Four hundred centuries have passes since man stepped out into the cold depths of space. Forty thousand years. An age so long that that its history lies shrouded in legend. Who knows how Mankind came to be scattered across a million disparate worlds? Who remembers the wars that tore ancient Earth asunder and dragged man down to the level of brute beasts? Who could recognize the names of Earth's ancient ruins, of nations destroyed and peoples long since crumbled to dust? To these questions, there can no answers. From these times there come only whispers of horror and death.
Too many tales... too many tales to sort through. It was my time, and even I cannot believe everything I have heard of the Long Night. The accounts of kings in the thrall of unliving courtesans... of entire cathedrals woven of living and unliving flesh that shuddered with the thirst for blood... of iron-toothed crones clutching flayed scrolls inscribed with the secrets of Lilith... of demons sinking their talons into the minds of kine and even Cainites... of heresy cults preaching the word of Caine the Savior... of a cup filled with the blood of Malkav... of ancient gods deep beneath peat bogs, devouring the sacrifices offered them until they woke... of the Old Folk catching and torturing anyone without the iron to keep them at bay...
—Vampire: The Masquerade - Clanbook: Malkavian (Revised)
Some very disillusioned members of the Convention would have you believe that the so-called "Mythic Age" was a perverse creation, an abomination forged by the combined abysmal might of the Hermetic Tradition and the Celestial Choristers, and that Mankind entered a vast, thousand-year reign of darkness and unending misery as a result of technology and reason being forced underground. They'll say that the horrid powers of witches, wizards and priests made living in the world as a technologist an impossibility, and only through their own unswerving dedication to the precepts of rigorous control could we have this modern age of technological wonders we have today.
In short, they're so full of shit that a sprinkling of sulfur is all that stands between them and being a fine example of Kallinikos' Greek Fire.
Oh, sure, it was bad. It was ugly. Lots of people died and lots more suffered. On the other hand, it's been that way forever and if you pick any major city on the planet, I can find you the downtrodden underclass who are still suffering, dying and rotting away from the inside. The main difference is the ones today have better scenery.
—Mage: The Ascension - Convention Book: Iteration X