Dynamic Trade Routes

Dynamic Trade Routes (DTR) attempts to add an accurate medieval trade system to Crusader Kings III, offering a more immersive experience with three main aims:

  • Historicity over Balance: medieval resources need to be accurately placed, not fairly distributed.
  • Medieval Lords, not Traders: this is a role-playing game, not Patrician IV or Victoria 3.
  • Realism: economy and development should be quickly and radically affected by war, and long-term advances quickly reversed.

trade-maps-dtr The mod Trade Maps DTR (Steam / PDX Plaza) adds custom map modes to understand what’s happening with resources in real time.

holding-sprawl The mod Holding Sprawl DTR (Steam) adds 3D buildings to the map, like the mod Holding Sprawl, but according to the needs of DTR.

pdx-settings βeta Testing

DTR was released in a development stage, so just by playing with this mod you are effectively testing it. Please contact me (at the mod’s page on Steam, on PDX forum, or directly at kapl0k.ck3@gmail.com) with anything you notice, no matter how trivial it might seem:

  • Bugs: errors, inaccuracies, inconsistencies, wrong graphics, GUI…that is, anything weird.
  • Balance: even if it is not the aim, it shouldn’t reach an impossible situation.
  • Content: I have tried to adapt the available research on each topic, but there must be errors and important holes. Citations and comments are included in the code, so look there whenever you are trying to correct something that I might have already considered.


Performance is a problem because of the many variables handled by the mod, and the many values shown in the graphical user interface (GUI) that are calculated on real time. You will notice:

    • Stuttering, due to constant updates run in the background.
    • When the Character Window or Holding Window are selected, constant GUI calculations will slow down the game. Hovering over complex tooltips like Trade Balance or Foodstuff will slow it even more.
    • Save Games are big (around 80-300 Mb), hence slow to complete on each January 1st.

For a smoother experience, these are some steps you can take:

    • Use a good gaming PC (better GPU helps since game start; better CPU and RAM will become more and more noticeable in late games).
    • Follow basic steps to improve CK3 performance:
      1. Close all other applications, especially CPU/RAM-heavy Software (like web browsers).
      2. Emphasize Performance over quality in your Graphic Cards settings (see some instructions here).
      3. On Task Manager (Windows), double click on CK3 and choose Go To Details (-> double click) -> Set Priority -> High.
      4. Disable Automatic Saves, or choose saving every 3 or 5 years instead of every year (avoids lag on Jan 1st).
    • Try to develop a  “GUI-performance awareness” and adapt your play habits for this mod (remember the GUI calculates All values shown Every.Single.Second):
      • Make a habit of stopping the game when you need to move around the map quickly selecting Holdings or Characters.
      • Make a habit of closing the Character or Holding window while on activities, events, wars…especially if the game is not stopped.
      • Make a habit of avoiding too many simultaneous actions like activities, decisions, events…especially if the game is not stopped.

Take into account that a few months after game start all AI rulers take many decisions, and it gets much slower for a while. So, if you are testing this mod for the first time, try to play beyond that first year to properly evaluate performance.

dtr-liteAs a permanent solution, if all other solutions don’t work for you, the DTR Lite patch (Steam / PDX Plaza) will eliminate many resources, rendering performance more similar to Vanilla, but keeping intact most character interactions, artifacts, effects and events.

pdx-Building_tax_assessor 1. Coinage System

At its core, DTR features an original Coinage System of Character Traits with:

  • 3 metals (Gold, Silver, Copper), 2 coins (Large, Small), 10 legend types with different requirements and effects. Also, Bracteates.
  • Dozens of specific graphical Coin Designs for traits depending on faith, culture, and location.
  • Coin Slot system with 4 Purity levels + 2 Fame levels (= Trait + Positive Modifier for the own Realm + Negative Modifier affecting neighboring realms), depending on coin metal and size.
  • Associated bonus or malus traits (Inherited Coin, Lesser Coinage, No Coinage Ruler,…)
  • Issued coins have associated Holding or County Modifiers, depending on purity, fame, and Mint locations:

button_set_royal_mint Mints & Minting Rights

  • Mints as special holding building: their coin issuance extends to the whole duchy.
  • Associated bonus (Granted Mint, Active Coinage) or malus (Barter, No Coin, etc.).
  • Court positions Master of the Mint and Warden of the Mint: allow for Renovatio Monetae & Debasement.

Annual updates with coin survival dependent upon:

  • Availability of precious metals in minting holdings.
  • The issuer (sub)realm’s balance of Resources, Production, and Taxes.
  • Careful handling of Minting Rights.
  • Foreign coins circulating in the realm (available Decision to Ban Foreign Coins).

pdx-Building_farm_estates 2. Resource System

Complex resource and trading system that affects non-tribal holdings and non-tribal rulers.

pdx-icon_structure_mines 2.1. Mines & Ores

Added all known medieval Mines of gold, silver, and copper, as well as all other essential or important ore sources (iron, tin, alum, marble, etc.)

Current Ore Extraction dependent on the mine’s historical starting year and known or estimated yield.

pdx-Building_guild_halls  2.2. industry & Product

  • Added all known relevant medieval resources with their (inter)regional Production or Extraction centers, as well as Trading Hubs/Ports.
  • Relative Product Quantity—simplistically shown in percentage as covered needs of the holding—using either known or approximate exports, or otherwise sensible guesstimates.
  • Local production (when that’s possible) follows the same rules as Exported production.
  • Actual Production/Year for each resource is based on specific buildings, building levels, and terrain/location, as well as on Culture (innovation, tradition) and Activity:

pdx-Building_tradeport 2.3. Activity & Trade

Trade (Imports, Exports) are heavily dependent on Region and Religion.

Activity—i.e. production and trade—is affected by development, war, raids, and related modifiers.

pdx-Building_orchards 2.4. Surplus & Deficit

Usage of resources checked yearly for each ruler:

  • Each Men-at-Arms type consumes specific resources, whose deficit or surplus can increase or decrease Hire and Maintenance costs (modifiers).
  • Combined (Sub)Realm food surplus or deficits affect army Supplies.
  • Food is consumed by army use, modifiers,…Deficits in holdings cause famines, then disease, whereas Surplus can accumulate for up to 5 years to compensate for Deficits.
  • Building Construction costs depend on available materials (e.g. timber, stone), which get consumed by army units, active constructions, etc.
  • Activity (feast, playdates, etc.) and Court Amenities consume luxury and/or foodstuff resources.
  • Physicians will use mercury to treat appropriate diseases.

pdx-Building_generic_house 3. Special Holding Buildings

Added interaction to Buy One More Building Slot, at a cost, if there are no free building slots. Maximum 2 more buyable slots for every holding: one when reaching county development 30, and another one when reaching 60.

button_set_horse_stable 3.1. Horses & Stables

  • Added Mounts as artifacts in a new Inventory Slot, including Warhorses , as well as Camels and Elephants where appropriate.
  • Royal Studs are a special holding building of Castles, with its horse artifact trading system and taxed sales.
  • Warhorses can be trained (incl. Head Groom, Master of the Horse) or bought, with breed and trainer’s culture, martial, and prowess affecting their quality.
  • Region- or culture-based Breeds and Types as described in the Middle Ages, adjusted to what we know today about them.

pdx-Building_jousting_lists Tourney & Chowgan

Wargames as activities with duel-like competitions, divided according to faith and location.

  • Tourneys for Western European Christians.
  • Chowgan games for Muslims and Eastern Christians (including Western Christians in the Middle East). Also allowed for neighboring pagan steppe peoples and Indian faiths (for balance, in lieu of more specific horse-related wargames).
  • Realistic: fatal injuries, HoF and Chaplain negative opinion, potential increase in martial and prowess for characters and horse artifacts, increased risk of factions, etc.

button_set_slave_market 3.2. Slave Markets

  • Slave Markets are a special holding building for Cities, with underlying slave trading system and taxed sales.
  • Domestic slaves and Mamluks (slave soldiers) as court positions. Adapted Chief Eunuch court position.
  • Slave Concubine system for Polygamous faiths, secret concubines for non-concubinists.

button_set_pilgrim_hostel 3.3. Caravans or Fairs

  • Caravans & Fairs (depending on faith and region) are a special holding building for Temples, with artifact trading system and taxed sales.
  • Low quality Imitation artifacts like weapons, armors, helmets.
  • Falcons (diplomacy, hunt) and Edible artifacts (stress relief) as special items.

button_set_royal_shipyard 3.4. Royal Shipyards

  • Royal Shipyards can only be constructed on holdings with a historical Trade Port.
  • They unlock the Admiral court position – usually available only for rulers with Royal Court.
  • When At War:
    • Rulers with shipyards can take the decision to Build a Fleet.
    • Rulers can take the decision to Hire a Fleet from any coreligionist Maritime Republic with a Shipyard.

pdx-Pillage_legacy_track 4. Raid or Trade

pdx-army_raid 4.1. Raid & Enslave

Raiding allowed for Tribals and Republics (=Trading), but also Feudal and Clan governments based on faith hostility (always) or traditionally raiding cultures and regions (Britannia, India, Africa).

Sacking a county can involve Enslaving its Population, but slaves need to be brought back by the army:

  • To be sold as Chattel Slaves into slave markets.
  • To become Serfs, increasing development in the capital (potential malus from max. number of serfs allowed by culture).

Robbing mint dies and selling for counterfeit.

button_set_caravan_fair 4.2. Trade Deal or Post

  • Non-raidable counties are amenable to trade, depending on diplomacy (Republics excel):
  • Raid or Trade has been modified to affect non-Tribals only.
  • Reaching a Trade Deal means sharing the resources of the realm (100% for trader, 50% reciprocal for ‘tradee’).
  • Establishing a Trading Post means sharing half of the resources of the county (in exchange for tax benefits).
  • Decision to Ban Strategic Exports limits the damage of trade deals and trading posts, at a cost.

pdx-army_details5. Wars & Sieges

  • Wars will be joined by vassals depending on their opinion of their liege—and almost certainly if they will lose land.
  • Holy Wars are more likely to be joined by same-faith neighbors and affected vassals.
  • The Fort Level will decrease after each successful siege for 1 year, increased if occupied again in this period.
  • Armies consume Holding Supplies of a province when at war or during raids.
  • After sieges, soldiers will attempt to commit excesses (during looting), and you have to decide if you’ll let them, with bonus or malus depending on your culture and traits.
  • Pillaging might include Burning a Building Down in a random holding of an already damaged county (unlike in Vanilla, this will affect important economic buildings first).

 6. GUI and More

  • Historically accurate on-start setting of Mints, Coins and Special Holding Buildings for 867 and 1066.
  • Cut and enhanced Holding graphics for a better experience.
  • Added ‘realistic’ graphics for Holding & County Modifiers.
  • Changed Window for Character and Character Lists to include necessary data.
  • Replaced numeric opinion values with more immersive graphical ones (incl. reverse opinion, as in Stik’s In My Humble Opinion).
  • Added Special Troops / Allies and adjusted Gold to wars starting 867 and 1066, to balance their outcome despite the use of this mod.
  • Added Special Troops for Crusades (randomized “Popular Crusaders” troops) to help beat the now overpowered Muslim Middle East. As far as I can tell, the AI alone is unlikely to win.
  • Kingdom of Portugal now formed by Portucale and Coimbra. Decision can be taken when an independent Christian duke controls these duchies and the county of Lisbon.

pdx-multiplayer 7. Compatibility

DTR hasn’t been tested with multiplayer, especially given the performance problems, but it was designed to work.


Mods that change the barony, county and/or duchy distribution will need a compatch for the changes to work properly.

Mods that change GUI files are likely to conflict with DTR. Especially damaging to your experience are changes to Character Window and County (Holding) Window.

When in doubt, try loading DTR after all other mods to avoid problems.

Compatibility Patches

Compatch for More Bookmarks+, maintained by Leviathonlx. Load order:

  1. More Bookmarks+.
  2. DTR.
  3. MB+DTR compatch.

Compatch for Prisoners of War. Load order:

  1. Prisoners of War.
  2. DTR.
  3. DTR PoW compatch.

Mod compatibility

This is the  load order for some popular, useful, or historically accurate mods that work fine with DTR (links lead to Steam):

(For readers on Steam, there is a Dynamic Trade Routes Collection to subscribe automatically to all these mods in the appropriate order.)

Mods from the DTR family must always be loaded *after* DTR: