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Stone Punk

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"Realize I’m living in the Stone Age
No fax, no cellular phone age
Pick my teeth with a dinosaur bone age
Liftin’ heavy boulders every day for my wage"

Stonepunk is a Sub-Genre of the Punk Punk science fiction genre. Stonepunk focuses on pre-technological developments in prehistoric times, its juxtapositions of the modern world with the primitive, and the effects of an early form of "advanced" technology on society, like The Flintstones, based on primitive materials such as rock, fire, clay, rope, wood and water. Unlike most classic Cyberpunk or Steampunk influenced fiction like Clock Punk, the Stone Age supplies the inspiration behind a modified form of technology based on the materials provided by the natural elements and surrounding environment. Bamboo Technology is common. Depending on the setting, there may be Sufficiently Advanced Bamboo Technology as well. This is the most likely Punk Punk to be Played for Laughs, given its most famous examples.

The defining feature of Stone Punk is the representation of modern inventions and technology but made with primitive materials, making the prehistoric setting a Purely Aesthetic Era. The idea here is that (for instance) road signs and furnishings would not have existed, but as a Rule of Funny and in order to further highlight the primary societal differences they have been included. Having the familiar aspects can make the foreign aspects seem even more foreign to the audience, which is used as a method of storytelling as a sort of constant reminder that "this work is set in a completely different world".

See also Caveman Media and Hollywood Prehistory.


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    Anime And Manga 
  • Dr. STONE falls into this setting due to its premise of Omnidisciplinary Scientist Senku waking up in a world with Stone Age technology. The existing society already has the Stone; Senku creates the Punk by helping to raise their living standards, bit by bit, until it's reached the 21st century life he's used to. These Stone Age people still wear loincloths, live in straw and wooden huts, and think Senku's achievements are magic, but through his efforts, they now have access to eyeglasses, firearms, chemical weapons, electrical lighting, audio playback technology, indoor climate control, telecommunications, motorized transport, and cola, all of them made from scratch with materials available in the area. That being said, this civilization was already on the verge of becoming this trope when Senku arrived, as one of the villagers, Chrome, thinks like a scientist, was close to some breakthroughs all on his own (such as electricity and pharmaceuticals), and is the only villager who can consistently keep up with Senku's explanations.

    Comic Books 
  • The Flintstones takes the setting of the animated series and uses it to satirize modern society. Many technologies are animal-based, like a small elephant serving as a vacuum cleaner.
  • Played with in The Goddamned. The story is set 16 centuries after Adam and Eve's exile from Eden and before The Great Flood, and the most advanced tech we ever see are iron weapons and wheeled caravans, though Cain's recognition of these advancements imply that they are rediscovered and reinvented as civilizations rise and fall.
  • Rahan The main character invents various technologies when needed.

    Films — Animated 
  • The Croods sees the protagonist begin developing advanced Stone Punk, only for her father to admonish her for trying to violate tradition. This conflict continues until the end of the film.
  • Early Man is about a Stone Age British tribe invaded by an Bronze Age civilisation which is obsessed with football.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Flintstones and The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas are set in the same modern-day version of the Stone Age as the cartoon.
  • Noah may be the first example of "Bible punk". In contrast to the agrarian Noah, the descendants of Cain form a pseudo-industrial society that ravages the Earth, all before the invention of writing.

  • The Way Things Work explains how real machines work by recasting them as stone punk versions.

    Live Action TV 
  • Gilligan's Island: While set in contemporary time, the available materials to the castaways was bamboo and coconuts, leaving them with this level of technology.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The GURPS online magazine Pyramid vol 2 had an article called "Stonepunk", set in a society with TL 0+8 technology, although cutting edge "nantotech" (having items disassembled and reassembled by trained ants) is early TL 0+9.

  • The Imaginext franchise from Fisher-Price had several prehistoric-themed sets complete with Bamboo Technology, bone architecture, battle-ready cavemen, and various dinosaurs and ice-age mammals that were often mounted as cavalry by said cavemen.

    Video Games 
  • Chrono Trigger's prehistoric world has humans and sapient dinosaurs coexisting (not at all peacefully), with the humans somehow contriving to have gear that's more advanced than the stuff from the far-off future (including robot parts and guns) while the dinosaurs have a medieval-ish castle with remote-opened doors.
  • Far Cry Primal has two enemy tribes of the Wenja, the brutish Cannibal Tribe known as the Udam and the Human Sacrifice-practicing Izila. The Udam can manufacture hallucinogenic poison bombs, and the Izila have fire bombs, fortresses, and a farming system. Player Character Takkar captures one Udam and one Izila to learn how to make their weapons and arm his tribe.
  • Monster Hunter plays with this a bit. The actual level of technology is somewhere between Sandal Punk and Steampunk, but a large portion of it is made of wood and the parts of the Monsters you hunt throughout the games.
  • Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time has the third episode, "Clan of the Cave Raccoon". Sly and the gang travel to the Stone Age after crashing the van along with the time machine. They then meet Sly's prehistoric ancestor, the first known Cooper in history and the greatest thief of the Ice Age.
  • The Land of the Cragnons in Super Paper Mario is firmly in this trope, in which the Cragnons live in stone dwellings, dress in loincloths, and fight wooly mammoths with clubs, while their technology is at least advanced enough to have Reality Television.
  • War Party has a trio of stone age tribes using tech influenced by a long lost ancient civilization. One tribe even makes use of mechanical arms and golems.
  • Zeno Clash and it's sequel are set in a prehistoric actually post-apocalyptic society where weapons and houses are made out of bone and stone, the only culture is built around Might Makes Right, no written language exists, and any attempts to establish laws and civilization are met with hostile resistance. Clash: Artifacts of Chaos, set in the same universe, is an even more primitive take on the setting.

    Web Animation 

    Western Animation 
  • The episode "Ugh" in Spongebob Squarepants features Spongebob and co. as cavemen in a prehistoric version of Bikini Bottom.
  • Phineas and Ferb did something similar to Spongebob in the episode "Tri-Stone Area", which places the cast in a Flintstones-esque society.


Video Example(s):


"Clan of the Cave Raccoon"

Since the level is set in the Ice Age, all of the architecture in the level is all either naturally occurring or was engineered with animal bones, pelts and rocks.

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Main / StonePunk

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