Independent economic sustainability in early-mid game.

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Bratok

Recruit
First of all, I've been a huge fan of the series since M&B
It seems that BL has the same economy issues that WB had, only these issues got even worse.

Since WB I prefer a stable sandbox gameplay. I like to stay independent as longer as possible, without becoming a vassal or a mercenary to a kingdom (I didn't want them to become hostile as well). I also did not want to settle down and invest into workshops or trade.
I just completed quests and fought bandits/deserters while getting stronger and raising a small but top tier army. Eventually my army reached the point (70-100 top tier soldiers) when I could no longer financially support it with free activities anymore. Food and wages cost too much, and I had to either mod the game (increase tournament bets, quest rewards etc.) or get involved into the above mentioned activities that I tried to avoid before.

The point is BL is even worse than WB in that regard. With BL's inferior loot (painfully terrible), inflated prices (hyperinfalted with indispensable RBM mod), and even worse tournament system (and I thought it was impossible!), I am constantly struggling for money even in early-mid game. With a company of 70+ high tier men (mostly Imperials and some Sturgians) my daily wage is roughly 700 denars, and I don't even have the most expensive troops, like heavy cavalry or noblemen.

With pathetic quest rewards and the sheer amount of time-consuming empty travelling/bandit chases, I burn through money stocks at an immense speed. It is not even funny anymore, every day is a constant struggle with inevitable bankruptcy.

I even disgraced myself with an attempt to exploit smithing, but levelling the skill takes so much time (even with infinite stamina mod), and all I do is running between hardwood/iron ore villages, buying raw materials, while still paying wages and feeding troops. I am currently on skill level 100 and crafted weapons are not profitable at all (I know that price depends only on damage output). I get about 200 gold for a normal two-handed sword (no crafting penalties) and javelin parts are still locked. Its hardly enough to break even. And the gameplay becomes even more tedious anyway.

So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?
 

Apocal

Grandmaster Knight
So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?
Go around beating up unhired minor faction mercenaries. It doesn't really damage relations, especially if you release them after battle.
 
First of all, I've been a huge fan of the series since M&B
It seems that BL has the same economy issues that WB had, only these issues got even worse.

Since WB I prefer a stable sandbox gameplay. I like to stay independent as longer as possible, without becoming a vassal or a mercenary to a kingdom (I didn't want them to become hostile as well). I also did not want to settle down and invest into workshops or trade.
I just completed quests and fought bandits/deserters while getting stronger and raising a small but top tier army. Eventually my army reached the point (70-100 top tier soldiers) when I could no longer financially support it with free activities anymore. Food and wages cost too much, and I had to either mod the game (increase tournament bets, quest rewards etc.) or get involved into the above mentioned activities that I tried to avoid before.

The point is BL is even worse than WB in that regard. With BL's inferior loot (painfully terrible), inflated prices (hyperinfalted with indispensable RBM mod), and even worse tournament system (and I thought it was impossible!), I am constantly struggling for money even in early-mid game. With a company of 70+ high tier men (mostly Imperials and some Sturgians) my daily wage is roughly 700 denars, and I don't even have the most expensive troops, like heavy cavalry or noblemen.

With pathetic quest rewards and the sheer amount of time-consuming empty travelling/bandit chases, I burn through money stocks at an immense speed. It is not even funny anymore, every day is a constant struggle with inevitable bankruptcy.

I even disgraced myself with an attempt to exploit smithing, but levelling the skill takes so much time (even with infinite stamina mod), and all I do is running between hardwood/iron ore villages, buying raw materials, while still paying wages and feeding troops. I am currently on skill level 100 and crafted weapons are not profitable at all (I know that price depends only on damage output). I get about 200 gold for a normal two-handed sword (no crafting penalties) and javelin parts are still locked. Its hardly enough to break even. And the gameplay becomes even more tedious anyway.

So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?
Two handed swords, it's pretty much all you need. If you are going to stay independent caravans are worth while
 

EmpireMan

Recruit
If you don't like the smithing exploit, you can always wardec any of the Empires.
They are pathetic in military sense and you'll be filthy rich in no time.

Easy mode:
- keep your clan in single party (stewardship skill is very important)
- maximize horse bonuses (cavalry and footmen on horses)
- declare war on NE
- catch their parties (you'll be faster than any of them - easy to avoid big ones)
- sell loads of loot and ransom top-tier prisoners
- you're set for life.
 
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Ananda_The_Destroyer

Master Knight
Okay first, I do agree the standard passive income of workshops, caravans and a fief fiefs is not very much by warband standards. The warband idea of building businesses all over to = or greater you party wage forever just doesn't cut it. I agree if there's going to be workshops and caravans in the game they need to be better then they are, possibly able to have many more or upgrade ....... something more anyways.

However I must stick up for bannerlord in a few points of contention.
The point is BL is even worse than WB in that regard.
Bannerlord gives much more loot for winning battles (no penalty for more party units) and you ALWAYS get capture of an enemy lord, this alone makes it very easy to sustain yourself. Further more there are some very profitable quests you can do "land owner needs manual laborers" can be very good, you complained about "hunt the brigands" but it's fairly rewarding IMO, deliver the herd in aserai villages can giver you 10 warhorses, which you can just sell and fail the quest for an easy 15k.

Go around beating up unhired minor faction mercenaries. It doesn't really damage relations, especially if you release them after battle.
^This is the best right here. You can also just start digging into a faction too! If you just get married and make spouse the quartermaster you can easily use 40 good men to beat most lords! Or just do the 1st quest to recue brother and use him! With clan rank 1 and brother I usually have 80 party size right away, that's more then enough! But just to be clear, you can even solo some of the minor factions (embers, hand) on a new character because their units are so weak.

I hate being a vassal and about 1/2 of games I just start fighting the khuzaits ASAP because I want to force recruit their noble units and take their t4 HA and cavalry prisoner for recruitment! You can just build up you money and forces! I like to use them this way and take a fief far away so they can't seige it (so far) and I can keep harvesting them at my leisure.

You can even take a fief with just your party, not a dinky one or a rebel town either, a fully armed big butt town like Ostri...the vlandian one on the far west... or Chaikand, anyways this is one way that bannerlord does beat warband in gameplay IMO, you can take fiefs and pay for peace as a lone clan and not have to deal with all factions dogpiling you! Once you have a town you can easily amass a force to quickly invade and stabilize another and so on.

A faction will want a lot for peace at first, like 200-500K or more, but as you keep beating them down the price goes down and if they get more wars declared on them (and they will) it can go down a lot.
 

Oakenlix

Sergeant
So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?
What makes you think such a party should be able to sustain itself without doing anything you mentioned in the first place?
 

kab

Recruit
So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?

It's odd that you insist on excluding a huge portion of the content. Caravans and workshops don't require you to "settle down", they're best used while independent because you have no enemies.

Regardless, even without any trading or passive income just doing quests for notables alone easily pays 1k or more per day. Training troops pays 2400 from day one and requires exactly one group of looters, it's often completed in the same day. Add in deserters, caravan ambush, army of poachers, trouble with brigands, inn and out, bandit hideout all of which largely overlap. Then dump prisoners at a town that needs manual laborers for another 10-15k+ on top.

With a company of 70+ high tier men (mostly Imperials and some Sturgians) my daily wage is roughly 700 denars, and I don't even have the most expensive troops, like heavy cavalry or noblemen.
Wages for 70 T5 troops is 864, less with perks. So you've got a party that consists of entirely of expensive, elite troops and it's still trivial to pay for without any perks or passive income just by doing some quests while hunting bandits and selling prisoners.

You could solve the entire problem and pay your daily wages with just two or three workshops. It takes all of about 20 - 30 days to get the first two up and running.
 

Nakh

Sergeant
Why do you need 70+ high tier troops if you independent? This is huge overkill for any quest.
 

Bluko88

Regular
What makes you think such a party should be able to sustain itself without doing anything you mentioned in the first place?
Kind of agree with this.

If you don't want to join the Kingdoms you've either gotta commit to being an actual Mercenary or Trader/Merchant - if you plan to keep growing your Clan that is. I mean if you don't own a fief how do you expect to pay for what is essentially a small army? There's a reason all the minor clans act as Mercenaries - cause they need the money.

I mean if all you're going to do is hunt Looters/Bandits and otherwise be a "Robin Hood" type - you really only should need 40-50 troops at the most anyways. Going beyond that you're basically building a warband, which would need more income then just loot and quest payments. Think about it: you're hunting poor looters and brigands (people who probably don't have much) and occasionally doing landlords a small favor. That you could sustain any party that way, realistically, is quite the stretch.

It's not like you HAVE to max out your party. Keep as many troops around as you can afford - that's how it works for everybody. If you want an actual warband you're going to need some sustainable income from either Workshops or Caravans. It's not like you run the Workshops/Caravans, you just reap the benefits. I mean if you're a deadset Wanderer "no-roots" owning a Caravan or two shouldn't really shouldn't violate your play ethic.
 

Spinozart1

Knight
Since WB I prefer a stable sandbox gameplay. I like to stay independent as longer as possible, without becoming a vassal or a mercenary to a kingdom (I didn't want them to become hostile as well). I also did not want to settle down and invest into workshops or trade.
I just completed quests and fought bandits/deserters while getting stronger and raising a small but top tier army. Eventually my army reached the point (70-100 top tier soldiers) when I could no longer financially support it with free activities anymore. Food and wages cost too much, and I had to either mod the game (increase tournament bets, quest rewards etc.) or get involved into the above mentioned activities that I tried to avoid before.
For food and wage cost : Some perks allow to improve the situation.
Considering the style of gameplay you want, as @Bluko88 said, you may try to find the best possilbe performance/cost ratio.
If you want a high tier only party, then reduce the number of troops.
30-40 peeps and your personnal skill fighting should be enough to face bandits parties.
From past experience with similar playtrough conditions, I could notice that caravan ambush and clearing hideouts were quite rewarding.
Caravan ambush may result in some troop loss though.
 

Ananda_The_Destroyer

Master Knight
I also forgot one other big difference/improvement from warband NO TAX INEFFICENCY you can just take fief after fief and the money will just start rolling in! More garrisons = more troops ready to stick in more towns , more money and so on forever!
 

Sigaretovic

Squire
To be honest i feel like maintaining and upgrading units is too cheap. Basicly anyone with half a brain can own a few fiefs and have a decent army. Its not hard and ive hardly ever seriously felt like financially on the verge of collapsing.
 

Spinozart1

Knight
To be honest i feel like maintaining and upgrading units is too cheap. Basicly anyone with half a brain can own a few fiefs and have a decent army. Its not hard and ive hardly ever seriously felt like financially on the verge of collapsing.
OP is aiming for a playtrough with specific conditions.
No vassalage, no merc contract, no war against kingdom, no trade, no workshop and no settle down.
A kind of nomadic and day-to-day play style.
So except from rebellions, it could be difficult for him to own a fief.
 

Sigaretovic

Squire
OP is aiming for a playtrough with specific conditions.
No vassalage, no merc contract, no war against kingdom, no trade, no workshop and no settle down.
A kind of nomadic and day-to-day play style.
So except from rebellions, it could be difficult for him to own a fief.
I know what he's asking and it sounds ridiculous to me the way you describe it. How could you expect to pay for 70 top tier units while not (to some extent) engaging in lucrative business?

Anyway, my remark was slightly off topic, but i think it should be more expensive. Troop upgrade and maintenance is ridiculously cheap

If you don't agree, just ask around how many players become millionaires by mid game already
 

Spinozart1

Knight
How could you expect to pay for 70 top tier units while not (to some extent) engaging in lucrative business?
This is exactly what he is asking for.
So the question is, how can an independent party support itself in early-mid game (at least) without allying with kingdoms, doing the main quest or involving into trade/production, and stay profitable and progress at the same time?
Maybe it is ridiculous for you but he is free to choose the way he wants to play the game.
And I didn't say I don't agree with you, I have another playtrough with a character rolling 200 high tier units (including 75 fians champion) and still earning money every daily tick.
But, as you said, it is off topic.
 

Antaeus

Sergeant at Arms
I tend to find myself making money hand over fist.

The combination of caravans, workshops and Askar horse runs, and a stable party size of 50 low tier horse archers leaves me with money printer problems. Too much money, not enough things to do with it.

Now that I can take cities as an independent, I can do stuff with the money. But I'd still like more to do.

I guess if you don't want to do passive income like running your own trade business, workshops, caravans, you're always going to be scrounging around for cash. But that's kind of appropriate.
 

kab

Recruit
OP is aiming for a playtrough with specific conditions.
No vassalage, no merc contract, no war against kingdom, no trade, no workshop and no settle down.
A kind of nomadic and day-to-day play style.
So except from rebellions, it could be difficult for him to own a fief.
Right: no trade, no war, no diplomacy. That doesn't leave much.
 

five bucks

Squire
What makes you think such a party should be able to sustain itself without doing anything you mentioned in the first place?

TL;DR on the article - medieval history involved many roving bands of free warriors who made a living through fighting whoever they came across, pillaging and ransoming without allegiance to any state, when they could not/did not want to work as mercenaries. So if it can be done in real life, and can be relatively easily accomplished with minor balance tweaks, why shouldn't OP be able to do it in this medieval sandbox game?

The real issue with the OP is that most of what he's asking for is already possible. Which I think he is aware of, since the real purpose of this post was to ask for ways to make it viable.

However he is correct that prices are a mess, that tournament rewards are too low, that deserters need to return, and that the game needs more quests that have suitable reward for an independent player in the mid-game.
Why do you need 70+ high tier troops if you independent? This is huge overkill for any quest.

I think OP isn't saying that he needs his party to be that powerful-- he's saying he likes his party to be that powerful while remaining independent, and would prefer profitable challenges scaled to the power of his party in the midgame that don't require tying himself down.
I mean if you don't own a fief how do you expect to pay for what is essentially a small army? There's a reason all the minor clans act as Mercenaries - cause they need the money. I mean if all you're going to do is hunt Looters/Bandits and otherwise be a "Robin Hood" type - you really only should need 40-50 troops at the most anyways. Think about it: you're hunting poor looters and brigands (people who probably don't have much) and occasionally doing landlords a small favor. That you could sustain any party that way, realistically, is quite the stretch.
In Warband you could fight Deserters to make your cash, which is mentioned in the op post. They were a high-risk, high-reward enemy who travelled in large parties, had proper military equipment/skills, and dropped decent loot. Thus making a playstyle like OP enjoyed in Warband more viable than it is in Bannerlord.
 
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