Maple Leaf
Conscript
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2016 2:27 pm

Playing as a mercantilist

Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:59 pm

I am playing a GC as France and trying to provide as much as possible of the three domestic goods (food, common and luxury) to my loyal French subjects. I notice that as I provide more food (for example) the amount that the people can potentially consume keeps going up! Is there a way to fully satisfy domestic demands of consumer goods?

Also, is it possible to build a strong economy focusing on the domestic market like this?
Thanks for any advice. 7 Years Old and this game is still the best strategy game on the market!

Respenus
Posts: 328
Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2008 10:19 am

Re: Playing as a mercantilist

Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:02 pm

I cannot speak for France, but I have been playing Italy in a multiplayer setting and I am doing quite well with a smart mixture between a mercantilist and an export-oriented economy. It just means playing to your country's strengths. Italy and France have a lot of food resources, including some for common goods (like wine) that you can develop more strongly than other countries. You should also get some national modifiers that help you along (Germany and Austria for example have bonus producing industrial goods, like manufactured goods, machined items, chemicals, etc.).

While not as productive as in other countries, I have focused on luxury and textile goods, which are always in demand abroad and bring in a pretty penny, together with food, which is not a high value added good (until you get fertilisers), but when sold on mass provide a solid backdrop to develop your industry (which is how I developed Italy).

As for your question if you ever get to fully satisfy your nation's demand for goods, it all depends on the technologies that increase it and how much you focus on specific items. Do not forget that you can adjust consumption in the F4 screen. For goods that you are lacking in, decrease it to 5%, find sellers abroad and set up commercial agreements in Latin America and Asia that allow you to build farms or mines (just be certain that you have relations at at least 25, otherwise they might take your buildings away from you). Plus, as a colonial power, you can quickly set up colonies that fulfil your needs. The Golden Coast can provide you with much needed gold and Arab countries with opium, coffee, gems and oil.

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loki100
AGEod Guard of Honor
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Re: Playing as a mercantilist

Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:14 pm

Think there is a critical difference between a vs AI game and MP.

In a vs AI game, if the player opts for mercantalism you will run into all sorts of problems. You creating and forcing international trade helps the AI - and really apart from the US, UK and Russia all the powers need the AI to have strong economies. A key mindset is that today's trading partner is tomorrow's enemy and vice versa.

In my old Manufacturing Italy AAR I did a chart comparing build to imports. As the old index is now broken I can't easily find it back but in general its more efficient to import than to produce. There is no harm in importing to export either.

The reason lies in the various feedback models - trade yields all sorts of useful taxes and its easier to balance costs/revenue.

The only problem with the PoN economic model is it doesn't really model domestic unemployment, so if you have under-employed population this has no impact unless you are also not supplying them the goods they need. This is a bit unintuitive but it avoids creating yet another level of detail. But this removes one motivation towards 19C mercantalist/protectionist economic policies.

edit: I'd fully agree with grabbing the region around the Horn of Africa etc, all that coffee, gems and opium does wonders for domestic contentment. Don't grab Eritrea as a later game event will give that to Italy in any case, but Yemen and the modern Gulf States are well worth grabbing - even at the cost of negative prestige,

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