whoa, D&D 5e economy is compatible with ACKS

I crunched some numbers. 5e doesn’t have a super fleshed-out economy, but the few data points in the PHB match up pretty well with Adventurer Conqueror King, which has a very robust and internally consistent economic model.

This is good news. ACKS expands D&D’s footprint in some cool ways, into a high-level world simulator and war machine. Slotting this into 5e is very appealing to me.

What does a gold piece mean?

Compatibility basically rests on one question: does a gold piece mean approximately the same amount of money in both systems?

Equipment-wise it does. A 5e longsword costs 15 GP. An acks “sword” costs 10. The longsword has cost either 10 or 15 GP since the D&D/AD&D split. What about the high end of the equipment list? Admittedly, armor prices are way off. Plate armor is 60 in ACKS and 1500 in 5e, but armor prices are generally peculiar in 5e. Ship prices match the traditional D&D prices in both games: 10k for a sailing ship, 30k for a galley, etc.

It’s not surprising that 5e and ACKS start with a similarly-priced equipment list, since they’re both descended from TSR D&D. Things get more interesting when we look at the non-equipment extrapolations: price of grain, income for laborers, stuff like that.

First of all, both games have a very similar “cost of living” chart. 5e’s is presented as a fixed daily number and ACKS as a monthly number range, so I’ve converted them both to fixed monthly numbers. I’ve left out some brackets to match them as well as I can. ACKS, for instance, has tons of high-income brackets, as befits a game focused on high-level play, while 5e simply says “in the Aristocratic tier, you can spend as much as you want.”

5e                                     ACKS
Wretched: 0 gp (outcast)               Wretched: 1 gp (serf)
Poor: 6 gp (unskilled laborer)         Meager: 7 gp (unskilled laborer)
Modest: 30 gp (laborer)                Adequate: 26 gp (laborer)
Comfortable: 60 gp (skilled tradesman) Comfortable: 70 gp (master craftsman, 
                                                          farmer w 85 acres)
Wealthy: 120 gp (favored of royalty)   Prosperous: 275 gp (patrician, 200 acres)
Aristocratic: 300+ gp (noble)          various brackets: 450+ (noble)

These charts are strikingly similar. It’s almost as if the 5e guys took a look at ACKS… for which I wouldn’t blame them. If you’re serious about having a rational economy, you need to consult Alexander Macris’s work at some point.

Here are the 5e prices of the main agriculture and mining staples:
1 lb wheat: 1 cp
1 lb iron: 1 sp

I can’t find direct prices for ACKS good by the pound, but in the mercantile rules, I find that 80 stone of grain costs 10 GP. That comes to… 1.12 cp per pound of wheat. Pretty damn close. In ACKS, “common metal” is 200 GP per 100 stone, or 1.4 sp/pound. Given that “common metal” is already an abstraction, that’s close enough for me.

Livestock are easier: no stone-to-pounds conversions here. Here are the 5e and ACKS prices: pretty similar, except for the big markup on ACKS chickens.

               5e    ACKS
1 chicken:     2 cp  1 sp
1 pig:         3 gp  3 gp
1 cow:         10 gp 10 gp
1 draft horse: 50 gp 30-40 gp

Here’s something interesting: a “comfortable” ACKS yeoman farmer has 85 acres and makes 70 gp/month. Farmers don’t really make monthly income, though; more likely it’s around 420 gp at each of the two yearly harvests. That means that, after harvest, a farmer has a LOT of wealth in the barn – but instead of gold, it’s in the form of several tons of grain and vegetables. Murder-hobo adventurers, try to figure out some way to make a profit out of that.

There are still some potential speedbumps in the so-far-unreleased 5e Dungeon Master’s Guide. How much does a 5e castle cost? How much treasure do PCs earn? 5e could wildly diverge from ACKS at high levels. So far, though, it looks like you could coherently play 5e and use ACKS for your treasure, trade, and domain management.

30 Responses to “whoa, D&D 5e economy is compatible with ACKS”

  1. Mike Monaco says:

    That’s pretty cool. I have seen others criticize the ACKS economics as making libertarian assumptions…if libertarianism isn’t based on pure fantasy, I don’t know what is, so that’s ok with me if true. :)

  2. Rhenium says:

    Interesting assessment now if only we can execute an arbitrage trade on chickens!

    85 acres however is huge! If I recall, most medieval manor estates were this size, particularly in more fertile country where sub-division amongst sons was so common.

  3. John says:

    “How much treasure do PCs earn?” What do you mean by this? Isn’t that determined by the players and how they go in a session?

  4. Who invented or popularized the term Murder Hobos? I’ve started to see it pop up lots of places?

  5. 60 gp for a suit of armor is way out of whack.

    Let’s assume late fourteenth century here.

    Consider that a series cost about 2 shillings (24d), and a mass produced suit of plate cost about 8£ (1920d). A handcrafted suit of armour would be more, possibly much more.

    Also consider that a decent peasant income would be 2-4£ per year, not all in cash.

    You have an ACKS peasant earning enough to buy eight suits of armour, when really they shouldn’t even be able to buy one. And a sword that should cost one eightieth of the suit costing one sixth…

  6. The peasant might be GROSSING enough to buy 8 suits of armor, but my guess is that average annual NET earnings are vanishingly small, since in years of drought or famine or war they might take a complete loss.

  7. paul paul says:

    John – yes, I meant “how much treasure do the monsters have,” as per random treasure tables – the players’ earnings are up to them. That said, many editions have a safe guess for an amount of gold earned by level. For instance, it’s possible for a first-level 1e fighter to have acquired more than 2000 GP, but it’s hard because 1 gp is usually 1 xp.

    Charles Taylor: As John D Payne says, a peasant doesn’t net very much. Also, a peasant might grow 365 GP worth of grain and never see a coin. Chances are, all of that grain will be eaten or used for seed next year. Nevertheless, a successful farmer does accumulate some wealth: in saxon england, 1 out of 5 farmers were expected to show up to their lord’s defense with a weapon and (chain, not plate) armor.

    Also, 50-60 GP is the traditional cost of plate armor in OD&d/Basic. Based on the fact that it’s an off-the-shelf non-tailored purchase in D&D, it must not be the Renaissance stuff.

    Rhenium – yeah, it’s pretty damn comfortable, if 2 acres of land support one person (http://faculty.history.wisc.edu/sommerville/123/123%2013%20Society.htm).

  8. The figures I gave were gross cash equivalents. I wasn’t suggesting a peasant would be able to actually buy the armour, merely looking at an equivalence of value. The value I gave for armour was for a “munitions-grade” suit, i.e. a mass-produced item (yes, they had assembly lines and mass production in 1400).

    The fact remains that armour is either astoundingly cheap in acks/basic/od&d or peasants are fabulously wealthy…

    Or perhaps it’s just that their baseline is a peasant with 85 acres – this would have been rather exceptional in medieval England. Not so much a peasant as a member of the lesser gentry, at that point. 30-40 acres was a large-ish peasant holding. Most families had less. I was operating on the basis of a “comfortable peasant”.

    I would describe a “comfortable” peasant as farming 10-15 acres, with a yearly cash-equivalent income of several pounds.

    At 85 acres, you’d probably be looking at (off the top of my head) something like 10-12 pounds of income, mostly in cash (larger farmers tended to sell their crops for cash, smallholders tended to eat their crops). So the ACKS comfortable farmer with 85 acres should earn about 90gp a year, or the armour should cost about 350gp.

    It’s stuff like this which is why I take ACKS claim to a sensible economy with a big grain of salt…

  9. Rhenium says:

    So we have two issues.
    1) The unusual abundance of land at 85 acres per family unit, and
    2) The unusual productivity.

    Working the land is hard and very labour intensive, which is why farms were often so small in the early medieval period. Point 1 can be explained if this is an area that has recently been settled. In the case of these adventures, perhaps resettled, hence the presence of ruins, ancient castles etc. It might also explain the lack of serfs or indentured slaves, if there is a lot of extra land to spare.

    As for point 2 the question of productivity, perhaps a large amount is grazing country? Perhaps people have better agricultural techniques (bountiful crops, well bred animals)? Productivity was really quite poor in medieval England. A lot of this may depend on the particular scenario such as climate and other factors. Given the relative “tech” level may mean that a typical D&D world is more like an early renaissance period as opposed to true “Dark Ages”.

    The more I think about the “Dark Ages” in the period between say 800 AD and 100 AD, the more it comes across as somewhat post-apocalyptic. Vague tales of mighty yet forgotten empires, their cyclopean architecture standing around you as you grub out the last potato with two more months of harsh winter to go…

  10. Paul: Any ideas who coined “murder hobos”?

  11. Rhenium says:

    Payne: A quick google search indicates the term initially appeared in early 2010.

    A forum post from late 2009 follows…

    “Many players, veteran and new, will often make their characters have minimal backstory or goals, either through laziness or fear that the GM will go out of their way to screw the player over. The result is a homeless person with no family or friends who only kills and goes through dungeons for the sake of it, being at best sociopathic.”

  12. Thanks, Rhenium! Should have done that search myself. :)

  13. Florian says:

    @Charles: Instead of assuming things about ACKS economics here is a blog from Alex himself about this issue:
    And here a post about armor prices: http://autarch.co/forum/linear-cost-armor-0

    Also as far as I know the ACKS setting is settled in the late antiquity with the assumptions about settlements and land.

  14. Greatnate says:

    The average farmer in ACKs only has 20 acres and lives hand to mouth (see here: http://autarch.co/blog/starting-ground-upliterally). The important word in the article’s example is yeomen, which is not your average farmer. The crop only income from 85 acres is 340 gp/year in ACKs or roughly 14 pounds. That’s before expenses, taxes, and duties.

    Another important assumption is that pretty much everyone in ACKs is living hand to mouth, your average lord might be living much better than the average peasant, but neither one of them is saving. Very few peasants are going to be able to save up and keep enough money to feed their family for more than a year, and if they did they would probably buy something useful like a draft horse or an ox, rather than a single suit of armor that he isn’t trained to use.

    60 gp (about 2.5 pounds) for a set of full plate is ahistoric, but important for game balance. Since every other piece of armor is priced at 10 gp/AC, all raising the price to historic levels does is penalize the classes that can actually wear plate, and since starting wealth is around 100 gp makes it so your characters have to wait to second level before buying plate. Historical plate probably provided more protection than 1 AC more than lamellar armor, but at the end of the day it’s a game and 97% of the in-game population is completely unaffected by the price of plate since they can’t use it.

  15. Tom H. says:

    I had this argument with Alex (the author) two and a half years ago; he argues that the cost of plate armor is actual historical in http://autarch.co/forum/linear-cost-armor-0.

    The bulk of his most relevant post:

    For middle ages prices, I assumed 1 silver piece in ACKS is worth 1 English silver penny, so an English pound is worth 24gp. Referencing some medieval prices, I saw some exorbitant prices occasionally listed for plate armor (Prince of Wales armor, 340L) but those were outliers. Complete lance armor is listed as L3 6s 8d in 1590 – roughly 80gp. Lance armor is listed as L4 in 1624 – roughly 96gp.
    However, “complete lance armor” is a heavier and more expensive armor than ACKS Plate Armor. Note that ACKS states “historical examples include classical panoply (if worn with arm and leg armor), medieval plate and mail armor, Middle Eastern mirror armor, Eastern European plated mail, and Japanese tatami-do.” Full Renaissance plate might be AC8, or 80gp, in ACKS terms.
    For ancient greek prices, I assumed 1sp is 1 drachma. The panoply of hoplite armor and weapons in Imperial Athens cost between 300 and 500 drachma, or 30-50gp. A panoply could consist of either linothorax (leather) or cuirass and greaves (less than plate – we’ll call it the equivalent of chain). It also included shield, spear, and short sword. So that gives us (20gp+10gp+3gp+7gp=)40gp to (40gp+10gp+3gp+7gp=)60gp. So ACKS is somewhat overpriced for panoply.
    From this I concluded that pricing at 10gp per point of AC was not unreasonable, and quite within a range of realistic prices. Since it was also smooth and aesthetic, I stuck with it.
    I suspect if you want to price more accurately, you actually should *decrease* the cost of leather, ring, and chain, rather than increase the price of plate.

  16. Tom, sure, you can set your silver penny equivalent wherever you want. If you want harness to cost 60gp, that’s fine.

    My point was that the other prices don’t fall in line with that!

    So the economy is off.

    It seems to basically just be old D&D prices with done changes and tweaks, rather than an actual sensible, researched, internally consistent “economy”.

    Also, I don’t know about you, but my games are more medieval than renaissance, so I’m not too sure why he’s quoting prices from 1600! Cash prices for armour in 13-1400 are much higher than that.

  17. Faoladh says:

    On “murderhobo”: According to this blog entry, it was a neologism that gained popularity on RPGnet in spring of 2011. Since that is the oldest reference that a Google search returns for the term, I suspect that it may be accurate.

  18. Faoladh says:

    And then I see Rhenium’s post on the topic, though he included no links.

  19. Thanks for the links, Faoladh!

  20. Alcamtar says:

    Paul: Very nice comparison.

    Charles, et al: there is a big difference between realistic and internally consistent. I don’t think anyone expects D&D to be realistic. Those who so want a realistic, historically accurate game would be better served by something like C&S or Gurps.

    Regarding the cost of plate armor, thw very presence of plate suggests 15c or later, so the early renaissance prices are not unreasonable. If you really want a middle ages game you should remove plate and leave chain as the best armor available. Either way the problem goes away. (Admittedly this involves a large fudge factor, but not at all unreasonable for D&D which blatantly thumbs its nose at history and realism.)

    I don’t know where you are getting the 85 acre farm… maybe the 8 families per sq mi in the borderlands? If so I think this is a misconception. Borderlands implies a mix of farms and wilderness, not 100% settled with large sprawling farms. ACKS assumes 30 acres per family, of which only 20 acres is cultivated and 10 acres is fallow pastureland. This is quite reasonable historically. So a borderlands area with 8 families per square mile is actually 38% settled and 62% wilderness.

    At 20 acres and a family of 5, the family is producing 20 quarters of wheat (80gp) but consuming 20 gp per in food, for an annual surplus of 60 gp. The cost of a suit of plate then is an entire year’s cash crop. Except some of that goes to taxes so (if I am reading it correctly) a peasant family had a real income of 45 gp per year. After buying clothes (12gp) and tools (5gp), and a mule or cart or plowshare (20gp), there is maybe 8 gp left… not enough for a proper sword, much less plate armor.

  21. To build an RPG economy, you can work from the top-down or the bottom-up.

    The top-down approach is the simpler of the two. You select your time and place, find a list of prices for goods and services in that time and place, and frame the game within those.

    The problem with the top-down approach is that any list of prices is going to be “off” relative to certain historical benchmarks because in real-life prices fluctuated over time and space. Prices weren’t constant for anything. Not even price ratios were consistent – wheat to daily wages, peasant wages to soldier wages, soldier wages to cost of soldier equipment, all fluctuated constantly. This is all the more true when, like ACKS, the game tries to be usable for a vast period ranging across 2,000 years and 2 continents. The other problem with the top-down approach is that it provides no explanatory power. You don’t really understand WHY the prices are what they are, and so you have no way of pricing new things – like, say, magic items – that don’t already appear in your historical lists.

    I therefore think the top-down approach is flawed. With ACKS, I took a bottom-up approach. I used a small set of historical prices were used as for the starting assumptions in the game’s economic model, and then built it from there. Happily, my assumptions and calculations were good ones, and the outcome that occurs does, within a modest variance, function well as a simulation of the ancient and medieval world. I’ve been refining the model literally every month since I developed the game in greater and greater detail to the point that I now have a complete economy in equilibrium worked out cash flows at both the micro (manorial) and macro (imperial) level.

    The peasant incomes are based around 1 silver penny = 1 silver piece and 1 quart of wheat valued at 4gp (3 shillings 4 pence). Each farm of 30 acres has 20 cultivated acres producing a yield of 1 quarter (8 bushels) per acre, yielding 20 quarters of wheat or 80gp. The 10 acres of pastureland produce another 80gp in cheese, meat, and wool (all based on historical data). This requires 183 man-days of labor, leaving 317 man-days of labor for the household (each household has 500 man-days of labor available). Labor-days are worked at 1sp per day, for another 32gp. Total household production is therefore 80+80+32gp=192gp, or 16gp per month.

    The peasant consumption is 1.88gp in wheat per month. This is based on Dyer’s “Standards of Living in the Middle Ages,” which requires 9,000 calories of wheat per household. That is 9 1,000-calorie loaves per day. 1 quarter produces 576 loaves of bread, and since 1 quarter = 4gp = 400cp, 1 loaf = 0.7cp. 0.7cp x 9 x 30 = 1.88gp. per month An additional 2,000 calories come from non-wheat, costing 0.34gp per month. Non-food consumption is set at 1.53gp per month, so that it reflects ~40% of total household expense of 3.75gp per month.

    The lord extracts the difference between production and subsistence consumption, which works out to (16-3.75) ~ 12gp per month. If you follow the economic flows, however (a very complex spreadsheet that shows a manor in equilibrium), the lord ends up returning some of his extraction in feasts and other services; and the median peasant family ends up netting about 6gp per month out of 16gp, or 37.5% of the take.

    Note that ACKS does not specify the exact means by which the lord extracts his value – it could be hired labor on a plantation, rent from tenant farmers, or serfs on demesne land. In any case, a 63.5% extraction by the lords is well-within historical norms; more oppressive serfdom extracts as much as 75%, more enlightened eras less. By adjusting the land, service, and tax values per family up or down, the Judge can simulate different economic conditions quite easily.

    At the default values, where 6gp = 60sp = 60 silver pennies, that translates to a household income of 60×12=720 silver pennies per year, or 3L per year, or 2d per day for the two able-bodied peasants and their children.

    For Guns at War I priced out various Renaissance era armor prices as follows:

    Padded Jack 20gp AC 2
    Munition Armor 30gp AC 3
    Half-Plate Armor 100gp AC 4
    Three-Quarters Plate Armor 150gp AC 6
    Full Plate Armor 300gp AC 8 (6)

    Munition Armor: A set of mass-produced plate armor made of cheap iron or iron alloy. Munition armor includes a light helmet, a gorget with spaulders, and a cuirass with laminated tassets. It has an encumbrance of 3 stone. Historical examples include Almain-rivet armor and most other 16th and 17th century footman’s armor.

    Half-Plate Armor: A set of hand-crafted, reticulated steel armor that covers the head, arms, and torso. It consists of a cuirass, a light helmet, a gorget, spaulders, cuirass, vambraces, and pauldrons. Half-plate armor was often worn by elite heavy infantry and by lighter types of horsemen. Because of the hand-crafted fit and advanced steel used, three-quarters plate armor has an encumbrance of just 3 stone despite offering 4 points of protection. Historical examples include 16th and 17th century landsknecht’s and harquebusier’s armor.

    Three-Quarters Plate Armor: A set of hand-crafted, reticulated steel plate armor that covers the entire upper body and the front half of the legs down to the knee. The torso is protected with a cuirass and spaulders, while the arms are fully armored with vambraces and pauldrons. The thighs and knees are protected by long tassets, but riding boots replace the lower leg armor. A light helm with gorget accompanies the armor, although a heavy helm may also be worn. Because of the hand-crafted fit and advanced steel used, three-quarters plate armor has an encumbrance of just 4 stone despite offering 6 points of protection. Historical examples include 16th and 17th century demi-lancer’s and cuirassier’s armor.

    Full Plate Armor: A complete set of hand-crafted, articulated, steel plate armor providing head-to-toe protection. It includes a heavy helmet and gorget for the head and neck; a cuirass with fault, tassets, and culet for the torso; spaulders, vambraces, and gauntlets for the arms; and mail skirt, cuisses, poleyns, greaves, and sabatons for the lower body. Full plate armor grants an AC of 8 against most attacks. However, it only provides an AC of 6 against morning stars, two-handed swords, great axes, pole arms, longbows, composite bows, arbalests, firearms, and natural attacks by monsters with more than 4 HD. (Firearms might ignore up to 5 points of armor in some cases; see below). Because of the hand-crafted fit and advanced steel used, full plate armor has an encumbrance of just 6 stone despite offering 8 points of protection. Historical examples of full plate armor include the White, Gothic, Maximilian, and Milanese suits of the 15th through 17th centuries.

  22. Faoladh says:

    Alexander Macris: Wow! Thanks for giving the assumptions behind the ACKS economy here. I have one minor question, though – should the value of non-wheat calories be that much less than wheat calories? That doesn’t seem intuitively right, though I haven’t looked at the historical values for comparison.

  23. My pleasure! Happy to share.

    According to Dyer, the calories were almost entirely wheat (or, I should say, “grain”):
    “The food needs of a peasant family have been estimated at 11,000 calories per day, on the basis of modern recommendations that an adult male needs 2,900, a female 2,150, and the three children about 6,000. It is thought, again on the basis of analysies of modern foods, that this would be provided by an annual 6 quarters, 5 bushels of grain, made up of wheat, barley and oats, eaten as bread and pottage, which would provide about 9,000 calories per day, the other 2,000 coming from two flitches of bacon each year, milk and cheese from a cow, garden produce, and ale…” – Standards of Living in the Later Middle Ages by Christopher Dyer

    Note that Dyer’s 5-person household is the same we use in ACKS. Elsewhere he notes “..The number of mouths to be fed was one of the main variables in a peasant’s budget. Peasant households were once thought to have been large and extended…Now it is believed that the great majority of peasant households were simple, containing a nuclear family of husband, wife, and children. According to one serf census from Lincolnshire in 1268-9, the average family size was 4.68 persons.”

    On a related note: Modeling medieval England was one of my “test cases” for ACKS.

    We know that England had a historical population of around 2 million when the Domesday Book was created. At 5 people per household, 2 million means 400,000 households in ACKS terms. ACKS assumes each household requires 30 acres. 400,000 households x 30 acres translates to 12,000,000 acres of farmland.

    From the Domesday Book, we now that in England, an average manor had 600 acres to 1800 acres, averaging 1,200 acres each, with a total of around 10,000 manorial estates. Domesday book’s 10,000 manorial estates x 1,200 acres each also equates to 12,000,000 acres of farmland. That’s the same as the value ACKS gives.

    Of course, ancient and medieval historians love to debate these figures, so ultimately it comes down to choosing a set of figures you think is reasonable and working from there.

  24. Paul says:

    I love this data, Alex! I love not doing my own research.

  25. Yeah. Given the way academics publish, assembling game-friendly data is excruciatingly time consuming and painful.

  26. Faoladh says:

    Alexander Macris: Even more numbers! I love it! I am definitely enjoying this, as it lets me play with the “guts” of the system.

    I was referring to the cost of grain, at about 0.21gp (0.20888…) per 1000 calories, as compared with the cost of non-grain, at 0.17gp per 1000 calories. Why the differential, and why in that way? Does that reflect other data you have access to? Yeah, I’m looking at a discrepancy of just a few copper pieces, but those things add up. It would seem to point to the idea that a “nomad diet” of meat, dairy, and vegetables would be superior (or cheaper, which at this scale amounts to the same) to a settled agricultural diet based on grain supplemented by the rest. My intuitive assumption would have been that non-grain was more expensive per calorie, meaning that nomads would choose it simply because they don’t have reliable grain access.

  27. It seems I have an error in my spreadsheet. I actually intended for the caloric cost to be about equal but I entered the formula as (2/11)*(1.88) rather than the correct (1.88/9*2). Thanks for the catch. The difference is a fraction higher expense on food and slightly less available for goods.

    There is a lesson here about the value of sharing your data for others to review!

  28. Faoladh says:

    OK, so generally 0.21gp per 1000 calories. Got it.

    Yeah, you need people who are not you who have an eye for detail to look over your information. I used to formulate that as only “people who are not you”, but I learned my lesson in that.

  29. Apep says:

    To add to Alex’s numbers, I’d argue that plate armour is relatively over-priced compared to some historical periods. In many ways I think the ACKS system is a better economic simulator for the Classical era or for the Renaissance than it is for the middle ages. If we look at the prices of armour in Germany during the renaissance compared to peasant wages, then we have:

    Peasants made approx 2 Guilders/month
    Landsknecht soldiers (mercenaries) made double that, so 4 Guilders/month
    Veteran Landsknecht Soldiers made double that, so 8 Guilders/month (this pay grade was dependent on their equipment)

    A pike cost 2 Guilders and was deducted from the first month’s pay for new Landsknecht if they couldn’t afford it (which would have been most of them).

    Armor (in this case 3/4 plate usually, so helmet, gorget, breast and back, fauld and tassets to cover the upper leg, and arms) cost around 16 Guilders.

    If we pretend that a GP = 2/3 Guilder, then we have recreated precisely the ACKS costs for peasant labor (3gp), light infantry (6gp), and heavy infantry (12gp) as well as the cost of a spear (3gp). Ultimately this suggests a price of 24gp for something that would at least be the equivalent of banded mail.

    Certainly a year’s wages for a peasant could put them in plate armor and equip them with a spear, but that requires us to pretend that they don’t need to spend that
    money on food.

  30. Thanks for the additional facts, Apep. I hadn’t done a direct comparison to Renaissance data but it’s interesting to see how much the values hold. I do think by-and-large the pricing and economics system are broadly consistent.

    The main area where I think ACKS could use additional work is in structuring alternative types of domains. The domain system does well in simulating land-based realms (such as Medieval Europe, the Thematic Byzantine Empire, or Feudal Japan) but it does not do as well at simulating realms where land ownership and taxation were formally separated such as Ancient Rome.

Leave a Reply