I've nearly finished this chapter now.
For the moment I'm keeping it all in one chapter - mainly because the other chapters that I might put stuff in haven't been written yet!
Anyway, I've now finished the costs and descriptions of: basic equipment, weapons, armour, pack and riding animals, land transport, ships and boats, buildings and fortifications, hirelings, and mercenaries.
All I've got left to put in is miscellaneous services and siege weaponry.
The rules for hirelings (hired low level NPCs to come on an adventure and act as porters and help out in combat) were strangely incomplete in the RC. It says that they get paid a fixed sum rather than expecting treasure, and says that they should be about half the level of the hiring party. Then it says to see the chapter on treasure for more details.
But nowhere does it give even a vague indication of how much they should be paid - and the treasure chapter doesn't actually give any more details other than to suggest that if a hireling is ordered to test a magic item to see if it is cursed, then the hireling will expect to keep said item.
I've filled in some of the blanks. Firstly I think that the hireling rules are held over from the old B/X sets and failed to take into account higher level characters,so I've said that the "half the party's level" is up to a maximum of 5th level. It seems silly that a 24th level party would be hiring 12th level hirelings - those hirelings would have their own adventuring careers by that point!
Secondly I've actually provided some costs. To balance things out, I've set the cost for hiring someone to be a tenth of the total XP they would need for next level, so for example a 3rd level fighter needs a total of 8,000xp to reach 4th level - so will cost 800gp to hire. Similarly a 1st level thief needs a total of 1,200xp to reach second level - so will cost 120gp to hire. I've put these costs in a table so that they don't have to be worked out each time, and included a 50gp cost for hiring a commoner.
The bit I'm stuck on at the moment is for hiring spellcasters. Since the RC rules don't (generally - there are one or two exceptions) have spell components or xp costs for casting, it isn't exactly a lot of work for a caster to cast a spell. Basically you're only paying for a minute of someone's time.
On the one hand, I could see magic-users not wanting to be constantly disturbed by people asking for spells - so I could imagine them setting prices high to discourage being disturbed unless they get decent compensation for it.
But on the other hand, clerics are there to serve their communities for the glory - and promotion - of their religion. It seems strange that a cleric would, for example, stick a large price on a Raise Dead spell for any reason other than an arbitrary "game balance". Unlike later editions, it doesn't cost the cleric anything to raise someone other than a minute of their time. There's no "5,000gp worth of diamond dust" or anything. Basically, if the cleric can cast the spell, then they've nothing to lose by raising as many people as they can and everything to gain in terms of popularity and public support. After all, if the cleric doesn't raise someone, they're just wasting the spell slot for the day.
So I find it hard to justify inventing a large price-tag for clerical spells. It seems more realistic that there might be a waiting list sometimes, but only the most die-hard mercenary of a cleric is going to price themselves out of reach of peasants; whether for casting a Cure Light Wounds on little Jimmy's broken arm or casting a Raise Dead on thatcher Bob who's fallen from the roof and broken his neck.
Of course, the really interesting bit is when there has been a goblin attack and there were 17 people killed in it - but the local cleric is only 10th level and can therefore only raise one per day and only if they've been dead for 12 days or less. Five of those people aren't going to get raised, and someone has to decide which five. That's hard enough in itself, and I don't think any amount of money is going to let a wandering adventuring party push in front of the queue and get their party member raised at the expense of another one of the locals...
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