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The Quiet Year is a map game. You define the struggles of a post-apocalyptic community, and attempt to build something good within their quiet year. Every decision and every action is set against a backdrop of dwindling time and rising concern.
For a long time, we were at war with The Jackals. But now, we’ve driven them off, and we have this – a year of relative peace. One quiet year, with which to build our community up and learn once again how to work together. Come Winter, the Frost Shepherds will arrive and we might not survive beyond that. But we don’t know about that yet. What we know is that right now, in this moment, there is an opportunity to build something.
The game plays through a year of relative peace for a small post-apocalyptic community. Players take turns playing through weeks in this year. Each week, the active player draws a card from the top of the deck (which represents the year), and reads the card. They carry out the actions or answer the questions that are specified on the card. Once the card is resolved, some quick upkeep occurs: projects that the community has in motion get closer to completion. Finally, the active player picks an action from a short list: hold a discussion, make a decision, discover something new.
The three actions give players a meaningful and difficult set of choices: do you spend time listening to others, in the hopes that they’ll listen to you in kind? Do you pursue your own goals, ostensibly for the good of the whole community? Do you focus inward or outward?
The game is played using a deck of cards – each of the 52 cards corresponds to a week during the quiet year. Each card triggers certain events – bringing bad news, good omens, project delays and sudden changes in luck. At the end of the quiet year, the Frost Shepherds will come, ending the game.
As a story game its primary entry (with the majority of information, threads, and forum games) is in the RPGGeek database: The Quiet Year