I don't necessarily agree with this reason:
> But donkey work like sailing a ship, or harvesting etc should not require
> all of a nobles efforts, which are needed for adventuring, fund raising
> and other noble pursuits.
That "donkey work" is what Olympia is all about, for better or worse.
But I do like the idea that unsworn nobles may decide to hire themselves
out, and the fact that a (perhaps desperate) player may choose to hire
out his own nobles. I like the extra layer it adds to the economy.
The mechanics might be somewhat tricky, but I think it could be
reasonably. Something like:
WORK gold [as] Hire yourself out for at least gold/month
HIRE who gold Hire a noble who issued WORK. New hires
sign on at the end of the month to the noble
offering the most gold per month.
TELL who command Give a command to a hireling
FIRE who Release a hireling from service.
Commands which a hired unit may be given with TELL:
any hired unit:
Hired units may be paid with PAY. They may be paid in advance; they
will deduct their pay from their inventory at the end of each month.
Unpaid hirelings leave the service of their noble.
Hireling may not be given orders directly. They may only be instructed
with the TELL command.
Hired units would probably keep their possessions separate from
their employers. i.e. when one signed on, the hireling would appear
to have no inventory. The hiring noble could give the hireling items,
and get them back later. When the hireling reverted back to its true
owner, its original inventory, plus any pay accumulated, would reappear
in the inventory.
-- Rich Skrenta <firstname.lastname@example.org>