This is a slightly more advanced guide for how to manipulate the market for guaranteed profits.
Few Pro Tips
Firstly, a few basic tips that you should know before starting:
1) Having horses in your inventory can speed up your movement speed, and increase carrying capacity. This will be helpful as you travel the map during this guide. Note that pack animals (camels, mules, stumpers) will increase your inventory capacity, but actually decrease your movement speed.
2) Every village produces some type of raw resource (horses, cows, clay, iron, grain, etc) – these are the same in every playthrough and don’t change.
Every town has 3 workshops – while most tend to produce the same goods, some of the workshops get randomized in every playthrough, thereby changing the dynamics of the world’s economy.
Understanding this will help you understand why some of these schemes work, and maybe give you some ideas for your own schemes.
3) Zoom out, hover over one of the towns’ tags, and right-click. This will open an interface with details on that town. From this interface, you’ll see the town’s NPCs on the top-right. Hover over each one, and it’ll tell you what they own in that town – including workshops. This is how you can identify the types of goods that any town produces, from anywhere on the map.
4) Did you know that if you buy a workshop in a town, change it to produce something else, then sell it, it won’t revert back to its original state? How interesting!
Spiffing Brit is a tea-loving youtuber and video game exploitaire! This video has some useful tips, and is fun to watch. Just be sure to prepare a cup of tea before hitting play. Also, note that some of the information that he gives is already outdated – the wood shop exploit that gives thousands per day no longer works. Still, there’s some good value in his content.
Monopolizing All the Pot!
(To see the payout of this scheme, see the bottom of this section).
Workshops used to be so good at launch. You could buy one, dump a load of raw resources into the town, and watch the sweatshop work in overdrive, pumping out massive profits of several thousand denars per day. This has been fixed – there’s now a cap on how many goods each workshop can produce. Makes these workshops a bit underwhelming, right? Well, what if I told you that they can still serve an indirect purpose? Check this out!
So I found an interesting town called Pen Cannoc, and it has 3 villages; Durn, Gainseth, and Mag Arba. What’s unique about this? Well, all of these villages produce clay! Holy crap! Unless there’s war that gets these villages raided, they will all supply the town with clay for non-stop production! What do we need clay for? We need it to craft containers for growing copious amounts of ganja!
Anyways, if this town has a pottery shop (henceforth referred to as a “dispensaries”), buy it out. If it doesn’t, buy some other one and turn it into a dispensary. Unless there’s war, it will guarantee profits – I’ve seen it go up to 670 profit one day:
Nothing impressive, but much better than any other workshop you can set up, and it’s passive profit. It’s a good start, but we’re aiming for something much more profitable. What’s next?
Well, you need to get your clan to level 1 if you haven’t already done so. At level 0, you are limited to just one workshop, and at level 1, you can have two. You will need that second workshop slot. Come back once you have it.
Our next step is to identify all of the towns that have dispensaries. Check out pro tip 3 in the previous section. Once you find a town that has a dispensary, mark it by clicking on its tag in the world map – it’ll make things easier for the next step.
Go to each town that you found in the last step, click on the dispensary owner (NPC portrait on the top-right), and click “Talk”. This will teleport you to them in town, usually a bit closer to the shop than you’d normally be, saving you some walking time time. Hold Alt to find the dispensary, and talk to a worker:
Buy the workshop out, and replace it with an industry that we plan to never partake in, like brewing:
Hold Tab key to exit the town, press L to open your clan menu, go to “Other”, and sell the Brewery:
If you want to double-check to make sure everything is working properly, go back into town and hold Alt – you shouldn’t see any dispensaries remaining.
You’ve lost 2-3 thousand denars doing this. Bummer. Don’t worry, it’s an investment, and your passive income will recoup you while you get to your next town on the list.
Do this with every dispensary in the world. It takes some time. I know because I did it. Trust me, it’s worth it.
As you’re doing this, you might be checking the profits that your dispensary is making, and you might have noticed that they’re not improving. Don’t worry, you’re still on the right track. The workshop’s profits won’t increase, that’s not the goal. In fact, they’ll get lower before the end.
Anyways, once you’ve eliminated all the competition around the world, it’s time to go back to Pen Cannoc. Check the trade tab. You may have noticed that there’s very few dime-bags of pot in there. This is because each workshop is limited in how much it can produce, and pot is limited to like 6-8 per day. As of writing this, I don’t know of any way to level up workshops, so maybe there will be options to improve this later.
In any case, we want more pot to be grown. Buy out the 2nd and 3rd workshops in the town, and turn them both into dispensaries. This will reduce the amount of profit that each one makes. If you own all 3 of them, you’ll notice that they total to about 1000 per day, and this is fine. We do not care about that. Here’s what we DO care about:
Do you see it? The town is now making 21-22 units of pot per day. This gives you more to stock up on, and lowers its buying price. You can buy it anywhere between 50 and 85 denar per unit, and you can sell it pretty much anywhere else in the world for guaranteed profit – I’ve seen towns buy it for 500 per unit.
Now you just sit in town and harvest your pot. Wait in town until the workshop finishes growing a batch of pot, buy it out before some NPC caravan does (hint: the batch completes right before the “Daily Gold Change” notification). Once you’ve got 200-300 dime-bags, it’s time to make some deliveries. Travel across the map to the furthest towns (the further you go, the less competition you’ll have with NPC caravans), and distribute the pot to 5-10 towns. Alternatively, you can sell it all to one town and still make a good profit. Then come back and repeat.
This will give you a great amount of profit, but also power-level your trading skill, and every tier of that skill gives massive benefits:
- Passive renown from profitable caravans at level 125.
- Increased workshop output at level 150.
- Beefier caravans at level 175. Alternatively, better taxation when waiting in a town that you own is also feasible, as it synergizes with level 225 skill, and you’ll be spending a decent amount of time in town.
- Improved pot growth at level 200.
- Bartering for settlements at level 225.
- Passive influence gain from caravans and workshops (I hear that influence is very hard to get late-game).
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