have Ship, Will Travel: Visit seven planetary locations, their moons and stops along the way and interact with over 100 characters.
  • Conflict Builds Character: Using an assortment of unique weapons, bring dozens of crime bosses to justice and turn a tidy profit.
  • Competitive Cooperative: Challenge your friends and family, not just your peers. Working together has never been so competitive!
  • Steam Achievements: Unlock all 40 Steam Achievements

System Requirements


    • Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista
    • Processor: 1.0 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 512 MB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX Compatible 128 MB Video Card
    • DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c
    • Sound: DirectX Compatible Sound Card
    • Hard Drive: 300 MB of Available Hard Disk Space


    • Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista
    • Processor: 2.0 GHz Dual-Core processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX Compatible 256 MB Video Card
    • DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0c
    • Sound: DirectX Compatible Sound Card
    • Hard Drive: 300 MB of Available Hard Disk Space
Customer reviews
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Mixed (542 reviews)
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381 reviews match the filters above ( Mixed)
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
432 of 484 people (89%) found this review helpful
51 people found this review funny
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2013
Did you ever play 'Drug Warz', the game that introduced a generation to the 'buy low, sell high' method of wealth attainment which probably led to the tragic american housing crash of 2008? Did you ever wish that you could have that very game wrapped up in a semi pointless 3D world you could navigate by clicking on someone's name to instantly teleport to them instead of walking all that distance? Did you ever wish that you could do all that and get to utilize those elite twitch shooter skills you gained through endless hours of Quake III Arena while all of your friends left you behind to obtain quality educations, well-paying jobs and loving spouses?

I know I did!

So when I came across Space Trader: Merchant Marine I knew I'd found the game for me. Marvel at the 2004 era graphics in a game that came out in 2008! (Same year as that housing market crash, I smell the NWO behind this) Throw your hands to the sky when you first break the 7-figure ceiling just by virtue of buying things when they're crashing hard because it's bound to bounce back in the next 48 hours!

Weep when you realize your job is terrible, you're lucky if you have thee figures in the bank and rent is coming due, the Illuminati forced the bank to foreclose on your house four years ago, (BECAUSE YOU KNOW TOO MUCH, DAMN IT!) and you aren't actually flitting between the stars flogging over priced Bananabis at every starport between Earth and Cygnus, you're sitting at your computer waiting to die.

9.5/10 it's okay from a gameplay persepctive.

1/10 for being a front for the Bilderberg group and secretly manipulating the masses, you foolish sheep.
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75 of 83 people (90%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
13.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 21, 2013
Space Trader is a very casual trader game. You mostly trade stuff and try to make as much profit as possible in a predifined timelimit. Trading side is like playing the old drug wars but it has some extra quests dialogs and events added.

On top of that there are bounties you can collect which take you to combat mode. If you catch the target, it's just more money. Additionally you will occationally get boarded by officials who try to make you pay taxes. If you are greedy, you will try and fight em, which will make the game even more interesting. Hard Stakes =) While the basic game is easy, the challenges can feel ridicilously hard giving something extra to the game.

If you are looking for something special you will definitely be disappointed, but I found it to be a fun and easy going game.
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98 of 125 people (78%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 1, 2014
Honestly, the game completely lacks any and all substance. It's bland, forgettable, boring and tedious.

In the game, you play as an unnamed adventurer/trader, that sets forth to do one thing, become the Master Trader of the known universe/galaxy. One of the first missions is to find some chick that will give you a million credits on loan in order for you to buy a ship and start trading. You have a deadline when to get the million credits needed, and this formula repeats itself several times throughout the game, so much so that even the multiplayer is basically only that. Oh, and no one plays the multiplayer. In order to GET the million credits, you have to buy some commodities on Earth, and go to the Moon (which is just clicking a button) and selling your merchandise. Or you can do contracts. More on that later.

The trading system is very simple. You get to one of the merchants, you see the commodities they have for sale, and you buy it. There is a bar graph showcasing whether the market price for the item is declining or not, however the graph is pretty much nonsense, seeing as there's no trend whatsoever, and seems to be entirely, 100% random. To add to that, the trading is a pretty pathetic source of income, as even if you get lucky, you won't really earn a huge profit on anything you sell.

You can also find random commodities strewn throughout the worlds you find yourself, so there's no real reason to actually BUY commodities, as you'll find some semi-valuable stuff just laying on the floor in the map, free for the taking. Items range from wool to fetuses and radioactive metals and whatnot, and the "illegal" stuff is more valuable than the legitimate trading commodities. The game doesn't punish you for owning or selling illegal commodities, which was a wasted opportunity for some amusing gameplay as an actual smuggler. Shame.

The second source of money is through doing contracts or helping people out with arduous tasks. To get a contract, you have to go to the bar, where the barman will give you a target which you have to kill. This is where the game gets a slight instance of gameplay, by introducing an FPS arena, however, this falls flat as well, because the gunplay is so barebones it physically hurts to play through the FPS stages. The missions where you help people out aren't much better, as the case often is that you're simply collecting or buying X commodity and bringing it to some random dude or chick. Again, incredibly tedious.

Also, the game came out 2008 if I'm not wrong. I originally thought it came out around 1999, when Freelancer came out, but holy ♥♥♥♥ 2008????????????????????????????????

The music is obnoxious and not memorable in any way (read: elevator music), it features abysmal graphics, the little mechanics the game has are horribly unrefined, the economic system is non functioning, trading is next to useless unless you get some very rare, expensive commodities from missions, and the entire game feels like a chore.

Overall, I'd give it a 3/10, would not recommend unless you have literally nothing else to do in your life.
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53 of 66 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
20.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Strangely likeable despite being somewhat terrible. The trading side of the game is solid and fun if lacking a little in inventory. Unfortunately it also has a really crappy FPS element to it which definitely lets it down as a whole. That aside, I find it quite enjoyable and the price is low enough that it serves its purpose as a timekiller. Your mileage may vary.
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61 of 83 people (73%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: April 15, 2014
This game blows. The idea is great, but the execution is just plain awefull. I understand this is an indie title, but the graphics, gameplay, sound, just everything suck. Travelling between planets is just a click, you never even see your spaceship takeoff. The npc's look lifeless, and never change their facial expression. The enviroments are small and boring. The shooter levels are almost all the same, and play like a shovelware crap shooter. No strategy or anything. You cannot buy weapons for the fps stages, but you can by generic crates of weapons to trade. This is beyond dumb. I can't believe anybody enjoyed this game.
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73 of 108 people (68%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 8, 2013
If you just want something to kill time then its an ok game, very basic FPS scenarios that you can do when collecting bounties and such in missions and basic buy cheap/sell for a profit system...the only downside to this game is there is not a sandbox mode...which ends up making the game dull and redundant when you have to start from scratch every time you complete a mission.

Def not worth the full price...worth the 49 cents I paid for it while on sale.
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33 of 43 people (77%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
21.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 12, 2014
Space Trader Merchant Marine was released in Oct 23, 2008. It boasts a score of 89% from a review by GameFocus saying, ""One of the best indie games of 2008. An innovative and addictive experience. Addictive, very fun and innovative are the best words to describe the game and the bottom line is this is a welcome addition to any gamer's library so buy this game and enjoy it."

This is very akin to the how 'reviews' reflected Bubsy 3D on its own packaging, to those that remember.

The game is broken down into four different areas, exploration, trading, time management, and fighting/bounty hunting.

The exploration is very limited, your only goal being to find crates of goods floating about, merchants, and the bar keep. The problem is that once you've gone through it once, you know where it all is, no variation, same boring bland walls, ect., and it honestly starts to feel like a chore.

The time management is very simple. Go to X location from y location = z time spent. You have a set amount of time in every 'chapter' to complete a set $$$ quota. Besides the time spent traveling through the travel menu, any time spent at a location does not diminish the time that you have left. And as thus, does not really give you any time pressure.

The trading is a joke, as, all you do it buy what's not doing well, and travel, and get guaranteed profit. It hardly reflects actual market value in the real world and makes the game largely unchallenging.

The fighting/bounty hunting is terribly bland and cycles through the same maps. Stupid AI, overpowered guns, and cheap kills, makes it horrid.

Now, all that said, this was made in 2008, 2-0-0-8, to be sure. Other games that were made in this period were:

Fable 2
Fallout 3
Rock Band 2
Gears Of War 2
Grand Theft Auto IV
No More Heroes
Left 4 Dead
Professor Layton & The Curious Village

Compared to that list, the time period the game was released, and actual content in the game... it makes it look mediocre, a joke, something that belongs in a 2000 release.
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66 of 103 people (64%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 9, 2014
I bought this game for 50 cents when it was on sale. I should have spent that 50 cents on a bag of chips. Or a soda. Or maybe a bottle of that pure water stuff.
It's playable until you realize your entire goal is to buy ♥♥♥♥ and then sell it for more money.

...anyone wanna buy this? c=
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24 of 30 people (80%) found this review helpful
12.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 18, 2014
This game is ok, so long as you understand that it is a very basic economic game with a little FPS thrown in. What sucks about this game is that your money resets after each section. So do not get a good sales route going thinking that you will have some extra cash to play with after you close out the level you are on.
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29 of 40 people (73%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
82.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 24, 2013
Space Trader Merchant Marine is that strange situation where two very different genres have been combined together in the hope of hitting that once in a lifetime combination that everybody agrees is pure genius, like Vampires and Teenagers, or Ninjas and Cheerleaders. Space Trader doesn't quite hit that special recipe however.

Space Trader is a combination of a numbers trading simulator and a first person shooter and by far and large the biggest problem is that playing the game you have trouble telling which of these two aspects feel the most tacked on.

The trading part of the game is simple enough. You travel between various planets in the solar system, each planet has a a few merchants each selling a few goods. You buy as much as your bank account and cargo space will allow and then travel to the next world. Space Trader has no real in game economy however and everything is decided by the almighty Random Number Generator. The challenge of choosing which products to buy is virtually non-existent as all items for sale lists how below normal market value they are next to their name. There is also a legal/non-legal system in place however it has no real effect in game making the actual buying and selling of products extremely dull and predictable.

You explore the various locations on foot, in a first person shooter aspect. The various trade hubs allow you run around a small area, collecting various sellable items littered about the place, trade with the local merchants and take on a number of missions. The missions mostly come down to "Bring X items", "Transport X items" or, the more common, shooter mission. The majority of the missions in the game, and perhaps one of the easiest ways to make money early on in the campaigns is the various bounty missions which are your basic FPS. You spawn in one of a few predetermined maps, kill a few henchmen and eventually a boss will spawn. All the while you can pick up loot that you can sell out in the proper game, and weapons, health and shields that'll help you on this mission only. The shooting is fairly poorly implemented, even for it's time. The weapons feel like pellet guns, the enemy AI is non-existent and the whole experience usually boils down to just sniping at enemies from around a corner.

The music throughout the game is a high speed techno beat that, while I am sure some of you will love it, made me play with the sound off after a few sessions. There is no voice-acting and very little ambiance. Even gun shots and hit sounds leave much to be desired. Graphically the game is nothing to write home about but not much below what you would expect from an indie title either.

All in all, Space Trader Merchant Marine is a game that tries to do two things and fails at doing either in an acceptable fashion. It's not a very good trading simulation and not a very good shooter. It doesn't sound or look very good and it doesn't feel very good. This is a game that can easily be skipped.
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Recently Posted
9.6 hrs
Posted: September 18
I have no idea why I have this game in my library, I've had it since 2014. Played it for the first time today.

Gameplay reminds me of the N64 Golden Eye, except you're Han Solo. Combat is decent, the in-game economy is very responsive in a way that makes it easy to make a profit if your timing is good, and theres "freebies" you can find laying around to suppliment your income. But for its goodness, the voice acting is the actual worst I have EVER heard. So you may want to mute the game and put on your favorite podcast.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Just In Time
0.7 hrs
Posted: August 9
It's a trading game where you're inexplicably asked to kill a guy to get your ship, then tells you afterwards you can take bounty missions. Bounty missions have infinitely respawning enemies that do lots of damage to you. Trading appears to simply be buying something with a red arrow on one planet, then selling it someplace with a green arrow on the other planet. There does not appear to be any space travel, just a quick cutscene warp.

If this game becomes amazing a couple hours in, I'll never know about it because there was nothing there to hold my interest that long.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
11.7 hrs
Pre-Release Review
Posted: July 31
Do not get this game. Everything about it is terrible, from plot, to graphics, to gameplay. While the premise sounds interesting, it is so completely linear and shallow it provides zero entertainment.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.2 hrs
Posted: July 23
♥♥♥♥♥iest game ever all u do is acquire resources and trade them to other planets and u rarely ever get to fight.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
7.4 hrs
Posted: July 12
It's OK. I guess.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
83.0 hrs
Posted: July 11
This game is so stupid but I kinda enjoy it.

Why it sucks:
- Extremely repetitive gunplay,
- Extremely repetitive trading,

Why I enjoy it:
- I have OCD
Helpful? Yes No Funny
1.8 hrs
Pre-Release Review
Posted: July 4
Too much pointless running crap around.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.1 hrs
Posted: June 27
My eyeeees!!!!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
25.8 hrs
Posted: June 8
The game has an interesting concept, merging a space trading game with some first person action elements and missions, and even a bit of mystery (Where the heck is Lieutenant Dan?), however it falls short on many levels.

Firstly, as a trading game it is pretty weak. The economy simulation has a very limited number of commodities and the pricing mechanics are reasonably predictable. Go to destination A, buy the highest priced goods that have the most recent lowest price, possibly split the cargo hold between the two top picks, then travel to the next destination to hopefully (and almost always) sell it at a higher price then repeat. It's fairly tedious, and there is no buy/sell commission/overhead so you just sell off your entire inventory whether it is a profit or loss, then buy up whatever is the best deal on the current planet even if it is one of the things you just sold them, fairly unrealistic compared to any other trading games I've played as there is no buy-ask spread whatsoever. There are 5 missions in campaign mode and the first 4 are more or less like tutorials more than anything and have only 2 or 3 destinations which is pretty suboptimal for a space trading game really. The real game is campaign mission 5 which has 4 destinations and a bit of a story to it (albeit a weak one). The biggest mystery in the game is trying to find Lieutenant Dan, which is a bit challenging, but also rather disappointing when you do find him.

You then go on contract hitman jobs to kill various bad guys you've been either sent to take out, or that you opted into by taking a job through the bartenders. The contract hits are incredibly repetitive due to there only being about 3 or 4 small maps that they play out in.

The FPS enemy AI is 1990s quality, and the action isn't that great. The meat of the game is in mission 5 which is the longest and has the most trading destinations (4 total). You're on a countdown timer from 500 hours with each travel you take consuming some number of hours with which you must meet the trading objectives. Problem is, from the start you can't trade anywhere due to a military presence halting trading, so you have to travel around to make money from hit jobs to then pay off the authoritarian police state guys to leave so trading can resume.

The rest of the time you end up running around the levels collecting crates full of random commodities like Super Mario and selling them. It's very tedious and gets boring quick.

I finished this game just to see if there was anything at all exciting about it, but it was somewhat disappointing. If it is a space trading game you're looking for, this sure isn't it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.8 hrs
Posted: June 2
Helpful? Yes No Funny