The economy of Calradia is essential to maintaining the balances (or imbalances) of daily life. The wealth of the nations affects the balance of power almost as much as territory as it allows factions to dominate each other. Many factors such as war, caravans, and bandits affect the economy, therefore it can rise or collapse very easily.
Towns and villages in Calradia need a wide variety of goods for their populations to remain healthy and productive. First in importance is food. Grain is the staple crop of Calradia, but people also need fat and protein in the form of meat, fish, or cheese. It takes almost as much work to preserve meat as to produce it in the first place, so salt is also in high demand. After food comes clothing: heavy wool, lighter linens, or luxurious velvet. Finally, people need the tools of their trade: ironware, pottery, leatherware, and, of course, arms, armor, and horses for war.
Most agricultural products are produced in the villages, while artisans in the towns specialize in manufactured or artisanal goods like fabrics or ironware. Also, different resources can be found in different parts of the country. Consequently, the key to prosperity in Calradia is trade -- both between the villages and the towns, and between the major towns themselves.
When trade flows, goods will be available and affordable, the population of a center will be healthy and energetic, and migrants will flock from the nearby regions. The center will produce more, consume more, and be able to contribute more in taxes to their lords. When trade dries up, towns and villages will see their workers flee to seek work elsewhere, and economic activity will drift to a stand-still. Thus, it is in the interests of rulers to protect trade routes from the hazards of war and banditry. A smart merchant, however, may want to seek out towns which have become isolated from the rest of the land, as he or she may be able to turn a tidy profit from the resulting price imbalances.
Villages are the source of various raw materials that town industries convert into finished goods. Consequently, villages are usually sell things like furs, grain, wool, fish and beef at lower prices than nearby towns. In contrast, villages will typically buy finished goods like tools, dried meat and flour at higher prices than nearby towns. However, most villages don't have very much coin, so most trade runs between town to village will be barter or purchase rather than sales. Whereas towns typically have significant coin reserves and can be relied on to purchase those raw goods outright.
While villages intend to transport their produced goods themselves and typically don't have very much up for sale, they are perfectly happy to sell you what goods they can spare at fairly low prices and let you absorb the risk of bandits or poor prices transporting them to a town.
A player who wants to know about the factors affecting a region's prosperity can speak to the Guild Master of the local town. Other information can be gleaned from passers-by, although they might not know very much outside of their own particular trade.
The economy of any certain faction is an important factor in the decisions made when becoming a vassal.
At the start of the game, prosperity is fairly random. After a few months, you can see that towns and regions assume different roles and factions move towards general trends.
You may notice that lands in the middle of the map, or ones that border other realms are more frequently subject to raids and sieges. For this reason, Swadia needs more castles than the average kingdom for protection purposes.
The trend with kingdoms like the Nords and the Rhodoks, is that since they have fewer towns and start with the same amount of lords (every kingdom has 20 lords not counting the king), they will more often be able to successfully expand and take land in the Kingdom of Swadia. Swadia is generally the 'no man's land' of Calradia, it also has the most land and fiefs with the same amount of lords to protect it. Strangely, the Sarranids have the most isolated fiefs and most defensive land in Calradia, but they still have fiefs second to Swadia in quantity. Larger nations may be better for vassals, because there are more fiefs per person, which helps satisfy the nobles and results in larger party sizes. This brings us to the next factor in determining the prosperity of a nation, its fiefs per noble.
|Fiefs per Lord or King||1.19||1.19||1.42||1.8||1.42||1.52||1.42|
The centralization of a faction's population also determines how you will distribute fiefs and which ones you will keep for yourself when playing as a faction leader. If you like nations with more Towns relative to other fiefs, you can manage land better playing with Khergit lands. The wealth of a kingdom can be solely determined by its tax revenue. Tax revenue scales based on the prosperity of fiefs.
The prosperity of a village depends on how often it is raided, if a Mill has been built or not (for 5% increase in prosperity), goods being bought by the player from village elder, and how many times a farmer party traveling reaches their destination. Though the amount a village is raided is the only major influence.
Town prosperity is different. With the same amount of prosperity, castles and villages make the same amount of tax revenue. Towns make close to double that amount. They also lose the majority of their prosperity after besieged, but they work differently in how they gain prosperity. The amount of caravans that move through the town, wealth of surrounding villages, and amount of imported goods are all strong influences of town prosperity. Tax inefficiency can have a minor affect on tax revenue but it scales with campaign difficulty and is only largely influential if you have a large number of fiefs. Isolated towns are producers and exporters. Towns in the middle of the map are besieged more often and frequented by caravans. Dhirim and Halmar are good examples of this. All of Swadia's cities could be classified in this group except for Praven.
List of factions by total tax revenue:
- Kingdom of Vaegirs
- Sarranid Sultanate
- Kingdom of Swadia
- Kingdomof Nords
- Kingdom of Rhodoks
- Khergit Khanate
The tax revenue of the Khergit Khanate is about half that of the Kingdom of Vaegirs. It seems the Vaegirs have the best overall positioning of any faction economically. Rarely do they ever lose significant portions of land in wars, and Tundra Bandits are some of the scarcest and weakest bandits. Rivacheg is consistently the poorest area in Calradia due to Sea Raiders, but it is a production run-off and great as a player fief. The rest of the kingdom is average in terms of production, but it is safer than the Swadian alternative and still is fairly near the center of the map and sits between three different kingdoms.
The Khergit Khanate does not always fare too well when left to the AI to manage it. While the Vaegirs may tend to be rich, it does not have very much potential beyond that. The Khergit Khanate however, has the potential to have the richest towns in Calradia and recieve more trade than the Vaegirs. Tulga is actually one of the richest towns in the game; it is very safe, and makes cheap spice and salt. Spice can make hundreds of denars in profit when traded right, and the only better place to buy salt is Wercheg. Keeping Halmar and Narra from being taken is essential in making the Khanate successful economically.
If you want more fiefs, joining the Swadians is a good idea. If you would like to grow an empire's borders, the Nords are a good choice of Kingdoms. The Rhodok Kingdom and Sarranid Sultanate are two run-off isolated kingdoms with lower potential, but very good safety. These two seem as if they only ever fight each other and very little progress is ever made, but Sarranids tend to have the upper hand in all expansion.