A bit more than a year ago Andy Bartlett wrote an interesting post on the economics of busking in WFRP1 (see The Golden Tune). In summary he calculated that a typical busker could earn a weekly income of 58GC 2/-, which far outstrips the 30/- weekly wage listed in the rulebook for an entertainer (or even the 60/- wage of an artisan).

I made the case in my original downtime post that the standard weekly wages listed in WFRP1 require some revision. But even the 50/- wage I proposed for Basic Entertainers is far below the earnings of a busker.  Busking therefore can distort the economics of downtime quite severely.

There is a simple solution, though. If we substitute shillings for crowns and pence for shillings, the WFRP1 rules (on pp67-68) start to make some sense. At least, they produce incomes closer to the levels of other professions. Under the changes weekly busking income (based on Bartlett’s assumptions) falls to 59/6. This is close enough to the 50/- assumed in my downtime system that I think it is workable. Better still would probably be to reduce the income from a successful busk to D4 shillings (and maintain D6 pence for a failure). That would lower the weekly income to a reasonable 43/6 – just enough to scrape a living.



  1. A pretty simple solution – and I like simple solutions. It makes perfect sense, especially as it reinforces the fact that people will be tossing a penny or two into the cap, maybe an odd shilling in very rare cases. And yes, while a good busker *can* earn as much money as an artisan, he or she will face harassment from the authorities, and probably from criminals, and there is uncertainty as to each daily/weekly take.


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