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Chapter 634 - Starfall City
Very quickly, Shi Feng paid the party's teleportation fees. Each person cost 80 Silver for a total of 4 Gold, 80 Silver for the whole party. An ordinary party could not afford to spend that much money even if they bankrupted themselves.
The Great Forest of Soria was a neutral area situated between the Black Dragon Empire and the Star-Moon Kingdom.
Current players were not nearly strong enough to survive the area.
Players also knew the Great Forest of Soria as the Forest of Death. It was a Level 50 to Level 70 leveling map, and it was three to four times larger than ordinary leveling maps of the same Level. However, the map's high level wasn't the greatest threat. The reason behind the 'Forest of Death' nickname was the utter lack of fortresses or safe gathering locations for humans. Instead, the map was a haven for Demonic Beasts and Half-orcs.
The Great Forest of Soria was a kingdom of Half-orcs, and it posed a great threat to players as the Half-orc race was highly prejudiced against outsiders. Players could encounter the Half-orc patrol squads at any time inside the Great Forest. Not only were these patrol squads extremely powerful, but they would also call for their other companions to ambush players. Hence, survival within the Great Forest was, to say the least, challenging.
Through the teleportation array, Shi Feng's party quickly arrived at Starfall City, a city near Star-Moon Kingdom's border.
Starfall City was the second largest city in Star-Moon Kingdom's northern region.
Although the city was near the kingdom's border, it was the most prosperous of all the cities in the northern region. Starfall City was of similar rank to White River City. Only, the city had a few more Tier 4 NPCs guarding it than White River City. There were a total of seven Tier 4 NPCs. The city's defensive power greatly surpa.s.sed White River City and was only weaker than Star-Moon City.
"This place is impressive!" Blackie could not help his shock when he saw the busy street.
There were a lot of NPC guards patrolling the streets, at least twice that of White River City. Other than the NPC guards, there were also plenty of Merchants roaming about. One could also see many horse carriages carrying cargo coming and going.
Moreover, these Merchants were not limited to NPCs. There were also plenty of player Merchants. These player Merchants similarly rode horse carriages around the city. There were also plenty of player Merchants who had parked their carriages in one place and hawked and bought various items.
"What are they doing?
Cola noticed that these player Merchants were frantically purchasing various materials and equipment from other players. There were even some who purchased common items from NPC Merchants. Moreover, these player Merchants purchased these common items in large quant.i.ties, costing up to dozens, or even more than a hundred, Gold. Such an amount would be enough to fund a small Guild for a relatively long time.
None of White River City's players would be so insane as to purchase so many common items from NPC Merchants.
"Those people are reselling goods and making a profit through the price differences," Shi Feng explained.
"Making a profit through the price differences?" Blackie was confused. "But the NPCs' prices are the same throughout Star-Moon Kingdom. Only some unique items can be resold for a profit. Even so, there aren't usually many of those items available for sale, and normally, when the NPCs restock, large Guilds usually buy everything, keeping them for their own use. Who are they planning to sell these common items to?"
"To players, of course," Shi Feng said, laughing. "Although NPCs' common items in Star-Moon Kingdom have uniform prices, the prices may be different in other kingdoms and empires. Some items sold in Star-Moon Kingdom might be more expensive in the Black Dragon Empire, while some items might be cheaper. Meanwhile, these people are trying to make a profit through the difference in prices."
"Then, aren't there teleportation arrays? Wouldn't it be easier just to deliver their products using teleportation arrays?" Blackie asked curiously. "Why must they use horse carriages?"
"Very simple. The transportation fees would be too high if they used the teleportation arrays. Moreover, only the capital city has an array that enables teleportation between other kingdoms and empires, and each teleportation would cost more than 1 Gold. Their profit margin is not high. Moreover, a player can't carry enough items. They might even incur losses if they used teleportation arrays to conduct their trades.
"Meanwhile, a horse carriage can carry more than a dozen times that of players. Some good horse carriages can even carry up to twenty or thirty times. Although one may waste some time and encounter some dangers if they travel to the Black Dragon Empire via a horse carriage, in general, they can earn a lot of money with a single trip. These player Merchants earn even more money than our Guild's elite players."
Shi Feng had some knowledge regarding the Merchant subcla.s.s. In the past, his Guild had frequently organized Caravans to conduct cross-border trade, earning significant funds for the Guild. Meanwhile, Starfall City offered a natural advantage for cross-border trade. This was also why many Merchants throughout Star-Moon Kingdom specifically traveled all the way to Starfall City to develop themselves.
Everyone came to a realization upon hearing Shi Feng's explanation. They had never imagined that the cross-border trade was such a profitable business.
The wages Zero Wing offered were among the highest of all Guilds in Star-Moon Kingdom. The money its elite members earned each day was several times more than the elite members of other Guilds. The money they earned could even rival that of ordinary experts.
Yet, these Merchant players actually made more money than Zero Wing's elite members. In other words, these Merchant players made more money than even the ordinary experts in G.o.d's Domain.
"Alright, split up and look for any Caravans that are about to depart," Shi Feng ordered.
There was a great distance between Starfall City and the Great Forest of Soria. If a player relied on their own two feet to travel, it would take over ten hours to reach the Great Forest. If Shi Feng were traveling alone, he could simply teleport to the Great Forest with the aid of the Seven Luminaries Ring, saving him a lot of ha.s.sle. Unfortunately, none of his other party members possessed the Seven Luminaries Ring. Hence, they would have no choice but to travel to the Great Forest on foot.
Meanwhile, if a Caravan were about to embark from Starfall City to the Black Dragon Empire, they would have to pa.s.s through the outermost region of the Great Forest of Soria.
If one traveled via horse carriage, the journey to the Great Forest would only take three or four hours. It was much faster than even Common Mounts.
However, the road to the Black Dragon Empire was not easy for a Caravan. A Caravan normally required an escort of guards. Meanwhile, powerful players would often accept such Escort Quests as they were extremely profitable. The money one could earn from these quests was several times higher than ordinary high-level quests. Only, one would have to invest a lot of time to complete the quest.
A dozen minutes or so later, Aqua Rose located a Caravan that was about to depart for the Black Dragon Empire.
This Caravan was not particularly large. In total, there were only a dozen or so horse carriages. Moreover, it was a Caravan that consisted entirely of players. It was far less safe than NPC Caravans.
After leaving the city, Caravans could encounter all sorts of trouble such as monster attacks and player robberies. In the past, Shi Feng had even tragically been mugged by a Tier 4 Sword Emperor NPC.
Meanwhile, in an NPC-organized Caravan, there would usually be some NPC guards escorting the Caravan. Ordinary players would not dare consider robbing such Caravans; monsters offered the greatest danger these Caravans. Player-organized Caravans, on the other hand, were often the targets of players who had joined the dark forces.
Of course, with risk comes opportunity. If player Merchants joined an NPC-organized Caravan, their profits would decrease sharply. The maximum amount of money they could earn from a single trade was only one-third of the money they could make if they joined a player-organized Caravan. Of course, even this was still a significant amount of money to an ordinary player.
In other words, a player-organized Caravan's profits were three times that of an NPC-organized Caravan. Naturally, courageous or strong players would take this risk.
"Our Red Rain Caravan is not some weak Caravan. We don't welcome weaklings here. Not to mention, you guys are only planning to join us to the Great Forest of Soria. You will occupy our guard slots for nothing." A female Ranger with a charming and flirtatious look sneered. This female Ranger had black, shoulder-length hair and wore a black-and-red tight-fitting leather jacket.