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Feb 22, 2018
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(Possibly for the better)

Trade has a problem in that it isn't really sure what it's trying to be. Some people really like it, some people seem apathetic towards it.

I've had an idea to address the situation by changing not how Trade is generated, and it's all to do with the market. Here's the steps:

  1. Trade no longer directly converts automatically into Energy or Energy + specified resource
  2. Trade remains not technically a 'resource', but still accrues monthly like any other resource.
  3. Market purchases are no longer made in Energy, but are made in Trade Value (TV).
  4. Market purchases made in TV are exempt from the Market Fee (or maybe heavily discounted).
  5. Selling resources to the Market buys TV (which gets banked/accrued), and is still subject to the Market Fee. Both monthly-incremental and one-off bulk transactions would still be available.
  6. As normal, all the normal resources are sold on the internal market at the beginning of the game.
  7. Resources are still bought unit by unit (e.g. you set up a standing Trade to buy 6 Minerals every month, etc etc)
  8. Once the Galactic Market is founded, Commodity Prices are discounted for purchases made in TV (but sales made to it are still subject to normal prices depending on market rates)
  9. Mercantile's 'Adaptive Economic Policies' Tradition is changed:
    1. Unlocks the ability to purchase Unity, but at a % of total TV, up to 50% of the total monthly current TV income (but not mass-buyable like other resources are, and still not sellable)
    2. Unlocks the ability to purchase Consumer Goods in % of the total TV (as well as unit-by-unit), up to 50% of total TV.
I'm not quite sure what to do with other Trade Policies yet - this needs some thinking.

What would the advantages of this approach be?
  • Trade would have a more clearly defined role as an alternative tool to direct Energy production
  • Dropping/Discounting the Market Fee for Trade Purchases would be a buff, encouraging use of Trade.
  • There would be no loss of ability to mass-sell resources in a pinch or ahead of a major purchase.
What would the disadvantages of this approach be?
It would probably prove controversial, maybe irritating major Trade fans, who might see it as disrupting their usual approaches and clipping their wings.

What would this approach take to implement?

  • UI changes
  • Coding changes
  • Knowledge and effort to enact the above

This idea is still early in development and could do with refinement, but I think it has solid potential. What do you guys think? How could this be refined?

Hey, are you a modder, interested in helping me build this idea as a proof-of-concept? Drop me a DM, let's talk about it!
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A Modest Proposal?

Is there also a policy which converts Pop Growth to TV and Food?

(Jokes aside, it's an interesting suggestion that I like mainly because it feels like it would resolve a lot of internal logic issues with the market and TV.)
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Ok, I like it, I would also like if it interacted better with the fluctuation of prices in a way as to benefit suppliers, for example, once the galactic market is formed empires that actively sell resources get a benefit of a small % in TV increase as to reflect the idea of them keeping several economies alive. After all that single dude specializing in food feeding half the galaxy by constantly selling it to the market (as long as the prices keep above the standard price, otherwise there is less demand than offer) should receive a bit more of a benefit, severally encouraging over specialized economies and fomenting trade among empires. Something similar should be done with trade deals, I would also like that commercial pacts required a connection between borders as currently it kinda teleports from nation to nation xD In general trade among nations should be more incentivized, the current comercial pacts almost discourage you to make them if you are commercially strong as you get almost no benefit but feed the other part hugely.
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