Taverns in a medieval world are a purely fantastical notion - they didn't have them then, and they don't even have that many now! Still, taverns remain some of the most fun places to write about in a campaign setting or fantasy world. Each tavern has its own story, its own patrons, its own atmosphere. From a richly decorated tavern in the center of a merchant city to a soot-blackened dice house in the slums of a ghetto, a tavern represents a great starting point for quests, or simply a place to rest for adventurers on the move. Here is a list of around one hundred tavern names to use in your campaign. Some of them have been written about, others are a blank canvas. Whatever your campaign, I think you'll find some use for this bunch of grog-holes.
Good taverns are taverns known for an exceptional quality of food or ambience, or taverns that are simply very respectable. They will usually cost more, but will be safer, cleaner, and much more pleasant than your average soup shack.
The Dockmaster's Tavern
The Stowaway Inn
The Traveler's Notch
The Unempty Mug
The Red Homununch
The Flaming Wand
The Jasper Otter
Inn Harm's Way
The Ogre-Door Tabernacle
The Riverman's Nestledown
Hearty Wines and Aged Soups Inn
Everyman's Wish Tavern
The Rich Peasant and Poor Landlord Inn and Tavern
The Poisoned Meat
The Salty Tusk
The Inn and Out Inn
The Minstrel's Dance
The Butterhouse Tavern
The Fireside Newt
The Pocked Pocket Inn
The Bard's Trousers
The Cob Web
Standard taverns are neither known for their good food nor their violent atmosphere - they are simply standard places to knock down some grog and flop on a sack. They can be found in all sorts of cities and towns.
The Bottomless Cauldron
The Steward's Hatch
The Port Crevice
The Poor Merchant's Inn
The Tanger Serpent Tavern
The Silver Sword Inn
The Clay Platters
The Dirty Sack Flophouse
The Footsore Wanderer
The Rusty Cog Inn
The Patched Robe
The Scrolls of Welcoming
The Tangled Vine Tavern
The Hearth and Road Inn
The Bard's Tale Tavern
The Slurred Speech Tavern
The Salt Merchant Inn
The Pewter Mug
The Flying Flute Tavern
The First and Last Tavern
Bad taverns are any taverns that are either run-down and dirty, violent and coarse, or owned by or used for criminal enterprises. This section is divided into subsections, to illustrate the nature of the tavern. While many taverns fall into several categories (A dirty, violent criminal gambling den), I have placed the taverns in the ones that correspond best to them. Since they are just names, you can switch them around as you like; I just categorized them to give you an idea of how I imagined them.
Dirty/Violent Taverns -
The Rat's Daggers
The Wharf Rat
The Drunken Sailor
The Patched Paw
The Running King
The Servant's Last Dance
The Fried Fingers Inn
The Rock Bunk Tavern
The Black Barnacle
The Moldy Eye
The Bloody Tooth and Broken Bone Tavern
The Dead Prince Tavern
The Hag's Pot Inn
The Bloody Body
Gambling Dens/Houses of Ill Repute/Criminal Taverns -
The Queen's Robes
The Black Flagon
The Merchant's Last Coin
The Last Wish Forgotten Tavern
The Spider's Nest
Good The Hare's Hair
The Once-Proud Goose
The Yawning Rabbit
Bad Scorfil's Ale & Fryes
The Harpey's Kettle
The Cockatryce Egg
Sleemy's Second Home
Standard House of Pots
The Cracked Hoof
The Come on Inn
The Fearless Flumph
The Rotten Bastard - a bad tavern
I tend to classify inns & taverns using the five-star rating system. It's fairly easy to use as a quick guide to the quality of a particular inn or tavern, with 1-star ratings used for bottom of the barrel, run down dives and criminal establishments, 3-star ratings used for average, run-of-the-mill locales, and 5-star ratings for elite, exclusive facilities.
Hero Den; Braera, proprietor. Two star dining club.
The Lawful Sanctum; Dagpyr, proprietor. Four star tavern.
The Bastard Sword; Malpastas, proprietor. Three star cafeteria.
The Ravens Scythe. One star alehouse.
The Fresh Flask; Damarira, proprietor. Four star nightclub.
The Rude Feasting Hall; Aryayth, proprietor. Three stars.
The Dart & Dress; Odina, proprietor. Three star tavern.
The Stone & Glove. Two star tavern.
The Blade. Five star alehouse.
The Avenging Poignard. One star restaurant.
The Furious Mug; Aryrya, proprietor. One star tavern.
Ye Olde Hairy Jack. Four star bistro.
Ye Olde Bone; Athavyr, proprietor. One star tavern.
The Bludgeoning Keg. Five star tavern.
The Unforgettable King. Five star cabaret.
The Gate. One star tavern.
Highwayman House; Arynyr, proprietor. Four star tavern.
The Reveling Wench. Three star bar.
The Royal Beerhall. Two stars.
The Swallows Throne. Two star cabaret.
The Bright Gladiator; Yarrath, proprietor. Five star tavern.
The Monkeys Chain. Three star grill.
I like tavern names that are drinking puns. Here's two I'm particularly proud of:
The Hammered Anvil
The Wasted Space
The Black Hangover- Infamous for selling a home-brewed ale that will temporarily blind a man during the following hangover.
The Blue Lagoon - A real wet bar, actually built in and on a small lagoon. The bar proper is a raft and the tables are tethered docks. It's mostly all show, and the drinks are quite poor for the price.
The Quartermaster - Established by a retired captain of His Majesty's Army, this tavern is frequented by military veterans and soldiers on leave. Talk is often political, sometimes heated, though fights are relatively rare under the old captain's strict orders.
The Stoned Philosopher - A political club under the guise of a trendy bar. Fairly bourgeois, stocked more with finer-drinking liqueurs than working class ale. Philosophical discussions groups meet regularly as though at a salon, but are curious of foreigners and happily take on anyone wanting to talk.
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? Responses (14)-14
Good Idea, now we need to see if it takes off.
Could you edit out the odd characters in your post (courtsey of MS Word)?
I like this.There should be a tavern codex. :)
That's exactly what I'm setting about to do. Once I have a few more taverns (like the Foolish Mage and Drunken Wizard) it'll be up there. Actually...aw heck, I'll put it up now so no one else can beat me and then add to it as I go along.
New bump to an awesome idea!
Okay six months have gone by and we let this one languish. So we should do something with it. If you wrote a tavern, or know a tavern post, enter it in the http://www.strolen.com/content.php?node=1996 Tavern related scroll.
Now, each of us has to have a list of tavern and inn names for their games. Post them up.
This needs the Ol' 101 treatment! How many are here so far? :)
79 by my count...
Can add The Rotten Bastard to the list...
That should bring the list up to 101 entries.
As a big fan of lists, I would have to say this is a great one.
I like this one, goes well with Barfight! I'll add some later.
I know this will be useful in the future
A fine listing, here.
Heh, I was looking all over for a list like this when I first started GMing. Eventually I just hit up a random generator and tried to roll with that for awhile. Absolutely love 'The Red Homununch'!