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The trade system rests on three pillars: Traders, Marketplaces, and Warehouses. In its basics, it is very simple: Traders match buy and sell orders to move food and bonds between buyers and sellers, Marketplaces are where traders and lords go to place and match buy and sell orders, and Warehouses store food.
While any lord or steward can place and fill individual buy and sell orders one at a time, nobles with the trader subclass have the unique ability to match multiple buy and sell orders at the same time. Traders need not ever take actual possession of the food, and do not need to store it or take a loss on trades due to rot while the food sits in a warehouse. So long as the amount of bushels to be sold matches the amount of bushels to be bought, and the trader at least breaks even, then the food and bonds are exchanged across all orders at once. Lords and stewards who are not traders are limited to filling a single buy or sell order at a time.
Traders can also see orders at a greater distance than non-traders. This takes the form of a static 100-mile bonus, plus an additional distance dependent on the trader's skill.
This is where traders, lords, and stewards do business. Lords will post trade offers and set the prices for automated sales, with which the trader can deal. The standard distance at which offers can be seen is a circle based on the noble's current location, with a radius as follows:
|In own region?||Marketplace?||Trader?||Distance|
- If a noble is at a marketplace, then it doesn't matter whether or not they are in their own region. There is no extra bonus for being in their own region.
- A lord/steward in their own region can see orders within a limited distance whether there is marketplace in the region or not.
- The trader's bonus range is dependent on the trader's skill. Higher skills provide a higher bonus range. A highly skilled trader at a marketplace has a truly impressive trading range.
Region lords can build warehouses where food is stored. Of course, in most regions this will not really be a single physical building, but a multitude of granaries, warehouses, depots, etc. Each warehouse can store up to 1,000 bushels of food. The available warehouse space does not limit the amount of food that can be stored in a region. However, food stored in a warehouse rots at a much slower rate than food not stored in a warehouse.
In addition to storing food, warehouses allow nobles leading soldiers to restock their troop's provisions, provided their is food stored in the warehouse. This takes a small amount of time and gold for the provisions to be bought and distributed among the soldiers.