I'm playing as Ottomans, and expanded all over the place, giving me pretty nice and long trade routes (which I think is a good thing).look at the Ottoman Empire

Of course I'm trying to steer as much trade as possible towards Constantinople. I'm pretty dominant in Constantinople, Aleppo, Alexandria, Basra, Persia, Hormuz, and the Gulf of Aden. In all of those I have at least 50% of trade power. (I'm smaller in Ragusa, Tunis and Sevilla). I´ve got merchants collecting in Ragusa and Sevilla (because a lot of trade value passes through there and I can´t steer it towards Constantinople). I´ve got merchants steering trade in Crimea (because otherwise it´ll go to Kiev), and Alexandria (because there´s also outgoing routes to Genoa and Venice). I´ve got a fifth merchant that still needs a job, but I´m not sure which. Trade from Aleppo can only go to Constantinople and Alexandria, from Basra only to Aleppo and Persia, from Persia only to Allepo (man, Aleppo is nice), from Hormuz can only go to Basra, and from Gulf of Aden trade can go either to Hormuz (and then Basra, Persia and Aleppo), to Alexandria (which I want), or to Zanzibar (which I don't want). (Edit: now that I think of it, I wonder if I should send it to Hormuz, so it'll collect more bonuses along the way. I'm not sure how that works.)

close-up of trade view on Gulf of Aden, showing outgoing trade to Alexandria being 5.89 in one place, and 0.00 in another) And here's the problem: for some reason, no trade is flowing from the Gulf of Aden to Alexandria, despite the fact that the Aden trade node says I'm transferring 5.89 to Alexandria. In the "Outgoing" mouseover, it clearly says 0.00 is going to Alexandria. In Alexandria, the "Incoming" says 0.00 is coming from the Gulf of Aden.

How is this possible? How can my 5.89 turn to 0? Is some unspecified effect causing this? Is it a bug? Do I completely misunderstand how this is supposed to work?

2 Answers 2


I have encountered the same problem as you playing with Ottomans and a very similar one with Russia concerning White sea.

There's a relation between the proportion of steering power in a trade node you have and the way the trade actually flows. This means that sometimes despite the fact that you control a healthy portion of the trading power in a CoT you will still see the trade flow in a direction you don't want.

The only solution I have found for this is to redeploy your merchants.

Looking at your current setup I would remove the merchants from Ragusa and Sevilla, simply because the efficiency of collecting away from your home trade node is so horrible. I would instead go for the trade routes with India. They have very attractive volume and Indus, Ceylon and Goa all have direct trade routes into the Gulf of Aden. Use some light ships to boost your trading power and a merchant in Aden and two of the Indian CoTs and your benefits will be much greater than what you now collect.

  • Sevilla is actually bringing in quite a bit of money. Ragusa a lot less, so I could remove my merchant there. However, the real mystery here is not just that trade is not flowing where I want it, it's that it does say I'm sending trade to Alexandria, and yet it's not happening. It'd different from Crimea where it explicitly said I was sending it to Kiev, so I needed a merchant there. As for India, the amount of trade there doesn't look all that big. Is that really better?
    – mcv
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 1:11
  • In my Ottomans game the combined value ot the 3 Indian CoT is 53, while the value of Sevilla is 58. Due to the fact that I control nearly all the trade power between India and Constantinople I'm able to make about 25 per month from the trade value in India, while I could not get anywhere near that in Sevilla. Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 11:09
  • As for the "dissapearing" trade: check out some of the CoT far upstream where you have no territory, but do have trading power. You will see plenty more examples where you are trying to send trade somewhere, but have it steered away by present merchants from other nations. Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 11:12
  • I can't check right now, but I think I currently collect about 20 in Sevilla. I'm absolutely interested in those Indian trade nodes, but the fact that they're three separate nodes means that it's a lot more complex than simply collecting in Sevilla. It seems wasteful to ignore the trade power I have there.
    – mcv
    Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 16:00

I have not played for a while and may misremember.

According to your screenshot, you haven no merchant present there. This means your trade power is completely irrelevant, because you are not using it. Instead, the trade value is going in whichever direction the other players, who do have a merchant present, chose.

Put a merchant there for steering and you should see the directed trade go up. The more power you heave, the more steering will occur then.

  • 1
    I can't steer because I have no merchant, but surely if the node says it's already going to Alexandria, then shouldn't it be going to Alexandria? The need to steer is why I have a merchant in Crimea; without it, it says I'm using my power to send trade to Kiev, which I obviously don't want. But in Aden it's different.
    – mcv
    Commented Feb 20, 2015 at 13:19
  • You mean, because Alexandria is listed, but with an amount of 0.0? I see. That may be a bit confusing, but it's technically correct - nobody (in particular not you) is using a merchant to steer in that direction, so it is zero. That Alexandria is listed at all is probably to help you notice that you can steer in that direction, if you want (and put a merchant there).
    – mafu
    Commented Feb 20, 2015 at 22:48
  • Or did I completely misunderstand you? I'm a bit confused
    – mafu
    Commented Feb 20, 2015 at 22:49
  • But below the "send merchant" buttons, it says I'm sending 5.89 to Alexandria. That really sounds like I'm sending 5.89 there (despite not having a merchant).
    – mcv
    Commented Feb 22, 2015 at 1:07
  • Oh, I see it now. Sorry. That is indeed strange. -- I'll leave this answer up in case anyone wonders about the scenario I described, even though it does not apply to your question sadly.
    – mafu
    Commented Feb 23, 2015 at 15:28

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