The Free Cities of Gladshelm
Mercenaries of the Free Cities
Mercenaries make up most of the armed forces of the Free Cities. Few City states have sufficient tax revenue to maintain a very large standing force but many require large armies to defend themselves during the mid-summer months when desperate lords start to look for ways to bolster their income or food supplies for the coming winter.
As a result each city maintains a small city guard (if they can afford it) to keep the peace through out the year but the summer months usually involve hiring of one or more mercenary bands to protect a city or to attack her neighbors.
Commanded by so called “Count Arius” the Red Cloaks are a highly respected mercenary group that operates through the Free Cities and sometimes into Gael or the regions south of the Oroth Plains.
Bargen is a dwarven recruiter who tried to recruit the heroes in their second adventure to join the Red Cloaks . He offered 100 gold for 100 days of work.
This small group of mercenaries is characterized by their huge shields. They often employ pikemen is reserve behind a wall of heavily armored warriors. They are neither fast nor clever but are excellent at quelling riots or dealing with city populations. They are sometimes employed in siege duty where again their fighting style has excellent results. Desperate lords have sometimes employed them to field warfare with less than stellar results. Their armor makes them difficult and dangerous to attack but clever enemies simply ride around them to engage other targets.