Ben has been a geek all of his life, so his expertise tends to fall into gaming and technology.
What to Buy From the Cartel Market in Star Wars: The Old Republic
With the introduction of the Cartel Coin Market for SWTOR, there are several new things that you can buy. Although the prices might not be final, you can preview the new market on the test server and check out all the stuff on there. All the choices might be a little overwhelming, though, especially if you plan on keeping a subscription, so let me help you focus on a few things that you should keep an eye on.
- Rocket Boost
- Ship Unlocks
- Cargo Hold Expansions
- Species Unlocks
- Cartel Packs
Don't Buy Too Many Cartel Packs
Before we start on what to look at, however, let me give you a piece of advice on what you might want to avoid. Although it's tempting to just dive in and get nothing but a collection of the Cartel Packs, your luck is going to play a big role in what you're able to get. On top of that, even if you're planning on selling everything you get from the packs, the money needs to be in the pocket of the person interested in it. Your best bet is to invest in the things that you'll want in-game and only spend the leftover money on a roll of the dice.
1. Rocket Boost
For the price of 540 Cartel Coins, you can get the top level of Rocket Boost, which would cost you several million in game credits. This is especially useful when rolling a new character and in locations such as caves where mounts aren't allowed. This really speeds up your travel time.
2. Ship Unlocks
It’s very handy to have several of these things on your ship as you’re going back and forth, and unlocking them for your entire legacy can be a good investment. Keep in mind, however, that the costs in Cartel Coins are not representative of their worth in Credits.
- The Repair Droid is 250 Cartel Coins, or 1 million credits.
- The Mailbox is 350 Cartel Coins, or 500k Credits.
- The Galactic Market Kiosk is 900 Cartel Coins or 5 million credits.
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The best bang for your buck would be the GTN and the Repair Droid. You can also spend just 50K credits for a portable mailbox, so it’s really not worth the cost in Cartel Coins.
3. Cargo Hold Expansions
While it might be tempting to spend the 475 Cartel Coins to get an extra Cargo Hold, you should spend the 1050 coins and get one for your entire account. The cost keeps going up and up in credits, but the cost stays the same in Cartel Coins. If you have more than 2 characters right now, or if you're planning on having more in the future, you will be setting yourself up for a much easier time storing items on new characters—and saving millions of credits at the same time.
4. Species Unlocks
For 600 Cartel Coins, you can unlock any species of your choice and be able to use it for new characters. Considering it costs 1.5 million for everything but Human, it's not the greatest deal, but it's not an unreasonable one. It's something to consider if you're running short on credits.
5. Cartel Packs
Currently on the market, the top two packs are the Crime Lord's Cartel Pack and the Blockade Runner's Cartel Pack. Even though it’s 360 Cartel Coins, twice as much as the Black Market pack, you will get two rare items. Even if you only plan on selling it, it’s likely that you'll get a better return on your gamble if you’re taking this kind of pack. The common items will likely be nothing to write home about, and you have the chance of getting something really rare and valuable if you go this route. Although risky, you also will have the best chance of hitting a payday.
Keep in mind, though, that you will need to act fast. The items are bound to you for at least two days, and the prices will fluctuate—no one will really be sure what’s rare and what’s not at first. Volatility means opportunity, and opportunity can mean profit . . . or losing it all. Be prepared for both. You also have the option of selling the packs directly, which might make it easier to get what you want in the long run, even if you're not going to luck into a big windfall.
What Will You Buy?
Ben Martin (author) from Nova Scotia on May 25, 2014:
Personally I think it best to get the cartel coins through subscribing rather then purchasing them outright as I like the subscriber benefits and the cartel coins are a nice bonus. One bad experience wouldn't sour me to them forever as there are several very useful things you can do with cartel coins. I am curious what the item was that was faulty however.
Tim on May 25, 2014:
Don't buy cartel coins. You will never see value or even get a return on them. I bought a faulty item. Customer service told me to watch patch notes. Still broken 6 months later.