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Value of Slavery/Prostitution in Skyrim


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OK, was thinking about this for a bit.


They have to be able to make enough septims in a typical day's work to pay for some food and drink and a place to stay (and in the case of slaves, to pay for guards/restraints to make sure they remain slaves.


So...how much should a typical prostitution encounter pay?  How much should an hour/day of labor pay?  This leads into a whole new problem of how much does the player make for adventuring and how much do they spend doing it?


EDIT: And also, if you're buying/selling a slave, what should a reasonable cost be?

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The price depends on the quality of the merchandise. A good looking woman would most likely move to a city where she could get hire rates for her duty. The average farmer will most likely not be able to afford a high-class lady. There might be brothels in smaller settlements, but I doubt it (most likely a wench in a tavern). In general, slavery and prostitution is a business line - you need money to start the trade, and you need even more for upkeep and new products.

Meaning: the cost would be adapted to the location. And most likely the cost will be adapted to the daily salary of the average worker (like the cost for a weekly fee e.g.). Well, this is not really helping since the numbers are lacking. I'd say, a farmer in a small town will earn about 20 septims per week. A trader in a small city will move about 100 gold per week. And the rich jerk in a big city (like eastern empire trading) will maybe have up to 500 gold per week. That would mean that an average person would need more or less a year to earn enough money to buy a house within city limits (which is most unlikely, but that could be because the houses are too cheap).

As for the slaves: I'd say a healthy slave in good age and good condition might cost up to 1.000 gold. An old hag, a child e.g. - maybe not more then 300 or 500 septims. Something like a gladiator would go all the way to 2.000 gold (if he is well known). Or more, depending on the fame. Since murder is charged with 1.000 gold, this might be a "realistic" approach on the subject.

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Things are thrown off by player level, too. Once you get to be higher level, like into the 50's, you start noticing that people are giving you unreasonable amounts of gold for completing simple tasks. Deliver a ring from the jewelry stand in Markarth to Calcelmo? Here, have 1500 gold. Deliver the stallion potion? Another 1k-ish gold. The silver smelter paying you a week's salary to convince the orc to stop beating him? He gives you like 750 gold or something. It's silly.


Plus, everything goes screwy once the player obtains and learns the 'banish daedra' enchantment. Then with just a handful of iron and leather strips and filled petty soul gems, he can easily make enough iron daggers of banish to walk away with all of whiterun's gold, and do that every day. And that's ignoring exploits the player may know, like killing the vendor and reloading saves to refresh his inventory.


And so it's pretty hard to judge your fees based on how much money the player is expected to have, but if you try to base your mod around "npc prices", where 10 septims is enough to buy a meal or a room for a night at an inn, and 5000 gold for Breezehome sounds like an incredible sum, that will very likely be a pittance for the player unless he's just started the playthrough. And at that point, the player is probably unlikely to spend what little money they have at a brothel. They'll say "I'll come back later when I'm financially solid".

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I can't say for the slaves, but I'd say the starting point for an unskilled prostitute per hour shoud be 50% to 150% of the price of a simple inn room per night, myself.


I don't recall the price in Skyrim gold off-hand, but it's a good starting point.


Bearing in mind that it's an entirely unnecessary luxury service, you could also compare it to the price of entirely unnecessary luxury food, like high-quality chocolate.


...Skyrim doesn't HAVE delicious luxury chocolate as far as I'm aware, but yeah it's going to be something RATHER more expensive than a sweet-roll.


In real life, while the prices of hookers vary extraordinarily, anywhere from half the price of a hotel room to twice the price of a hotel room is pretty reasonable per ride or per hour.

$50 to $100 US, for example, is perfectly good payment in Colombia.

You can get a PRETTY mean chocolate confection for that much, and you can stay at a really ratty Inn/hotel/motel for that much per night, too.


With more skill, they can charge more, but to remain reasonable, the max ceiling per prostitute-hour will be something like 2 or 300% the cost of a high-luxury hotel room for a night.


Now when you get to the extravagant luxury escorts and shit, you can probably start inflating things to a much more absurd and unreasonable amount, like the equivalent of $2000 US per hour or so ... but just like there's no hooker whose services are ACTUALLY worth that much money in the real world, there isn't going to be one worth that much gold in Skyrim.

Not that I can think of a good comparison for "what costs 2K US" offhand so you can figure out the equivalent in Skyrim gold.  But you can think one up.

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Putting in the player's ability to earn gold is going to throw everything off the scale.

Walking around Whiterun can get you thousands of gold with starting alchemy level, and grow exponentially from there with skill increase and gear.

Even picking up random junk around town and selling it to merchants can amount to hundreds if not thousand of gold if you have the patient for it.


A better baseline would probably be see how much services cost, I think inn is usually 10 per night, bare houses go from 5000 to 25000 with you needing the obtain permission to buy, a horse is 1000.

Food items varies a lot, farmers are willing to pay 1 to 2 gold for raw cheap produces. Inns sell varieties of food and drinks going from a few gold to hundred plus.


I would say gold per day to should be low to mid hundreds.

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One would have to think of Skyrim without the player interacting with it. That's what it all pointing to. Start with lvl 1, check the common prices. That's where you're supposed to start.


If you scale it with the player, a simple slave might cost 50k gold. Totally screwed, cause it's value would be like 10 times a house in Whiterun. Forget it. This game was not designed to be dependend on currency. That's why there is no real questing content (except for one stone of Barenziah) in housing. Or crafting.


Take the game on lvl 1 and start calculating from that base.

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