Vice posted a cute piece over the weekend by Star Citizen player who explains how he used the old “one red paperclip” trick plus basic trading strategy to turn his Star Citizen fleet into an actual car.
“When I pre-ordered Star Citizen in 2013, I was anticipating a fun video game,” author Kyle Brodzky writes. “Over three years later, I have a thoroughly more entertaining story than any tale of interstellar adventure: Thanks to a thriving gray market for virtual spaceships in a game not even released yet, I was able to wheel and deal my way to thousands of dollars in profit. This easy money helped me out so dramatically that even if Star Citizen never comes out, I’ve already won.”
Brodzky began with the cheapest pre-order package and the $80 early LTI package, the latter of which he sold for almost double what he’d paid, which he then used as his pool to buy more ships and flip them over the next two years.
“Especially fun were the few times I saw cars and dirt bikes put up for trade — real-world transport in exchange for totally fictional rides,” he says. “It was gross to think that this was money other people had given up for video game trinkets with no use other than the potential to be flyable in a game years down the line.”
And then, he found he needed one of those real-world rides in a hurry himself. In the end, Brodzky says he made enough to buy a used Seattle blue 2007 Hyundai Elantra for just under 5000 bucks after his old Escort croaked. And everyone else? They’ve got pixel spaceships.