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What are mercenaries worth really?

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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby Jalapenotrellis » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 2:40am

On the topic of mercenaries, I noticed that in the ogre horde expansion the mercenaries have an initial cost and a maintenance cost whereas in the barbarian Quest pack they just have a buy cost. What is with this rule discrepancy? Do they have a maintenance cost between quests or no?
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby Anderas » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 2:53am

ATOH is European rules, the frozen horror is US rules. So a discrepancy may occur. Just decide which rule you like better and use it.

Afterwards, I blame Morcar for playing stupid if the mercenaries survive a quest. :-)


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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby SirRick » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 8:05am

I use the Battlemasters minis, not for mercenaries, but maybe for additional help granted by the Emperor, people to be rescued or whatever. I don't have a cost associated with them for that reason.

Imperial Infantry
Move 6, Attack 3, Defend 4, Body 2, Mind 2

Imperial Archer
Move 6, Attack 2, Defend 2, Body 2, Mind 2
Ranged attack

Imperial Crossbowman
Move 6, Attack 3, Defend 2, Body 2, Mind 2
Ranged attack

Also Lionheart minis:
Infantry
Move 6, Attack 2, Defend 4, Body 2, Mind 2
Diagonal attack

Archer
Move 6, Attack 2, Defend 3, Body 2, Mind 2
Ranged attack

Peasant
Move 5, Attack 1, Defend 1, Body 1, Mind 1
Pitchforks (Break when a black shield is rolled, then they are unable to attack)
Last edited by SirRick on Wednesday February 13th, 2019 8:10am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby j_dean80 » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 8:06am

I think you mean WoM as AtOH does not use mercs.

As Anderas said WoM and FH are not related as they weren't available to the same markets.
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby wallydubbs » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 8:23am

I playtested the Glacial Gate with and without mercenaries and I must say, they made it a lot quicker and easier. The heroes were able to split up, each taking a casual number of mercenaries with them. The Barbarian bought 1 Swordsmen and 1 Crossbowman, the Dwarf bought a Swordsman too, Elf hired a Halberdier, and the Wizard bought a Crossbowman and Scout. The Female Barbarian didn't have enough gold for any.

So I split the group up, having the Barbarians go one way, accompanied by a swordsman. The Elf and Wizard ran off with a Swordsman, Halberdier and Scout, and the Dwarf took the 2 Crossbowmen.
More ground was covered rather quickly, and only the Scout and Halberdier died; a swordsman and crossbowman took one body point each, and the Female Barbarian came very close to death by the end of the quest.
The Wizard had Air, Detection, Fire and Water Spells, while the Elf had Earth spells. Surprisingly, all spells were used but Courage.
The group were low on potions of Healing, so the Elf added Heal Body to his spell ring.

Space didn't seem to be an issue when the group was split up.
Maybe it should've been more difficult had I not allowed the Female Barbarian to go with them, but it was still fun. I would agree that the mercenaries are worth every penny.
I'm thinking that maybe the cost of them should be raised as well... perhaps the purchase of the weapon...
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby Anderas » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 1:26pm

If the swordsman is not left behind due to slowness, he is definitely more worth than is written on the card. If I take the Helbardier as starting point, the Swordsman should cost nearly twice as much.

For the Crossbowman, it depends how you play ranged weapons. If it can't attack diagonally adjacent squares, then Helbardier and Crossbowman both have their niche and are worth equally much. The Crossbowman is then good for hallways but not so good in rooms and the Helbardier is the King of the rooms with his long 6 squares movement and his ability to hide behind diagonal standing friends.

The Scout, I love to have a scout. Super fast, able to search traps so you don't waste turns, able to deliver the one scratch that was needed for the last goblin in the room... and so cheap it doesn't hurt if he dies.

What's the basic price to pay? Don't know. If we stay at 75 Gold for the Helbardier, it could be 140 or 150 for the Swordsman....

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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby Spookyhappyfun » Wednesday February 13th, 2019 4:50pm

This is a helpful discussion. I'm going back in and taking a look at Mercs in my Quests and the best way and places to introduce them and how many should be allowed per Quest and Pack.
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby wallydubbs » Thursday February 14th, 2019 2:23pm

Of course, the value of the swordsman (as well as other mercenaries) is heavily increased with the assumption that white shields are his blocking power.
Throughout these quests the heroes encounter numerous evil mercenaries; despite having the same stats nobody has any issue that these mercenaries must roll black shields in defense.
The quest booklet does not specify what type of shields the mercenaries require when hired by a hero.
Zargon/Morcar is the ultimate authority on the matter, however the quest booklets Wizards of Morcar and Frozen Horror each give a different set price in KEEPING the Mercenaries. They are the same price when bought for 1 quest, however Wizards of Morcar says they must be paid 10 gold to keep them. However in the Frozen Horror it says you must pay them the full price for the next quest.

A crossbow is 350 gold if a hero buys it, but he gets to hold onto that between quests. A mercenary is not maintained unless the price is right.
If you go by the Frozen Horror purchase and pay them their full price each quest, well then that little bit adds up. You'll be paying 700 gold for a swordsman each group quest (7, not counting solo quests). But going by WoM price it's 160 gold for 7 quests.

Though either way is acceptable, I'd like to make the suggestion:
Going by Wizards of Morcar prices, the mercenaries need black shields to defend.
Going by Frozen Horror prices, the mercenaries get white shields.
This way you get a relatively fair price for the cost of each mercenary. 10 gold to keep a mercenary that has a more likeliness to die.
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby j_dean80 » Thursday February 14th, 2019 8:53pm

I went with 25 GC to re-hire. I thought 10 too low and full price too high.
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Re: What are mercenaries worth really?

Postby clmckay » Thursday February 14th, 2019 9:19pm

I suffer from some cognitive dissonance on the cost of retaining mercs. Being in the US, I grew up with the full price to retain. My belief is that given the microcosm of the game at the time of development, full price was intended for retention as a gold sink for teams of fully outfitted heroes. Of course if a team relies heavily on them and fails a quest, they may have insufficient gold to rehire enough mercs, compounding problems. I think this is true of the BQP, primarily. I did allow for mercs to be hired from BQP forward through EQP and into the many homemade quests we’ve gone through.

For what has become the tried and true way for my games: mercs cost the same as listed in BQP. Retention is for 75% of the full cost (rounded down to the nearest 25 gold). I printed a deck of mercenaries with multiple copies of each merc. If they go to hire any I draw 5 cards. That’s who’s hanging around town that they could recruit. I did alter the price on a couple of random cards as a way to add a bit of flux into decision making. Not sure that’s really bad an effect. The limited options for hiring does however seem to impact whether they retain a merc in favour of a stronger one that may be available for hire. I like that decision making needing to be done.


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