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Advanced Trading Systems


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Trading is an incredibly interesting mechanic from a conceptual level, being able to put some amount of your resources towards bartering with traders in order to be able to obtain goods which you otherwise would never be able to obtain or are currently unable to find such as halite, tin, or any other sort of good that a trader sells of that sort. The issue with the system as it is actually implemented is that very rarely can you reliably barter with one trader let alone multiple. Trading stocks will change often and not in a predictable manner, meaning that the trader that you journeyed 1000 blocks to sell you stacks of fire clay to may not even be buying it. And the aforementioned 1000 blocks is the other major issue with traders, their spacing and distance from each other makes it a massive journey just to interact with a few merchants and possibly sell some of your items. As such, I propose a few ways to go about fixing this issue of lack of accessibility while also simultaneously providing players with a variety of fulfilling ways to expend resources which they may have in excess in the later game.


Many people have suggested the idea of a system of villages and employment before, saying that the idea would cut down on menial labor and make for an interesting gameplay loop. As to that, I say that being able to collect so many people together in one spot permanently and assign them to tasks takes away from the primary gameplay of VS too much, turning it from a game wherein you build yourself up from nothing by your own might and ingenuity to a colony sim. In addition to that, the coding of a system that allows for NPCs to dynamically go out into the world and harvest resources would require basically as many resources as producing an entirely new game on top of the VS engine, so such a complex feature shouldn't be considered in its whole state.

So, instead of being able to have a town of permanent residents, I suggest instead being able to simply act as the host for wandering traders who come, rest, trade with you, and then leave without engaging in any sort of labor. This accomplishes two goals.

  1. Players have more direct and numerous access to traders
  2. Providing accommodations for the traders takes significant amounts of resources, meaning that large amounts of trading can only be done if the player has large amounts of resources to spare in following this path.

Traders would only come to your inn to trade if you met certain conditions which would even out the massive buff that being able to trade with a large and varied quantity of traders from the convenience of your homestead provides. Additionally, you would be able to control if a house is considered viable for a trader and thus be able to simply close up shop if you ever go on a long adventure or are running low on supplies, meaning that participation in this system is wholly voluntary. And as a bonus for the labor of constructing these lodgings, traders would pay you a small sum of gears for their stay depending on the conditions.

Conditions of Your Inn

The quality of your accommodations would be an important factor in the willingness of traders to stop by your inn and their agreeableness in giving you good, low price deals. The three primary components that would go into the trader's perceived quality of the room would be:

  1. Quality of the room structurally
  2. Decor/furnishings of the room
  3. Quality of the food provided
  4. Other local conditions

Structural Quality

Primarily based on things such as if the room is heated when in a cold region, if the room has windows, how large the room is, if the room has a bed, etc. Accounts for basic physiological needs of shelter and warmth.

Decor/Furniture Quality

Primarily based on things like the quality of the bed provided, the decorative objects placed around the room (flower pots, paintings), etc. Accounts for general quality of life/comfort outside of pure physiological needs.

Food Quality

Primarily based on things like the warmth of the food when served, the variety in the ingredients, the regularity of meals, etc. Accounts for the basic physiological need of food but also accounts for taste and personal preference in food outside of whatever is the most nutritious and filling, a component which is not necessary for the meals that the player eats.

Local Conditions

Primarily based on things like proximity to other traders (packing traders together like sardines makes them angry), nearby rift activity, nearby player activity (helve hammers are loud and unpleasant), etc. Accounts for a variety of things that mostly fall under the umbrella of comfort and mental health such as avoiding noisy or crowded environments.

All of these together would necessitate that the player dedicate a significant amount of resources towards constructing lodgings, constructs them away from noisy work such as smithing, and gathers the ingredients for and prepares meals which exceed in taste the current meta of red meat stew and onion pie that is used by most players. With this, it would be advantageous for players to pursue more artisan food goals such as cheesemaking, spirit distillation, and breadmaking and it would mean that there is also use for a large surplus of food in the later game once a single harvest of an onion crop yields enough food to last multiple years.


Garbage accommodations. Traders may sometimes show up but they will not
be in the mood to do much business with you after sleeping on a dirty hay mat
and eating cold boiled turnips.



Decent accommodations. A nice bed, a well constructed room, and some
porridge with honey will give a boring but very acceptable stay and traders
will willing to sell their wares to you in such conditions.



Good accommodations. A spacious room, some decor, a jug of ale, and a
nice table to sit down for a meal at provide for a very comfortable and
pleasant stay in which traders will gladly trade and barter with you.



Amazing accommodations. A lavishly decorated room, a jug of wine, a meal
of roasted carrots with cheddar cheese and rye bread, and a comfortable bed
all lead to an amazing stay in which traders will be much more willing to cut
their prices and give you some good deals in trading negotiations.

Additional Notes

This idea of innkeeping very closely ties with previous ideas that I have posted about in regards to providing good accommodations for traders.


Guild Trading

Now, a system that I have seen few people suggest is the idea of trading on a larger scale than the small inventory size quantities between larger trade organizations. Given the lore implications of large trading leagues in the world of Vintage Story, there already exists precedent for larger scale trading between large parties which is exactly what this feature would entail. Connections would be made with large trading guilds by way of conversation with wandering traders, contracts would be signed promising to produce and package a certain quantity of goods by a specified date, and large sums of gears would be paid out for the fulfillment of the contract. This system would solve the same sort of issue presented in the beginning of this post of overabundance of resources in the late game. Many people will find iron, make a full set of plate and tools, and then simply have no more reason to create more iron because it provides them with no benefits. In this proposed system, it would be worthwhile to pursue this goal even further because of the fact that large profits can be made through selling this excess of iron off to a large guild which can then be used for other, smaller trades between individual traders.

The most important aspect of this trading system is that unlike trading between individuals, this system would be slow and methodical where you sign a contract on one day, prepare the goods on another, ship them it off on another, and then finally receive payment for them once the guild receives their end of the bargain. This level of predictability allows for a much more consistent schedule of trading as compared to the rapidly cycling trades of typical cart traders and the volume allows for players to specialize in producing certain goods for large profits in a way that at least somewhat emulates a multiplayer trading experience.

Additionally, this system would tie in closely with the previous system of innkeeping as signing these contracts would require that you contact a trader who is a part of one of these leagues in order to have them act as a representative and messenger for your deal, thereby requiring that the player engages in at least moderate innkeeping and gather good will if they wish to trade in such large quantities.


Trading is an incredibly promising part of this game but is something that I believe is sorely lacking in its current implementation. I was first exposed to the degree to which the existing system feels lacking when I first played with the Useful Stuff mod and decided to test out the welcome mat feature which allowed for you to construct a room for traders and have them come in every few days to trade. Keeping track of prices, shuffling through my storage for good items to trade, and buying all sorts of fancy things with the great quantity of gears I got from it was a deeply engaging process but it felt a bit flat in that the traders could simply be packed into small boxes and fed raw onions without much bickering. I made them small fancy rooms but it still felt like it would be much better if I were to act as a true innkeeper instead of the slum lord that I felt I was.

So, as such, I developed this idea and I hope it catches the eyes of others as much as it has done to me.

(Oh yea and about the guild trading part, that was an unrelated but similar idea I had separate from innkeeping)

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  • 1 month later...

THIS. I've had this idea on my mind for like a year at this point. I had a blast reading your post, and if something at least similar to this is ever implemented, VS will become one of my favorite games out there for sure. I hope this post doesn't go unnoticed.

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I have an idea for another trader, not a trader as usual, more like a pub where you can play one, two, three minigames. Stake - rusty gears. A minigame fascinated me in Ashes of Erebus / Fall From Heaven. A mod game for Civ IV, it's a simple card game - similar to tarrot/solitaire. Maybe 2-3 more minigames.

if you break off the game, for example because of starvation or a temporal storm, you automatically lose your bet.

As with the quality of traders' housing, casinos could range from shabby and seedy till luxurious.

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6 hours ago, RobinHood said:

I have an idea for another trader, not a trader as usual, more like a pub where you can play one, two, three minigames. Stake - rusty gears. A minigame fascinated me in Ashes of Erebus / Fall From Heaven. A mod game for Civ IV, it's a simple card game - similar to tarrot/solitaire. Maybe 2-3 more minigames.

if you break off the game, for example because of starvation or a temporal storm, you automatically lose your bet.

As with the quality of traders' housing, casinos could range from shabby and seedy till luxurious.


That's a really good idea! I think this deserves a post of its own so that it gets more visibility.

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  • 3 weeks later...

i played 100h and i feel this post with depths of my soul , current implementation of traders is just...unrewarding , aside from having spare gears and getting wax(who is pain to get otherwise) and maybe honey (4 bowls for 1gear is great deal) i dont feel like any of 50 traders i seen had something worth the hastle , especialy lots things they buy have huge marksup and aside from few exeptions i saw no reason to sell them as most goods they buy are not worth hastle unless you do mass crafts and that will take really a lot effort

especialy lots are far between , on my first map i played i had 5 clothing vendors 1 general and 1 farming , so no good way to get anything in "resonable distance to my base"


having traders have varied stocks and better prizes(depending on quality of stay) and "visit you" would be great to remedy most of these problems , not to say id love traders to offer to buy luxury goods like cheese , wine or "meals" , maybe if even you wont "trade" vilaggers will pay for your stay(and depending on food , and luxury provided would give players more incentive to gather and expand to produce better meals and food as well build proper base)


tho we would propobly need smaller denominal currency like "gear pieces" being worth 1/5 or 1/10 of gear , and temporal gear maybe being worth/being currency too

Edited by Varenvel
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