You stared out over the gloomy landscape. It stretched on for miles. The end of it was not visible. Your mind floated back to another time, one long gone. The same landscape was filled with fields. The large, protective hill you were standing on was covered by a prosperous city. Next to all of this, a large meandering river was running. It provided life to the city.
Your father tells you,"As long as this river runs, we shall be forever strong." But those words fell on your ears years ago. Not too long after, the river dried up completely. The land died. Your father died. The city died. After a while, nothing was left. All there was was a dead hill, a deserted plain, and a dry riverbed. You and your remaining followers decided to leave. Eventually you found a new place to settle up north. It was relatively quiet there, and you established a nice little village.
One day however, you found a dam. After a few seconds it dawned on you that, this was the dam that killed your city. It was right in front of you, staring you in the face. You turned beet red in anger, and made up your mind to tear it down. You gathered the villagers and destroyed it, unleashing the river once more. A great victory had been acheived - only to be followed by a loss. A mob fell on you almost as soon as you were done with your task. You fled. Many fell. Eventually, you lost your attacker in the night. A few made it back with you to the old hilltop.
And so the river had returned. However, you had some problems yet to deal with. The river was back, yes, but the land was like an unpermeable rock - it would not accept the life-giving forces of the river. To fix this, you would have to irrigate the land and break it up. In the meantime, you had to feed your people somehow and find wood enough to defend your tiny settlement - you had no doubt that your assailant would find you out sooner or later. The only thing you could think of that would help you were the stakes left in the ground from the city, and that harsh strain of hops given to you by that merchant. Maybe that hops could grow here somehow...
I got one playtester for this aside from myself. Hopefully it's not too hard.