When I was in 5th grade, we spent the better part of a year in Europe. December was spent on the side of a mountain (called Mondsee - tr: Moon-Lake) that rose over the lake of Mondsee, next to which the town of Mondsee was located.
On december 5th, we went into town for the celebration. Men on horseback dressed as demons called Krampus rode into town in the middle of the festival, throwing handfuls of hard candies and coins into the street. The children all rushed to gather everything they could, and while they did, the men would ride their horses into the center of the crowd of children and whip them viciously.
It was an odd sort of game, one which made Nightmare Before Christmas seem rather tame in comparison, in which punishment and reward were not opposites, but necessary components of some other thing entirely.
But I don't yet know what that thing is.