>To make _good_ deals only available to people who really want to be
>_traders_, whilst still letting other folks do a little trading.
>If I go (real-world) shopping I can get a good deal on many things.
>This is all small quantities, though; if I went to a city I didn't know
>and tried to get a great deal on \pounds 100,000 worth of cars or books
>or food, I'd have no chance - I haven't the experiance or the
>Consider this in 'Olympia' terms. Each city trade could be considered
>to be 'normal' or 'traders only'. 'Traders-only' can only be bought or
>sold by nobles who have a particular skill.
>I'm offering for discussion the idea of a new family of skills: 'Trading'
>The skill is widely taught. Nobles who wish to be professional merchants
>seek out basic instruction in this area and learn the category skill,
>and the 'Locate seller' and 'locate buyer' skills. (Or just have both
>in one, 'Locate Deal').
>On arrival at a new city, our trader ignores the flashy banners and
>shouts of the market traders. He spends a few days practising his skills
>in the back streets, in unmarked warehouses and other places. He then
>can pick and choose from bulk deals or special offers.
>Translation: After using the skill, more trades will be visible (if the
>city has them).
>Another varient would be to have all trades visible, as they are now,
>but some are marked as 'merchant only'. However this would just make
>explorers or warriors study 'trade' on the spot and we'd be back with
>the same problem as we might have now...
>What do people think? This would reward players who really concentrate
>on being traders, protect their income, not restrict inter-trader
>rivalry, and help keep the money supply under control.
It would only be a hindrance if you required NP top study it.
Personally I feel a trader is someone who trades, not someone who has spent
time learning how to get the best price. They are just better traders.
Long trade routes means significant investment in time in getting from a to
b, and not being tied down to any one place. Being a mage or a warlord
usually means being tied down to buildings - towers or castles. I don't see
that there is all that much conflict.