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Author Topic: "...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device  (Read 5730 times)

daniel_ream

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #180 on: June 06, 2016, 02:25:50 PM »
The real issue is that what we call a tribe these days is a geographically dispersed population with tenuous connections at best.  It would be extremely difficult for one native tribe to completely exterminate another simply because the logistics make it unfeasible to roam all over a wide territory finding every last village of people that might be interrelated.

But there's certainly ample evidence of native tribes in the North Americas completely exterminating entire villages of rival tribes down to the last child, which is as close to genocide as you can get given Neolithic technology.
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Omega

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #181 on: June 06, 2016, 08:57:08 PM »
Yes, thats what I mean. Total extermination of villages. Wiping out whole tribes was not as common far as I've been told due to the aforementioned dispertion. Though apparently not for wont of trying. Why? I have no clue. I assume over competition for hunting grounds mostly. At other times it seems like a tribe would go out of their way to exterminate a village/tribe.

Make of it what you will. Stuff like this can be interesting when applied to campaigns and finding out WHY this tribe is doing this, or trying to stop them, can become a major quest.

Simlasa

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #182 on: June 07, 2016, 12:05:14 AM »
Quote from: Omega;902224
Why? I have no clue.
As if any cohesive group of people ever needed much of an excuse to hate another group of people... "Them fuckers over there, we hates them, lets go kill them and take their stuff!"
As I recall the Old Testament had a few tales of one group eradicating another group.

Bren

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #183 on: June 07, 2016, 12:58:02 AM »
Quote from: Simlasa;902269
As if any cohesive group of people ever needed much of an excuse to hate another group of people... "Them fuckers over there, we hates them, lets go kill them and take their stuff!"
As I recall the Old Testament had a few tales of one group eradicating another group.
The excuse was that god told them to do that.

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Only in the cities of these peoples that the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, you shall not leave alive anything that breathes. But you shall utterly destroy them, the Hittite and the Amorite, the Canaanite and the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, as the LORD your God has commanded you,
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Simlasa

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #184 on: June 07, 2016, 01:24:41 AM »
Quote from: Bren;902278
The excuse was that god told them to do that.
I guess it's nice to have a god that tells you to do stuff you were probably already inclined to do anyway.

S'mon

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #185 on: June 07, 2016, 03:46:50 AM »
Quote from: Omega;901962
They dont? Native American history has ample tales of tribes pretty much exterminating and/or capturing other tribes to the point they effectively ceased to exist. And that was before europeans arrived.


Yeah. Steven Pinker 'The Better Angels of Our Nature' has some enlightening info on this. It's actually pretty common for hunter-gatherer inter-group warfare to culminate with the annihilation of one of the groups, whenever there is resource scarcity. The widespread contrary belief seems more due to Rousseau-ean Anthropologists (sp?) seeing what they wanted to see, & then spreading myths to that effect.  Chimps and other hunter or hunter/gatherer group animals do the same.
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S'mon

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #186 on: June 07, 2016, 03:48:16 AM »
Quote from: Skarg;902124
I'm not sufficiently familiar with that situation to comment on it, but no, generally, they don't. There are some exceptions, but they tend to raid to take things and assert themselves, not to murder their neighbors. There's usually no worthwhile reason to risk pitched battles. Raiding provides one way to balance scarcity and overabundance.


They don't wipe each other out in pitched battles. One side typically launches a big dawn raid/massacre to wipe out the other side while they're sleeping.
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Skarg

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #187 on: June 07, 2016, 12:28:38 PM »
Seems to me people actually do need reasons for kill other people. Wiping out other tribes when there's a great scarcity of food and attacks and retribution are escalating is very different from just deciding to kill all the people in another village just because.

There are of course different situations and different levels of conflict. However there is definitely a common class of livestock raid (which is I would say by far the most common overall) which is not about trying to kill the neighboring people.

Bren

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #188 on: June 07, 2016, 02:10:29 PM »
Quote from: S'mon;902309
It's actually pretty common for hunter-gatherer inter-group warfare to culminate with the annihilation of one of the groups, whenever there is resource scarcity.
That's one of the justifications in the ancient world for slavery being the lesser of two evils.

Quote from: Skarg;902379
Seems to me people actually do need reasons for kill other people.
Not just reasons, but the right circumstances. Col. Dave Grossman has done a fair bit of research on this topic. His 1995 book On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society is pretty enlightening. It has one of the most interesting, and to my mind reasonable, explanations for why guns supplanted bows and crossbows despite guns being inferior in rate of fire and accuracy.
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Omega

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"...an ancient evil has awoken", or the Big Threat plot device
« Reply #189 on: June 07, 2016, 08:48:01 PM »
Quote from: Skarg;902379
Seems to me people actually do need reasons for kill other people. Wiping out other tribes when there's a great scarcity of food and attacks and retribution are escalating is very different from just deciding to kill all the people in another village just because.

There are of course different situations and different levels of conflict. However there is definitely a common class of livestock raid (which is I would say by far the most common overall) which is not about trying to kill the neighboring people.

With NA tribes at least in the Ohio region it seemd there was an inordinant amount of territory wars and wars just because they didnt like some other tribe for reasons other than food. There was at least one period where I believe the Iriquois swept through and effectively depopulated the whole Ohio region. Some tribes fled to other regions. Others were wiped out or close enough. Why? Apparently just to get rid of them. The region wasnt settled by anyone for a long time after.

This was actually one of the reasons given in a campaign for why a whole region was nearly devoid of settlement. In ages past the area had been swept of just short of all civilization and what was left were a-lot of ruins above and below.