Wednesday 10 June 2009

Hireling Backgrounds

We all know hirelings are a cornerstone of D&D and other dungeon-delving type fantasy games. Cross their palms with silver and they'll follow you to any dragon's den. But what's really in it for them? What's all that silver for? Roll a d12 and find out.

1. The hireling is an opiate addict and needs money for his fix.
2. The hireling's sister was abducted by bandits and he needs ransom money.
3. The hireling is on the run from the law and being a hireling is just a cover.
4. Money makes the world go round and this hireling is just a greedy bastard who wants more of it.
5. The hireling spends all together too much on whores.
6. Gambling debts and loan sharks makes earning money a matter of life and death.
7. The hireling is a lothario and bon viveur and needs silver to maintain the lifestyle "to which he has become accustomed."
8. The hireling is an ascetic who wants to earn money so he can give it to his religious order/the poor.
9. There are a dozen children for the poor sap to support.
10. The hireling is saving money so that he can buy a boat and head off to the New World.
11. The hireling is an ex-military man and the only skill he has is with a sword.
12. The hireling wants to pay a cleric to heal his wife of a debilitating disease.


  1. Oh, I like this a lot. Wonderful way to jumpstart ideas -- especially if the hireling somehow drags the PC into the background somehow.

    May I borrow it? :3

  2. AWESOME!!!! And we get to dust off our trusty d12, BONUS! I'm adding this to my notebook, I really like this Noisms.

  3. Oh man, another awesome little table to add tot he collection. I wish folks like you and Taichara woudl put all this stuff in one big book.

  4. Nice. Another little wonderful table indeed.

  5. I'd like to say "Kudos!", so that you're distracted, and don't notice my deft copy/paste manoeuvre

  6. 13. The hireling is hoping you'll die so he can become a PC.

  7. *borrows*

    Not that I've had players take on hirelings in over a decade... which may account for the high mortality of player-characters in my last few campaigns :)