Please consider shrinking footprint of trade ship - Minor Bug

Hi Devs!
Long story short. This is probably relevant only for MegaRandom, though it would probably help with the very wacky trade boat bumping which can push the boat back halfway to the home dock which is hilarious.

It is my understanding that units, especially boats, have a “footprint” or radius that is relevant for path-finding in tight places, and bumping and stuff like that. I also am aware that the trade ships are much larger than than fishing ships visually which is fine, especially since they have 2 people on them, one trading for gold, one for wood!

I do not have a screenshot, but basically I had a MegaRandom map generation which had two lakes. The larger one had the coastal trade post and would have had an okay trade route. Meanwhile, adjacent to it was a smaller lake. These two lakes had this muddy shallows area between them which was walkable. Sometimes you cannot determine if it is navigable visually. So in the smaller lake in the dark age I put a dock that is even farther away and therefore would have been an even better trading route. So far so good.

I test the navigability of the muddy shallows with fishing ships. These ships have no problem traversing the muddy shallows. So in feudal I queue up 3 trade ships and ignore them assuming this was going to work.

Then I notice they are stuck! They cannot traverse the mud. Presumably because the navigable part is too small.

Now I know that large Carracks often have this problem, which makes sense, and I am fine with the concept of larger footprints. But:

  • (a) Trade ships should be small like fishing boats anyway I would argue. I can build more docks for fishing but the issue was the maximizing the usefulness of the coastal trade post spawning.
  • (b) For situations like this, it really would make sense for the trade ships to be small so that they can maximize whatever the MegaRandom has available.
  • (c) Finally, I would argue that it would not be “broken” or OP for the trade ships to have a smaller footprint? I think there is no downside to shrinking the footprint. Only upsides for MegaRandom.

Thanks for reading and considering.

Thank you for the detailed explanation @JohnDresty. The team will review expected functionality here. Much appreciated!