View Full Version : [Brainstorm] Illegal ways to have fun in a medieval setting

2013-01-19, 11:03 AM
So I'm planning this place called a "Fun house", which is basically a Thieves Guild-sponsored place where rich people in my setting go for a week to have some amoral, illegal fun. This Fun House would be situated in a right-wing theocracy.

I thought I was able to pull off evil, but apparently, not that much. Outside of a brothel, a gladiator's ring, a torture room (where you can be the torturer!), restaurants which serve humanoid meat, and places to use hardcore drugs, I am completely out of ideas. And I thought, man, there are some pretty evil minds in the Playground, I'm sure they can help me! :smallbiggrin:

Now, I'd just like to say that I want to stay away from rape, and while I agree it would probably be part of it, just describing them as regular sex will already be enough.

2013-01-19, 11:24 AM
Go subtle instead of kitten-eating. Keep in mind, if each guest is killing one person a night, they have to be paying a LOT for that to be sustainable in any sense.

But you're in a theocracy. It probably has taboos, and probably a lot of them would seem very arbitrary to outsiders. The Fun House might be a place where you can feel free to break such taboos without fear. Things like certain proscribed foods and drinks (these Bolus nuts grow from a bush rather than a tree, so they're taboo, but the Fun House has lots of em!), forbidden images and texts (a place to read banned books), and so on. There may be some of that torture/gladiator/etc stuff going on as well, but it may well be considered 'crass' or 'common' by the richer clientele.

2013-01-19, 11:43 AM
If they're in a right-wing theocracy, depending on the god, gambling is probably illegal and high-stakes games are going to be a big deal.

A menagerie that contains various rare, but not too high-CR creatures for the nobles to ooh and aah over. (There's a troll! They use its meat for the restaurant! There's a very annoyed dryad! There's a dinosasur! There's a lion!)

Places where the nobles can have sex with each other. Again, right-wing theocracies tend to get bent out of shape on premarital sex and breaking marriage vows, and having a swingers' club is not something they're going to want having around.

2013-01-19, 11:50 AM
There could be sprawling grounds, like a Victorian England estate, in which several endangered species of animal roam and which the guests are free to hunt. This could also be that the guests are able to hunt beggars and street urchins that have been abducted by the guild.

2013-01-19, 12:00 PM
I'm pretty evil, I'll lend a lobe:
Maybe they could spend some time socializing with inherently evil beings, if such exist in the game world. It could be anywhere from casual conversation to sacrificing the souls of virgin paladins.
Coercing/forcing/bribing/tricking otherwise innocent people to do immoral things. Maybe betting on where their breaking point is.

2013-01-19, 01:10 PM
If they're in a right-wing theocracy, depending on the god, gambling is probably illegal and high-stakes games are going to be a big deal.
Or left wing. They frown upon such things even more.

2013-01-19, 01:19 PM
Sex, Drugs and Rock 'n' Roll is always popular: so more music with your action.

Some hardcore regimes have been known to ban theatre hardcore evil theatre would be a murder mystery with real murder, and punishment.

2013-01-19, 03:32 PM
Try combining concepts into more sophisticated products.
Why settle for simple cards when you can gamble of how long it will take an innocent victim to die while their organs are being removed?
Why not spice your foods with forbidden drugs to enhance the taste?
How about a look though the peephole at the other guy fornicating with a goat? Or better yet, why not put that show on stage?
How about a quick trip to the library where you can read those taboo books, while sitting on living furniture made of bound and gagged victims?

Don't be afraid to be exotic. After all, sometimes more mundane pleasures can be considered evil if mixed properly.

2013-01-20, 12:02 AM
You guys are all really awesome, and I will use every single idea here. Of course, if anyone got any extras, I'd also take them, but this seems like it,s enough to fill my fun house! :) thank you so much!

2013-01-20, 12:41 AM
An illegal fun house might have just about anything that's illegal and fun. "Fun" might be relatively easy, though some people enjoy some strange stuff, but what is illegal in your world? That's something tougher.

Anyway, maybe the place is a tattoo parlor, though probably specializing in body parts that aren't typically left bare. This might be used for flavor for the wider society, too - maybe they always keep the shoulders covered with a cape or cloak, while the rest of the torso is fine to leave naked for both genders, for instance.

Perhaps they teach martial arts that aren't socially acceptable or to people that aren't acceptable to know how to fight. Fencing was once a scoundrel's art IRL, for instance, and no nobleman would admit to being a skilled fencer. And of course women were traditionally not trained in the sword in Europe.

Alternatively, maybe they teach non-martial arts to people that aren't supposed to learn such things. Maybe all poets in this culture are women and men who want to appreciate it cannot, for instance.

These things aren't evil, but perhaps you should have some things that are just different mixed in, too.

2013-01-20, 01:33 AM
Spoilered because it's disgusting. Also I assume magic in this setting. Actually it might not need to be now, I toned down a lot of it to avoid potential problems with the admins.

Poetry and songs should be always playing, but they're singing either praise to the devil character of the theocracy, bawdy songs about inappropriate topics often only loosely covered in a metaphor, or songs insulting the monarch or whatever the leader is. In-between the bands songs your players should hear a low wail of someone that the players will never quite be able to find.

If your players go try to rescue on of the people being tortured, that one in particular happens to be one of the nobles whose into that sort of thing and will try to get the players caught.

One npc needs to be cutting on someone as he/she has his/her way with the victim.

Go through imagery of things that just seem off to your players sensibilities, hermaphrodites, characters with weird fetishes about lost limbs or zombies or something.

One room in particular just brings in slaves (brought from a neighboring country if slavery is not legal there), so that the more mystical of the patrons can simply practice enchanting and bending them to their will. Numerous slavers are left at the end of these exercises soulless husks covered in their own piss and tears shuddering and gasping for air. The remaining creatures are then taken by the caretakers of the house and sent to another room for patrons who have a thing for those sorts of remains. No one knows or wants to know what happens to them there. Even the other patrons seem to want to avoid talking about it.

When they're done with them the now abused, and broken bodies are given to the more scientific minded, who dissect them just to watch as the last shred of anything left is wiped out. One among this group of patrons will be furiously scribbling notes about how each body is brought to them in various states of disarray and seems far too interested in documenting and rereading every little detail that goes on. This character may actually believe that what he's doing will be useful one day, but honestly he just consumes himself by rethinking over these experiences again and again lost in his own world of murder and will repeat them to anyone who will listen.

The plays that are on in the background for those willing to watch are garish affairs where instead of masks the actors where the faces of past victims tied to their own face. The decorations are also suitably vile with living people tied together uncomfortably, to make shapes that are unnatural for the human body, bones may be broken, the victims should be silently crying.

One room that the players enter into is filled with blood and crushed pieces of glass, nothing else.

Now that's about as unsubtly over the top ridiculous evil as I can get without literally having dead babies as decoration.

For more subtle things, have there be the sex and fetishes and whatnot, but instead the main attraction is that these nobles get to sit around and talk to each other, and plan. Peoples lives are hung in the balance, bartered for, and sold as crooked dealings get done behind closed doors. Sometimes it's a simple thing like who controls what part of the nearby forest which will be cut down for ships. Other times they'll be discussing the murder of the prince, whose too independent, so that the second potential heir, a much less ambitious lad, will take the thrown. The members also give some foreign sounding chant when entering and leaving, which when investigated would lead your players to an even larger mystery involving a shadow religion that has popped up and mostly controls the actual theocracy, and reveals that the assumed good deity of the theocracy is actually anything but good.

2013-01-20, 03:29 AM
Rome did a pretty cool one IRL. In plays, when they would have a character die, they brought a death-sentence convict onstage and killed him for real, right there in front of everyone. All the actors were wearing masks anyway, so you could pretty easily suspend disbelief and revel in the carnage.

Drugs. No more needs be said.

Nobles can watch Aztec-style religious sacrifice, complete with tearing still-beating hearts out of victims, and little blood-runnels which flowing blood turns into pretty designs on the sides of the altars. People in cultist/priest-clothing are conducting the "ceremony", while scantily-clad women (and men :smalltongue:) do cute little dances on the sides. Having them instead just be actors could be an amusing twist, since actual priests of this religion are offended by this bastardization of their sacred rites for some noble's entertainment (These sacrifices will more likely than not just be another grotesque show full of stereotypes, with little religious significance). The religion portrayed may even be enemies of the Fun House, as a result of what they perceive as an insult to their religion.

Vampires can get their blood-fix here, in special rooms with victims all chained up, well-fed, and ready to go. They can even order different flavors, of victims given special diets so their blood has just the right taste. Vampires, of course, have other accommodations like sunless rooms.

Many nobles may choose to wear masks (the playful kind, usually) to hide their identities. This can help set up characterization for NPCs attending this foul den of debauchery. A particularly gluttonous/lustful noble might wear a pig-mask, a liar might have a long-nosed mask, the BBEG might wear a demon mask, and so on.

No one mentioned Succubi yet, I am disappoint :smallannoyed:. There is so much you can do with them, especially the Change Shape ability. For an extraordinary price, a patron can spend the night with any woman or man he chooses, who will literally read his mind to determine the exact fantasy to be acted out. And don't forget Incubi, the male counterpart to Succubi. Of course such a wonder as a Succubus will carry a tremendous price-tag, which includes the cost of renting a Ring of Negative Protection (Death Ward's duration is too small) to keep the patron safe. The Succubus has more likely than not been bound by Planar Binding to do this work for cash or some other reward, and has surely been paid well, since she has a lot of dirt on a lot of powerful men. Maybe they cycle out succubi, so no one of them gets too much... sensitive information. Either way, they're Demons after all, and may give information for the right price, often in the form of evil, bizarre deeds instead of money.

Of course, patrons are constantly tempted with drink and drugs to further loosen both their pockets and any inhibitions they might still have.

2013-01-20, 07:58 AM
I feel that is you go over the top, and make the place really depraved and mega evil, then you might alienate you players and they might not take it seriously or feel really awkward if they ever have to interact with it in order to cope. To to make this thing effective think of it like a balloon, you want it to be blown up with lots of bad things that make give The Fun House an evil and depraved vibe, but you don't want to burst that balloon.

So stick to mostly superficial "evils" or taboos, and mix it in with some downright evil ****. In fact you could present the Fun House to the players as place that only lets people indulge in superficial evils like peeing with the toilet seat down (for guys that is), this way the PCs might begin to tolerate the place (that is if they are Good). Then you can hit them with evidence of the really evil going-ons. I mean if the players are Evil them this might be great news to them, either way I think that would make the whole thing a little more interesting.

2013-01-20, 09:53 AM
Well I must say some of you went reaaaaaal far in the evilness of their ideas, and I guess I'll have to tone some down for this particular place! :smallbiggrin: I mean, it's a Thieves' Guild, not a Demonic Cult, and they cater to the "immoral nobles". I was looking for "yeah, bring me a sex slave I can whip during the act" more than "yeah, decapitate these infants while I masturbate with broken glass in my hand". That being said, still a whole lot of great ideas!

And regarding the "everyone would wear a mask", I hadn't thought of that, and that is definitely something I have to take into account.

List of ideas I will use, by categories (because I like ordered things)

Orgy room (for the nobles, but also has some slaves)
Magically-dominated sex slave
Swingers (noble-only, only for couples)
Bestiality on stage (slave with whatever animal/monster they have in stock)
Succubi/Incubi service


Restaurants which serve humanoid meat (Trolls and Hydras being popular for obvious reason)
Restaurants serving proscribed foods and drinks
Forbidden texts and pieces of art
"Normal" gambling (cards, dice), but with higher stakes
Evil Gambling (betting on a victim's breaking point, on beggar fights)
Zoo of interesting/endangered monsters/animals
Some furniture made of people
Music show (Songs insulting the monarch, naked dancers in cages)
Disgusting decoration
Vampires can get blood fix, with various kinds of "donor"
Place to use hardcore drugs (cigar club, except with cocaine)
Drugs to spice up food
Drugs being served everywhere, as if it were normal


a gladiator's ring
a torture room (where you can be the torturer!),
Theater where murders are real
Hunting grounds of endangered and exotic animals/monsters or lowlifes (beggars, urchins)

If your idea is not on the list, it's not that I don't like it, it's that I deem it too evil for a Thieves' Den. I still like you. :)