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So, the Dwarf traders have arrived. The day that they showed up, I immediately told everyone to start moving goods to the Depot.

  • q on Trade Depot
  • g move goods

and told my broker to haul his ass over too.

  • q on Trade Depot
  • r request trader at depot

By the time the broker finally decided to show up, I found out to my surprise, that no-one could be bothered to haul items to the trade depot, even though hauling to the Trade Depot jobs have a high priority (right?). They were all going about their business: attending meetings, watching sparring demos, eating, sleeping, doing their job (for a change), dumping, moving items to stockpiles, ...

I have no idea what is going on. The Trade Depot is accessible. When I start trading, stuff from last year is available for selling. The rest is still [PENDING]. No mandates are impeding trade, stockpiles are giving away like hippies elves, no burrows active, no forbidden items (couldn't have marked them for trade anyway, I think)..

How is my leadership lacking? Is the dwarves' passive-aggressive ignoring me an early sign of a mutiny about to happen?

  • Have you marked goods as things you want to move? There's an implication that you have, but you're not specifically saying that you did, so I'm double-checking. – Frank Feb 11 '15 at 17:50
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There are literally so many things that might have gone wrong with this process that we may not be able to help you without a save uploaded to http://dffd.bay12games.com/. Still, these are some common reasons that trade depots are not working well.

The depot is clearly cart-accessible from the outside, because you say the traders showed up and unpacked properly. However, is it accessible from the fortress? Check your stairs and ramps. People screw these up constantly, it happens. If the depot is in an insecure area (in a room outside your main gate, or even outside entirely!), make sure the front doors are unlocked, the drawbridge is down, &c.

Is your stuff reachable? If you've set up all your stockpiles on a different floor (which is common), make sure dwarves can reach that area as well. I think this is probably the most likely problem from your description. You may have inadvertently cut your fortress into two pieces, which aren't reachable from each other. Your broker and depot are on one side, all your export goods are on the other.

Did your broker show up too early? Since you said the dwarves weren't even trying to deliver stuff, this is unlikely, but it's a common mistake. You can order the goods moved over and request the broker to show up, but you want to give the dwarves a few days to actually deliver stuff before initiating the trade process (with q-t).

  • Depot is accessible for the traders. The depot is also accessible by the dwarves. In fact, there is only one drawbridge between the inside of the fortress and the depot, and it's open, which brings us to your next question. I think my stuff is reachable. I have read about some glitches with ramps, I hardly have any. 3-wide stairwells everywhere. You mention something interesting though. I DID tell my broker to get to the depot ASAP, killed all his job permissions. So he was there relatively quickly. Didn't know this could be an issue, I'll check it out and get back to you. – Fnord23 Feb 10 '15 at 15:17
  • My trader was at the depot already, nothing I could do about that anymore. I just waited patiently, without pressing t to start trading. My dwarves started bringing goods to the depot eventually. Just a few dwarves at first, until the pace picked up. Thx for the quick reply! Also, how did you format those keypresses (q-t at the end of your reply) so awesomely? – Fnord23 Feb 11 '15 at 9:17
  • @Fnord23 formatting is done through <kbd>key</kbd> tags. – Andrey Regentov Feb 12 '15 at 10:51

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