As for the camp followers - where would they get their goods from, and what use could they possibly have for some locally minted currency? Assuming a lack of established supply lines (one of the reasons for the lasgun being so popular .. no ammo imports needed!), there won't be a lot of goods they could offer the troops. Sure, many of them would offer services, and others might wander off to hunt food, but even then a bunch of coins you can only pay for on a couple specific worlds seems like a questionable form of payment.
Your historical knowledge here is lacking, Lynata. Or just your knowledge of human nature .
Camp followers/merchants/suttlers always have goods to sell, even when the actual army is starving. It's their usp.
A good example would be the Peninsular campaign of 1807-1814. Suttlers provided a very necessary service and somehow always managed to find goods to sell. Even the French suttlers belonging to Massena's army before the lines of Torres Vedras when they were cut off from Spain.
It would take a very barren world with no local settlements or army provided supplies to let these shrewd merchants run out goods to sell. And even then, I'd expect them to have backroom deals with corrupt Munitorium staff to get some goods to sell...
Which brings me back to historical references (yes, I know, I keep mentioning this). You read about soldiers hiding money or valuables in their shoes/uniforms/shakos/belts as emergency funds. Not about them hiding a few extra ration packs or a live chicken. Because money and baubles are portable and usually far more valuable for their weight than typical barter goods....
I'd think when Americans go to war against other Humans, this makes more sense than when the Guard shows up to reclaim a world taken by Orks, Nids, or some other "wreck everything!" army. By the time the IG get alerted to a problem, mobilized, warp travel, get lost twice, get hurdled a few decades the wrong way through time (because Tzeentch is just a tool that way ), and then finally arrive, deploy, and whatnot, there aren't usually Human settlements left. Sending your people to go trade with that Ork camp is heresy.
Also, and this sort of gets back, a bit, to the retirement bit, in a roundabout way, if I'm an Allied soldier in Nazi Germany circa 1944, it might do me some good to squirrel away some extra money; when I get home, and I hopefully still plan to, I can spend it, or, if it's German money, exchange it Deutschmarks to Dollars. If I'm a Catachan 88th on Kulth, I'm probably never leaving Kulth, and Kulth is at least a world with people on it. If I were deployed to fight on an Ork-held world, again there will be no shops to visit, no towns to barter with, or pay for goods, and possibly no leaving, even if we win; someone has to stay there, in case those Ork spores sprout a decade or three down the line.
This can be one of those scenarios where real-life comparisons can fall through. Orks don't have money (they have teef), and even if you shot a bunch of Orks, and your Colonel said "harvest the monsters' teeth, and we'll use them to barter with the more sympathetic tribes," he'd immediately be shot by the Commissar for heresy, and that assumes Orks have anything you still want. So many IG engagements seem, at least to me, to be more from the perspective of "IG goes to an already infested hole, being now the only Loyalist Humans on the planet, and have to wreck everything to get it back for the Emperor," rather than "the IG were sitting there, and suddenly had to repel the Greenskins, when they came to invade." That's more PDF, in my mind, while Guardsmen are more firefighters, sent to an existing problem to fix it. It seems less likely to find loyal Humans there, who can be of assistance, and such,
And spending money in camp? I would certainly not say that Quartermasters can't be bribed with money for better stuff, even if that stuff isn't theirs, but where is the Quartermaster spending it? He might never be leaving, either, or just to be deployed to the next engagement zone. If you aren't in a place with a strong civilian population (in which case what are the menacing Orks or Nids actually doing?), I don't see as many opportunities to squander, err spend any money, be it on hard liquor, soft company, or whatever your particular itch/fix is. Again, I've never served, so the life of an active soldier in a foreign place, Earth or 40K, is not something I'm familiar with, but what seems to work in this world, with actual people, sympathetic populations, and a certainty that you CAN go home, someday, doesn't as well pan in a place filled with DIFFERENT alien nightmares, total devastation, and a hierarchy above you that will shoot you for saluting wrong.
Edited by venkelos, 16 October 2014 - 12:50 PM.