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The life of an independent trader isn’t an easy one. On paper, the career
seems simple: get a ship, get a crew, get cargo, get paid. In reality, nothing
ever seems to go as planned—starships break down or get scorched in firefights,
a journey through the Drift turns out far more dangerous than expected, and
sellers overcharge while buyers haggle down. But the prospect of danger and
uncertainty makes for an exciting Starfinder campaign! The following optional
rules provide a new way to structure a campaign around a PC crew of independent
merchants flying a starship of their own while buying, moving, and selling cargo
in the Pact Worlds, Near Space, and the Vast.
During the Fly Free or Die Adventure Path, the PCs take control of their professional destinies to work as freelance traders and troubleshooters. The rules presented in this article are designed to simulate part of that lifestyle, and you can use them in almost any campaign, especially a sandbox-style one.