- No individual mercs. They can be hired collectively in platoons, companies, or squads, as appropriate.
- Costs for companies are expressed in increments of 250 gp, and roughly rounded. Costs for squads and platoons are expressed in increments of 25gp.
- Wages and supply and quartermasters and armorers and shit are all rolled into the total cost of operation.
- Costs for variations of the loadouts of mercenaries within a single class (Heavy Infantry B vs C) are abstracted, and will tend towards the average or upper end of the available options.
- Slingers and Medium Cavalry delenda est; their availability numbers are rolled into Bowmen and Light Cavalry, respectively.
- Crossbowmen have also been rolled into Bowmen for availability, as they draw from the same pool of candidates. Some cultures will have crossbowmen instead (available as Bowmen, but cost as Longbowmen).
- Really I should get rid of Longbowmen and Cataphracts too, but they're kind of player-favorites.
Here are some tables that show either how many of a particular size group of mercs are available per month in a given market, or how long it takes to recruit a group of mercs of that size (ie - "2 per month" means you can recruit 2 platoons per month in this market; "2 months" means it will take 2 months to gather a single platoon). This is a perfect job for a henchman who is too badly injured to continue adventuring ("Yeah, and you'll get full medical coverage!" "... Is that what full medical looks like?" "Given that I've been dead twice and lost a total of five limbs and three eyes, I'm pretty happy with it."), or maybe even a henchman who isn't terribly maimed.
Note that while you can recruit multiple different types of mercenary concurrently (eg, a unit of heavy cavalry and a unit of heavy infantry), you can only be recruiting one unit of a given type of mercenary at a time (ie, time spent recruiting a company of heavy infantry cannot also be counted towards gathering a platoon of heavy infantry).
|Light Infantry||6 per month||1 per month||2 months||4 months||9 months||20 months|
|Archers||8 per month||2 per month||1 per month||3 months||6 months||14 months|
|Heavy Infantry||3 per month||2 months||3 months||7 months||15 months||36 months|
|Longbowmen||1 per month||3 months||6 months||15 months||30 months||91 months|
|Light Cavalry||4 per month||1 per month||2 months||5 months||9 months||27 months|
|Horse Archers||2 per month||2 months||3 months||8 months||22 months||66 months|
|Heavy Cavalry||1 per month||3 months||5 months||20 months||30 months||100 months|
|Cataphract Cavalry||1 per month||4 months||6 months||31 months||38 months||150 months|
|Light Infantry||1 per month||3 months||5 months||16 months||35 months||80 months|
|Archers||2 per month||2 months||4 months||11 months||24 months||54 months|
|Heavy Infantry||2 months||5 months||9 months||27 months||60 months||142 months|
|Longbowmen||3 months||11 months||22 months||60 months||120 months||364 months|
|Light Cavalry||1 per month||3 months||6 months||18 months||36 months||108 months|
|Horse Archers||2 months||6 months||12 months||30 months||86 months||261 months|
|Heavy Cavalry||3 months||11 months||18 months||80 months||120 months||400 months|
|Cataphract Cavalry||4 months||14 months||24 months||122 months||150 months||600 months|
Below is a table of availability of 6-man squads of infantry, or 3-man squads of cavalry. At this scale it doesn't really make sense to use Domains at War (though I've tried) because of DaW's assumptions about what fraction of combatants can actually attack the enemy, but this seems like a reasonable minimum size group of mercenaries to attempt to collectively bargain with, and to manage morale for. It also has the convenient property that a squad fits nicely into a 10' hex, and the even more convenient property that it is the same size as an average beastman gang (5 orcs plus champion).
|Light Infantry||33 per month||8 per month||4 per month||1 per month||2 months||4 months|
|Archers||44 per month||11 per month||5 per month||1 per month||2 months||3 months|
|Heavy Infantry||16 per month||4 per month||2 per month||2 months||3 months||8 months|
|Longbowmen||7 per month||1 per month||2 months||3 months||6 months||19 months|
|Light Cavalry||24 per month||7 per month||3 per month||1 per month||2 months||6 months|
|Horse Archers||10 per month||3 per month||1 per month||2 months||5 months||14 months|
|Heavy Cavalry||7 per month||1 per month||1 per month||4 months||6 months||20 months|
|Cataphract Cavalry||5 per month||1 per month||2 months||7 months||8 months||30 months|
It's worth noting that rounding to months introduces a some inconsistencies, particularly in cases where you're rolling 5d10 individuals per month, which is almost-but-not-quite a platoon. It might be worth switching to weeks instead of months for some of these (in which case 5d10 would be 5 weeks instead of 2 months). Likewise, sometimes 1 per month is secretly 1.5 per month, which gets abstracted away unless you go hire a bigger unit instead. Maybe I should be doing this whole thing with rational numbers instead of ceilinged/floored floats.
Anyway... looking at those recruitment times, it's going to take forever to muster a force capable of storming the local count's castle, even if the PCs are willing to do a fair bit of the heavy lifting. Those 25 mercenaries you get when you hit 9th won't help all that much either. This further supports my belief that if you want to gather an army to take a civilized domain by force, you're better off going out in the woods and subjugating bandits, berserkers, nomads, and beastmen than sitting in town and waiting. You were going to be out in the woods anyway, because that's where the treasure is.
Anyway. Here is a simplified total cost of operation per month table:
Hiring a unit of mercenaries is sort of like hiring a henchman. When hiring mercs, you should do the "reaction to hiring offer" roll; each unit accepts or declines collectively, typically through a veteran NPC spokesman, who serves as the unit's face to the party for the duration of its employment. Half of mercenary units are cautious and desire garrison duty somewhere safe and with a surfeit of whores, and half are aggressive, ambitious, and desirous of plunder. These preferences can be used to improve one's hiring offer - a promise of garrison-only duty or a campaign with plunder within the year are sufficient to sweeten the pot on a roll of "Try Again". Should you fail to carry through with your promises, a loyalty roll at -2 should be made immediately (not quite a catastrophe...). Mercenaries are also well-known for their love of money up front, with a month's cost of operation yielding a +1 bonus to the hiring roll (or another try). Mercenary units each track their loyalty / morale as a unit, and desert or betray their employers collectively. Cautious mercenaries are more likely to desert than betray (desert instead of betray on a 2 on a loyalty roll, but still betray at 1 or lower), while aggressive mercenaries are more likely to betray their employers (betray on 3- instead of 2-).
1d12 Mercenary Company Names
- The Bloody Band
- Egil's Reavers (action starts here)
- The Black Company
- Wilhelm's Freikorps
- The Catalan Grand Company
- The Varangian Guard
- The Company of Death
- The Pecheneg Bows
- The Almogavars (Awaken, iron!)
- The Genoese Crossbows
- Buccleugh's Highlanders
- The Thuringian Pikes (the Thuringii did not have a substantial mercenary history, but Thuringian is fun to say)
Beastman mercenaries, if you can hire them, are always aggressive (except goblins and kobolds, who are wimps).
|Goblin Light Infantry||0.75||750||200||50|
|Goblin Wolf Riders||4.75||4750||1200||250|
|Orcish Light Infantry||1||1000||250||50|
|Orcish Heavy Infantry||1.5||1500||375||75|
|Orcish Boar Riders||6||6000||1500||300|
|Ogre Heavy Infantry||5.75||5750||1450||300|
I guess I should rework Domains at War's hiring tables for domains of various sizes at some point, too.