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wraitii

Improving the trading mechanic.

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While you're probably right, your system sounds to me like it would be too complicated for the very simple resource representation we have in 0 A.D.

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Traders become sorta player neutral. This could be adjusted, obviously, but I sorta like it.

I would like neutral traders too. I don't like the current bonus for trading at a allied market, especially double bonus for trading between two allies.

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If you want to reduce the "straight line" effect, wouldn't it be better to just make it circular? I mean, instead of setting a trader from one point to another, make it go around many markets, with bonuses for number of markets and extra for number of foreign markets, or something like that. And instead of a market every X squares, why not a single market per nearby Civic Center (like in Rise of Nations)? The idea of workers in the market is cool, could be used as yet another bonus. And maybe for each of these bonuses you had to research a tech (having in mind that trading is an investment for late game, here)?

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I would like neutral traders too. I don't like the current bonus for trading at a allied market, especially double bonus for trading between two allies.

You also get that bonus when trading with a neutral player.

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In the end I'd like to see a web kind of trade with evenly distibuted traders.

In wraitii's approach 2 markets will only trade with each other (coupled markets).

Besides of being hard to implement, my method has the problem that markets would be build in abandoned places.
This is best avoided by this idea:

  • Going further, we could have markets' resource creation rate be affected by buildings around: say houses gives +5% (up to +20%), docks give + 50% (but you can't trade at docks, so you need a market next to them - possibly even for sea trade), we could even have specific buildings here: a woodworker, a jeweler... This opens up a ton of interesting economic possibilities, makes it more realistic, and will give your cities a more "live" feeling. It'll feel a lot more like city-building.

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I would like neutral traders too. I don't like the current bonus for trading at a allied market, especially double bonus for trading between two allies.

What's wrong with double bonus:
For a 3 player team in the map Nile it is best to build 2 docks of different players on both ends of the Nile. Now every player trade only between the docks of his 2 team mates. All get double bonus.

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Made a small mod with the changes to the trading mostly following my own idea. There were a few issues with my original idea (mostly some players could be left out in cases multiple players traded).

In the mod — simply enable in the in-game manager — trader will move around "trade goods", a new local resource. This resource is stored in each markets, and markets convert this resource into the actual in-game resources at a fixed rate. This rate is exceedingly slow in the beginning, you must garrison workers (females or citizen soldiers) inside to improve it. However, even full, it remains fairly slow, I think you'd need a few markets to get acceptable income. Obviously those values should be tweaked and techs would play a part, I haven't changed those.

Have implemented a distance limit between markets of 160. Not sure what to do of docks.

You will notice that trader goods are a very low value: this is because the consumption rate of markets is quite low. The formula I'm using is of the type "Log x + x" so markets that are too close to each other won't give any resources, but distance isn't a huuuge advantage either. Trading with allies is better.

You probably won't need more than 5 traders at any rate.

Merchant Ships carry twice as much as traders for the same distance, so you can make fewer of them, and docks don't improve when garrisoned but have a higher base ratio. Garrisoning traders in a merchant ship no longer does anything.

I haven't completely revamped the GUI but you can see the trade stock in your markets/docks and the tooltip tells you the rate. It follows your global settings otherwise.

TradeMod.zip

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I tried it. It's ok. Now i understand your idea.

INTERNATIONAL_TRADING_MULTIPLICATION = 3 so trading with allies is really better :)

Good work.

Edited by fatherbushido

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Had a better idea, so I changed the mod. Previous idea wasn't very elegant after all.

New version, partly inspired by ffm's comments:

-Markets generate income.

-Markets garrisoned with workers generate more income (ungarrisoned markets only have 20% efficiency).

-Markets generate income based on "connections" with other markets.

-Traders increase this "connection".

-You can only build one market per CC.

Basically the way it works is that traders link markets together, and the more markets a market is linked with, the higher its efficiency. This means you don't need 100 traders, you need between ⅔ and about 10 for the most distant markets to keep a full connection at all time.

This is also modulated by distance: the efficiency bonus from a connection depends on distance (specifically, I'm using the log of the distance/100). This means that it's better to trade with far away markets, but moving them 10 meters from one another won't change much.

Another modulation is that for each market, the total efficiency is sqrt-ed. Ie the more markets you are connected to, the higher your efficiency, but there are diminishing returns. It's quickly better to make another market and connect that one than focus solely on one market.

The effect overall is that:

-You need more markets.

-You need a "web" of connections and not a straight line.

-You need fewer traders but more workers so the overall pop is the same.

The good thing is also that the income rate is very easy to manage and control. There's also plenty of opportunity for technologies: traders could increase the connection more/go faster, so that you need even fewer, markets could leverage efficiency better…

Please try it, I think you'll agree with me that it's a much much better idea.

Note that I probably broke naval trade but that's not a big issue.

TradeModv2.zip

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These ideas look interesting and I also don't like how the current system encourages to have so many traders.

However, in my opinion the system should be somewhat self-explaining and it should be possible to understand how it works without looking at number too much and certainly without making calculations.

Facts like these are hard to figure out for players:

-Markets generate income based on "connections" with other markets.

-Traders increase this "connection".

-You can only build one market per CC.

The basic idea isn't that hard to get, but how can you influence the number of connections exactly, how much benefit do you get from an increased number of connections and is there a difference between own markets and allied markets? It's hard to explain these things to players in a mathematical formula. Restricting the number of markets by CC seems to be a bit arbitrary, especially considering that some civs just have these smaller military settlements.

I liked the separate "trading good" resource because it's something which is easier to understand by players. What about having different trading goods as a less abstract way of explaining these "connections"? You'd get more profit if more different types of trading resources are connected to your market.

  • These trading resources could be placed by the map designer and whoever owns the resource could build a market close to (or on) it and trade it (kind of like in Riese of Nations).
  • Or it could be that each player can trade one or more predefined types of these resources and the only way to get more different types is to trade with allies. In this case we'd have to find a solution for how the distance between markets affects the system. It could require more traders to operate a short trade route (less profits if you sell the resource close to where it's being produced).
  • Or these two approaches could be combined and there would just be some generic "trading camps" on the map where the players could build their markets and trade their own trading resource(s).

This is just some brainstorming and it would still require quite a bit of work to get to a solid concept.

In any case I'd probably reduce the maximum number of markets to a very low number. Generating profit there should be more about setting up an efficient trade network and not just about building more markets and more traders.

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I see where you're coming from with this Yves, but your approach has a number of technical issues and isn't necessarily more obvious.

I think it mostly comes down to an interface problem - that can be fixed - and the fact that it's not the same as in AoK, but the system isn't difficult to understand and I think with a simple tutorial it'd work just fine.

The tying of CCs with markets is mostly an artifice because allowing a player to have a ton of markets may be a little gamebreaky but I'd need to check that.

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The tying of CCs with markets is mostly an artifice because allowing a player to have a ton of markets may be a little gamebreaky but I'd need to check that.

Why making it difficult with one market per CC?? And not just a minimal distance between markets, like towers have?? This seems to be easier to understand.

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I understand what bouke wants to say. 0 A.D. only uses range building restrictions, so it would be logical to use it for the markets too. (instead of using something entirely new). It would also solve the problem of city areas (since those wouldn't be needed anymore)

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Village phase market: no auto-generated trade income (A small village that is not well not known to traders/merchants, villagers visit bigger settlements in order to engage in trading)

Town phase market: normal auto-generated income (A regular town, occasionally visited by merchants and travellers)

City phase market: higher auto-generated income (A well known city visited by many merchants and travelers)

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I understand what bouke wants to say. 0 A.D. only uses range building restrictions, so it would be logical to use it for the markets too. (instead of using something entirely new). It would also solve the problem of city areas (since those wouldn't be needed anymore)

No, 0 A.D. already use other kind of restriction too, not just range.

If Market to auto-generate income, I think it better to be a series of increase technologies. I have such a tech in Delenda Est ("Commerce Taxes") but it's just 1 tech. A series might be good.

Edited by wowgetoffyourcellphone
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hmm, I was doubtful, but in the resum on the track ticket seems nice and simple

IMHO trading shouldn't be better than working on natural resources, even with full garrisoning and techs.

Finally, it wouldn't be better to have citiziens working on market rather than garrison on them? That would make them even more raidable. Then citiziens would wander in the market playing some salesman animation.

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My opinion on the trade vs resources debate: I agree that resources should be faster when they are still present. However, I also believe they should be faster given equal technological investment, ie upgraded trading might be faster than basic resource collecting, but not upgraded resource collecting.

I also believe that trading should be able to replace resource gathering somewhat efficiently when resources are depleted so that the game doesn't slow to a complete crawl.

Finally, with that particular implementation, I think it might be worth it to have a civilization where trading might get more interesting than gathering overall for some resources not necessarily all of them though), for example the Persians, which are supposed to be a trading-strong civ (in SVN they get 25% more from their traders, here their markets are 25% more efficient). So say maybe for Persians, they don't have access to the best (say) metal gathering techs, but trading can compensate.

Also worth noting is that trading rate currently depends on your trade preferences, which may or may not be a good idea, because if you focus entirely on one resource, you will get a much better rate. Perhaps players should no longer be able to determine what resources they want to gain from trading?

I do agree that it would be interesting if players could raid markets, but it would require quite a lot of changes. In the meantime, perhaps markets should ungarrison units even when only slightly damaged or captured.

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I do agree that it would be interesting if players could raid markets, but it would require quite a lot of changes. In the meantime, perhaps markets should ungarrison units even when only slightly damaged or captured.

I was thinking something like farming but not in a fixed position, with people saling between the market building.

Nice!

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Here's idea (may be similar to other ideas):

Only 1 trading resource: "Coin". That the resource that get gathered with each trip of trader.

At Market you can use Coin to purchase other resource (food, stone, etc.) and sell those resource for Coin. High level Market tech can cost Coin. Destroy enemy Market and you gain all the Coin at that market. Some treasures can be found that give Coin too. Coin is not resource that show in top bar treasury, it show in the Market UI.

Edited by wowgetoffyourcellphone

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[...]

Also worth noting is that trading rate currently depends on your trade preferences, which may or may not be a good idea, because if you focus entirely on one resource, you will get a much better rate. Perhaps players should no longer be able to determine what resources they want to gain from trading?

[...]

Actually, the ability to choose your own trading resources is something I really value in 0 A.D. But how does one get a better rate when focusing on 1 resource? I don't get that.

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Here's idea (may be similar to other ideas):

Only 1 trading resource: "Coin". That the resource that get gathered with each trip of trader.

At Market you can use Coin to purchase other resource (food, stone, etc.) and sell those resource for Coin. High level Market tech can cost Coin. Destroy enemy Market and you gain all the Coin at that market. Some treasures can be found that give Coin too. Coin is not resource that show in top bar treasury, it show in the Market UI.

Hm. I don't think that would work nice. Taking from my previous experience with Age of Empires 1 (and I'm sure many here will agree), I was extremely annoyed by the fact that I could only see the population by checking in a house. It's the kind of thing you can't hide from the users because it's very important for their strategies. Besides, when I noticed one market was going to be destroyed, I could just spend all those coins in whatever I could, to not let the enemy have it, and it brings us back to problem #1: how to represent in an easy-to-understand way the advantages we can have by trading with multiple markets?

Finally, with that particular implementation, I think it might be worth it to have a civilization where trading might get more interesting than gathering overall for some resources not necessarily all of them though), for example the Persians, which are supposed to be a trading-strong civ (in SVN they get 25% more from their traders, here their markets are 25% more efficient). So say maybe for Persians, they don't have access to the best (say) metal gathering techs, but trading can compensate.

Also worth noting is that trading rate currently depends on your trade preferences, which may or may not be a good idea, because if you focus entirely on one resource, you will get a much better rate. Perhaps players should no longer be able to determine what resources they want to gain from trading?

I do agree that it would be interesting if players could raid markets, but it would require quite a lot of changes. In the meantime, perhaps markets should ungarrison units even when only slightly damaged or captured.

Indeed, some civs could benefit more from trading in a resource than gathering it manually, and it is historically accurate (Greece used to import grain from Egypt and export weapons, for example).

I know pretty well that we can't stick 100% to real life, but I don't think you'd trade something you had for something you don't really want, would you? And if you already have very efficient workers gathering that resource optimally, why would you set traders (which are less efficient and more expensive) on that too? As I see it, that would be a reason not to bother trading.

yeah, why not just make the market workers occasionally drop boxes in the civic center (as if gathering resources too)? Although short, it would open a window for raids.

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