The Drowned Earth: A look at the Fluff!
By now many of you will have seen the skirmish game everyone seems to be talking about: The Drowned Earth, but we thought we'd take a closer look at the game, the mechanics, and the overall flavour.
First off, the obvious: The Drowned Earth is set in an Alternate Sci Fi world, and specifically on the continent of Ulaya, a tropical land of swamp, rainforest, lagoon and island.
All over Ulaya are the ruins of a once mighty, and technologically advanced civilisation, and the material wealth of this civilisation is the most obvious cause of conflict in the world, and what many games will be fought over.
The Pre-Fall Civilisation as it is known, was destroyed by an unknown event at an undisclosed period in the past. Judging by the state of the ruins however, we can be certain that it was more than a few hundred years ago, but not as long as a thousand years. This "Event" caused huge global warming, rising sea levels and a drastic change to the environmental conditions of Ulaya.
Despite the time past, occasionally people searching the ruins might find a piece of working technology, or at least, something which could be studied, repaired or put to use in some fashion.
However, the ruins are dangerous places. Giant predators, species from the Mesozoic epoch, roam the jungles of Ulaya like guardians of the ancient secrets of the past.
What's this you say? Dinosaurs? Well, it gets stranger!
•Less than a third of the intelligent beings on the planet are fully human.
•The rest are genetically engineered hybrid species or uplifted animals.
•These and the Mesozoic wildlife are the result of genetic engineering programs of the distant past.
Thusly, not only have sea levels raised but the environment, fauna and even the nature of intelligent life itself have radically changed.
There are many species on Ulaya, but at present the game only represents the main four, in the miniatures range. They are:
1 Humans: You know what these are, right?
2 Berengeii: Uplifted gorillas.
3 Sorrians: A reptilian species of mixed genetic origin.
4 Dverg: A former slave race of diminutive but hardy near-humans.
Tantalisingly, the creator has said that other, less common races, will be represented in the miniatures range in the future.
So Ulaya is a land rebuilding civilisation, and using ingenuity, scholarship, study and of course the material wealth of the past, to re-conquor a now very hostile earth.
For a long period, due to environmental instability, the survivors of The Event lived a desperate, nomadic lifestyle. Some people still do live in this manner, but most begun to settle down and farm as soon as the environment stabilised.
Their new problem was of course, the wildlife, only the strongest of which had survived.
By now cities have grown up, defended settlements dot the lowland and coastal areas of Ulaya, and technology is an eclectic mix of whatever people have availability to, be it as simple as a water powered mill, or as complicated as a salvaged power generator, and everything in between. Ancient technology is of course, very rare and highly prized, and whether it is a power source, weapon, or some sort of mechanical device, these objects can seem like magic to those who are totally unfamiliar with them.
Many games of The Drowned Earth will be fought over such resources- some factions have the acquisition of this tech as their complete raison d'etre, while others turn their hand to a bit of plundering while they go about their normal activities. But the opportunity is too good to pass up for anyone brave or proficient enough to wander the dangerous wilds of Ulaya.
I hope you've enjoyed this quick primer. Next step? Head on over to The Drowned Earth Kickstarter and see if it's for you!