The Empire has fallen. The Emperor has been overthrown. The military remains, weakened, scattered, but still standing in many places. With no strong central leadership to maintain control, a power vacuum develops that pits military warlords against local governors vying to exert authority over the territory they control. This is the beginning of an “age of darkness” that lasts for five hundred years until another more powerful emperor emerges who unifies the warring factions into a new, expansive empire.