Fantasy taverns (synonyms: inn, pub, lodge, alehouse; example toponyms: The Drunken Pony, the Kettle & Mug, Ye Olde Pub and Inn) are places in fantasy worlds where heroes meet, plan, obtain quests, learn valuable information, and relax. Taverns are found in towns, cities, and long roads. They are home to tavernkeepers, servers, and cooks – though because taverns serve as a community meeting place, anyone could be found here. Different groups (dockworkers, guilds, thugs) may have their own tavern. Taverns may serve food and may be conjoined with inns to also provide a place for travelers to rest.
Designing Fictional Fantasy Taverns
Fictional taverns will often contain unusual or interesting interiors. They may have rat-infested cellars, rafters full of ravens and rogues, and crawlspaces made for escape and for spying. There may be hidden rooms and hidden passageways that lead out to the alleyways, into the sewers, or though a cavern.
When designing taverns consider what role they play in your fictional society. These may be centers for the community, or may be locations of crime and debauchery. If your culture shuns the use of alcohol, taverns may be hidden.
What types of drinks are served at your fictional tavern and from where are these drinks sourced?
|Backroom||a||Simplified||Only workers allowed back here|
|Bar||a||Simplified||The central focus of any tavern|
|Barrel||s||Simplified||Wine, beer, or something else?||Explore|
|Bulletin Board||a, s||Simplified||Local news and quests||Explore|
|Cellar||a||Simplified||Might be full of rats||Explore|
|Creaky Floorboard||s||The regulars know to step around it|
|Dark Corner Tables||a||Simplified||Who's sitting back there in the darkness?||Explore|
|Fireplace||a, s||Simplified||A cozy fireplace||Explore|
|Hearth||a||A place to cook||Explore|
|Hidden Room||a||Simplified||To hide people from those that search||Explore|
|Inn||a||Some taverns are also inns|
|Kitchen||a||Simplified||A place to cook food for hungry guests and travelers|
|Mounted Weapon||s||A memento from a past adventure|
|Peephole||s||Simplified||To spy on guests||Explore|
|Rafters||a||Simplified||Wooden crossbeams to hold up the roof||Explore|
|Reinforced Door||s||Is it a bad neighborhood?|
|Room for Rent||a||Simplified||Some traverns may also rent rooms|
|Stables||a||To keep the steeds of travelers|
|Storeroom||a||Simplified||To keep extra supplies, food, and beer|
|Table||s||For guests to sit at|
|Tavern Keeper's Rooms||a||An attached living space for the tavern owner|
|Trophy||s||Antlers, a wolf's head, or something else|
|Window||s||Simplified||Someone could get thrown through it|
Tavern Name Examples