Questions tagged [trade]

For questions involving the economic exchange of goods or services.

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Litmus test for discerning worthy counterparty of medieval trade

Medieval Europe tends to be regarded as an example of significant fragmented sovereignty. That is to say multiple entities would stake claim to the same land and/or inhabitants. Of course there were ...
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16 votes
14 answers
4k views

How to Supply a City on top of a Vertical Cliff?

In my fantasy series, there’s this city called Pharcos situated on top of nearly vertical 3,500ish foot high sandstone cliffs above the river it uses for water. This river, called the Clazelis, along ...
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2 votes
3 answers
109 views

What do I need to do to define resources and economic exchanges? [closed]

How to define the resources of each country/state and the trade route (road)? I would like to define: the resources of each country/state in my world; the trade of goods (economic exchanges) between ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
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What alternative monetary unit can serve as the basis of a reserve currency while preventing a long term debt cycle?

The Bretton-Woods system established the rules for commercial and financial relations among the United States and its allies, and established the U.S. dollar as the world's reserve currency. The ...
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10 votes
6 answers
994 views

How to build roads in a windy desert

The world is a desert, and it's awfully windy. The wind is as unpredictable as possible with an average speed around 150km/h. It's usual to see wind reaching 300km/h once every three days. The human ...
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16 votes
9 answers
4k views

How can I justify an Iron monopoly?

In my world, only 2 cultures (who share a common ancestor, but are rivals) regularly use Iron, which they have for hundreds of years now, the rest of the many, many cultures have naught but bronze, ...
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-3 votes
3 answers
99 views

A Unified, Global Bronze Age, How It Would Affect America [closed]

Here are the points of departure to this scenario: China, not Southwestern Asia, began the Bronze Age in 3300 BCE Either China or the nearby steppes of Central Asia, not Eastern Europe, was the ...
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25 votes
10 answers
7k views

How would you build a harbor in a world with *intense* tides?

Long story short, my world is set on a habitable moon of a gas giant, and as a result has some very intense tides (about 5x those of Earth, averaging a few dozen foot difference between high and low ...
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2 votes
1 answer
125 views

How fast might technical knowledge & culture spread in the pre-colonial Americas?

Unbeknownst to the majority of the continent, there is an alien invasion in progress. Finger-sized and not particularly threatening, they've been confined to the coasts of North America by the unique ...
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4 votes
3 answers
1k views

How do submariners contribute to the surface-world?

If there are people living deep underwater swishing around in nice submarines, how will they provide value to normie landlubbers? http://theoildrum.com/node/4558 all but rules out the possibility they ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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How far could material cableways stretch if carbon nanotubes were used?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Material_ropeway is an elegant technology, popular around the 18th century, that transports bulky cargo along highly-trafficked routes with minimal energy requirements. ...
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3 votes
3 answers
216 views

Are vactrains a good choice for cargo?

It seems like all the discussion of vactrains is about transporting people. But what about a smaller-diameter vactrain that could shuttle cargo around the world at thousands of mph? You could have a ...
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  • 1,561
2 votes
3 answers
96 views

Maxed out charisma

The Feridians, marine fauna, kings of the ocean and for centuries unmatched with no predators and capable of eating and surviving on any source of food, even plankton. This thing evolved perfectly to ...
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2 votes
2 answers
135 views

What would two planets connected by traversable wormholes trade that is worth the travel risks?

I've posted here before about the realism of my wormholes and such, but I feel this question better fits the forums context of how it wants questions. I have multiple wormholes that are within the ...
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2 votes
6 answers
804 views

How would a world with limited access to modern technology work?

The setting is a semi-modern fantasy world with pockets of population separated by huge expanses of wild land where monsters and other predatory creatures live, keeping civilization from expanding too ...
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2 votes
2 answers
333 views

What makes for a good/bad port city?

What are the factors that would determine whether a city on the coast will become a bustling metropolis or whether it will always remain a modest fisher's village?
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8 votes
6 answers
2k views

Reasons for insanely huge precious metal deposits?

In my book series, there is this extremely rich Earthlike planet called Aurea whose claim to fame is supplying the vast majority of the galaxy’s precious metals (gold and silver for the purposes of ...
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-5 votes
2 answers
142 views

How do I fix the unit of money/coins? [closed]

Ok so here's the thing, how is the the value of a coin and the value of items you buy with it decided? After production is enough to fill the needs of the population, item to item trade comes to an ...
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2 votes
2 answers
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Is there a way to cross my volcanic ocean?

In my world there is an ocean that separates the two main continents. The problem is that I think it's impossible to navigate these waters as there are active volcanoes on the bottom of the ocean that ...
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0 votes
11 answers
3k views

Despite proliferation of graphene, why is gold still so expensive in the future?

Right now I can think of 3 important factors determining the trading value of gold and why is it so expensive: Factor 1 is longevity; this element rarely if ever reacts with anything, particularly ...
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5 votes
3 answers
284 views

Why is monster index still going strong?

An index is a measure of how a stock market is performing. Even the monsters know how to build up their portfolio. When a kill is secured -- say a human being -- or a carcass is recovered, they are ...
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5 votes
7 answers
884 views

Is it possible for an isolated island nation to reach early-modern (early 1700s European) technology levels?

Background: I am currently writing my first fantasy novel and the nation/continent on which my story takes place is an island roughly the size of New Zealand. It consists of two nations who split off ...
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3 votes
3 answers
176 views

Assuming that the environment of Earth and Mars are similar, is there possible trading between Earth and Mars in current technology?

Let's assume that Mars has an atmosphere, oceans, plants, and animals, even there is some native civilization like John Carter. Is there any possible trading between Earth and Mars? I noticed that ...
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  • 311
3 votes
6 answers
649 views

What basic goods do I need to make a functioning High-Fantasy trade system

This is my first time ever posting. Please let me know If I've done anything wrong and I'll do my best to correct it. This is my first time attempting to create a functional world in D&D5e and I'm ...
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6 votes
3 answers
425 views

Is the composition of the major asteroid belt bodies different enough to make trade between colonies worthwhile?

For my question I'm assuming that we're talking about colonies on the very biggest bodies that are 100s of kms in size. I'm assuming that by this point humans have become cyborgified/roboticized ...
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  • 914
3 votes
5 answers
212 views

How can I build an inter-dimentional transportation system between pocket realms?

The world is broken down into 5 continents: North America, South America, Eurasia, Africa, and Austrailiartica. These landmasses exist in separate dimensions called realms, and are separated from each ...
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  • 38k
9 votes
5 answers
2k views

How can I reinstitute the gold standard in the current global economy?

The gold standard is a monetary system where a country's currency or paper money has a value directly linked to gold. The U.S.A (United States of Amestris) operated on this standard, allowing the ...
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  • 38k
36 votes
13 answers
9k views

What would America lack if cut off from World trade for years?

North and South America totally cut off from world trade for years in modern times. No intercontinental except between the two. Would there be any current technology that couldn't be made due to lack ...
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  • 357
1 vote
1 answer
137 views

How does an empire rise, work and fall [closed]

So let’s say that an empire is rising. How does that work? How do the people form an empire? They would need to have some land, a leader, and some natural resources to trade? So now the empire has ...
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51 votes
30 answers
10k views

Despite slain monsters continually yielding gold coins, why does gold's trading value seem to remain constant over the years?

Set in fantasy medieval times, monsters can be seen loitering around the kingdom. People discovered that the slain carcasses of these monsters contain a certain quantity of gold coins. The rest is ...
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7 votes
5 answers
452 views

How to perform important transactions over vast distances?

I asked a similar question on the History Stack Exchange, but it was suggested I might get better feedback here. How can you guarantee atomicity of a transaction in a high-latency system? High-latency ...
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26 votes
28 answers
5k views

What would keep traders away from a specific area of the ocean?

This is a WIP map of a continent in my world: The small portion of land you can see in the topmost area is another continent, to the north of which the sea is almost always frozen and thus almost ...
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  • 4,617
26 votes
20 answers
8k views

Why would an advanced civilization even want slaves?

In a world where people have advanced robotics and A.I. to the point that most people can just have a machine do things for them, is there any reason for slaves to be used also? Obviously nobody needs ...
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-4 votes
2 answers
117 views

Most important trading resources for the US [closed]

After Bob brought the American flag from the moon into his possession and convinced the majority of the American people that it is true, President Prumptin is not very pleased of this idea. While he ...
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5 votes
4 answers
236 views

What kind of tradable resources would come from the ocean in a Renaissance era culture that would be different from our own society?

Ocean sourced Trade goods in a Renaissance era Earth I am in the process of writing a fantasy book that is set in a post-apocalyptic late medieval/renaissance era society. This is on Earth, about 1300-...
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13 votes
4 answers
1k views

How to teach the Mesoamericans seafaring?

I want to have a powerful Mesoamerican civilisation by the 1100s; one that decides to sail east and discover Europe. Earlier versions of the story had them contacted by Zheng He in the 1400s, but I ...
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5 votes
5 answers
219 views

Can a city develop without exterior trading?

I’m exploring different scenarios for a future D&D campaign. I want to know if it’s possible, for a growing settlement, to develop without trading with its neighbors. Let’s assume that they can ...
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9 votes
3 answers
660 views

"African" states alliance?

To start this off I will dispel preconceptions: Africa had great empires and was not technologically inferior to Europe before the invention of guns. They had quilted armor (the equivalent of ...
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15 votes
7 answers
3k views

Is a privately owned nomadic trading fleet economically viable?

A popular trope with some basis in history is the "travelling merchant", who visits remote villages carrying merchandise both common and rare, and many stories from strange lands. I've got a scenario ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
115 views

What valuable resources or features could a city state have to keep themselves independent and a dominant local power? [closed]

Trying to build a coastal region of feudal/renaissance city states surrounded by small feudal kingdoms. Looking for resources that are valuable beyond their access to sea, its bounty and the trade ...
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  • 69
6 votes
8 answers
379 views

Why is there a cap on magical currency despite unlimited magic power?

Set in the modern day, only a small portion of the population is aware of magic and some of them has unlocked their innate magic potential at a young age. There is a governing body that ensure fair ...
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2 votes
6 answers
151 views

What environmental conditions would create compounds not found on earth?

My world is spread across thousands of planets in thousands of star systems, with a sort of United Nations (of Planets) acting as intermediary to ensure peace and prosperity between the planets. Each ...
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38 votes
8 answers
9k views

How could pirates reasonably transport dinosaurs in captivity, some of them enormous, across oceans?

In my novel, there is money to made in the capturing and selling of 'exotic' animals from a distant, jungle-covered continent, though for various reasons (notably that it is illegal under Roman rule) ...
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  • 521
3 votes
0 answers
368 views

BCS: Chola Empire colonizes Australia? [closed]

So, here's the premise- in the mid 11th century, a Vellalar prince, looking to gain influence and power in the Imperial Chola court, funds and organizes a small colonial expedition to search for new ...
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1 vote
1 answer
122 views

What if Modern Furniture was Brought to the Renaissance? [closed]

A protagonist equipped with unstable time traveling powers is shopping at their local furniture store when they realize their powers will knock them back to the Renaissance period. They only have a ...
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  • 3,252
1 vote
3 answers
220 views

Introducing currency in a barter trade society

I am writing a book where I have a main character who comes to a young civilization. The young society only works through barter trade, and he wants to introduce a form of currency, such as money. ...
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  • 145
5 votes
4 answers
614 views

Is My Historical World Domination Reasonable?

This can be considered a sister question to this question. The Beginning Outside of Ser, the world was a chaotic and dangerous place. Ser was the only neutral country in a world filled with violence ...
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  • 6,112
16 votes
11 answers
7k views

Is a world with one country feeding everyone possible?

I imagine a world with the size of Europe and the Middle-East. In this world, with lands and seas that are comparable to Europe and the Middle East for its geography, farming is not developed. In fact,...
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4 votes
5 answers
293 views

What is the cheapest way to move large amounts of trade goods to orbit?

Given a world with similar size and atmospheric composition to Earth that has a commodity export, be it grain or oil etc, that has trade with other planets, what would be best way to orbit massive ...
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  • 2,210
9 votes
11 answers
2k views

How to market an anarchic city as a tourism spot to people living in civilized areas?

So, in my Post-Apocalyptic world, there’s a city down in South Nevada known as Vegas. Unlike the rest of the majority of North America, Vegas was not hit by nuclear warheads in its near vicinity. But, ...
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