A Hitchhicker's Guide to the Planes
There are five types of city living in the game. This determines where you live in Sigil and the amenities you have at your disposal. Each level has a monthly cost associated with it and a permanent cost. The monthly cost must be paid each month to keep the lifestyle maintained. Missing a month causes you to make a charisma check. The DC for this check starts at 8. Once you miss a payment the DC increases by one, permanently. If this check is passed you don’t’ owe for that month – the cost is subsumed in the credit/payments you’ve previously paid. If this check is failed the creditors come calling and toss you from your place (as well as pee on your carpet). In game terms you are busted down to the next level of living and must immediately pay the monthly cost for that level or make a charisma check. You will keep repeating this process till you make a check or pay a monthly cost you can afford or, of course, hit the streets. Months in advance may be paid to a maximum of three but any living increase must be paid all at once.
The One Percent: All food is not only paid for but the best cooks fight to serve at your parties. Your house is large and in the The Lady’s Ward, a mansion really. Numerous staff sees to your every need and The Harmonium keeps a permanent group of bloods not only at your domicile but wherever such an important person goes. Clerics are provided at your house from a friendly temple and you are considered fully healed after only one hour in attendance. Any level cleric spell necessary to ‘get you right’ is at your disposal. All material components are provided except resurrection. Even in this case the spell is provided if you have the materials.
Carriages or palanquins are provided for your transportation so the unwashed heathens won’t bother you. Tickets to any high class events and reservations at the best taverns are yours for the asking. A +10 bonus to diplomacy checks is given to the lucky recipient at this level of living with any other nobles who are aware of Sigil and it’s prominence in the multiverse. A +5 bonus to any diplomacy checks made with any other nobles just for being so rich. Your clothes set the trends; the pipeweed is picked by the dryads themselves and cleaned on their virgin thighs and the maitre-de’s let you walk in without a reservation for the pleaser of fawning over you, Mr. Mordenkainen.
Monthly cost: 40,000
Permanent living: 4,800,000
High On The Boar: Not a bad place to be really. You live in any of the better wards; Market, Guildhall or Clerk’s. A brownstone or a sizable apartment is yours for the taking. Healing is provided for free and you are considered fully healed with any full 8 hours of rest in your home. All Basic cleric services are provided with you supplying the material cost for raise dead or resurrection. Servants are in attendance and transportation like a carriage or such is always available. Harmonium (2) guards are available for walking around town. Diplomatic checks for nobles and merchants are made at a +4 bonus within the city. The clothes are stylish, the pipeweed the best and the local maitre-de’s know your name, Abe Froman, sausage king of Greyhawk.
Monthly Cost: 20,000
Permanent living: 240,000
Working For The Weekend: Solidly middle class, you live in the Clerk’s or Market Ward in a small town home or apartment. There are no servants but you might have a part time cleaning lady. Food is good but you have to cook it. The natural healing rate is doubled in your home but no one stops by to see how you are doing unless arrangements are made. Dead? You should leave a will. The clothes fit and you might even have something that was in style last season. The pipeweed is available and not to shaggy. The local maitre-de will take reservations from you but only with a small bribe,
Monthly Cost: 1,500
Permanent Living: 120,000
SOF (Single Orcish Female): Basic living in the beautiful Lower or Hive wards. A small flat with all the basic necessities that four walls and a room can provide. Food is ok and once in a wile you might eat something almost yummy. Healing is at basic rates and cleaning is up to you. Clothes have some color to them, the pipeweed if from the hobbit at the corner and maitre-des won’t let you in the better restaurants but the guy at the street level stall knows you quite well.
Monthly cost: 200
Permanent Living: 48,000
Living on the Edge: Bootless and unhorsed. Ahhhhhh….big city living. When you ran away from home thinking you were going to make it big this is exactly what you didn’t have in mind. (But that half-orc at the gate station seemed so nice…) Füd provided, healing at normal rates with only a small chance of disease and the razorvine around the stairs helps keep the muggers to just a minor annoyance. There’s a cot and even an old carpet hung in front of the doorway so you can only see the legs of the other creatures going down the hall to use the one toilet. Clothes are made by a company called burlap, the pipeweed is from the guy down the hall and scarce with the maitre-de’s calling the hardheads when you walk by.
Monthly Cost: 50
Permanent Living: 30,000
Last and definitely least…
Street Level: Unwashed heathen. Sleeping in the Hive where they tend to not roll you to the end of the district for sleeping in doorways. Neighbors are the dead The Dustmen haven’t cleaned up yet. Food is the rat you just caught, healing is almost non existent and disease ridden and the razorvine is your major competitor for doorway space. Clothes are taken from that dead guy and pipeweed was what brought you to this low end. The Harmonium beat you on regular basis just to make sure you don’t bring down the property values in the upper wards. there is food, questionable, to be found at any of the Bleaker’s soup kitchens but who know where they get the meat.
There are various things that can help you meet the monthly requirements – like a job for instance. However these take away from your available time. Also other things might affect these numbers on a case by case basis.
Jobs: Give up time for money. Full time work makes more then part time. The nature of the work and the skill required sets the starting amount.
Charisma: A bard making performance checks is guaranteed a certain amount of money this is also factored in to the equation.
Skill: Can you make potions? Good at it? That makes your job doing so more valuable.
Knowledge history? Catalogue books at the city archives!
A value determined by these factors is multiplied by the level of time taken and a final number is determined. This amount of money is given to the character the first of every month. He or she may or may not use this money to pay the bills.
Full time employment: 1 (40+ hours working, set times)
Part Time: .75 (20 or so, mostly set times)
Come as you are: .15 (5 hours, no set times)
Here is an example:
Satlese lives in the ‘Working for the Weekend’ level of city living and so monthly owes 1500.
She has a job singing at The Lady’s Ward for the Fortune’s Wheel. A high class establishment. That pays well and only requires her to be there a few evening a week but is still considered full time. It is skilled labor (singing) and allows her to make charisma checks to add to her straight income so we have something like this:
Full time singer at a high class establishment: 600
Charisma (tips): 900 vary – but with a high class joint most of income will be from tips given from hopeful/drunk/lonely men/winners at the tables. This may seem high but in her case a succubus is considered very specialized and draws a lot of attention.
Skill: She is an accomplished singer. This amount reflects that there are patrons of the arts who pay to make sure she has the time to work and produce music: 200
Factor in the time her job takes.
Monthly income: 1275
So she falls short each month. This might explain her willingness to distract someone in a bar for cash (how she met the party) and why she might be willing to pick up odd jobs here and there.
Now, she has missed some work adventuring with the party. This might solidly drop her down a level so she has to be careful to make up the time or accept the time loss and hope adventuring makes up the difference.
It is important to note the monthly living expenses only cover her basic living expenses. In her case her addiction to alcohol is above and beyond her monthly living expenses – or it wouldn’t be a disadvantage. It’s easy to say that any day she’s working isn’t a problem – she works at a night club – but beyond that it’s a separate expense and she must always keep that in mind.
So when she returns from Acheron her boss is mad and cuts her hours – fair enough she’s missed some work. Here’s what we have:
Full time singer at a high class establishment: 600
Charisma (tips): This amount drops as, of course, she must be there to collect tips: 300
Skill: She is an accomplished singer. However she isn’t producing music by being gone so this money might suffer. However artists are supposed to be temperamental so for the small time she’s missed this isn’t penalized: 200
Now were at a different total this month: 1100
Now let’s factor in the time: 825
In this case she hasn’t missed that much work there is no change to the factor of her work but rest assured next month will have different number if she’ isn’t willing to make up the numbers.
Also in this case her lack of showing up at work penalizes her twice: the multiplier and in her factor for tips.
Such is the way of arty jobs.