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mr.darkmasters
2016-09-14, 10:05 AM
I'm Making a Criminal Underbelly for my Game, and I want more unique places for my players to go than Just The Sewers AGAIN.

Any Ideas?????

arrowed
2016-09-14, 10:14 AM
Well... what about a demiplane accessible through particular doors in the city if you have the proper key? Or a giant flying ship that's invisible from below? Or a noble estate used by the thieves thanks to their strong blackmail on the owner, with a recently added secret tunnel into the heart of the market? Or a hideout hidden inside a bag of holding, taken to wherever's convenient by the underbelly's most mysterious member, the infamous Mister Sack.

BRC
2016-09-14, 10:25 AM
For a seedy criminal Underground?

A hidden room in the back of a bakery. Ask the kindly Baker's Wife at the counter for "Yesterday's Bread", and give her three silver pieces. She'll let you into the kitchen, then just crawl through the second oven, and you're in. Also, try the Rye, it's criminally delicious.

The Wandering Troubadour is an odd name for a ship that never seems to leave the dock. In reality, it serves as a meeting ground for some of the worst thieves and murderers the city has to offer.


The Averdelle mansion has been abandoned ever since Lord Averdelle murdered his wife and children. It's said that the Lord's madness was the result of a curse placed on the house by a housekeeper who was cast out after bearing the Lord's illegitimate child. Whatever the truth, the great manor house has remained unoccupied, it's gate's locked. But, Thieves are a resourceful sort. The King of Knives and Shadows hold's court in the Kitchen. His band of ruffians and cutthroats sleep in the old servant's quarters. However, by unspoken agreement, they never venture to the second floor, especially not into the old Library, where they say blood still stains the books.

The City Guard never ventures into the den of thieves and beggars known as the Ragged Towers. A crowded slum that keeps it's own laws, with it's own sense of justice, swift and ruthless. The people of the Towers are distrustful of outsiders, and respect those cunning and strong enough to take from the powerful lords. Anybody who enters the Towers in the name of the Law will be met with silence at best. More often, they simply vanish, never to be seen or heard from again. Silently disposed of, any possessions they were foolish enough to bring are distributed among the beggars.


Or, if you want something more fantastical, then I once had a thieve's guild called the Green Door Club.

The Green Door Club exists in no specific place. You go looking for it and hope it finds you. Wander the right streets long enough, and you'll eventually spot a green door with a copper handle.

Go inside, and you'll find yourself in a well-appointed club. Beyond the Foyer, you'll heard the sounds of clinking glasses, laughter, and Music.

But first, you must get past the Doorman.

The Doorman, a hulking brute with a face like a crate of bricks, will ask you for the Password.

You do not know the Password. Nobody knows the Password except for the Doorman, and it changes everytime the door opens. But, if you can't charm, cheat, trick, sneak, bamboozle, or hoodwink your way past a dim-witted doorman, you don't deserve to be in the Green Door Club.

Inevitability
2016-09-14, 10:39 AM
A temple to one of the more chaotic of deities. Those who tell one of the priests they 'have sins to confess' (a knowledge check of an appropriate DC reveals this faith has no traditions of confession) are led to a confession booth. Within is a hidden door to a room for the criminals to gather.

Depending on how magical you want to get, you can have the priest then use an illusion spell to make it seem like the criminal is exiting normally, as well as one when they want to leave again. These illusions can come from or disappear in large crowds, where their sudden (dis)appearance is at least plausible.

mr.darkmasters
2016-09-14, 10:40 AM
For a seedy criminal Underground?

A hidden room in the back of a bakery. Ask the kindly Baker's Wife at the counter for "Yesterday's Bread", and give her three silver pieces. She'll let you into the kitchen, then just crawl through the second oven, and you're in. Also, try the Rye, it's criminally delicious.

The Wandering Troubadour is an odd name for a ship that never seems to leave the dock. In reality, it serves as a meeting ground for some of the worst thieves and murderers the city has to offer.


The Averdelle mansion has been abandoned ever since Lord Averdelle murdered his wife and children. It's said that the Lord's madness was the result of a curse placed on the house by a housekeeper who was cast out after bearing the Lord's illegitimate child. Whatever the truth, the great manor house has remained unoccupied, it's gate's locked. But, Thieves are a resourceful sort. The King of Knives and Shadows hold's court in the Kitchen. His band of ruffians and cutthroats sleep in the old servant's quarters. However, by unspoken agreement, they never venture to the second floor, especially not into the old Library, where they say blood still stains the books.

The City Guard never ventures into the den of thieves and beggars known as the Ragged Towers. A crowded slum that keeps it's own laws, with it's own sense of justice, swift and ruthless. The people of the Towers are distrustful of outsiders, and respect those cunning and strong enough to take from the powerful lords. Anybody who enters the Towers in the name of the Law will be met with silence at best. More often, they simply vanish, never to be seen or heard from again. Silently disposed of, any possessions they were foolish enough to bring are distributed among the beggars.


Or, if you want something more fantastical, then I once had a thieve's guild called the Green Door Club.

The Green Door Club exists in no specific place. You go looking for it and hope it finds you. Wander the right streets long enough, and you'll eventually spot a green door with a copper handle.

Go inside, and you'll find yourself in a well-appointed club. Beyond the Foyer, you'll heard the sounds of clinking glasses, laughter, and Music.

But first, you must get past the Doorman.

The Doorman, a hulking brute with a face like a crate of bricks, will ask you for the Password.

You do not know the Password. Nobody knows the Password except for the Doorman, and it changes everytime the door opens. But, if you can't charm, cheat, trick, sneak, bamboozle, or hoodwink your way past a dim-witted doorman, you don't deserve to be in the Green Door Club.


I Like This

mr.darkmasters
2016-09-14, 10:42 AM
A temple to one of the more chaotic of deities. Those who tell one of the priests they 'have sins to confess' (a knowledge check of an appropriate DC reveals this faith has no traditions of confession) are led to a confession booth. Within is a hidden door to a room for the criminals to gather.

Depending on how magical you want to get, you can have the priest then use an illusion spell to make it seem like the criminal is exiting normally, as well as one when they want to leave again. These illusions can come from or disappear in large crowds, where their sudden (dis)appearance is at least plausible.

Really Good but not Quite Right with my Setting
Thanks Though

chaoschronicler
2016-09-14, 11:08 AM
What sort of setting do you have in mind? Cause I had a great idea based off of a speakeasy. Have some photo refs too.

Inevitability
2016-09-14, 11:24 AM
Really Good but not Quite Right with my Setting
Thanks Though

Okay.

By the way, you can quote multiple posts using the small button next to 'reply with quote'. It allows you to mark a post, then quotes all linked posts in the next reply you make. Double-posting is frowned upon, so it's a good thing to know.

Mark Hall
2016-09-14, 12:56 PM
There's also the possibility of a warehouse.

In Shadowrun: Hong Kong, you usually meet with your Triad fixer in a mahjong parlor. In Shadowrun Returns, it's a bar with a basement. In Dragonfall, it's an import/export business in a free section of an anarchist city.

Vlad Taltos, IIRC, had an office above a bakery.

halfeye
2016-09-14, 01:18 PM
Or, if you want something more fantastical, then I once had a thieve's guild called the Green Door Club.

The Green Door Club exists in no specific place. You go looking for it and hope it finds you. Wander the right streets long enough, and you'll eventually spot a green door with a copper handle.

Go inside, and you'll find yourself in a well-appointed club. Beyond the Foyer, you'll heard the sounds of clinking glasses, laughter, and Music.

But first, you must get past the Doorman.

The Doorman, a hulking brute with a face like a crate of bricks, will ask you for the Password.

You do not know the Password. Nobody knows the Password except for the Doorman, and it changes everytime the door opens. But, if you can't charm, cheat, trick, sneak, bamboozle, or hoodwink your way past a dim-witted doorman, you don't deserve to be in the Green Door Club.


Based on the song?

BRC
2016-09-14, 01:29 PM
Based on the song?

Never heard the song. What is it?


Edit: Googled it. I had never heard of the song, but now I really need to get The Green Door Club in a game again so I can use this song.

Telonius
2016-09-14, 03:16 PM
In a modern setting, I'd use the local Radio Shack.

RyumaruMG
2016-09-14, 09:28 PM
"You ever walked down on the docks and seen that old building, the one with the faded brass plate that says Noble Sisters of Saint something-or-other? It's a charity house, alms for the poor and all that. At least, when you go inside, that's what it looks like. But the old lady at the desk who asks for donations isn't really that old. And she's got a loaded crossbow under the desk. See, if you know the right knock and tell her you've got a delivery from their sister house in Blackreef Port, she'll let you into the back. And that's where the real building is. Of course, if you find yourself in there without an invitation, they might just string you up and leave you outside until dawn, so people know not to try and sneak into the Thieves' Guild."


(Based loosely on the actual location of the Rogues' Guild in Final Fantasy 14)

Mark Hall
2016-09-15, 10:43 AM
For a long time, GI Joe was based under the Chaplain's Assistant School in Fort Wadsworth, New York.

Storm_Of_Snow
2016-09-15, 11:28 AM
Well... what about a demiplane accessible through particular doors in the city if you have the proper key?
London below from Neverwhere? :smallwink:

What's the genre? Fantasy - there's a tavern, with a back room specialising in the exotic, restricted or outright illegal for those in the know. And the secret hideout's a further layer of security checks beyond that. Or one of the crypts of the local church has a panel that swings away if you move something in the right manner.

Modern - under the floor of a garage (as per one of the vaults in Fallout 3), a "private room" at the local strip joint, or you give a nod to certain subway drivers, get into the rear drivers cab and they slow the train at the right point, allowing you to walk off onto a platform that doesn't officially exist on any map of the network. A lift (one of several together) that goes to a basement level if you insert a firemans key, turn the lock twice and hit a certain set of floor buttons in the right order. Or maybe it doesn't actually exist physically, it's entirely online in a part of the internet even the rest of the criminal underworld don't know exists.

arrowed
2016-09-15, 12:09 PM
London below from Neverwhere? :smallwink:

I've read Good Omens and American Gods, but not Neverwhere actually. Would you recommend it?

I should probably also contribute to the thread topic though, so...
What if the thieves' HQ was actually in the lower levels of the palace dungeons, abandoned by the authorities due to excessive haunting. However, since many of the ghosts were criminals, a lot of them support the thieves and keep the other ghosts away from them in exchange for help towards finding their rest, gaining vengeance on old foes, or simple habit. There's some tension between the helpful spirits and the thief boss(es), since the thieves rely on there being enough independent ghosts to deter intruders but also enough willing guardians to hold off any that try to attack the thieves, while a lot of ghosts help on the idea of eventually escaping ghostdom.

Fri
2016-09-15, 12:33 PM
I've read Good Omens and American Gods, but not Neverwhere actually. Would you recommend it?


For what it's worth, I can say that neverwhere is my favourite novel of all time.

Mark Hall
2016-09-15, 01:12 PM
Also, consider where thieves are likely to be able to easily congregate, or easily cycle in and out all day. An Import/Export business is a classic for smugglers, because they have legitimate cover coming in all day. You might go with a Teamster's Union (like, guys who actually drive teams of horses), since they'll be able to have "members" go in and out all day, looking for work, etc.

VoxRationis
2016-09-15, 01:30 PM
A poorly-patrolled section of the docks district, with several homes and shops having been taken over by the thieves and connected through alleyways (blocked off to the outside), secret doorways, and rooftop-to-rooftop walkways.

Cluedrew
2016-09-15, 08:54 PM
If you are actually looking for a secret base it might not work, but I always sort of liked the idea of thieves meeting up in innocent location and dispersing without a trace. I suppose some of the outlying locations might work like that.

Secret bases... if you go to the old district, where buildings are three stories tall and wider with every floor, where streets never go more than a 100 meters without turning and where the town guard doesn't parole. There you can find the thieves guild, sped over homes and shops, sections packed into alleyways. As you go further away from the new city and the houses start to rot, the line between criminal and citizen disappears. After all, hardly anyone here has anything worth steeling they didn't steel themselves.

To everybody: Just reading some of these ideas makes me want to do a story with a thieves guild.

SorenKnight
2016-09-15, 09:14 PM
My last campaign took place in a city built on top of a volcano. The criminal underworld congregated in hollowed out sections of the old city, which had been buried by a pyroclastic flow hundreds of years ago.

Not useful for most campaigns, admittedly.

Storm_Of_Snow
2016-09-16, 03:25 AM
I've read Good Omens and American Gods, but not Neverwhere actually. Would you recommend it?

Not read it myself actually, although I thought the tv series was quite good (personal opinion, your mileage may vary :smallamused:) and the book's supposed to be many times better.

Hmm, I think I've just found my next holiday reading. :smallbiggrin:

Back on topic, I agree with Mark Hall - you need somewhere that people will go to, where the members can legitimately disappear off to do whatever they need to do, potentially for extended periods of time, and return from there, all without it appearing suspicious or it being easy for people to track them.

Another modern one might be a shopping centre/mall, where some of the shops are run by the guild to help launder money and goods and there's various access points (one or two changing rooms in clothes shops, some of the bathroom stalls, a side door in the smallest screen of the multiplex cinema).

Mutazoia
2016-09-16, 04:15 AM
Perhaps if you gave us more setting info.....

Kelb_Panthera
2016-09-16, 02:32 PM
Don't forget that OG classic; the family restaraunt. You get a nice pasta primavera, with a little wine; cannoli for dessert; and talk shop with a couple of the good fellas you keep around you. :smallwink:

And rememer: you're just a businessman.

Mutazoia
2016-09-16, 08:38 PM
Put your secret base inside a Day Care facility, or even better, an Orphanage. The good guys can't just kick in the front door and fire-bomb the place with out hurting innocent children. Plus you can totally "Fagin" the kids as they get older and have them off scouting and pulling petty crimes for you.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VogHwP0C5VY