These Manor Lords upgrades are so overpowered you'd be crazy not to use them

 Manor Lords.
Manor Lords.

While every settlement you build in the popular new medieval city-builder Manor Lords will need to keep itself afloat with basic necessities like timber, firewood, and something decent for all those hard-working serfs of yours to eat, the resources in each region largely dictate what you can and can't industrialize as you progress deeper into a playthrough. You likely won't be able to smith lots of armor and weapons if you're not in an area with a rich iron deposit, for example, or your meat and leather surplus may be paltry due to a lack of nearby animal habitats.

Lots of the Development upgrades you get access to by growing your population and upgrading structures make it easier to play to your strengths with new technologies and refineries, but there are two extremely powerful ones in particular that supercharge trade, a very important part of Manor Lords' mid-to-late game. Trade enables profiting off of extra resources and materiel you don't need for the continued development of your city, while simultaneously allowing you to supply your people with things they can't grow or make themselves.

Importing supplies can get very expensive at baseline, as establishing the direct Trade Routes certain items require can cost hundreds of Regional Wealth and every purchase comes with a tariff of 10. With the Trade Logistics and Better Deals perks, though, you can cap the price of Trade Routes at 25 and eliminate the tariff completely, respectively.

Manor Lords
Manor Lords

These upgrades can be found on the bottom branch of the unlock tree on the right side of the Development View menu, which is the one focused on economy and trade. Both skills are much better than the Foreign Suppliers perk above it (it just lets you build food and firewood carts manned by a foreign trader in your marketplaces, which you won't need if you manage your production of those resources well), and are also more valuable than pretty much every other skill in the city-builder, too.

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That isn't to say other perks aren't great, of course, because they are. It's just that none of them will have the same explosive impact on your economy that these ones do, making them less of a priority in your "main" city that you build before branching out to different parts of the map. Highly specialized farming and production upgrades are better suited to the smaller towns and outposts you'll be setting up later.

The growth you can achieve with both of these upgrades is frankly a little ridiculous; once I started to heavily take advantage of them to import tons of varied food types as well as raw materials I then crafted into expensive goods to sell, my population ballooned up to 300 people in just two years and my Regional Wealth started to push five-digit values. I wouldn't be surprised if they get nerfed in a future patch somehow, because they're honestly pretty overpowered.

Manor Lords
Manor Lords

Manor Lords itself is doing as well as my Rooftile business right now, which is to say: incredibly. It's gone from being the most wishlisted game on Steam to becoming the peak game on Steam's Top Sellers chart, with over 150,000 players checking out the Early Access city-builder as I write this. It's $40, but from now until May 10 you can get it for just $30 thanks to a sweet 25% off launch sale.

As I wrote in my review, it's the most addictive city-builder I've ever played, and one of the best PC games of the year thus far. The game is available on Steam, GOG, and the Microsoft Store, and is also playable with an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate or PC Game Pass subscription. When it eventually comes to Xbox, it'll be on the console-specific Xbox Game Pass, too.

Manor Lords (PC) | $39.99 $29.99 at GOG

Greg Styczeń's highly anticipated city-builder Manor Lords is finally here, and it's just as amazing as everyone was hoping it'd be. I'm not even a huge fan of the genre, but it's absolutely hooked me with its addictive gameplay loops, and I'm confident you're going to love it, too.

See at: Microsoft Store | CDKeys (Steam) | SteamView Deal