There was a great role play on RPoL.net called Pillars of Culture. In it, various players began from Paleolithic times and eventually became Bronze, or early Iron Age societies. Unfortunately the role play died very early, just when it was getting REAL good.
In this game, game play may be split into different turns, from any time, like one day, up to seven days each. You would start your own societies that you would build from the ground up, and eventually improve on your technology, your culture and religion, etcetera. You begin at the Tribal stage, at first only having natural shelters, and a few other very very early Technologies and maybe some societal distinctions from other tribes.
There would be two different kinds of actions for players to post. Industrial And Cultural/Societal. The purpose of Actions is to gain in-game rewards from them. For example, Industrial Actions are used to build or grow things that you have invented or set into place with Cultural/Societal Actions, so if you wanted to invent a Religion, you would post the following.
The Hebrews have had a mild Winter. The Spring comes to bring them the hope of better days. A Wise Man contemplates the meaning of life and decides that there isn't more than one God, there is only One. He concludes that there are Ten major Commandments that people have to follow to please this God for the good of Society. (Judaism is Invented).
The Wise Man takes his new beliefs to the other Wisemen, Elders and Chiefs of the Hebrews. They discuss their beliefs and an argument develops among the Elders and Wisemen, eventually however, they all agree with each other that there is only One God. These Wise Men had a vision of the One God, and come to believe in him and seek to obey him through the Ten Commandments.
Result: The Hebrews develop Judaism, and adopt it in the same turn.
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=Reserved For Rules Clarifications And Game Explanation=
Certain societal needs and advantages are fulfilled and gained through building structures, and adopting religions, and philosophies, such as Monotheism, Polytheism, and Chivalry, etcetera. Advantages gained are based on the Text you perform Actions with. There are societal ways that your civilizations and tribes can gain other advantages than just religions and philosophy, for example, being Nomads, or something like that works just as well.
The Technology Level for this role play is very VERY low in the beginning although in it's final stages it would possess Technology from these days, all the way to perhaps centuries in the future. In other words, this could be a role play that begins in the days of Paleolithic Cave Men, go all the way through the Mesolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Middle Ages, etcetera, all the way to Star Trek level Technology.
At first, your unique peoples will have the ability to communicate with eachother EITHER with spoken language or hand gestures, gather food, cook them with fire, have natural shelter, and hunt, and have a handful of other technologies themselves, in addition to having five societal attributes.
For example, My ActTribe would have:
Spoken Language (But you can research Hand Gestures too)
Starting Unique Tech:
OOC: Because Medicine Magic includes Herbalism as kind of Technology to work and is able to be had by this people, they start this Role Play with Herbalism for free, and have all of it's benefits. Medicine Men have powers to heal, and can make the people healthy or even sick if they are happy or displeased.
In addition, Your Society may develop paranormal, magical or mystical powers of their own. You begin with One of these, which may include a Technology all on it's own. For example, my Act Tribe Starts with Medicine Magic, and Medicine Men have the power to heal and make their Tribe healthy. The life span of these people should be 35, but because of Herbalism and Medicine Magic, their Life span is already 55. This will allow the Tribe to grow much faster because of people living to be older, and will keep the Tribe productive because less people are sick.
Family Values : (The house is led by Father and Mother. . . and by their Father and Mother, followed by you, your sisters, brothers and sons and daughters.
Patriarchal Order : (The house is led by Father over Mother first. Men generally run society. . .)
Individual Worship : (Worship is individualistic. Although this is a Tribe, individual families have more power over religions followed than the Tribal community for each nuclear family).
Oral Tradition: The telling of stories.
Oaths: The people are honest, and if they give you their Oaths, they will do their best to fulfill that Oath.