UPDATE: The final version of Labyrinth Minions has been posted. The link on this post now points to the new version. It can also be found on the Kilgore Kreations page.

Over the past several sessions of my son’s ongoing Labyrinth Lord campaign, we’ve cooked up a simple system for PCs to look for hirelings. It’s still a work in progress, but it’s been serving pretty well so far and I thought I’d toss it up here and see if anyone had any thoughts:

Labyrinth Minions - PDF

Labyrinth Minions - PDF

I allow PCs to use their reaction modifier for charisma to adjust the cost. My son’s thief, for example, has a reaction modifier of -1. So he only has to pay 4gp per effort rather than 5.

I don’t see why this wouldn’t work with Swords & Wizardry as well, though studded and scale are not armor types in the White Box game. (Maybe work in ring for Core.)

UPDATE: I should make clear that all normal rules for reaction checks, loyalty, wages, treasure shares, and the like remain in effect. This is intended to merely serve as a quick way to determine how many potential recruits show interest and what sorts of NPCs they are.

Also, I mixed up the die types for armor and weapon/shield. Armor is d8 and weapon/shield is d6. This will be corrected in the next version.

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12 Comments to “Labyrinth Minions – 1st Draft”

  1. Restless says:

    I like it. It’s a good adjunct to the pieces in Fight On! or Knockspell (I forget which) that can be used to give hirelings quick personalities. You can dice up a couple pages of them pretty quickly.

    You should discuss treasure shares in the document, so players (or even DMs) don’t expect that the pay is all they receive. Also, do you still assume that each of the potential hirelings still make a reaction roll prior to hiring?

    • Kilgore says:

      Yes, this can easily be used with the personality generator. I’ve intended to do that, but I’ve never had the magazine handy when rolling these guys up so far. And, to my son’s discredit, NPC hirelings don’t seem to survive long enough for personality traits to matter all that much…

      Yes, I do also assume standard reaction rolls, wages, treasure shares, etc. I didn’t address any of that in my write-up because I suspect that it varies widely by referee and campaign. I just wanted a quick way to determine who responded to the recruiting effort. I should make a note to that effect, though.

    • Kilgore says:

      Ah. I see that I did leave in a bit of our house rule for pay (non-combatants half pay). I also see that I mixed up the die types for armor and weapon/shield. It should be a d8 for armor and a d6 for weapon/shield.

  2. bulette says:

    I like this too, but I’m going to revise the hit points for Men at Arms. Minor pick but evenly spreading 3-6hp seems “fairer” for zero level types than the more likely 6 hp here (or am I misreading it? Are 6hp given for 5-8?) I’m replaying Hommlet lately and there’s a Men At Arms chart there where they aren’t as tough as your guys, and that’s for AD&D (slightly more deadly in general I think).

    • Kilgore says:

      A d4 is used for hit points, so it is an even spread for 3-6 hit points for men-at-arms.

      I will have to take a look at the Hommlet chart. I don’t remember it at all. Unless maybe it isn’t in the T1-4 set? That’s all I have, not the stand-alone version.

      • bulette says:

        Ah, my misread, cheers – consequently no need to consult T1: not sure if it’s in the set as I only have the stand alone. 😛

  3. cr0m says:

    Great little system/chart! I’m going to start using it in conjunction with Robert Lion’s Random Hireling Generator from Knockspell #1, which I highly recommend you check out.

    You roll 3d6 for Disposition, Talent and Notable Feature and voila! You’ve got yourself a Lazy, Badly Scarred former Mercenary (for example). In conjunction with your tables (especially the one for starting equipment), my hirelings are gonna rock!

  4. bulette says:

    i plan on doing the exact same as cr0m actually (combining this with Lion’s generator), and am making up some index card “minions” character sheets for this purpose.

  5. cr0m says:

    LK,

    Would you consider writing a blog post comparing LL to S&W? I’m on the fence about which game to use and there aren’t many bloggers who have played/are playing both.

    I’m not looking for a “play X because Y sucks” kind of comparison, more of a “this is what LL is good for, this is the kind of game/preferences S&W works best with”.

    Or failing that, a post about why you decided to start playing S&W after playing LL for a while. Any insight is appreciated!

    cr0m

    • Kilgore says:

      Coincidentally, I want to write a “here’s what I’m planning to do with LL and S&W and here’s why” type post. After messing with both for a while now I think I’ve got a direction figured out.

      One thing, though, is that my S&W experience is with White Box, not Core. So some of my reasoning won’t necessarily apply when comparing LL to S&W Core. I will probably mention this and go into it a bit.

      I want this to be a bit of an essay (maybe a two-parter) because there should be some depth to it. Hopefully I’ll get started on it this week yet.

  6. cr0m says:

    Sweet!