I have picked up my books after a 2 year absence and I am trying to find the rules about paying other magi to make something for you. I found the rules in HoH:MC where a Verditius will charge 2 times the vis needed. e.g. project needs 6 pawns of Re Te vis, you pay 6 (to be used) + 12 (fee) = 18 pawns total.
I remember something about other Magi charging less, but I can't remember where it is. It was either the cost of the vis, e.g. 6 + 6 fee = 12,
or something to do with how much Vim they could extract in a season.
There's nothing specified in the RAW about this, as far as I can remember. My books are currently downloading slowly from Dropbox to my new computer, so it will be a while to check.
I do recall that the prices you mention are fixed by House Verditius and apply only to his House. Also, where the vis extraction price comes into play is if a Verditius is asked (presumably by another magus) to undertake a project that doesn't actually cost vis (or perhaps costs less vis than the rates would allow, such as making an Item of Quality, my personal interpretation) that the magus might charge 2x the amount of Vis he could extract in a season.
With respect to other magi who aren't Verditius, there aren't any established prices, and buyers and sellers can negotiate whatever they wish, but each side knows that there is a guideline in place for what is considered reasonable by House Verditius. Magi are free to charge more or less as they can negotiate with the buyer, who knows what the price would be if a Verditius makes the item...
True, my Verditius magus' prices are set by the house, but the question isn't about him. Here is the background to the question...
He has Elder Runes and he is using it to open a large item (70 pawns of vim) for another covenant. As it is a little hard for a covenant to lay there hands on 210 pawns of vim, he is going to make a deal with them including non-vis payments. He is considering farming out some lesser works that he needs doing.
He has a long list of lower level enchantments that he wants done for his lab, and if someone else does them he can spend his time on greater projects.
So, he opens their device for them, they pay him some vis and the other covenant's magi do some work for him. His pride is salved because he has turned an entire covenant into his underlings. 8)
I just needed to know the prices for the items they would make, and as they aren't bound by the price rules, he can use his high Bargain score
In sagas I've played in, we generally use the suggestion for Verditius in non-vis projects (also p114 of HoH:MC) - twice as much vis as you could extract during that time. We use a rough amount of Appopriate lab total/10, rounded up, and then double it to get a magus' "going rate".
Sorry to resurrect this thread after a few weeks, but I was just reading the House Mercere chapter of HoH:TL and noticed the part about Redcaps paying for items. They pay 1pawn per 10 levels of effect. It mentions how this is paid to outside magi and that lots of people compete for these contracts.
It is mentioned on p88, just below the section on Charity.
Redcaps pay 1p per 10 levels
Verditius want 2p per 10 levels
Other magi will be somewhere in between? Or even lower than the redcap price, because redcap "contracts are highly sought after" indicating that it might be a good deal.
I'd say it's a variation of the Good/Fast/Cheap triangle. Mideval guild-style organization and a cultural belief in quality prevent anyone from really selling an inferior product; and in terms of game mechanics, there's not a whole lot of difference regarding who makes an enchanted item.
However, you CAN distinguish on the other two axis.
My interpretation? Mercere sells at-cost, in order to build up goodwill, as well as to get rid of their older products that the Redcaps have been using (which may have physically worn out, or whatever.) However, there aren't all that many Mercere enchanters, and so those low-cost items are relatively rare and/or scheduled out for a decade or more.
In contrast, there are a LOT of virditius enchanters who will make whatever you want, when you want it - but you're paying a premium to get it next season (or even "oh, right, I've got a few of those back in the shop").
I think that there has been a misunderstanding somewhere.
House Mercere pays outside magi to make items and longevity rituals for redcaps. These outside magi are paid at 1 pawn per 10 levels, which is half what a verditius would get paid. House Mercere are buying these items from magi of other houses, not selling them.
I get the impression, yours may differ, that the prices House Verditius charges is effectively a floor, especially when selling items for vis. It's from the idea of someone price-gouging, that Vendettas spring (flatly stated in the text).
When you combine the minimum House Verditius charges with what House Mercer pays, you get a picture that Verditius don't undertake House Mercer projects unless the Redcap wishes to pay more than what the House typically pays. That's it. The idea of paying a premium to House Verditius (it is the choice of the Redcap, after all) to craft an item doesn't seem that unreasonable or create any problems.
Yes, I agree. The initial question of this thread is about prices for other houses. If another magus wants to hire a non-verditius to create something, are there any general guidelines of what they charge? Or is the Verditius the standard and every deal is a variant of that based on Bargain rolls.
We now have two examples in the core books. For game purposes, I am going to assume that most other magi charge around one and a half times the value of the item.
Well, I tend to believe that magi will charge whatever they want, whenever they want. If they are short of vis, and need a certain amount for a project later, and can undertake the commission, they may just set the price to the amount of vis that they need, or close, whether that actually matches up with "market" prices or not.
You're in the realm of customized equipment, commissioned works, and the makers can charge whatever the buyer is willing to spend. It might be possible to find someone else to make something, but that presupposes that the alternate maker has the interest and time to make such an item, and that he's willing to charge less than the original magus. If he doesn't have the time, his price might well be more, and the original magus might just decide to charge more...
As long as you are considering enchantment with a final effect level below 30, you should be able to find several mages who could do the job within your own tribunal within a season. But as the level increases, the requirement becomes more specific (tailored made to a user to prevent warping for high level effect for example), and also the timeline the buyer is willing to wait becomes shorter, then the alternative becomes rarer.
And then the mage has to pay the price if he absolutely wants a specific service done within a short timeline.
A wand of pilum of fire, with unlimited use, but no penetration ? There are probably a few lab texts available per tribunal for different variant of material/shapes, making it trivial to source.
Enchanting a mage tower, using hermetic architecture to have a nice +8 aura... well there might only a be couple of mages able to do it within the whole Order, they are definitely senior mages and they have their own agenda and might not be willing to drop what they are doing unless the reward is significant.
Between these two extremes, it will depends on the personal relations and connection you have and also how much you are willing to pay House Mercere to find the best deal available.
As a rule of thumb, any effect duplicating exactly a spell in the core rulebook is available, with a cost increasing with the final level. As soon as you start to look for customisation (specific parameters), high Penetration and what not, some research is required and the price will increase until Verditius House price.
When it starts touching completely original spells, or effect requiring some mystery initiation, the chance that a Verditius can do it drops significantly, thus the cost increases.