How would you imagine a reworked economy should be like? Fun Discussion.

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Spyware

Regular
This isn't a suggestion but a fun thought experiment. Bannerlord in the base game centers around social ladder climbing and combat. Thus, the whole game caters to the sustaining of those endeavors. As such, currency or denars just comes out of thin air and inflation is more than inevitable, it's required. To add more depth to this would make it complicated and force a rework of all aspects of the game and even drastically changes the meta of the campaign.

If the economy did heavily impact our rudimentary and primitive AI, they might not be able to raise armies from the ground anymore and would easily be curbstomped by a bunch of bandits. Whole kingdoms could easily fall into ruin by the player alone if they find a market exploit and snowballing would be more prevalent as the faction with the least inefficient economy would go on and just take everybody out because everyone is too poor to put up a fight.

But supposed combat and social ladder climbing isn't the main dish and side dish served by this game. Rather, the game by original design is a politics and management simulator where the combat is just an additional feature and so they happen more rarely because it's more of an option and a fun mini-game to get to a goal.

Personally, I think before we rework everything as simple changes to the current system and resource distribution would cause immediate balancing issues, we should first ask the basic questions and principles of what makes an economy an economy.

1. What does the AI value?

Does it really have need for weapons, butter, clay or what not when there's no room for growth or need for it? Why do people want to buy these leatherworks when it is effectively useless and is just used for nothing but the player to resell and pretend people like it? This concept of what is and what isn't valuable needs a complete rework for the machinery of the consumers and the state. Though yes, it is true that price is determined by how much people are willing to pay for it, even if it's completely useless, people would gladly trade away their useless gold rocks for a drink of water in the desert.

So the first thing would be to address a hierarchy of needs and categorize a settlement into a focus based on their current situation. I personally would put these into necessities where food input is the main focus of most settlements as it is the most consistently valued and starving is NO BUENO. Maybe a multiplier for settlement happiness due to available food variety.

In addition to food input, other things need to support a medieval sized and styled society such as fuel like wood and charcoal being the primary form of energy for most people. Though this is actually expensive for small time things, I think for simplicity's sake and without adding a new item(though I think new items are inevitable in a reworked economy), it should be kept as such.

Wood and charcoal as necessities fuel industries and would also be multiplied in their requirements when an industry has more needs for them such as iron works, silver works or wood works and other such businesses. I haven't thought this completely through, but I hope my explanation may give you an idea without adding more items to the game. Rather, we just change the way they function. Industries and or items are required to fuel the next item to the point where it will end as a usable resource or consumed good.

Moving on with industrial goods - items such as clay, tools, leatherworks and other such being available also help fuel jobs and thus prosperity(population). Iron ore alone does not end with iron. You need coal or charcoal, wood for the tools or just tools themselves to get production going. Population should be tied to the availability of these resources to support jobs, the usual reason for population growth in the first place. The availability of these goods would help multiply productivity of certain industries.

Third, the category of luxury goods of being available to the population. These are items like jewelry or silk. These would be the end consumer product in themselves and categorized and of no inherent worth in themselves but fetching a high price and market value. These are the most difficult to tackle as tastes and consumer demand ebbs and flows. While there is reason to consistently gather fuel, food and items that help multiply productivity and therefore have an economy, there is little to think of what jewelry does for a computer-ran AI economy. So, I guess they just give a lot of loyalty cause these goods are consistently available in the kingdom?

Basically, the kingdom is so rich you'd be a fool to betray it. Yeah, simple as fuark.

2. What is Currency?

Currency is the means of exchange everyone agrees on has value. It can be anything so as long as everyone in that community agrees as the standard by which they set their goods on. In the game, people use denars or "gold" for simplicity's sake. Though in the past, different groups minted coins with different values on them due to many differing gold, silver or copper contents.

I think that instead of one universal currency divided into "gold, silver or copper" which is basically just subdivision, there should be multiple currencies, one for each faction and the option for the player to start their own currency when their own kingdom is made.

The currency is usually pegged to something of value and as such would be in limited supply. Most people used gold or control of any other precious metal, but for competitive game design's sake, a modern take on economy would provide the best balance(in my opinion): currency should be pegged to a faction's net value of goods produced divided by their total population.

This is basically GNP and though the numbers would be kinda gay due to the totally artificially contrived numbers, we can just hide it for the player somehow so as not to break immersion and put their currency in relative power parity with others.

I wouldn't see the exact math, but I would see rather would be something like:

FACTION AND CURRENCYPLAYERKINGDOM "Butterbars"Battanian "Stater"
PLAYERKINGDOM112
Battania121

In this way, a certain amount of your currency immediately gets converted when you buy from a different place. In addition, trade would also function like this among the AI.

This does not necessarily mean Battania is overall poorer. The Player Kingdom in the table just has a lot of high producing industry for a considerably smaller population. Battania could just have a much bigger industry, but they have an even bigger population to go along with it, thus devaluing their "currency".

Factions should also adopt currencies of foreigners if their economy is just too much in the ****ter and the player too. This could also be a fun way to stoke players' egos when they make their own currency used by everyone and would be great roleplay lol

Though I haven't thought of how this would affect trade and relations in between factions. Maybe they just really want to access a certain kind of good? I don't know. Maybe currencies can be used for casus belli?

3. Currency Sinks and Consumables.

All these items should be consumed or used and disappear over time from use. Food should be consumed by the population, tools should break down and and 2 wood for charcoal that is then used to smelt iron and other such ores should happen dynamically in the settlements. One of the most obnoxious things I can encounter in games is when gold or the currency is so much it's literally a joke. This is a necessity at times because in the real world, there is a limited amount of currency and their printing and regulation is heavily controlled.

Armies should use up supplies like wood, charcoal, salt, and tools for example as they march on campaign would be necessities for AI lords and the player. No longer food, but items and tools are needed to ensure an army is fighting fit and multiplies their marching speed.

I imagine the first iterations of my thought experiment would have everyone start off immediately poor until over time they can get themselves on their feet via production. Heavy editing and updates would be needed to get the balance right and to make sure that faction is as rich as it is lorewise and not just collapse immediately.

____
Anyway, this is my thought experiment, I hope you enjoy reading it and maybe I inspired you to have thoughts of your own.

Take note, that this is just if Bannerlord would go the route of a state and politics simulator. Because I admit that if we go this route, the freaking game would reduce in combat heavily as building an army and then using it wisely would be more important than the frequent awesome combat we get. Maybe it'll increase the value of combat as a great treat because we worked so hard to actually build and maintain that army that it won't collapse after three days because of bad supplies and logistics.
 
The game starts with only a few functional NPC parties. Looters are the only initial enemies. Nobody is at war.
Recruits and the means to upgrade them are more scarce and depend on food supplies and prosperity, but not the stat as it exists in game.
Looters disrupt villagers, NPC lords must combat them.
Looters may, by defeating villagers be able to make a base and upgrade into to bandits, bandits may further occupy villages or ambush caravans and challenge npc parties, as they are not nearly as strong early game. NPCs allowing looters to make hideouts and increase in power is a big no no.
Raising up recruits requires going to a town, castle or camp and using supplies made from material from the local villages (or bought by town or NPC) or can be obtained from looting the defeated or raiding other villages or caravans. Different supplies yield different upgrade kits so control over certain supplies can be a big advantage. NPC may be stuck using inferior equipped troops if some supplies are disrupted. Getting the best materials for the desired upgrades is art for the player and very rewarding.
Overtime the NPC factions have more functional parties and begin to skirmish with thier neighbors over neutral territories where they want to build and control addition supply villages.
The player s actions are very important and impactful and helping or hurting a faction can greatly shape how the world goes.

This is rough, but the core of my desire for a game likes this is THE AI/NPC MUST DO THINGS to EARN troops and function, they can't just exist and fight, we have custom battle for that.
 

Spyware

Regular
This is rough, but the core of my desire for a game likes this is THE AI/NPC MUST DO THINGS to EARN troops and function, they can't just exist and fight, we have custom battle for that.
lol yeah but you gotta admit the AI for video games regarding these is pretty stupid. Since they're artificially contrived, a real thinking human being is gonna steamroll them soon as they find a pattern or logic they can outsmart. The best we can hope for is dream.
 
lol yeah but you gotta admit the AI for video games regarding these is pretty stupid. Since they're artificially contrived, a real thinking human being is gonna steamroll them soon as they find a pattern or logic they can outsmart. The best we can hope for is dream.
If I want to not be able to find a way to steamroll the AI I'll play chess. For anything else, I want it to be fun, engaging and make me feel I used some creativity and player agency to win.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
Though I haven't thought of how this would affect trade and relations in between factions. Maybe they just really want to access a certain kind of good? I don't know. Maybe currencies can be used for casus belli?
Trade ahould be the big driver in the economy, otherwise things are going to become extremely unhinged. Goods produced have to be consumed at some point or else the whole thing falls apart. Unreasonable rates of consumption would be the only solution if there isn't a huge amount of trade going on, like the town that produces half the silk in Calradia also somehow consuming it in order to maintain the relationship between currency and production.

Realistically, I could see forging and counterfeiting currency being a casus belli however simply using another currency would be a bit odd. I'm not saying it would never happen but it would be a weird war, literally "Shut up and take my money!"
The currency is usually pegged to something of value and as such would be in limited supply. Most people used gold or control of any other precious metal, but for competitive game design's sake, a modern take on economy would provide the best balance(in my opinion): currency should be pegged to a faction's net value of goods produced divided by their total population.

This is basically GNP and though the numbers would be kinda gay due to the totally artificially contrived numbers, we can just hide it for the player somehow so as not to break immersion and put their currency in relative power parity with others.
Pegging to a metric derived so strongly to population is going to be counterintuitive for players. Strong currency is definitely going to be seen as a good thing but it will be difficult to top owning a handful of very productive villages for low pop with great production. But that's a bit off because tiny farming communes didn't have strong currency -- they generally had NO currency. In-game, conquering is going to immediately tank your currency's strength because you're adding population without (presumably) the production to match. Now, sure, you can jiggle the formula to make it less counterintuitive (not that currency valuation is intuitive for anyone) but ultimately, grafting modern economic elements onto a depiction of a feudal society is going tto result in some weirdness.
 

Spyware

Regular
Trade ahould be the big driver in the economy, otherwise things are going to become extremely unhinged. Goods produced have to be consumed at some point or else the whole thing falls apart. Unreasonable rates of consumption would be the only solution if there isn't a huge amount of trade going on, like the town that produces half the silk in Calradia also somehow consuming it in order to maintain the relationship between currency and production.
In which case, the basics of economics come into play. If there's too much supply and too little demand, the goods decrease in overall value to encourage consumption.

Pegging to a metric derived so strongly to population is going to be counterintuitive for players. Strong currency is definitely going to be seen as a good thing but it will be difficult to top owning a handful of very productive villages for low pop with great production. But that's a bit off because tiny farming communes didn't have strong currency -- they generally had NO currency. In-game, conquering is going to immediately tank your currency's strength because you're adding population without (presumably) the production to match. Now, sure, you can jiggle the formula to make it less counterintuitive (not that currency valuation is intuitive for anyone) but ultimately, grafting modern economic elements onto a depiction of a feudal society is going tto result in some weirdness.
Well that's why the decision to go to war should not be taken lightly. War is expensive and war without plunder or reparations(which is basically the tribute system in the game) is unthinkable. This is assuming Bannerlord went into the direction of statesmanship rather than being a warlord.

The game is already weird anyway, hell the character designs alone go into the uncanny valley for some of my friends who are put off by how the NPCs look.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
In which case, the basics of economics come into play. If there's too much supply and too little demand, the goods decrease in overall value to encourage consumption.
Sure. But there still needs to be trade in order to have it ultimately make sense. Like, no matter how cheap bread gets, I'm not buying twenty loafs when I go shopping.
Well that's why the decision to go to war should not be taken lightly. War is expensive and war without plunder or reparations(which is basically the tribute system in the game) is unthinkable. This is assuming Bannerlord went into the direction of statesmanship rather than being a warlord.
I definitely agree that war should be potentially ruinuous but in terms of both history and gameplay, victors expected and often were rewarded economically. It was difficulty-to-impossible to develop a given plot of land enough to be worth more than simply taking more land. So the game should reflect the risk-reward calculation war, but not punish it.

Tying currency value to population is bound to be counterintuitive and cause players to start to interrogate the assumptions behind it.
The game is already weird anyway, hell the character designs alone go into the uncanny valley for some of my friends who are put off by how the NPCs look.
At this point, NPCs looking silly is basically M&B's brand.

(At least I hope it is, because the alternative is a billion and one dudes asking when they can marry Rhaegaea.)
 

Spyware

Regular
Sure. But there still needs to be trade in order to have it ultimately make sense. Like, no matter how cheap bread gets, I'm not buying twenty loafs when I go shopping.
I don't recall saying that there won't be trade. I have not revoked the idea of caravans and other NPCs who will still do their own thing.

I definitely agree that war should be potentially ruinuous but in terms of both history and gameplay, victors expected and often were rewarded economically. It was difficulty-to-impossible to develop a given plot of land enough to be worth more than simply taking more land. So the game should reflect the risk-reward calculation war, but not punish it.
I think that's what tributes and reparations are for. The enemy pays you while you're trying to occupy and rebuilding them back to their full potential. Don't forget, now that these people are under your command - they also pay you their taxes now.

A devalued currency isn't necessarily a bad thing anyway. Currency just is. The United States and People's Republic of China for example are "lower" in value compared to the Euro or the Pound-Sterling and let's not forget the Japanese Yen and the South Korean Won, whose industries rely on export so they extremely devalue their currency so it becomes easier for foreigners to trade and buy their stuff. It's the actual health of your country's economy that matters regardless.

Tying currency value to population is bound to be counterintuitive and cause players to start to interrogate the assumptions behind it.
Because the alternative is to create a limited and or unlimited and undynamic supply of a "gold standard" to peg their currencies to. If this was in the game, it would be a cheap exploit to just hoard the gold and make them your *****es. Using productivity as the basis of an economy or currency not only provides multiple potential emergent economic powerhouses, but also makes state-building and caring about your kingdom actually important.

Of course, remember I am speaking of a timeline where Bannerlord went into the path of Politics and Nation-building simulator but trying to maintain much of the current designs implemented for combat and such.
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
I don't recall saying that there won't be trade. I have not revoked the idea of caravans and other NPCs who will still do their own thing.
You said you were unsure of the relationship trade would play, didn't you?
I think that's what tributes and reparations are for. The enemy pays you while you're trying to occupy and rebuilding them back to their full potential. Don't forget, now that these people are under your command - they also pay you their taxes now.

A devalued currency isn't necessarily a bad thing anyway. Currency just is. The United States and People's Republic of China for example are "lower" in value compared to the Euro or the Pound-Sterling and let's not forget the Japanese Yen and the South Korean Won, whose industries rely on export so they extremely devalue their currency so it becomes easier for foreigners to trade and buy their stuff. It's the actual health of your country's economy that matters regardless.
Players won't necessarily know that though, unless the game takes pains to teach them through mechanics that low-value currency can be a net benefit. It isn't intuitive. Players aren't (usually) stupid but they do have to be given the opportunity to learn, especially presented a lesson that isn't easy to understand. Conquering land making your kingdom weaker would be pretty much groundbreaking as far game mechanics go but I applaud anything that gets close to the historically accurate, fiscally ruinous nature of war.

But it is kinda weird in to present in medieval context because those were economies (at least in Europe) that were only partially monetized and just as likely to run on bartered trade and social obligation as much as coins, while conquest was (generally) directly profitable.
Because the alternative is to create a limited and or unlimited and undynamic supply of a "gold standard" to peg their currencies to. If this was in the game, it would be a cheap exploit to just hoard the gold and make them your *****es. Using productivity as the basis of an economy or currency not only provides multiple potential emergent economic powerhouses, but also makes state-building and caring about your kingdom actually important.

Of course, remember I am speaking of a timeline where Bannerlord went into the path of Politics and Nation-building simulator but trying to maintain much of the current designs implemented for combat and such.
I mean, you could just peg it to their trustworthiness and demonstrated ability to pay debts.
 

Spyware

Regular
You said you were unsure of the relationship trade would play, didn't you?
By that I mean I haven't really gone in depth. I just imagine how a rework would be according to me. Also, balances. Lots and lots of balancing probably needed.

Players won't necessarily know that though, unless the game takes pains to teach them through mechanics that low-value currency can be a net benefit. It isn't intuitive.

Lots of Bannerlord isn't intuitive in itself and deliberately misleading such as Prosperity =/= how good the place is it just basically means Population. I ran on making prosperity for a long time before I realized all I was doing was starving the damn place.

Players aren't (usually) stupid but they do have to be given the opportunity to learn, especially presented a lesson that isn't easy to understand. Conquering land making your kingdom weaker would be pretty much groundbreaking as far game mechanics go but I applaud anything that gets close to the historically accurate, fiscally ruinous nature of war.

Would help make Bannerlord more popular by saying it teaches people a little bit about basic economics, don't you think?

But it is kinda weird in to present in medieval context because those were economies (at least in Europe) that were only partially monetized and just as likely to run on bartered trade and social obligation as much as coins, while conquest was (generally) directly profitable.

I mean, you could just peg it to their trustworthiness and demonstrated ability to pay debts.

The current political system in itself is weird and totally ahistorical except for a few cultures like the Battanians. Personally, I think my approach gives the game more depth but keeps suspension of disbelief more so than... A billion freaking denars coming out of thin air. It is still a game after all. It still has to be fun and engaging. Imagine actually pouring over accounting documents while playing a freaking game lol. What weirdo would find that fun? Paradoxfans?
 
Currency is the means of exchange everyone agrees on has value. It can be anything so as long as everyone in that community agrees as the standard by which they set their goods on.

Actually this is one thing a lot of these kinds of games get wrong, and it is the underlying reason why they can never balance economies properly. Currency isn't a natural grassroots agreement, it's literally forced on people by governments. Anthropologists have found no good examples of currency without a state, and even with a state, most ordinary people didn't use the currency that often.

Premodern, precolonial economies are based on population and land. These are the hard limits to how much a state can achieve. Currency and taxation can be used to force subsistence farmers to farm more intensively or become more efficient, but the limitation is still in the land itself, and the people living there.

Thus I don't actually mind currency staying the same value throughout the game, but I do think it's silly that you can pay for almost anything with money, like recruits or even castles. It devalues the whole clan system they're trying to flesh out. There is no reason to interact with any of the other mechanics because all you need is a pile of coins and you can do anything you want, even when the very states those coins are minted by are in disarray, bankrupted, or outright destroyed.



The way I would design the economy in this game is to de-emphasise currency to just personal purchases. Instead, you would recruit soldiers for free at any fiefs you own, but while you have them they wouldn't be working the fields. You would build new buildings by ordering serfs to build them as part of their obligation to you, but unless you have inordinate amounts of personal wealth you wouldn't be able to force them to do it for very long each year. And food would mostly stay in villages unless you impose a food tax on them, or try to seize their land, or have more serfs instead of freemen etc.

Basically as the lord you are a freeloader on a society that could easily exist without you. The way to get more troops or build things more quickly would be to somehow pressure villagers and townspeople into going above and beyond their social obligations to you. This way the game is more about interacting with characters and groups of people, rather than just being a money conveyor belt.
 
even when the very states those coins are minted by are in disarray, bankrupted, or outright destroyed.
Certainly an issue with paper money (promissory notes). However, ancient coins with sufficient silver or gold content retained some intrinsic value and were commonly traded (possibly discounted) in other countries.

In the absence of coin some Roman troops were paid with salt (white gold) because it also retained an intrinsic tradable value.

Being so valuable, soldiers in the Roman army were sometimes paid with salt instead of money. Their monthly allowance was called "salarium" ("sal" being the Latin word for salt). This Latin root can be recognized in the French word "salaire" — and it eventually made it into the English language as the word "salary."

From time to time, you may have heard someone say that someone or something is “worth its salt." This common idiom means that someone or something deserves respect and is worth its cost or has value. The phrase originated with the ancient Romans, who valued salt highly
 
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Spyware

Regular
Actually this is one thing a lot of these kinds of games get wrong, and it is the underlying reason why they can never balance economies properly. Currency isn't a natural grassroots agreement, it's literally forced on people by governments. Anthropologists have found no good examples of currency without a state, and even with a state, most ordinary people didn't use the currency that often.

Naturally Gold, Silver and other basic precious metals. All prized, valued and eventually adopted. Regardless of who initiated it, it became currency as soon as they all adopted it and decided to work with it. Some currencies can be forced but are worthless such as Zimbabwean Dollar, the the Weimar Papiermark. All forced by their governments but abandoned by the people when they literally were worthless.
 
Naturally Gold, Silver and other basic precious metals. All prized, valued and eventually adopted. Regardless of who initiated it, it became currency as soon as they all adopted it and decided to work with it.
However, ancient coins with sufficient silver or gold content retained some intrinsic value and were commonly traded (possibly discounted) in other countries.


Gold itself has almost no intrinsic value for ordinary villagers because it's useless for normal transactions. Can you imagine trying to pay for a beer with gold coins? Or even bronze?


All archaeological evidence suggests that the advent of coinage is the result of large scale, long distance markets, or the markets that form around armies. It has to be maintained with cash taxation otherwise there is no incentive to use it.
To modern people in developed capitalist countries it can often seem like money has some metaphysical use-value that exists outside of the state or society, but that's because we've been essentially forced to use it for so long that our society and culture has formed around it, and this ends up impacting how video games depict money, but it wasn't really the case prior to the 1500s.

Think about it, it really doesn't make any sense that a state would mint coins, dole them out, and then periodically demand a fraction of them back if it was just for the intrinsic value of the gold. The point of monetary taxes is to force people to use the currency you've just invented, and control the amount that people work. This is why taxes caused riots in premodernity. When most people are subsistence farmers who typically don't interact with markets much, having to pay a set amount every year (in a currency you can only obtain via markets), is an act of indirect violence, and a more effective form of coercion than just taking taxes in kind or in labour (which is how most peasantry was exploited in medieval europe).

This can often seem a bit counter-intuitive, for example the chapter I linked mentions how in early medieval europe everything had a set monetary value, from crimes to body parts, but these were abstract guides used to resolve disputes when there was no other alternative, and in these cases actual money rarely came into the equation. For the most part (and anyone who has lived in a village will have experienced this to some extent), transactions in premodernity were tied up in social bonds and cultural norms. Straight barter was practically unheard of, most exchange was a back-and-forth of informal gifting and uneven debts, and the values used in disputes were not referenced by this kind of socio-cultural exchange.

I rambled a bit there but my point is that no game really depicts this kind of thing. Bannerlord exists in a world that is more capitalist than modernity, let alone the period it's supposed to depict, and it makes money the centre of everything. I think this is the source of most of the problems in the campaign, and if they made it more realistic in this regard it would actually be more fun to play.
 
What I think about how the economy needs to be rebuilt is written in the first two threads (but also the third indirectly) of this link.
ECONOMY , LOGISTICS and WARFARE SUGGESTION LIST

I believe it must be based on these factors:
1) the demand must be proportional to the needs (therefore a system of "needs" of the population is necessary).
the needs are: food, clothing, pot and comfort.
2) supply WANTS to be proportional to demand but to BE IT, the production system must allow it.
3) the production system consists of:
- raw material
- workers (the population)
- tools (both work and "comfort")
- food and drink (daily target to consume and seasonal to store)
- clothes
- money (the means to mediate exchanges and to pay daily taxes)
- storage warehouses (sabotable infrastructures)

the population has daily needs (linked to the energy that they must recover by eating food and drinking) and seasonal needs that they want to satisfy, so they use the raw material to produce and sell, or produce and store.
He also has duties that he has to fulfill (pay taxes).
It also produces the tools that increase production at a lower time cost and therefore make them meet their needs first.
The more they meet their needs, the more social stability there is.
The rest you can read in the threads.

Obviously, among the "tools produced" there are also weapons, armor, ammunition, etc. ..
Regarding these supplies, see the threads or section on maintaining armies and the one on supply lines.
 
Gold itself has almost no intrinsic value for ordinary villagers because it's useless for normal transactions. Can you imagine trying to pay for a beer with gold coins? Or even bronze?


All archaeological evidence suggests that the advent of coinage is the result of large scale, long distance markets, or the markets that form around armies. It has to be maintained with cash taxation otherwise there is no incentive to use it.
To modern people in developed capitalist countries it can often seem like money has some metaphysical use-value that exists outside of the state or society, but that's because we've been essentially forced to use it for so long that our society and culture has formed around it, and this ends up impacting how video games depict money, but it wasn't really the case prior to the 1500s.

Think about it, it really doesn't make any sense that a state would mint coins, dole them out, and then periodically demand a fraction of them back if it was just for the intrinsic value of the gold. The point of monetary taxes is to force people to use the currency you've just invented, and control the amount that people work. This is why taxes caused riots in premodernity. When most people are subsistence farmers who typically don't interact with markets much, having to pay a set amount every year (in a currency you can only obtain via markets), is an act of indirect violence, and a more effective form of coercion than just taking taxes in kind or in labour (which is how most peasantry was exploited in medieval europe).

This can often seem a bit counter-intuitive, for example the chapter I linked mentions how in early medieval europe everything had a set monetary value, from crimes to body parts, but these were abstract guides used to resolve disputes when there was no other alternative, and in these cases actual money rarely came into the equation. For the most part (and anyone who has lived in a village will have experienced this to some extent), transactions in premodernity were tied up in social bonds and cultural norms. Straight barter was practically unheard of, most exchange was a back-and-forth of informal gifting and uneven debts, and the values used in disputes were not referenced by this kind of socio-cultural exchange.

I rambled a bit there but my point is that no game really depicts this kind of thing. Bannerlord exists in a world that is more capitalist than modernity, let alone the period it's supposed to depict, and it makes money the centre of everything. I think this is the source of most of the problems in the campaign, and if they made it more realistic in this regard it would actually be more fun to play.
Barter existed, but coinage also circulated through the hands of peasants in medieval villages.

Peasants regarded the handing over of a coin as a way of signalling an obligation, or the membership of a community, like the tithing penny paid to the lord of the manor to acknowledge his jurisdiction, or the penny offered by everyone, including servants, to the church at the principal feasts, or the penny that every parishioner contributed to the church tithes, or the penny that even the poor paid to the vill's tax when (after 1334) it was administered by the villagers.
 
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