Wednesday, 28 January 2015

A Post War World

I've already stated that the world of Darmonica is in a Post-War state, the 50 year long Great Darmonican War having ended about a decade ago. So what does that actually mean for adventures and campaigns set in Darmonica?

This post is intended to answer part of that question.

Looking at our own history there can be seen certain aspects common throughout the centuries following a major conflict, be then the World Wars of the 20th Century or the much earlier European wars that spanned decades. Ron Perlman's famous phrase from the Fallout series of games sums it up quite nicely; "War. War never changes."

So what are those aspects anyway?

Devastation:- Long before the 20th Century there was often wide spread devastation in the wake of a conflict, especially besieged cities when the attacker brought their siege weapons to bear and of course after a breech in the city's walls had been achieved and the attacker's troops storm the city. Even small towns and villages weren't immune to war's destructive touch, particularly when they became the site of pitched battles between opposing armies. Industrialization meant war became ever more destructive, the Western Front that stretched across Europe like a dirty great scar during the First World War and aerial bombing in later conflicts are compelling proof of this.

With regards to Darmonica it means that even a decade later there would scars from the war remaining, cities would still have bomb sites (London did in the 1960s) and old battlefields would be littered with the derbies of war. Entire villages have been bombarded out of existence, a large chunk of Sodkan territory was devastated by the Blast round the end of the War. For the players the most visible signs of the scars of war would be large chunks of major cities being little more than bombed out ruins. There would also be shanty towns made of people made homeless by the bombing, often in squalid conditions. Reconstruction will take years if not decades to complete.

Rationing:- A notable feature of the World Wars was rationing, chiefly food and petrol (particularly during WW2) were severely restricted for the average civilians. There were schemes to encourage civilians to grow their own food and to reduce food waste, though in some cases there was a very real risk of starvation. In earlier conflicts there were food shortages, typically if farmer fields ended up being used as battlefields or troops pillaged what they could get their hands on. Sometimes after a war has ended rationing became much more stricter, post-WW2 rationing in Britain was hugely more severe than it was during the war.

Course with imposed restrictions upon goods there is a rise in the Black Market and opportunities for smugglers to make a fair amount of coin, typically trying to sneak in goods under the noses of the local authorities. For players, if located in an area where rationing is being enforced, there is the chance that they could suffer from starvation due to the lack of food available. There may be smuggling jobs available for the players or they may need to go to the Black Market to acquire items.

The Human Cost:- Every war has its price in lives lost and shattered, most families would've lost loved ones whilst others would've lost a limb or an eye. Crippled veterans would be another noticeable feature, even if its mentally rather than physical. Humans can be fragile creatures, this also applies to player characters.

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There you go, hopefully some elements that would should be able to incorporate into your games set in Darmonica. Though I am taking suggestions and ideas for future posts, so feel free to post a comment.

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