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BalticM

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Ok, I hope this can get some attention from Paradox.
I’ve made lots of research and it took me few months to polish all this and turn it into complete suggestion. All suggested trade nodes are logical, with strong geographical & historical background and well balanced for the game. If not everything, then at least parts of this I hope to see implemented one day.
Some nice observations!
Enjoy.

Key notes on suggested changes:
  • Coastal China trade nodes are sea orientated – Yellow Sea (Beijing), East China Sea (Suzhou) & South China Sea (Canton). This should give far more interesting interaction between China, Korea & Japan, encouraging use of light ships, embargo & other trade mechanics between countries.
  • Small area changes for trade nodes in Southeast Asia - Siam, Malacca, Philippines & Moluccas, concentrating on coasts along waterways and not land masses.
  • New trade node in Central China – Hankou. Hankou was one of the largest trade hubs in China during Ming & Qing era, one of the 4 national markets along Beijing, Suzhou & Foshan (Guangzhou vicinity).
  • Yumen trade node split into Mongolia & Moghulistan (Yarkand) with many area changes. Those were 2 different markets separated by Altai Mountains.
  • New trade node in Far North East – Sea of Okhotsk (Okhotsk), to represent Fur trade of Ainu people & Russians.
  • Trade flows between trade nodes include all major historical trade routes, even ancient ones. Some tricky interpretations on trade flow directions or connections, but I did my best to make it all historically correct and gameplay more challenging & enjoyable.
  • China Proper trade node areas are based mostly on Physiographic macro regions of China by G. William Skinner.
  • China Proper trade route directions favor origin locations of “Ten great merchant groups” of China and match main Grain flow directions – major trade of China. No south-north connections between Xian, Chengdu, Hankou & Canton present importance of Yangtze & Grand Canal as main economic communication link in China.
ChinaTrade.png

SouthEastTrade.png

Don’t be surprised – importance of Beijing trade node is well demoted. But sitting on the farthest corner of China Proper without any of international trade routes passing through, largely agricultural and with merchants from neighboring Shanxi & Yangtze Delta dominating its trade – I don’t see why trade routes of Beijing should be different than this.

3 key maps I've used for trade nodes & trade routes in China Proper:

Physiographic macro regions of China by G. William Skinner
China regions.png
All Henan is included to Central China trade node in my map due to balance reasons. Given that Henan is neither coastal neither near Grand Canal, and with Yellow River nearly non-navigable - it really fits better there than in coastal Beijing trade node.

Ming economic centers and roads
Ming trade.png
Gansu & Yunnan are not well covered with no trade centers marked due to Han traders not being dominant there. Those regions were dominated by Chinese Muslim merchants and actually were the most important China Proper regions for international inland caravan trade routes.

Grain trade of China
Trade flow.png
Central China produced large Rice surplus which was sent along Yangzte & Grand Canal to feed populations in East & North China.
North China plains produced large Wheat surplus which was sent along Grand Canal to populous coastal East China & also Beijing in the north (same trade node).
Grain trade was major trade in China surpassing all the other trades.
The only more profitable trade at times was Salt trade which was under state monopoly and to obtain license merchants had to deliver Grain tributes to soldiers in border regions along Great Wall. And this is how some greatest merchant groups of China made their fortune.

Ten great merchant groups of China
  1. Shanxi
  2. Huizhou (Southern Anhui)
  3. Shaanxi
  4. Guangdong
  5. Ningbo (Zhejiang)
  6. Dongting (Suzhou)
  7. Jiangyou (Jiangxi)
  8. Linqing (Shandong)
  9. Fujian
  10. Longyou (Zhejiang)
5 of 10 merchant groups originate from East China Sea (Suzhou) Trade Node
2 of top3 merchant groups originate from Northwest (Xian) Trade Node.
Shanxi and Huizhou were in particular dominant merchant groups.

Just pointing out that wealthiest Chinese merchants were based in what are Xian & Suzhou trade nodes in my map. Idea could be to make Xian & Suzhou trade nodes to compete over internal China trade, just as Shanxi & Huizhou merchants have once competed.
Xian & Suzhou trade nodes are also starting locations of 2 major trade routes of China – Silk Road & Maritime Silk Road. Through inland Silk Road all but coastal South China & Japan trade can be steered, while through Maritime Silk Road all but Xian, Mongolian & Tibetan trade. Veery nice concept I think.
Maritime Silk Road
East China Sea -> South China Sea (Canton) -> Southeast Asia bordering South China Sea
The most important trade route in East Asia.
Single maritime exit route through Canton would well portray Canton System.

Silk Road
Xian -> Yarkand -> Central Asia & Lahore
Silk Road was in decline during Ming & Qing, but it would be weird not to have it.

Southern Silk Road
Chengdu -> Burma -> Bengal

Tea-Horse Road
Chengdu -> Tibet -> Bengal & Xian
Tea from China to Tibet & India, horses from Tibet to northwestern region of China along Great Wall.
Horses route to Xian is somewhat ancient but it would cover return trade from Tibet to China and (indirectly) Tibet-Kashgar historical trade link, while Tea route to Tibet was officially recognised trade route in Southwest China during Ming & Qing.

Siberian Route
Beijing -> Mongolia -> Siberia (Cotton, Silk & Tea from China to Russia)
Okhotsk -> Mongolia -> Xian (Furs from Russian Siberia to China)
Siberian trade with Russia was conducted by Shanxi merchants from China side, merchant group which dominated Mongolian market even well before this route was established.

Maritime Fur Trade
Northwest America -> Okhotsk

Ainu-Japan Trade
Okhotsk -> Nippon -> East China Sea
Japan Trade.png

Manchuria Trade
Girin -> Yellow Sea
China & Korea were main trade partners of Manchu people with Shenyang & Northern Korea being most busy borders. Trade contacts with Japan, Mongolia or Eastern Siberia were so minimal that I don't see them as potential trade routes. Trade link to Okhotsk I think would even ruin all the idea behind Okhotsk trade node which should be dominated by Russians & Japanese.

Manila Galleons Trade
Canton & Moluccas -> Manila -> Acapulco

South China Sea Trade
Canton -> Siam, Philippines & Malacca
South China Sea was area of major outflow of Chinese goods. Large Chinese merchant communities were present everywhere along South China Sea coasts from Philippines to Siam even well before arrival of Europeans. And interest of Europeans to establish trade posts in Siam, Vietnam or Philippines was not only due to access for local production, but also as a way to gain access to Chinese market with Chinese merchant communities of Southeast Asia working as intermediaries.

Melaka-Manila-Maluku Triangle Trade
Philippines -> Malacca (Northern / Western Route)
Moluccas -> Malacca (Southern Route)
Moluccas -> Philippines (Eastern Route)
Last one is reverse to what it is now, but that’s how it was before European arrival with Brunei, Filipinos & Chinese merchants profiting from trade with Maluku Spice islands. Spanish and to some extent even Portuguese merchants also used this route that way. With Batavia now moved to Malacca trade node, such direction is neither wrong for Dutch. Can't see any arguments why flow should be Philippines -> Moluccas.
Source for 14-16th century trade routes

Siam Trade
Siam -> Malacca & Philippines
Siam had some trade with Philippines and was visited by Brunei & Filipinos (also Chinese & Japanese) merchants, while Spanish barely had contact. Somewhat minor trade route but it would help to steer more trade out of Siam which otherwise would have just single exit route.
Burma -> Siam
I've included Northern Siam & Northern Laos to Burma trade node as those like Burma & Assam were also Yunnan Muslim caravan trade areas. And that gives good reasons to make Burma -> Siam trade route because trade from places like Chiang Mai & Luang Prabang also reached Gulf of Siam & Mekong Delta.

Trade Nodes

Economic center of gravity in East Asia during Ming & Qing era. Area of triangle trade between China, Korea & Japan. Includes Jiangnan - major industrial area of China. Should be the richest and most important trade node in East Asia.
This article will well explain what it is all about and will mark exactly same trade boundaries as trade node in my suggestion.
Above anything else I hope this trade node with suggested boundaries can be implemented one day because it’s entirely historical and awesome for gameplay.

Trade node area
Southern Jiangsu
Southern Anhui
Zhejiang
Fujian
Taiwan
Ryukyu & Kyushu islands (Japan)
Gyeongsang & Jeolla (Korea)

Center of Trade
Suzhou (3)
– heartland of Jiangnan & wealthiest city of China at the time, should be level 3 trade center I think. Source - Suzhou: Where the Goods of All the Provinces Converge, title says it all.
Hangzhou (2)
Yangzhou (2)
– trade hub near confluence of Yangtze River and Grand Canal, main Salt distribution center of the country.
Nanjing (2)
Fuzhou (1)
Ningbo (1)
Wuhu (1)
- major Rice market and river port on Yangtze in Anhui.
Dongnae (1) (Busan) – main trade center in Korea for trade with Japan.
Nagasaki (1) – main import/export port of Japan in later period.
Hakata (1) – province also covers Tsushima Island, important trade centers early on.
Satsuma (1) - another important trade center of Japan taking advantage from trade in China goods with Ryukyu Islands.
Okinawa (1) - Ryukyu Islands prospered greatly from distribution of China goods throughout East Asia.
Tainan (1) - oldest and most important commercial city in Taiwan.

Yangtze Estuary
Songjiang
(Shanghai) – major port and market of Cotton Cloth, I'm sure such province will be created one day.
Coasts of Yellow Sea and northern half of Grand Canal. While not as prolific as East China Sea, Yellow Sea has history of another triangle trade - between China, Korea & Manchuria.

Trade node area
Northern Jiangsu
Northern Anhui
Hebei
Shandong
Liaoning
Chungcheong , Gyeonggi, Hwanghae & Pyongan (Korea)
Yellow river was flowing through northern Anhui & northern Jiangsu at the time and was entering Yellow Sea waters

Center of Trade
Beijing (2)
Linqing (2)
– trade hub on Grand Canal, main center of Silk trade in North China. Place of origin of Shandong merchants – wealthiest China merchants in this trade node.
Jining (1) – trade hub on Grand Canal, major Grain distribution center.
Mukden (1) (Shenyang) – main center for trade in Manchuria.
Hanseong (2) – capital and main trade center of Korea
Pyongyang (1) – most import trade center in northern Korea
Gaeseong (1) - most powerful private merchants of Korea were based in Gaeseong
Uiju (1) - main commercial town of Korea for trading with Manchuria

Huang He Estuary
Huai’an
– trade hub on Grand Canal and last significant city through which Yellow river flowed at the time. I have no idea about provincial boundaries of those times but Huang He River never passed Haizhou city (now Estuary is in Haizhou). And given high commercial profile of Huai’an – trade port and important Salt distribution center at confluence of Grand Canal & Huang He River, I think it would be more logical if Estuary was in Huai’an province.

Peiho Estuary
Tianjin – trade hub on Grand Canal, gateway to Beijing. 2nd most important Salt distribution center in the country greatly benefiting from its position at confluence of Grand Canal and 5 rivers of Hebei flowing into Bohai Sea. If Estuary not given, then it should be Center of Trade.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hai_River

Sources:
Shandong trade centers
Korea trade routes map
Korea.png
Trade node based on historical & geographical region of Lingnan which also includes northern Vietnam up to Mekong Delta. Simple and historical boundaries.

Trade node area
Guangdong
Guangxi
Hainan
Tonkin, Annam, Champa (Vietnam)

Center of Trade
Guangzhou (2)
Kweilin (1)
(Guilin) - main commercial town in Guangxi.
Dong Kinh (1) (Hanoi)
Hoi An (1) – main commercial port of Annam until 18th century, then replaced by Da Nang.
Vijaya (1) – main commercial port of Champa.

Pearl River Estuary
Guangzhou


Red River Estuary
Pho Hien – main trade port in Tonkin (northern Vietnam) at the time, located on Red River.
Hubei, Hunan, Jiangxi & parts of southern Henan form geographical region - Middle Yangtze. All these 4 regions nowadays are considered as Central China.

Trade node area
Hubei
Hunan
Jiangxi
Henan

Center of Trade
Hankou (2)
- part of modern Wuhan, it was the most important commercial area in Central China.
Nanchang (2) – Jiangxi merchants from Nanchang and its surroundings were among most successful traders during Ming as Gan River proved to be one of the easiest trade routes linking North China & Yangtze regions with the South.
Jiujiang (1) - major trade port on Yangzte river in Jiangxi.
Changsha (1) – main Rice market of Hunan.
Kaifeng (1)
Hilly China Proper region west of North China Plain and north of Yangtze river basin.

Trade node area
Shanxi
Shaanxi
Gansu

Center of Trade
Xian (2)
Yumen (2)
– don't know about the name of town/province since nearly all sources I went through mention it as Suzhou (modern Jiuquan) as main trade post.
Pingyao (1) – trade center on trade route from Beijing to Xian. Place of origin & financial capital of Shanxi merchants group – the most powerful merchants of China during Ming & Qing era. By the end of game it becomes main financial center of whole Qing China.
Lanzhou (1) – main center of trade in central Gansu.
Datong (1) – gate to Mongolia, main market for Mongolian Horse trade.
Xining (1) - gate to Tibet, historical center of trade on main route to Tibet.
Yungui Plateau & Upper Yangtze.

Trade node area
Sichuan (without Tibetan regions)
Yunnan
Guizhou

Center of Trade
Chengdu (2)
Chongqing (1)
Kunming (1)
Dali (1)

Many historical and important centers of trade in Yunnan, but I've stopped at 2 most significant ones - Kunming & Dali.
Might seem as small area on map, but it’s huge market. Overall it should be bigger market than all Malaysia-Indonesia, or few times bigger than Siam trade node. Or nearly as big market as France or Holy Roman Empire in Europe. 7 CoTs there I think wouldn't be exaggeration.

Trade node area
Honshu
Shikoku

Center of Trade
Osaka (2) - main trade center of Japan. Same province as Sakai I guess.
Edo (2)
Kyoto (2)
Nagoya (1)
Kanazawa (1)
Hiroshima (1)
Sendai (1)

I've picked largest and geographically well placed castle towns with some trade history to supplement Osaka-Sakai-Kyoto-Edo dominance in trade.
Northwestern coasts of Sea of Japan and Amur River delta & valleys.

Trade node area
Lands of Jianzhou Jurchens
Lands of Haixi Jurchens
Lands of Wild Jurchens
Gangwon & Hamgyong (Korea)

Center of Trade
Girin (2)
Ningguta (1)
– most important commercial town of Jianzhou Jurchens, 2nd most important trade center in Manchuria until late 19th century.

Amur Estuary
DerenTyr & Deren used to be outposts of Ming & Manchus to collect tribute from Wild Jurchens near Amur River Delta. In return Jurchens received some Chinese goods there.
I'm sure that all of us feel that Girin trade node needs to be split, and Okhotsk is excellent choice since it's very historical Fur trade area. It must include Hokkaido island which wasn't part of Japan at the time and far eastern territories of Russia. Fine article on this.

Trade node area
Yakutia
Kamchatka
Coasts of Okhotsk Sea to the north of Manchuria
Kuril & Sakhalin Islands
Hokkaido

Center of Trade
Okhotsk (1) – the only Russian port in the East during entire EUIV timeframe. Starting location of all Russian expeditions to Kamchatka, Kuril Islands, Hokkaido as well as to Northwest America, and port through which all trade goods were sent back to Russia or China (through Mongolia, to exchange for Chinese goods).
Matsumae (1) – trade market of Japan at very south of Hokkaido. Ainu people were coming there to exchange Fur and other commodities for Japanese goods.
Yakutsk (1) - important trade center along river trade routes.
Historical Mongolia including Buryat lands around Baikal. Buryatia has long history of intense trade with Mongolia continuing this trade even these days. And Buryatia in Mongolian trade node before Russian conquest is even more logical.

Trade node area
Outer Mongolia
Inner Mongolia
Eastern Mongolia
Buryatia (including Irkutsk & Transbaikal)

Center of Trade
Ih Huree (1)
(Urga) - difficult pick for Mongols as their towns and capitals were constantly moving & changing, but when settled Urga bacame uncontested no.1 CoT of Mongols.
Hohhot (1) - main trade hub in Inner Mongolia.
Irkutsk (1) – the most important Russian center of trade in whole East Asia, vital link for all trade routes.
Tibetan Plateau & Himalayas.

Trade node area
Tibet
Nepal
Bhutan
Kham
Amdo

Center of Trade
Lhasa (2)
Kathmandu (1)
Dartsedo (1)
(Kangding) – the most important center of trade along Tea-Horse main road in Kham.
Qamdo (1) - important center of trade in western Kham.
Area through which went ancient Silk Road. I think it’s logical to detach it from Mongolian lands which weren’t on Silk Road. Overall it’s modern Xinjiang + lands north of Tian Shan (Kirghizia & Zhetysu) which at the time were more closely related to this region rather than Central Asia.

Trade node area
Tarim Basin
Dzungaria
Zhetysu & Kirghizia

Center of Trade
Yarkand (2)
– to my surprise for EUIV timeframe Yarkand was far more important center of trade than Kashgar as it linked region with Afghanistan & Indus Valley in the south - more busy trade route at the time than route to Central Asia. Yarkand was also de facto capital & largest town of Kashgar & Yarkent Khanates. More on this throughout this source.
Kashgar (1) – nevertheless Kashgar was very important link of trade routes to Central Asia and fairly large town.
Turpan (1) – trade center along ancient Silk Road, very important trade post during Dzungar Khanate era.
Ili (1) (Yining)– capital of Dzungar Khanate, most important center of trade in Dzungaria.
Northern Thailand (Kingdom of Lan Na) & Northern Laos (Kingdom of Luang Prabang) should be in Burma trade node. Those are mountainous regions where rivers aren't navigable, regions which were regularly visited by Yunnan Muslim caravan traders and regions which were part of wider trade network of Southern Silk Road from China.
Map & source on this.
Chiang Mai.png

Trade node area
Upper Burma
Assam & other small states of Northeast India
Northern Thailand (Kingdom of Lan Na)
Northern Laos (Kingdom of Luang Prabang)

Center of Trade
Ava (2)
(Inwa) - major economical area and principal center of trade of Upper Burma.
Bhamo (1) - located in Shan Manmaw State. It was the most important commercial town on main road from China, from which goods were sent to either coasts of Burma (down Irrawaddy through Ava) or to Bengal via Assam.
Guwahati (1) - major port on Brahmaputra river and most important commercial town in Assam since ancient times.
Chiang Mai (1) - main center of trade in Northern Thailand.
Luang Prabang (1) - center of trade in Northern Laos, important caravan stop.

One of better sources on Ava & Bhamo.
Valleys and delta regions of Mekong & Chao Praya rivers.

Trade node area
Central Siam
Southern Laos
Cambodia
Mekong River Delta

Center of Trade
Ayutthaya (2)
Phitsanulok (1)
- located at strategic location linking Northern and Central Siam it was 2nd largest city in Siam after Ayutthaya, late capital of Kingdom Sukhothai.
Prey Nokor (1) (Saigon) - one of the most important centers of trade in all Southeast from 18th century.
Phnom Penh (1) - together with Longvek it was main commercial center of Khmers.
Vientiane (1) - main center of trade in Laos.

Mekong Estuary (1/2 each)
Mi Sar
(My Tho) - northern shore of Mekong River. When Mekong Delta is split into more provinces I think My Tho should appear since it was the most important Vietnamese trade port on Mekong Delta.
Prek Russey (Vinh Long) - southern shore of Mekong River.

Chao Praya Estuary
Thonburi (Bangkok) – no comments are needed I think. In 18th century Bangkok was already one of the most significant trade sites in Southeast Asia, and the most significant in Thailand.
Only one change - Brunei most definitely should be in Philippines trade node. It’s just same trading area before European arrival with Brunei itself expanding into Philippines. Also same geography – eastern coasts of South China Sea.

Trade node area
Philippines
Northern Borneo (Brunei)
Micronesia

Center of Trade
Manila (2)
Brunei (2)
Sulu (1)
– political and commercial capital of Sulu Sultanate, which was one of main trade powers in area.
Cebu (1)
Eastern half of Indonesia.

Trade node area
Central-East Java
Southeastern Borneo
Sulawesi
Lesser Sunda Islands
Maluku Islands
West Papua

Center of Trade
Makassar (2)
Surabaya (1)
– major port and center of trade in East Java since 16th century.
Ternate (1)
Tidore (1)

There should be CoT in Maluku islands since its main trade location of this node and Ternate-Tidore Sultanates were traders themselves.

Solo Estuary
Gresik
– located on Solo River Delta it was the most important commercial port of Majapahit early on before rise of Surabaya. Solo River – the longest river in Java stretching along very fertile lands, it was of massive importance for shipping agricultural products (Rice). So far Gresik falls into Surabaya province, but Surabaya is located on Brantas River Estuary, so geographically there’s enough ground to make Gresik as separate province one day.
Western half of Indonesia & Malay Peninsula. Or coasts along Malacca Strait & Sunda Strait. When there were problems for ships to pass Malacca Strait – Sunda Strait or overland route through Malay Peninsula were used as alternatives. It’s important to include West Java into this trade node since southern half of Sumatra commercially was dependent on Sunda Kelapa / Batavia. Overall it should be another massive trade area similar to that of East China Sea and I am quite modest there with number of potential CoTs suggested.

Trade node area
Malay Peninsula
Sumatra
West Java
West Borneo

Center of Trade
Malacca (3)
Sunda Kelapa (2)
(Batavia)
Pasai (2)
Banda Aceh (1)
– main center of trade of Aceh Sultanate.
Banten (1)
Bintan (1)
– main center of trade of Johor Sultanate. Replaced Malacca in importance when it was conquered by Portuguese.
Nakhon Si Thammarat (1)
Padang (1)
Patani (1)
– merchant based area shining already since 15th till some 17th centuries. It had intense trade connections with China.

Musi Estuary
Palembang
– economical heartland of ancient kingdom of Srivijaya, significant trade center later as well, especially since 17-18th century. Musi River basin – the largest waterways in Sumatra Island.

Batang Hari Estuary
Jambi – another key port of kingdom Srivijaya, was also significant trade port of Pepper during Jambi Sultanate era. Batang Hari River is the longest river in Sumatra along which Pepper was shipped from inland areas.

Kapuas Estuary
Pontianak
– with arrival of Dutch and Chinese in 18th century Pontianak became very important trade site in Borneo. And Kapuas River was of major role to this as it is the longest River in Indonesia, of great width and fully navigable at most of its extent. There’s no better way to reach central Borneo than through Kapuas.

5 greatest rivers in Indonesia for attention.
 
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cub298

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I really love seeing this because, one it is really well done and two it is changes to how trade flows and almost all the time I would really love it to be changed. There is only one part I question is that the trade going to North America is going to Acapulco and not Panama. Also, what would you think the new North America trade would look like since it says coming from Northwest America. Mainly because I would like to know how trade would get into Asia from new world with this new type of set up.
 

MilkAndLettuce

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This is a really superb suggestion, well done.

I really love seeing this because, one it is really well done and two it is changes to how trade flows and almost all the time I would really love it to be changed. There is only one part I question is that the trade going to North America is going to Acapulco and not Panama. Also, what would you think the new North America trade would look like since it says coming from Northwest America. Mainly because I would like to know how trade would get into Asia from new world with this new type of set up.
I believe it's justified to link the Philippines to Acapulco rather than Panama, as the former was Spain's primary port in the Pacific, if I recall correctly. Silver would be traded in the Philippines for Chinese goods, which was then sent to Mexico, portaged to Veracruz, then sent on to Europe. Panama's importance was less than it is today due to the inhospitable terrain and weather.
 

Canute VII

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I don't likd that lone manchurian trade node, it should probably also flow into nippon and receive trade from ochotsk...?

Also should't southwestern china still flow into south china?
 
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BalticM

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I don't likd that lone manchurian trade node, it should probably also flow into nippon and receive trade from ochotsk...?

Also should't southwestern china still flow into south china?
I didn't make it the way I like, I made it according historical trade routes of 15-18th centuries.. The ones best documented and more significant.
Russia didn't expand to Manchuria in 15-18th centuries, neither built Siberian railroad.
Japan didn't invade Manchuria yet either.
Nor Manchus were building fleets and trading in Okhotsk Sea.
So Manchuria has the only clearly documented trade route leading to China & Korea.
No problem if it's done differently, but I'm providing my historical research :)

Personally I dislike that there are 3 outgoing routes out of Beijing, but don't know which one to remove, all seem historical and important.
 

Canute VII

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I didn't make it the way I like, I made it according historical trade routes of 15-18th centuries.. The ones best documented and more significant.
Russia didn't expand to Manchuria in 15-18th centuries, neither built Siberian railroad.
Japan didn't invade Manchuria yet either.
Nor Manchus were building fleets and trading in Okhotsk Sea.
So Manchuria has the only clearly documented trade route leading to China & Korea.
No problem if it's done differently, but I'm providing my historical research :)

Personally I dislike that there are 3 outgoing routes out of Beijing, but don't know which one to remove, all seem historical and important.
Yes, I understand your premise. My point was not to contest your historical research, but to question whether that reasearch should be enriched by plausible alternative trade routes and consideration for game-play /-balance.

E.g. Manchus didn't build a trade fleet (not sure, but if you say so), but they could have, given their long coast, and they could have traded with ochotsk/nippon. Maybe they just didn't have enough trader envoys (in game terms).

E.g. south-western china didn't flow into south china sea? But it could have given available river connections. Maybe (again in game terms) trade was just steered away to central china by Ming/Quing trader envoys.

I hope you see where I'm heading to?
 
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Salix

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I find a difficult as the game mechanic is limit and it's hard to show Ming trade restriction and Japanese Isolationism. Loved the text for East China sea.
Also the one sided trade mechanic makes it's hard to balance

Gameplay balance wise, China and Ryukyu would profit, while Japan and Korea will be worse off and their major trade center will be dwarfed gameplay wise, through trade centers in the East China sea.

I like the historical correctness, but with the trade system in place that would make Chinese too strong and would also lead in ahistorical outcomes on importance of trade centers.
I like the addition of Trade center. As trade center were expended in Dharma I hope some will get in the game. But without a better and more Balance trade system and I can't see how a historical depiction can be made. You could say the about other major trade zones, like the Baltics and North Sea.

Even though I find a correct to cut the Girin trade node as biggest one and also shrinking the second biggest, which is Nippon is also good. While reducing the inflow into Nippon can be Problematic balance wise.
The East China sea is balance a problem in my eyes. China will completely dominate this trade node and leech strong on adjacent trade nodes.

Also I'm not sure about the North West China and Mongolia. as they feel quite strong now. While South China seem very disconnected. I know lot of trade went by ship but no connection to Central or southwest China?
 

BalticM

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Is there any nodes flowing into South China Sea (Canton) besides the East China Sea node?

I would think that at least Central China would flow into South China Sea.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mei_Pass
No. Sure South China was connected with Central & Southwest China, but like I said:
"No south-north connections between Xian, Chengdu, Hankou & Canton present importance of Yangtze & Grand Canal as main economic communication link in China"
If you make such connections in game (I've tested things a lot), merchants of Southeast Asia reach those regions too easy and steer lots of trade with caravan trade (which is way too powerful early on) while China will never use those routes that way. It feels both ahistorical and not good for gameplay. I'd rather see trade being steered along Yangtze into East China Sea before it enters South China Sea waters.

Gameplay balance wise, China and Ryukyu would profit, while Japan and Korea will be worse off and their major trade center will be dwarfed gameplay wise, through trade centers in the East China sea.

I like the historical correctness, but with the trade system in place that would make Chinese too strong and would also lead in ahistorical outcomes on importance of trade centers.
You can't be more wrong than this. If anything I thought I'm nerfing China too much.
My suggestion boost trade opportunities for Korea & especially Japan more than for anyone else. They would have chance to profit from China trade without need to conquer any of China provinces, all they need is to boost their trade centers and build big navy of light ships.

Just look on situation there is now - China has complete control over all of its trade which it can funnel into Beijing, and with Yumen controlled - nearly no trade leaves China. Light ships aren't even needed to guard trade in Beijing and can be used to steer more trade out of Nippon, so China can dominate Korean & Nippon markets but not vice versus.

And then look at my map. First - there is no such trade node like Beijing into which as much trade can be steered. Supposedly best trade node is East China Sea, but China will have there like 70% of provincial trade power and rest will come down to ships, bonuses, CoT upgrades and etc. Both Japan & Korea have lots of coastal provinces and can build similar navies to that of Ming. If China steers all its trade into East China Sea but grabs just 70% of it, it's not the same as it was with nearly 100% in Beijing? Also East China Sea node is in reach by Southeast Asian countries nearly from beginning and with those sending ships there competition would be even more tight. Again - not the same as with nearly non-reachable Beijing when Yumen falls into Chinas hands?

Trade income by country after 5 months passed in current game version:
3.png
Trade income by country after 5 months passed in version with my suggested trade nodes:
2.png
As you see Ming has much lower income from the start in my version, while Korea much higher, and even me with Ryukyu Islands (no CoT) or some small Daimyos of Japan make the list. Sure when Ming gets more than 2 merchants and if it moves its main trade city into East China Sea Node - situation will somewhat change. Just as it will change when Dharma gets released & trade center updates take place, but maybe I'll experiment further on this then.

General overlook on trade nodes of my suggestion:
1.png
Chinese trade nodes clearly need to be richer, especially inland ones.
 

Canute VII

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But from your tables of trade income... Jianzhou gets nerfed (no Manchus forming + conquering China then?) and Korea buffed (again, no Manchus?)? :oops:
 

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Two Question so I understand your result. Did you also did add Trade center and if on Both? Second of all yes in the beginning I would agree without doubt The would eat nice Chinese trade. But in when Japan is formed that would be the more interesting question. And Mercantilism, Merchants, Upgrading of Trade centers kicks in. Also as China will probably collect in Northwest China/Yarkand
and South China.

Could give us a result in a later dates like 1600 1750


To why I think Japan Korea will be worse
Also to take that nice Chinese money you must compete with china in the East China sea. Both Japan and Korea would send their Manchuria/Nippon/Okhotsk sea trade in there. And China can overpower them easily, because they have more money. more monarch points, higher fleet limit. Also some of their productive land is not part of their main trade node.


Those proposal are balance only, not to do with historical and how trade should flow.
If China would stay in East China sea, it might work out. my proposal purely balance reason would be steer south china sea in East China sea. That would guarantee that China would collect in East China sea and not just flush their trade through while collecting some Nippon trade too.

For the Manchu I would consider to steer from Okhotsk sea into Manchuria. And maybe scrap yellow sea --> Mongolia and establish Mongolia --> Manchuria


I like your idea and a experienced Player you will dominate no matter how structure them, but Ki and weaker player is the problem.(I play with a friend who is really bad at this game) Also pointed out well the Manchus are the biggest loser.


I completely agree with your structuring in South East Asia, I think they balance the region out good and your second Merchant is not a throw away for most Nation there now.


I completely agree Sino trade is very weak and after I look how they buff Europe and India with trade center I'm afraid of looking to the trade map of East Asia on Thursday. As they dislike trade there. The actual Girin and Nippon trade node size are an example for that. OR the connection for example of the Philippines
 

BalticM

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But from your tables of trade income... Jianzhou gets nerfed (no Manchus forming + conquering China then?) and Korea buffed (again, no Manchus?)? :oops:
No, Manchuria has slightly more trade in my map if counting Jianzhou+Haixi+Yeren combined.
Nearly no boost either, but I don't think that trade is what Manchus need most. They weren't best traders.

Two Question so I understand your result. Did you also did add Trade center and if on Both? Second of all yes in the beginning I would agree without doubt The would eat nice Chinese trade. But in when Japan is formed that would be the more interesting question. And Mercantilism, Merchants, Upgrading of Trade centers kicks in. Also as China will probably collect in Northwest China/Yarkand
and South China.

Could give us a result in a later dates like 1600 1750
Trade centers weren't touched.
Now I moved Korean trade center from East China Sea to Yellow Sea and Korea is even more rich.

And I've tried playing Ming myself. Added extra trade center in Yangzhou (East China Sea), Korean trade center is still moved from East China Sea to Yellow Sea. I relocated main trade city to East China Sea and sent all light ships to protect trade there. Result - trade income increased by barely 1.00 and total trade income is still below 12.00. East China Sea is full of light ships from small Kyushu nations which are stealing my trade (sounds very historical). Actually all my trade is stolen all around - by Mongolians in the north, by Tibetians & Burmese in southwest, by Vietnamese in the south and by Japanese & Koreans in the east, without extra merchants Ming will be really weak controlling its trade even in players hands. And with 5 merchants Ming still will be losing trade in all those directions, I'm pretty sure.


My main aim though is that Korean AI would have its main trade city in Yellow Sea, united Japan AI in Nippon and China AI in East China Sea. That would be accurate historically.
As much as I see trade balance of Korea in Yellow Sea should be well positive (that is stealing trade from China) as long as it has some navy or isn't embargoed by China. Especially when/if Manchuria becomes part of China.
Japan will have opportunity to get what it loses to East China Sea from Okhotsk.
And collecting trade in East China Sea should pay off for Korea & Japan even if their main trade city isn't there. At least in case when China brings all its trade there.
Flow from Manchuria & Nippon trade nodes shouldn't be big since Ming will be more busy defending its trade with light ships rather than using them offensively, plus it will be short of merchants to send them there - it needs 5 merchants just to control trade in China proper.

As a player managing Korea & Japan sure you will probably act differently, that is try to challenge Ming in East China Sea. But that would be only more fun :)
 
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Salix

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I'm happy if that's the results. Even though I'm skeptical, but it's better than the current setup.

I'm a little bit worried about dharma, as it seemed India and Europe got added bunch of Trade Center, while what I saw of East Asia not that many.
 

BalticM

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I'm happy if that's the results. Even though I'm skeptical, but it's better than the current setup.

I'm a little bit worried about dharma, as it seemed India and Europe got added bunch of Trade Center, while what I saw of East Asia not that many.
Look at Philippines :D Every village has CoT there.
I think it was just done in a rush, and eventually CoTs will be well distributed and there will be many more of them. I skipped CoTs like Butuan in Philippines as those seemed too small and not significant enough, I've picked only 100% ones (I think). So I assume that sooner or later devs will find many more CoT options in East Asia than what I've suggested.
 

Canute VII

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Looking again, I would probably just add
  • a Ochotsk->Girin route and
  • a SouthwestChina->Canton route
 

BalticM

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Shouldn't Tibet also flow into Lahore?
I think not. It was difficult trade route historically and for game play it's just not necessary. Lahore has 2 trade routes coming in, Tibet 2 coming out, why do they need 3rd one?
I've also wanted to make Tibet a bit more rich at least through trade. Actually I feel it should be more developed region than it is now. You should convince devs to boost development a bit ;)
 

BalticM

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Looking again, I would probably just add
  • a Ochotsk->Girin route and
  • a SouthwestChina->Canton route
I've tested things a bit.

Central China -> Canton maybe is a good option after all. It gives incentives for China to boost centers of trade in Central China and to have merchant there. Because I as player playing Ming China saw no use to send merchant into Central China, trade was still coming where needed.

And level 3 centers of trade in Suzhou and Malacca also seems as bad choice. Level 2 is enough at start and is more balanced option. Actually Ming trade centers could be downgraded even more since there's no problem for Ming to boost them.

All the other trade links seem perfectly fine for game play. Wouldn't change a thing.
Okhotsk is very poor trade node, Manchus won't get richer if you make connection there.
 

AirikrStrife

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I think not. It was difficult trade route historically and for game play it's just not necessary. Lahore has 2 trade routes coming in, Tibet 2 coming out, why do they need 3rd one?
I've also wanted to make Tibet a bit more rich at least through trade. Actually I feel it should be more developed region than it is now. You should convince devs to boost development a bit ;)
You mean like this?? ;) https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?threads/tibet.1096518/

I wish they did^^
Tibet was fairly well developed trade wise, though maybe the western trade route is mostly local, and also I didn't check properly enough but the himalaya hill area is in the doab trade route,