# Populating urban centers

Does anyone know of a source that discusses the various services/businesses/amenities an urban center has? The core book talks about the number comprising a thieves guild, but how about other stuff? How many city guards should there be on average, per citizen? Or taverns, or blacksmiths or churches?

City guards: An urban settlement has a default garrison cost of 2 gp/family per month. We can use this to determine the city guard.

The exact number of guards will vary depending on their makeup. I think the most common members of city guards would be light infantry (patrollers), heavy infantry (SWAT teams), and light cavalry (riders for patrolling outside the city). Light infantry have wages of 6 gp/month, heavy infantry 12 gp/month, and light cavalry 30 gp/month.

If we assume that the guard’s makeup is 50% light infantry, 25% heavy, 25% light cavalry, the average guard’s wage is 13.5 gp/month. This tells us that we would have roughly one guard per 6.75 families (or one guard per 33.75 people overall).

(If you’re curious, this is a higher police density than modern cities have, which I think is fine because modern cities don’t usually get invaded by monsters. NYC has 8.406 million people and 51,000 employees of the NYPD according to google, for a density of 1 per 164.)

Blacksmithies can probably be evaluated by market class and items available. For example, a class VI market has only a 10% chance of having a single item of price 11-100 gp available. They probably do not have the blacksmithing production to make that item in a single month on a regular basis. They have 1 of each item of price 2 gp-10 gp, so they probably can make multiple of these in a month. I would therefore estimate their blacksmithing production at about 40 gp/month, meaning a single blacksmith. (Or, more likely for this town in the middle of nowhere, a journeyman and his two apprentices.)

If you want to do the more complicated math version (which I might do later anyway), you can add up the total cost of every blacksmithing item available in a town by market class (by adding up the numbers and costs of items in each category) to determine their monthly production. You’d have to reduce it by some percentage to account for the shelf life of items that sit around for a while without being bought. Then you could select apprentices, journeyman, and masters to fill the necessary production needs.

Churches I have no way to estimate. Eyeball it depending on setting; some campaign settings may have very common churches everywhere, while others may only have soaring cathedrals in the great cities.

I don’t have a good way to estimate taverns either.

http://www222.pair.com/sjohn/blueroom/demog.htm is my go-to for this kind of thing; take a look at it if you haven’t already. It’s obviously not ACKS-specific, so it may not quite mesh with the ACKS economy, but I doubt that the discrepancies would be at all noticeable without really going deep into number-crunching.

Medieval Demographics Made Even Easier (by automating them): https://www.rpglibrary.org/utils/meddemog/

That’s the version I use.

Those are awesome sources. Thanks, guys!