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I ordered 5 rolls of tamper evident tape and it shipped in less than 1 day!! Without a marketplace, you will not have that 'blanket' of extra food stored up. This extra food storage in the market place is what allows larger populations to survive on fewer food producing buildings and can help weather disasters, unless of course the marketplace is destroyed and then so is all the stored food. The marketplace also allows you to import corn if you are running low.

Like other industry buildings, if your marketplace has less than units you will import corn and it will be delivered to the marketplace.

You can make money by exporting food, but, food has a very low profit margin as farms tend to hire a lot of workers. Also, you can't rely on food as a stable source of income because your people keep eating your profits. It can be useful in the early game if you have an ore poor map, but, it is not a viable long term strategy.

The best foods are cattle and fish. Cattle ranches only need 2 workers compared to farms which need 6. Farms also take up a lot more room with all the fields they plant, whereas the cattle roam around randomly in different spots while they graze. If you delete or build over a field, the farmers have to replant it and wait for it to regrow slowing production. If you build over a grazing area, the cattle herd just moves to another area and the production is not interrupted.

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Cattle can also be upgraded to Smoked Beef for a fee. This will not affect the quality of the food, but, will get you more money if exported.

I never bothered with goats or llamas except for scenario objectives, so I have no comments on those. Fish only use 4 people and has a very small footprint on the ground, however, it obviously needs access to the sea and you can't put many fish docks next to each other or you will over fish the area.

I would only suggest at most 2 fish docks per beach, spread widely apart. Corn, Pineapple, Papaya and Banana are only suggested if you have plenty of fertile land available and lots of extra workforce to spare. Coffee, Tobacco, and Sugar are not food crops and are treated as resources. They cost more to build, but are well worth the investment. On food it will grow all three of the fruit crops at the same time.

On Cash, it will grow all three of the cash crops at the same time.

They also employ fewer people and produce food faster. The Bio Ranch is similar in that it will produce all three animal products at the same time at a faster rate. The fish farm is also an improvement, will produce more fish and has extra settings which you can play around with if you choose.

I also think these building make the Environmentalists happier, but, that is not verified. Ore is worth quite a bit and in the early game will make up the bulk of your income.

Oil is a late game resource as all the buildings require college educated workers. I rarely used oil. Oil on land and Ore are limited resources and will run out eventually. This is OK since they are mostly used to get your economy started.


After you have manufacturing industry up you can import the ore you need. Oil out at sea is unlimited as far I know. Mines work by being near a deposit. They do not need to be directly on a deposit. If multiple deposits are near a mine and the mine is set to the proper work mode, the workers will extract from all the deposits. Unfortunately, I don't know what 'near' means in the game, so, use your best judgment.

Land oil must be directly on top of the deposit to work properly. Salt is mined just like ore and oil, but, its unlimited. It also has a decent profit margin. The salt mine is relatively cheap and only needs 4 workers. I always get excited when I see salt near my port because I know it will make decent money.

Unlike other mines, salt mines must be directly on top of the deposit in order to work, but, it is unlimited. Salt is also interesting because salt mines will increase productivity of nearby fish and cattle ranches without using any of the salt! The cash crops are decent on profit but require a lot of room, workers, and fertile ground just like the food crops.

If you have the Plantador DLC then you can use the Plantation building which uses the same number of workers but has a much higher production rate. If you have lots of fertile land I suggest cash crops, even if all you do is export them raw. Coffee is the best. Logging is the worst of the resources as it has very low profit margins.

Logging camps also use lots of workers which can cause an early game worker shortage very quickly if you try to spam them. They also chop down trees quickly which means they have to go further and further to gather resources. In order for logging to be viable you also need to have a lumber mill followed by a furniture factory as well as a horticulture station set to reforestation.

All these buildings combined makes anything dealing with wood very low on the total profit scale. Also, environmentalists hate logging camps. My suggestion is to avoid logging unless you have no other choice or it is part of an objective.

All Manufacturing Industry has high profit potential, but, they all require high school graduates in order to function which is why they are mid game buildings. All industry buildings except the cement factory will also require an initial investment by downloading a blueprint in addition to the high construction cost which makes starting industry very expensive.

A suggestion would be to download the blueprint and then wait for another export before building the building. This will increase the speed of all construction projects on the island and you can export cement. Also, it requires no inports so the cement export is almost pure profit. If you don't have the cement factory then the first industry to invest in would be one that matches to your current resource production. Bauxite ore is still a profitable export however.

Each industry is quite profitable so I am not going into too much detail on them. Jewelry has a high value, but, gold is an expensive import. Weapons are good, except that they can cause foreign relations problems. Rum is profitable, but, requires more workers than other industries. So, each one has positives and negatives.

Furniture is the only industry to require a 2 part resource chain. Technically, lumber is an industry to itself and the mill requires high school workers to function. Personally, if I use furniture, I just import the lumber which makes it easier.

If you have Modern Times then you will have access to the electronics factory and the car factory. Electronics requires bauxite or gold which makes it flexible. The output is not worth much but, the upgrades can greatly increase production so the profit comes from volume. Many people, including myself seem to have trouble getting cars to get delivered from the factory to the port which could be a bug. While cars are worth the most per lot, the fact that they don't export regularly makes them just as profitable as all the other industries.

They also come late in the game and are just not a very popular choice. When you have the money you should download all upgrades for all industries. Some upgrades will require power which is a late game mechanic. There industries that have no imports, but, they require power or college educated workers which make them good late game industries.

This includes the Oil refinery and chemical plant.

To Import or Not to Import? This is a question many people have. Importing will cut into your exporting profits, this is true. But, consider that to produce the resources locally will cost you in other ways such as taking up space, angering the environmentalists, paying for upkeep and wages and increasing traffic as the teamster's have to deliver the extra product to the manufacturing plants.

Overall, when all aspects are considered, importing your resources if far more cost effective than to produce them locally. This is especially true of the Furniture factory. My suggestion for all manufacturing industries is to allow imports even if you are producing locally and when you are making decent money set your port to No Limit. This will allow each ship that docks to import up to units of each resource per industry. Imports will stop when you have no money in the red or when the industry has more than units of input resources.

Even if you are producing locally, if your industry has units you can export the excess resource and make your money back. The biggest benefit of importing is that your industry will always have plenty of input work with. If you industry runs out of input, it just sits idle and burns money in the form of wages and upkeep.

Keep in mind that when a ship is docked, it will export first which could give a huge boost to your income but, then it will calculate imports based on your new treasury amount. If you have a new industry available the imports could equal your exports. Don't worry about it. The imports will get less and less as your industries fill up on input resources. Just think of it as an investment. The customs office is a building that does not directly make money through exports, but, it can enhance your exports.

The customs office has 4 settings. It can increase export revenue, decrease import cost, increase tourist spending or siphon money to your swiss account based on export profits. The best setting is to Stimulate Exports. In a generic example, you might be exporting , and importing 30, for a total of 70, average profit on each ship. There is also an economy edict which requires a TV station which will increase profits on exports for 3 years.

Its worth the investment, but, by the time you have a TV station, it may not be needed. I say it is equal when you set it up right.

Manufacturing and Tourism are fundamentally different kinds of industries but have the same profit potential. Lets compare them: Industry brings in money in large chunks with a pop up message that informs you when it occurs and how much. The large chunks could take anywhere from months to occur. Tourism brings in money continuously in small increments and there is no message about how much you are making unless you look at the charts which makes it seem like it is doing nothing.

Industry requires few buildings, but, those buildings require lots of high school educated workers and are very expensive to build. Tourism requires more buildings, but, those buildings only require a few uneducated workers and they are usually inexpensive to construct.

Industry has a bottleneck; the port.


If the port has no dock workers, the dock workers are stuck in traffic or they are on strike which seems to happen more often than other buildings you can't import or export. Tourism can make money from your tropicans as well as tourists, can make tropicans happy with increased entertainment options, and has multiple routes of getting more tourists dock and airport and they can spend money in multiple venues at the same time. Industrial products have uncontrollable values set by system generated events.

The customs office can help. Tourist income is set manually at each attraction and is determined by tourism rating and tourist spending limits. The more tourists are willing to spend, they higher you can set the entry fee.

A Customs office can also help with tourism. Industry buildings are often very expensive to replace after a disaster or rebel attack and when destroyed they also destroy all the input and output resources stored there.

Tourism buildings are cheap to replace when destroyed, are targeted less often by rebels and have no stored resources to lose. I believe that most people prefer industry because it is simpler to construct and operate and there is that very satisfying message every few months that says how much you exported. Seeing that message that says you just exported , is quite fun. Tourism has no such visual queue and so seems much less satisfying. So, how does one build a tourism industry that can rival manufacturing?

The key is to build hotels and attractions in a ratio. Understand that each hotel can only hold so many tourists. Each attraction can only hold so many tourists. While the capacity of each building is slightly different, the overall average is that hotels and attractions can accommodate about the same number people.

When you build a hotel lets say you attract 10 tourists. When you build a restaurant, those 10 tourists can all go to the restaurant at the same time and they are all spending money. If you then build a pub, the tourists have more options and they are more happy, but you still only have 10 tourists spending the same amount of money. The difference now is that you spending more money in upkeep. Your tourist rating is slightly higher, but, you income is less.

The other way is just as bad. If you have two hotels with 20 tourists and only 1 attraction, then that attraction will most always be full but you will have tourists walking around with nothing to do and they go home unhappy, your tourism rating falls and you have fewer tourists which means you have an empty hotel later on.

The key is to build hotels and attractions on a ratio which will ensure that you always have enough space for all the tourists to be doing something all the time.

Why Hotels?

Hotels are inexpensive and have the highest capacity other than the skyscraper hotel. You can only have 1 skyscraper and it requires power. I suggest building it when you can because its cool. Motels are just ugly and low quality and the other options are just too low capacity to be worth the space the take up and it throws our ratio off. The luxury hotel is a nice option if you want to add a little color to your tourism, but, usually, only wealthy tourists can afford it.

You can place you hotels and your attractions in any configuration you wish. I usually put all my attractions together and all my hotels together. That is mostly an aesthetic choice though. I don't know if there is any advantage to mixing the two. When I start my tourism industry I build one dock and 3 hotels followed by 3 attractions.

I usually choose different attractions each time just to keep things fresh. Its important to build different kinds of attractions because that is what increases your tourism rating and thus the spending limit of each tourist.

My suggestions for early tourism would be: Beach Site Spa Restaurant Pub Souvenir Shop When these buildings are erected and operational you will have to wait for the first tourists to arrive. When all the hotels are full and the tourists are spending money build 1 -3 hotels and the same number of attractions at a time and wait for those to fill up.

Remember that you can enact edicts which will attract certain types of tourists to the island and increase tourism and entertainment. You will need specific kinds of attractions and a minister of economy for different edicts. In late game when you have power, you can build all the tourism buildings and I suggest you do. Diversity is key to a high tourism rating.

Just remember to build a hotel for each attraction.

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The sky scrapper hotel can probably accommodate attractions on its own. If you have Modern Times installed the 7-Star Hotel can definitely attract enough tourists for attractions. Most of your tourism buildings will be located in Entertainment, Attractions and Luxury Attractions. Some less obvious tourist buildings are in the economy and welfare section; the bank and the shopping mall. The bank requires college educated workers and must be set to off shore banking in order for tourists to use it the National Back in Modern Times automatically allows tourist use regardless of work mode.

The shopping mall will begin to import luxury goods which are very expensive and could cause a large drop in your treasury for the next few export cycles. Shopping and Banking are two of the categories that affect tourist rating. Crime can also have an effect on tourism rating and I suggest building a police station near you tourist area. One question you might have at this point is if you should try to attract a certain kind of tourist.

Children can also be a category for specific buildings but I think that only applies to Tropican children. I have never seen a tourist child, but, I could be wrong. I don't bother specializing in tourist types, its too restricting.

The times that I have, I specialized in Wealthy. Also, many of the regular attractions have a work mode called Dress Code which only allows wealthy tourists to use the establishment.


Wealth tourists obviously spend the most money, but, they also are the hardest to please. As always, my suggestion is to diversify. For the most part, you can just build your tourist trap and let it work for you.

Every building for tourists can be profitable except the dock which is free for people to use. The Customs Office on the right work mode can make the dock profitable as well. The Tourism industry does not really require any tweaking in order to make money, but, if you want to then you can manually adjust the fee for each attraction based on the spending limit for the average tourist.

The spending limit is determined by the tourist type and the tourism rating, as well as any other modifiers your Presidente or the scenario may have in effect. I usually don't bother tweaking and my tourism industry often rivals my manufacturing industry in yearly profits. It includes housing, media, the palace, government buildings, garages, construction offices and anything that is not related to the other categories. So how can infrastructure make you money?

While all buildings will incur expense in the way of wages and upkeep, some buildings will charge visitors a fee for its use.

Other buildings have special settings which will generate income based on certain conditions. I believe that if a tropican spends money at an entertainment building it is classified as infrastructure income, if a tourist spends money it is classified as tourism income. Generally, in the early and mid game you want to use pubs and restaurants. But, in late game these buildings are overshadowed by Night clubs and gourmet restaurants and your pubs and restaurants actually become a burden on the economy because no one visits them anymore.

When you get power added to your city, you might want to destroy the old entertainment buildings and replace them with more sophisticated counter parts. Or pick one of the older ones and turn it into a Secret Police HQ. Unless you have a large tourism industry, your tropicans only need 2 or 3 entertainment buildings to keep them happy. It all depends on how much you are paying your people, how much you are charging for rent, how many people live in specific buildings and if you have free housing edict active.

So if you pay a citizen 9 dollars a month, he will live in a tenement that costs 3 dollars a month. A strategy I use starting in early game is to pay all uneducated workers 9, high school workers, 12 and college 20 default for college. I then set all my Tenements to 3.

At this level, a full tenement will essentially pay for its own upkeep no profit yet. In mid to late game when I have decent income I give everyone on the island a raise to a minimum of At this level, all residential buildings will generate about a month in profit.

With 10 of these buildings that is a month generated by my housing alone. If you have Modern Times you should set the maximum rent to 6. If you keep rent at 7, then all those people will have to live in shacks!

The real money in your infrastructure is from media; newspapers, radio, TV. All of these buildings require college workers and two of them require power, so they are late game buildings. Each of these buildings has multiple work modes. One or two work modes will increase liberty or increase respect from certain factions. Some of the work modes will generate income based on the surrounding population! At first these incomes seem horrid and won't even cover the cost of the building itself.

However, the incomes are highly dependent on the population density in the nearby area and the workers skill level. Until you see it for yourself you will just have to trust me. First build your media buildings in the very center of your residential district and make sure to surround these buildings with tenements and apartments when you expand later.

Set the Newspaper to Coupons N' More. Set the Radio to Opera. Set the TV station to Lucha Libre. At first the income will be depending on surrounding population. After a few years the income will jump to The largest income I have seen from these buildings is about 50, on a long sandbox map.

On a scenario map I routinely see 20, income from each. Combined with the income from entertainment and housing, my infrastructure was generating more income then all of my island expenses combined! And you can have multiple TV and Radio stations set to different work modes. I find that to be overkill and I get along just fine with 1 of each.

Yes, you read that correctly, with media buildings set to right work mode, your infrastructure will actually pay for all the upkeep and wages for your ENTIRE ISLAND including all the expenses from tourism and manufacturing industries. This means that in late game, it is entirely possible to run your island purely off your infrastructure. You just need to give it time. Radio Dishes can generate a small amount cash when set to Sell Spy Information, but, it is quite abysmal and does not cover the upkeep of the building itself.

The Museum of Modern Art can generate entry fees like other entertainment buildings, but, when set to Sell Tropican Art, it will randomly sell a piece of art work for dollars depending on who visits wealthy tourists will pay more for artwork. If you have Modern Times this becomes even more ridiculous.

The National Bank has a setting that will generate income for all employees in the area that have a salary above The Business Center also has three work modes that generate income based on the surrounding population, its not as good as the national bank, but, its more money and employs a lot of people which is good for late game employment options.

Something you have to watch for with MT is that the Business Center and Babel tower have a preset wage of 20 which cannot be changed. This was done intentionally so you can't spam the National Bank with wages over This also means that you have to set your rent on all housing to 6, because at 7 no workers in the towers can afford to pay rent.

The sanatorium is a MT building that can be used in place of a clinic or hospital. It has a higher service quality than a clinic and it charges an entry fee. At the base fee of 5 it will still incur a cost, but, if you raise the rate to 10 or so, it can start making a profit while providing health care to the masses.

They are explained to a degree in the tutorial scenarios but they are worth discussing again here thats how important they are. The skill they gain will remain with them until they die. So a tropican could be a fisherman for a year, then become a teamster for a year and then graduate high school and become a factory worker until they retire.

This tropican will have three skills listed for fisherman, teamster and factory worker. You can even use this as an indicator to see how stable your workforce is. If tropicans seem to have lots of low level skills then this is a bad sign of instability and it slowing down your progress. Skills are transferable. A tropican who gains skill in a jewelry factory can use the same skill in a weapons factory.

A doctor can gain the same skill in a clinic then use that skill in the hospital. Skills are used by buildings to determine how effective the building is at what it does. It affects production levels of industry, satisfaction levels for entertainment, tourism, and services, and effects of special work modes like the media buildings or power plants.

The longer a worker stays employed in that building the more skill they get and the better that building becomes. In early game, a church may have a satisfaction level of 60, but, in late game, that same church may have a satisfaction level of 90 because the priests are more skilled. Any trait, ability, bonus, edict or upgrade that can increase the speed of skill gains is probably the most important investment you can make in the game.

The literacy edict increases skill gains. There are a few avatar traits that increase skills as well. The grade school is paramount to skill gains.

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When set to Spelling Bees, all the children in the grade school will graduate with higher overall intelligence. Intelligence is a tropican statistic that affects the rate at which the tropican will learn skills. Higher intelligence means faster skill gains.

Skill levels of teachers and professors also affects the speed at which new students graduate. Grade School graduates are based on age. The skill level of the grade school teacher affects the intelligence bonus applied at graduation.

The key to a fast and more stable mid game is getting your tropicans educated and working in the industry as quickly as possible. First they have to have enough intelligence to become a student Grade School helps with this but is not required.

Second there has to be enough open positions available for high school or college workers.Each attraction can only hold so many tourists. This is one advantage of a marketplace. Combined with the income from entertainment and housing, my infrastructure was generating more income then all of my island expenses combined! Unlike other mines, salt mines must be offifial on top of the deposit in order to work, but, it is unlimited.

The skill level of the grade school teacher affects the tropico 4 prima official strategy tropico 4 prima official strategy guide bonus applied at graduation.