Understanding BDO Nodes

Ready to start conquering lands and owning every BDO territory in sight? Then building a massive node network is just what you need! 🙂 Black Desert Online has a fun and rewarding city building aspect to its game that some call node empire building. This BDO node guide will help you understand more about how node connections and investments work in game, and how you can expand your own node worker empire.

Nodes in BDO are represented by icons on your game map (M) after you have visited a location. Nodes are useful because they allow you to invest your Contribution Points (CP) and energy to earn special benefits like money, game items, buffs, trade routes, and amity help. The types of nodes you can invest in are main location nodes and their production subnodes.

BDO Node Map Empire

Location Nodes (aka Main Nodes or Adventure Nodes)

Main nodes are clearly visible on the map after you have visited their location. Sometimes this can get tricky to know exactly where to step to get the icon to appear on the world map. But usually it’s near the the Node Manager. This is where a good node map website comes in handy, like somethinglovely.net. Without a Value Pack, each node is controlled by its Node Manager. You can travel to a Node Manager by right clicking the node icon on your map to create an auto-path, then T to auto-travel.

Node Managers that you have already spoken to can later be auto-pathed to via the NPC button on the top right of the screen. Type “Node Management” into the search of the NPC Finder interface and it will list all the Node Managers you have already spoken to, sorted by region.

  1. Town Node Town Nodes: Where every sprawling node empire must have its humble beginnings… Every node you purchase, must be connected to a town or city that has a Work Supervisor (most do). Town and city nodes are usually given for free and provide one free worker (free means no CP cost). Invest energy into town/city nodes to lower starting interest and favor of NPCs in that city/town. Useful for acquiring amity with those obstinate NPCs!
  2. Gateway Node Gateway Nodes: these expensive nodes cost too much Contribution Points, but help you connect to more important nodes further away from town.
  3. Connection Node Connection Nodes: produce goods or sometimes just help you expand your empire and connect to other resources and cities. Purchase with Contribution Points or level them up with energy to gain an item drop buff for the enemies you kill around the node’s location.
  4. Dangerous Node Dangerous Nodes: be careful when you visit these as they are usually smack dab in the middle of mayhem, but many are often well worth the trouble, because just like connection nodes, they offer resources in exchange for CP and an item drop buff for your energy. Read more about how to spend energy to max out a Node to level 10
  5. City Nodes City Nodes: If you see one of these node icons, you’ve landed in the big time baby! Congratulations. 🙂 They are the same as towns in function, but have more lodging for your workers, which you will soon need so you can overthrow the world with your node kingdom.
  6. City Nodes Trading Post Nodes: very similar to connection nodes and usually have Trade Managers with a few housing and production options.

Production Nodes (aka Subnodes or Secondary Nodes)

Resource Nodes Subnode Resources: click on a main location node (a connection/danger/trading post node) and it will often have one or more subnodes you can purchase with CP. They can sometimes be tricky to spot on the in-game map unless you use a map website like somethinglovely.net. For example, some nodes don’t show their resources, until after you purchase the main node with Contribution Points and spend Energy at the Node Manager.
  • Gathering/Farming NodesGathering/Farming Nodes Farming/Production Nodes: starting out, you will want the nodes that produce starches/grains, so you can craft beer AFK to replenish the stamina of your workers.
    Starch/Grain Node List:
    Corn: Toscani Farm (Velia)
    Potato: Bartali, Finto, Loggia Farms (Velia)
    Sweet Potato: Shuri Farm (Tarif)
    Barely: Northern Wheat Plantation (Calpheon City)
    Wheat: Costa Farm, Moretti Plantation (Heidel) + Northern Wheat Plantation (Calpheon City)
    Crafting beer also provides a secondary item you can turn in for more CP! (about 1 out of 5 beers crafted) If you find you enjoy cooking, there is great opportunity to purchase more food nodes and earn silver. For example, the grape node outside of Olvia is the only fruit node for aspiring cooks. Alejandro Farm, which produces Cooking Honey, is needed for Cooking as well.
  • Mining Nodes Mining Nodes: Most ores are in high demand, often have cheap CP costs, and are used in allot of crafting recipes, like the popular and profitable +AP Grunil armors. The cheap ore nodes around Velia are great investments. Some mining nodes produce rare and valuable crystals/powders.
  • Timber Nodes Timber Nodes: Most timber has high value even unprocessed. Some players, who have high enough processing skill, level their processing and make extra money by buying timber and ore directly from the Marketplace and processing it for resale. (soft cap is Artisan 2 SOURCE: BDO Profitability Tool) Timber usually has good demand at the Marketplace. Boat crafters will love you. Sailing, anyone? 🙂 Note: always check pricing before buying to resell.
  • Fish Drying Yard Nodes Fish Drying Yard Nodes: dried fish is great for people who enjoy cooking, but don’t like to fish! Works wonderful in making Good Feed for pets. Dried fish stack in the bank and your worker does the drying for you. Just selling the dried fish uncooked isn’t very profitable atm, so Fish Yards are only recommended for people who like to cook. Because of their long work cycles and distance, fish drying yards need goblin workers, who have the highest Workspeed/Movement Speed. The cheapest and easiest fish drying yard to purchase is Serca Island, just NW of Port Epheria. Costs 2 CP and you get a free worker.
  • Excavation Nodes Excavation Nodes: these little gems are often tricky, but worthwhile to purchase. For many of them, you have to visit the Node Manager and spend Energy (-35 Energy) to open up a sometimes secret Excavation sub-node. Excavation nodes produce all of the various and very high demand Traces of _______. When used in crafting recipes, Traces have a good return. Use goblins in excavation nodes because of the very long work cycles and distances. Go to the bottom of this page to read about Excavation Nodes and how/where to obtain them.
  • Investment Bank Nodes Investment Bank Nodes: Click on a city/town node to view available bank nodes that you can invest gold bars in and possibly earn interest from. Gold bars are purchased at the Storage Keeper for silver. But you must have a rank 1 residence and that costs real cash. According to Balzor, a few investment banks pay 125 million silver per month, but only if you plan on spending at least $200 trying to outrank the current #1 ranking resident. That means buying the newest/smallest furniture from the Pearl Shop. And newer/smaller furniture with better Interior Points are constantly being added to the shop. View Balzor’s Bank Node Guide
  • Investment Bank Nodes Specialties Node: Like Investment Bank Nodes, these require you to purchase a residence with CP and obtain a rank 1 house where the specialty is located. Rank 1 requires filling your residence with items that have high Interior Points. (means buying furniture with real cash.) Takes six hours to craft one item for free that is worth 6k to 50k at the local Trade Manager.

Connecting Nodes with Contribution Points

Nodes have to be connected to each other in a chain from a city or town that has a Work Supervisor. This requires that you have at least 2 Contribution Points (1 CP for a main node and 1 CP for its resource node). CP is obtained through questing and cooking/alchemy. The CP cost of nodes increases as you move into higher level territories, but you will also obtain higher level resource items, which are used in higher level recipes. When connecting a node with Contribution Points, you will need a lodging, a worker, and enough storage space for the main resource, but also it’s secondary resources. For example, timber often has a smaller yield of an alchemy ingredient along with the timber.

BDO Node Connection Lines

Look for Node Managers that have the <Node Management> title above their name. Talk to them (R) and select the Node Management button to purchase resource nodes for 1 to 5 CP. (35 energy is sometimes required). This will automatically open a world map. If you do this and haven’t connected the right previous node required, long thin beams of light will shoot down from the sky on your world map showing the closest Node Manager locations that you haven’t connected yet (even if there is still a fog over the area because you haven’t visited).

NOTE: If you have a Value Pack buff, you can more conveniently purchase nodes via the map with CP, but it will cost 10 energy for each investment. Also, you must have visited the node previously. (With no unexplored fog over the map.)

After you have discovered an area and removed the fog over the map, node connections show as thin white lines that curve between the map icons. If you own that connection, it becomes a possible trade route and turns yellow. All your invested node icons are highlighted in yellow as well.

If you need help finding the best nodes to invest in, you may find the BDO Node Investment Calculator helpful.


BDO Contribution Withdrawal and Invest

Contribution Withdrawal (Disconnecting Nodes)

Contribution Points are never spent and lost forever. You can withdraw invested CP by using the world map interface, but withdraw in the reverse order that you invested in. For example, you can not pull CP from a node in the middle of a chain, if it breaks another node’s connection to a Work Supervisor leaving it stranded. Also, subnodes have to be uninvested before the main node’s CP is withdrawn. A Contribution Withdrawal button will appear in the Node Information box, after you click on a node and when there is no worker currently working there.

WARNING: when you withdraw CP, you loose all node levels and any energy you invested to gain those levels!

Contribution Withdrawal Errors Much?
“You Cannot retrieve Contributions Points from the Node while the Worker is working”: These types of errors are common, even though you can see that no worker is currently working on the node you want to withdraw Contribution from! Follow your node network from the node you want to uninvest to see if you are trying to disconnect a node that would leave a currently working worker stranded from his Work Supervisor. One strategy that might help is to filter your worker list by City and see which worker is working on which nodes.


Energy CostNode LevelItem Drop Rate
01+5%
1002+10%
2003+15%
4004+20%
6505+25%
10006+30%
14007+35%
19008+40%
25009+45%
320010+50%
Total Energy Cost: 11,350

Investing Energy for Node Levels

Invest energy into nodes to gain an item drop rate increase. Putting energy into a city/town node also helps amity conversations for NPCs in that city/town.

Level 10 Nodes: provide +10% rare loot obtain chance. (doesn’t effect junk loot that drops all the time.)
      ● +5% Item Drop Rate for 10% of monsters killed, for each node level
      ● Has no effect on party drops.
Simplified Example: Investing a total of 11,350 energy for Node level 10 gives +50% higher Item Drop Rate for 1 out of every 10 monsters killed
Detailed Example: Elite Sentinel pirate has a Blue Coral Ring drop rate of .1% (1 per 1000 kills). So a level 10 node would increase the drop rate to a .15% chance for 100 pirates out of 1000 pirate kills

There is still debate about raising node levels for other reasons. For example, there are rumors about investing energy into resource subnodes and main nodes to improve worker yields, vendor prices, worker promotions, improved relic shard drops for afk fishing, etc.

Connecting Nodes for Trade Routes

When you connect one node that has a Trade Manager to another node that has a Trade Manager, you have created a trade route. This allows you to buy one item from one Trade Manager and maybe sell it for a profit at another distant Trade Manager. The longer the distance you transport trade goods, the bigger your distance bonus. When selecting items to buy for resale, be sure to check the Trade Manager’s Market Price button, so you don’t make a trip for nothing! Competition by other players trading the same thing can actually lower the value and make you loose money. Pricing fluctuates all the time. One day you might see a Trade Manager’s item with a 200% resale value to a distant Trade Manager during a “Boom Period”, but the next day you might actually loose silver to that same Trader. Most people consider trading Trade Master purchased items as a waste of time and it’s not recommended as a way to earn serious silver. So only do it if you enjoy trading or want to level up your trade skill! (There are faster ways to level trading, but they will probably cost you more Pearls and silver.)

BDO Trading Guide

Without a trade route established by having purchased a node chain with CP, your trade items will have a 70% penalty in sell price. It’s important that there is no break in your node chain from the Trade Manager you originally bought from to the buying Trade Manager. If you see a 30% sell price, then you are missing a node somewhere. Trade items can also be obtained through questing and hunting. One fun and profitable way to level up your trade skill, is to fish and sell the fresh fish.

Moving Trade Goods
Trade items are always heavy, especially the ones purchased from the Trade Manager. If you purchase from the Trade Manager, you will become very slow, but walking with a trade pack on your back does increase your Strength (+Weight Limit). When leveling Strength, use the Auto Loop feature on your map. (You only need 1 trade good in your inventory to level Strength.) If you’re not trying to level Strength, then make sure you have a Mule, Horse, Wagon, or Elephant nearby to transport the trade goods.

Connected trade routes also make transporting bank items via the Storage Keeper from city to city cheaper.

BDO Crate Trading

Connecting Nodes for Crafted Trade Crates

Creating trade routes by connecting nodes is important if you want to profit from your own crafted trade crates. These are made inside Workbench housing, a type of housing you purchase in the node interface with CP. You create trade crates by processing wood and ore via the Processing tab (L) using your own processing skill and then having your workers pack the processed goods into crates. Processing can be done by you, but trade crates can only be created by your workers.

The most popular and profitable crates players like to trade (with Desert + Distance + Bargain Bonus, and crafting in Trent and transporting to Valencia) are…

  • Crates Produced by Mineral Workbench Housing:
    • Brass Ingot Crate: 31,590 Base Price / 118,813 Sell Price
    • Bronze Ingot Crate: 29,670 Base Price / 111,592 Sell Price
    • Steel Ingot Crate: 21,030 Base Price / 79,096 Sell Price
    • Jewelry Crate: 189,030 Base Price / 710,961 Sell Price (requires rare gold, silver, platinum)
  • Crates Produced by Wood Workbench Housing:
    • Balenos Timber Crate: 28,710 Base Price / 107,981 Sell Price
    • Serendia Timber Crate: 32,550 Base Price / 122,424 Sell Price
    • Mediah Timber Crate: 40,230 Base Price / 151,309 Sell Price
    • Calpheon Timber Crate: 50,790 Base Price / 191,026 Sell Price

For an even greater distance bonus, players craft crates in Grana, but it’s not as popular for some due to the higher CP costs. (you get 113% distance bonus vs Trent’s 99%)

To get an idea of what you can potentially earn, visit Famme’s Crate Calculator. As you can see, the earnings can be quite high, but there are allot of factors that you have to consider like distance bonus, artisan 2 trade skill requirement, processing skill (soft cap is Artisan 2, SOURCE: BDO Profitability Tool), desert buff, bargain bonus, and the logistics of transporting massive amounts of heavy crates, connecting and then disconnecting very long node chains that are CP expensive, market price fluctuations…. ACK!!! Crate Trading is a complex topic to say the least and you can potentially make or loose money doing it, so it requires its own guide. You can read more about trading in Eminent’s Trading Guide and Biohack’s Trading Guide.

Excavation Node List & How-To

Excavation nodes are important, if you enjoy crafting and like to maximize your income potential by creating stuff with workers or your own skills. Excavation nodes produce a bottleneck item for many recipes, which is called Trace of ______. If you do not plan to craft, then you might want to avoid excavations, as their node chains can be expensive and the work cycles are too long to make good money. However, if you do craft, you can at least double the Trace’s value, if not more. Be sure to check Marketplace prices before attempting any crafting! Game updates and supply/demand can change a Trace’s value.

Excavation Nodes

Many Excavation nodes are hidden and have to be purchased in person at their Node Manager, even with a Value Pack buff on. This often requires you to purchase the main node first with CP, then you will see an option to spend Energy. Energy cost is usually 35… don’t be surprised if you pass out from utter exhaustion for speaking so effusively to your sneaky Node Manager. 😉

IMPORTANT: Be sure you have plenty of space in your worker’s storage location! Many Excavation nodes take up to 5 slots because they produce at least two vendor sell items along with Traces.


Eastern Balenos Excavation Nodes

Ancient Stone Chamber

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Velia)
    • Trace of the Earth Trace of Earth 16/Day
      • Legendary Beast’s Blood
      • Plywood Hardener
      • Elixir of Carnage (+15% Down Attack Damage)
      • Basilisk’s Belt
    • Trace of Ascension Trace of Ascension 16/Day
      • Wise Man’s Blood
      • Yuria weapons
      • Leather Glaze
  • Node Manager: Stone Chamber Excavation Lead (SE of Western Guard Camp) 0 Energy required.
  • CP Cost: 2

Serendia Excavation Nodes

Glish Ruins

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Glish)
    • Trace of Origin Trace of Origin 17/Day
      • Gem Polisher
      • Horn Bows
      • Grim Soul Reaper’s Elixir (+3 HP per hit)
    • Trace of Hunting Trace of Hunting 17/Day
      • Epheria Frigate: Nor’easter Sail
      • Epheria Sailboat: Lightweight Black Plating
      • Centaurus Belt
      • Duvencrune furniture
  • Node Manager: Karu (Ne part of the ruins, up on the wall. E of Glish, SE of Central Guard Camp)
  • CP Cost: 2

Lynch Farm Ruins

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Heidel)
    • Trace of Savagery Trace of Savagery 17/Day
      • Tyrant’s Blood
      • Metal Solvent
      • Sicil’s Necklace
      • Ain weapons
    • Trace of Hunting Trace of Hunting 17/Day
      • Epheria Frigate: Nor’easter Sail
      • Epheria Sailboat: Lightweight Black Plating
      • Centaurus Belt
      • Duvencrune furniture
  • Node Manager: Zara Lynch (West of Heidel)
  • CP Cost: 2

Calpheon Excavation Nodes

Berniato Farm

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Calpheon City)
    • Trace of Battle Trace of Battle 16/Day
      • Silver Embroidered Trainer’s Clothes
      • Bare’s Weapons
      • Elixir of Endless Frenzy (All AP +13)
    • Trace of Forest Trace of Forest 16/Day
      • Silver Embroidered Gatherer’s Clothes
      • Silver Embroidered Farmer’s Clothes
      • Elixir of Strong Draining (HP +5 per Critical Hit)
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
  • Node Manager: Griffian Bernianto (NW of Northern Wheat Plantation)
  • CP Cost: 3

Rhua Tree Stub

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Trent)
    • Trace of Despair Trace of Despair 30/Day
      • Ring of Cadry Guardian
      • Eye of the Ruins Ring
      • Duvencrune furniture
      • Krea weapons
    • Trace of Forest Trace of Forest 30/Day
      • Silver Embroidered Gatherer’s Clothes
      • Silver Embroidered Farmer’s Clothes
      • Elixir of Strong Draining (HP +5 per Critical Hit)
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
  • Node Manager: Kamasilve Priestess Lunia (NE of Behr)
  • CP Cost: 2

Mansha Forest

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Trent)
    • Trace of Despair Trace of Despair 16/Day
      • Ring of Cadry Guardian
      • Eye of the Ruins Ring
      • Duvencrune furniture
      • Krea weapons
    • Trace of Violence Trace of Violence 16/Day
      • Elixir of Perforation
      • Perfume of Courage
      • Kalis weapons
  • Node Manager: Karu (N of Trent, W of Lake Kaia)
  • CP Cost: 3

Star’s End

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Papu with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Grana)
    • Trace of Deeath Trace of Death 2/Day
      • Elixir of Death
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
      • Seleth weapons
      • Epheria Frigate: Enhanced Black Plating
      • Epheria Frigate: Streamlined Black Plating
      • Epheria Sailboat: Enhanced Black Plating
    • Trace of Violence Trace of Violence 2/Day
      • Elixir of Perforation
      • Perfume of Courage
      • Kalis weapons
    • Mass of Pure Magic Mass of Pure Magic 1/Day
      • used to craft Pure Magical Black Stones, which are required to enhance Blackstar weapons.
  • Node Manager: Runaway Monster (W of Calpheon City, N or Grana)
  • CP Cost: 4 (Total CP is actually 16+ because CP requirement for the pre-requisite node chain is extremely high.)

Mediah Excavation Nodes

Ancient Ruins Excavation Site

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Tarif)
    • Trace of Battle Trace of Earth 16/Day
      • Legendary Beast’s Blood
      • Plywood Hardener
      • Elixir of Carnage (+15% Down Attack Damage)
      • Basilisk’s Belt
    • Trace of Chaos Trace of Chaos 16/Day
      • Khalk’s Elixir
      • Ring of Crescent Guardian
  • Node Manager: Jamo Hasa (NW of Tarif)
  • CP Cost: 4

Valencia Excavation Nodes

Pilgrims Sanctum Humility

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Valenica City or Sand Grain Bazaar)
    • Trace of Memory Trace of Memory 22/Day
      • Elixir of Assassination
      • Elixir of Fond Memories
      • Painting furniture
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
  • Node Manager: Tarik (SE of Sand Grain Bazaar)
  • CP Cost: 4

Roud Sulfur Works

  • 0 Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Valencia City)
    • Rough Diamond Rough Diamond 26/Day
    • Sulfur Sulfur 26/Day
    • Powder of Crevice Powder of Crevice 26/Day
  • Node Manager: Salta (NE of Ancado Inner Harbor) requires 50 energy at Ustouvan, the Node Manager of Roud Sulfur Mine.
  • CP Cost: 7

Kamasylvia Excavation Nodes

Tooth Fairy Forest

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Fafu with 160 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Grana)
    • Trace of Forest Trace of Forest 29/Day
      • Silver Embroidered Gatherer’s Clothes
      • Silver Embroidered Farmer’s Clothes
      • Elixir of Strong Draining (HP +5 per Critical Hit)
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
  • Node Manager: Hunnie (NW of Tooth Fairy Cabin)
  • CP Cost: 5


Drieghan Excavation Nodes

Fountain Of Origin

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Duvencrune)
    • Trace of Origin Trace of Origin 46/Day
      • Gem Polisher
      • Horn Bows
      • Grim Soul Reaper’s Elixir (+3 HP per hit)
  • Node Manager: Jyarro (NW of the node icon)
  • CP Cost: 5

Sherekhan Necropolis

  • Traces/Day: (Artisan Goblin with 150 workspeed/7.5 movement speed from Valenica City or Sand Grain Bazaar)
    • Trace of Memory Trace of Memory 30/Day
      • Elixir of Assassination
      • Elixir of Fond Memories
      • Painting furniture
      • Piece of Image (for Forest Path Wagons)
  • Node Manager: Camira
  • CP Cost: 6

Trace Drops From Hunting Around High Level Nodes

From the December 13 2017 Patch Notes: The following monsters in Valencia and Kamasylvia will now drop Trace items.
  • Bashim Base: Trace of the Earth
  • Basilisk Den: Trace of Memory
  • Cadry Ruins: Trace of Death
  • Centaurus Herd: Trace of Hunting
  • Titium Valley and Desert Naga Temple: Trace of Savagery
  • Crescent Shrine: Trace of Death
  • Gahaz Bandits and Pila Ku Jail: Trace of Violence
  • Roud Sulfur Works: Trace of Chaos
  • Navarn Steppe: Trace of Forest and Trace of Ascension
  • Manshaum Forest: Trace of Hunting
  • Polly’s Forest: Trace of Forest
  • Fadus Habitat: Trace of Battle
  • Forest Ronaros: Trace of Origin