[quote=Acliabides]Piggybacking off this (not that anyone should ever get near a pig), how useful is the steam-yacht? I’m trying to decide between trying to get it and using my hard earned cash on the merchant ship. I’ve tried out the merchant ship, and it seems excellent, especially for the runs out to the Salt Lions. Guzzles supplies, but not unmanageable.
I wish there was an option to keep your old ship docked in London, so you could switch out at will. Also maybe to have some storage in London, either in your house or a rented warehouse. It’s annoying when I’ve got an extra sack of coffee or couple candles and I have to sell them off to free up hold space when I know I’ll need them at some point.[/quote]
Depends a bit on what you want to do with them. Main considerations:
Yacht = stats boosts to Hearts, Veils, Pages.
Yacht = 20 crew vs merchant 30.
Yacht = 60 storage vs merchant 100.
Yacht = 100 hull vs merchant 200.
Due to the way food works, the saving from 20 vs 30 crew isn’t as much as you might think: 20 crew will eat four-fifths as much as 30 rather than the two-thirds you’d expect. (20 crew = 10 hunger per tick = 5 ticks to reach 50, vs 30 crew = 15 hunger per tick = 4 ticks to reach 50.) With either vessel, you can save a bit by keeping the ship under-crewed, although you want to have enough spares that you don’t end up having to limp home at half-speed after something eats a crewman on the other side of the zee.
If you’re doing a lot of trading, especially short runs, the merchant is a better bet: more hold space = more profit per trip. If you’re lucky enough to have the Salt Lions near London, the merchant will probably make you almost twice as much profit per run.
If you’re doing long-distance exploration/Admiralty runs/Blind Bruiser errands, the merchant will give you a longer range before you have to resupply - it has 67% more hold space and only 25%-50% more food consumption, depending on crewing levels, and no difference in fuel consumption. However, you will be using more supplies and this may cost more. (Against that, the extra capacity may allow you to delay resupplying until you get somewhere cheap.)
Against single opponents, 100 hull should be enough as long as you have good stats and guns. But if you’re doing something like farming Lorn-Flukes for Secrets, it will limit how long you can spend farming before you need to come home for repairs - and for LFs you will also want the extra crew as protection against losses.
All in all, the merchant is probably a better ship for most applications, but I went with the yacht anyway because I liked the storyline.
Note that when you trade the yacht in, you can always get it back again at Venderbight without paying extra - however you’ll lose money on the trade-in for whatever you had beforehand.