Thursday, July 5, 2018

What we lost in the Starving Time

There's a reason for people to be optimistic about the future: the past was probably worse.

A generation ago, the world came to an end.  The sky grew dark, crops failed, sickness and hunger plagued the earth.  So much was lost in the starving time.

(Reza Afshar)

When you're writing up a new human tribe, roll to see what they lost:

Starving Time (d10)
1They lost their history.
2No one is left who can do their craft.
3Their sacred items went missing.
4No one knows how to plant or harvest their old crop.
5They're all that's left of a powerful city/kingdom.
6Several groups of refugees came together to form this tribe.
7There was once a great hunt among this tribe.
8They abandoned their old religion.
9Danger drove them far from their old home.
10The elders are ashamed of what they did in the dark days.

In a way, the apocalypse was harder on the ones who survived.  The dead were gone more quickly; the living had to carry the burden of losing their entire world and doing whatever it took to survive.  For that generation, everything was defined by the apocalypse.  Their lives were divided into two parts: life before and life after.

The younger generation grew up knowing nothing else.  The starving time was just a story their parents told; the days before just a time of legend.  Most people today don't mourn the old world because they never knew it.

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