This tool can be used to quickly generate names and characteristics for all kinds of hostels, coaching inns, taverns, clubs, and brothels.
Inns of the Empire is dually inspired. First, by the Random Fantasy Business Names generator by Mike Hensley at hackslash.net. The tool's functionality is based wholly on the work of Henrik Grönberg in Liber Fanatica, Vol. III. Credit is due to both individuals for the inspiration.
Your players decide to get a drink and some food, maybe pick some pockets, and get the local gossip. You, the GM, suddenly need a name for the establishment. Maybe you need a couple of names, or more, because you want to pick the "best one." Look no further…
The size of the inn will modify number of rooms and the availability of various services.
Although an establishment normally falls entirely within one category, exceptions do exist (e.g. Common quality lodging but Good food).
A hostel is an inn providing food and lodging, while coaching inns (or riverside inns) are larger (and often fortified) establishments serving many other functions as well.
A tavern is primarily a drinking establishment located in a settlement, sometimes offerings food and rooms as well.
You can read more about hostels, coaching inns, and taverns in the Old World Armoury, pages 88-89.
The club is the tavern's more fashionable cousin. In clubs, the clientele is restricted in some way, either to members (and their guests) or to a certain social group (like the nobility or the merchant class) and they almost always have dress codes.
Brothel should be quite self-explanatory.
Vacancy options modify the portion of rooms and beds available (in that establishment—not to be confused with Availability as described in the Equipment chapter).
Vacancy may serve as inspiration for an encounter (“why is it empty?”). Conversely, a busy evening or even that the inn is “overbooked” with guest being asked—even urged—to share rooms or sleep on the floor (or in the stable).
An inn will begin with a random base percentage: 43%. The inn has a good reputation (43% - 10% = 33%). The party arrives in the evening (33% - 20% = 13%). The road wardens are adjudicating the fates of several goat rustlers and the community has turned out for a hanging (13% - 30% = -17%). No rooms are available, the party might need to look elsewhere…
Dorms are presented as number of beds (bunks, cots, &tc.). All others are number of rooms.
Outlaws are currently troubling the area, but you can be safe because they only seem to attack people with money.
Someone allegedly made a strange observation in the next village, where all the inhabitants were behaving very strangely.
A notorious criminal just escaped, and the authorities are searching the vicinity. Watch out, because he is desperate and prone to violence!
An inappropriate love affair is much talked about, between a noble or merchant or senior official and a peasant girl, waitress or handmaiden.
The settlement has a serious rat problem, and Rat Catchers are currently being summoned to do something about it.
A merchant was gruesomely murdered yesterday. However, the perpetrator was caught and it was the poor merchant’s heir. He must have been the only one who didn’t know the victim was broke!
An attack on the settlement is imminent, but the authorities refuse to issue a warning. The militia is armed, the watch is doubled and mercenaries are hired.
A large quantity of beer is missing, stolen from a local brewery. And then, at the next inn or tavern the beers are strangely cheap…
A well-liked inn was recently closed for reasons untold, but there seemed to have been something wrong with the sausages served there.
A local tradesman cheats his customers, selling products of lousy quality. He is protected by a trade guild, so there’s no point in complaining.
The prices below roughly correspond to the prices in WFRP (p. 114–116) and Old World Armoury (p. 88–89).
Inns of the Empire is inspired in part by Mike Hensley’s Random Fantasy Business Names generator at hackslash.net. The content, information, and modifiers are based wholly on the work of Henrik Grönberg, as presented in Liber Fanatica, Vol. III.
The presence of services like baths or Women of Ill Repute (which sometimes includes Men of Questionable Reputation) or the presence of a snug (a small private dining or sitting room) is determined by a number of factors. It should be noted that, here, “service” means the inn-keeper himself employs a person to provide the service or otherwise encourages it: there’s nothing stopping two guests from playing cards just because there’s no croupier employed.
Coaching Inns: In addition to the presented services shown, coaching inns often have a blacksmith employed to repair coaches and shoe horses. Many coaching inns also serve as bases for Road or River Wardens. In those cases there’s often some sort of look-up or oubliette where prisoners can be stored until transported to the nearest town.
Rooms come in four sizes: single, double, large, and dormitory. The size of rooms is a factor of the type of establishment, e.g., brothels almost never have anything other than single rooms, close quarters for the ménage à trois…
Number for dorms is number of beds. All others are number of rooms. Singles have one bed; double, two beds; large, four beds.
[spitting ale, eyes wide in disbelief]
“Did you just say two comely lass!? Why, whoever heard of such debauchery?! Your story is heresy! and you do best to hold your tongue in these parts.”
If you want to come up with a few notable characteristics for this inn, use the following options. Some might not make sense in context or repeat (the nature of the random d10 roll). You can also blend items…
Shady waitresses and Old-fashioned waitresses might become Shady, old-fashioned waitresses, or old-fashioned, shady waitresses.
A old-school random encounter. Tailor for the party, or the party being thrown.
Many inns in the Empire are known for their beer or locally produced hard cider (and “known” does not always imply “famous”…).
* panaché is a blend of beer and some other beverage.