Logan Graves ([email protected])
The following is a brief history of the events that have shaped the world of the 2050's and the city of Seattle, in which I dwell. (A few of the entries relate to my time spent with the ill-fated Outcasts.) The Earth and her people have undergone awsome changes, the like of which no 20th-century forecaster could have imagined.
- As the civil unrest that marked the end of the millenium intensified, corporations became alarmed at the state of social and political afffairs. Fearing to trust their assets to governmental military forces, they began arming their own security personnel with the finest equipment available and hiring professional mercenaries. As the tide of civil disobedience and urban violence began to engulf every nation on the globe, the corporations began transferring their paramilitary assets wherever needed.
- Food riots of the late 1990's reach their peak in New York City, during the three month truckers' strike. Thousands are injured as violence spreads through the city.
- A precedent-setting ruling on The United States vs. Seretech Corporation, the Supreme Court upheld Seretech's right to maintain an armed force for the protection of its own personnel and property.
- In a landmark case, the Shiawase Decision (The Nuclear Regulatory Commission vs. The Shiawase Corporation) firmly established the extraterritoriality of multinational corporations in international law, by giving them the same rights and privileges as foreign governemnts.
- New technology makes it possible to construct the first optical chip that is proof against electromagnetic pulse effects.
- The Resourse Rush, United Oil, and other major corporations demand and get licenses to exploit oil, mineral, and land resources on U.S. federal lands, including designated Indian lands. Radical Amerindians respond by forming the Soverign American Indian Movement, (SAIM).
- Libya unleashes a chemical weapon against Isreal. Isreal responds with a nuclear strike that destroys half of Libya's cities.
- A major earthquake in New York City kills more than 200,000 people, with damage at 20 million dollars. It will take 40 years to rebuild the city.
- Japan announces the creation of a new Japanese Imperial State. The Japanese depoly the first solar-powered collector satellites to beam microwave energy to receptors on the Earth's surface.
- Angry that the government has leased additional Indian lands to United Oil, SAIM commandoes capture the Shiloh missile facility. They launch a Lone Eagle missile towards the Soviet Union, bringing the world to the brink of nuclear war. The crisis ends when the warheads mysteriously fail to detonate.
- In retaliation for the Shiloh affair, the U.S. government passes the Re-Education and Relocation Act, authorizing the detention of thousands of Native Americans in concentration camps (euphemistically known as "reeducation centers.")
- First outbreak of Virally Induced Toxic Allergy Syndrome (VITAS), which kills 25 percecnt of the world's population before the year's end.
- The Year of Chaos. Governments began to topple, famine stalks the world, nuclear power plants suffer meltdown, with extensive radiation fallout. The dawn of the "Awakened world" begins.
- The first mutant and changeling children are born, signaling he start of the UGE (Unexplained Genetic Expression) Syndrome. The news media dub these new beings as "Elves" and "Dwarves."
- On December 24, thousands of Japanese witness the first Dragon, Ryumyo, to reemerge from dormancy on Mt. Fuji. The same day, Daniel Howling Coyote, Prophet of the Great Ghost Dance, leads his followers out of the Abilene Re-EducationCenter.
- Beginning this year, political chaos begins to engulf the planet. In 2011, the Federal government of Mexico dissolves in riots, while Tibet regains indepenence as magical defences seal it off from invasion and render the region incommunicado.
- Ghost Dancers announce the formation of the Native American Nations (NAN), with the Sovereign Tribal Councel at its head. The Dancers claim responsibility for the eruption of Redondo Peak in New Mexico; Los Alamos is buried under 100 meters of ash. A federal force sent in to retaliate is destroyed by tornadoes called down by the Ghost Dancers.
- The United Free Republic of Ireland is established, while the white-controlled government of Africa collapses.
- In a period of three weeks, U.S. President John Garrety, USSR General Secretary Nikolai Chelenko, Great Britain's Prime Minister Lena Rodale, and Prime Minister Chaim Schon of Israel are assassinated. All but the Garrety assassin are killed in violent shoot-outs with local law offiials.
- New U.S. President William Jarma issues the infamous Resolutions Act, sanctioning the extermination of all Native American tribes. In responce, the Indians began the Great Ghost Dance. Freak weather and other uncanny events destroy or disrupt U.S. military bases hosting troops slated for use in the Resolution Action. On August 17 in responce to the Ghost Dancers' growing power, Mount Hood, Mount Ranier, Mount St. Helens, and Mount Adams erupt simultaneously just as government troops are finally about to begin their attack.
- First-generation ASIST (Artificial Sensory Induction System Technology) is created by Dr. Hosato Hikita of ESP Systems in Chicago.
- The Treaty of Denver is signed. With this agreement, the federal governments of the United States, Canada, and Mexico acknowledge the sovereignty of NAN over most of western North America. The document outlined a ten-year population adjustment plan, that would relocate all non-Indians off lands belonging to NAN. Seattle remains as an extraterritorial extension of the U.S. as does most of California. Denver itself was set aside as the "Treaty City," under joint administration by the signing parties.
- The U.S. spaceplane, America, with its secret military payload, disintegrates in orbit. The wreckage lands in Australia, killing 300 in the small town of Longreach.
- Goblinization. On April 30, 10 percent of the world's population suddenly began to metamorphose into new racial types, known today as Orks and Trolls. This transformation, popularly known as Goblinization, marks another threshold point in the reemergence of magic on Earth. Humans react violently to the presence of the metahuman races in their midst.
- Québec declares its independence, receiving immediate recognition from France.
- Severe rioting continues all over the world in responce to the phenomenon of Goblinization. The U.S. governemnt declares martial law for several months, while reports trickling out of the Soviet Union indicate deaths on a mass scale. Many changed beings go into hiding or withdraw into separate communities.
- Only another outbreak of VITAS quells the radical violence, leaving another 10 percent of the world's population dead in its wake.
- The term, "Awakened Beings" is coined to describe the metahumans and other emerging lifeforms.
- The first simsense entertainment unit (a kind of sensory VCR) becomes available.
- President Jarman is reelected U.S. President in a landslide victory, based on the first use of the remote-vote system. Opposition parties claim fraud.
- Several prestigious U.S. universities establish the first undergraduate programs in occult studies.
- The U.S. Constitution is amended to include all metahumans.
- The first cyberterminal (a room-sized isolation chamber for a single operator) is developed. Funded by various intelligence agencies, the goal of the research is to make it possible for strike teams of "cybercommandoes" to raid data systems.
- The first commercial fusion reactor power plant comes on-line.
- In the United States, the CIA, NSA, and IRS pool their resources to recruit and train Echo Mirage, the first team of "cybercommandoes."
- The Computer Crash of '29. A mystery virus attacks databases worldwide, resulting in total financial chaos. The government and megacorps attempt to fight the virus with their own cybercommandoes, but eventually must recruit maverick hackers to fight the virus with untested technology. These second-generation terminals are desk-sized and no longer require an isolation tank. In the course of fighting the virus and attempting to rebuild the world wide web, the Matrix is born. The surviving hackers now have knowledge of cyberdecks and begin to cobble together their own units.
- The NAN declares that the emerging metahumans (especially Elven folk) are welcome in tribal lands.
- The remaining United States of America merges with Canada to form the United Canadian and American States (UCAS). A coalition of southern states opposes the idea.
- Euro-Wars. In this twelve-year period, Europe and Asia are rocked by a series of wars that result in a complete political transformation.
- The former Soviet Union fragments, while the Awakened come to dominate vast wilderness areas, including portions of Siberia, Mongolia, and the mountains of northeastern China. Switzerland remains, as always, neutral. The Germanies recombine, becoming one of the stronger states in the new Europe. In a return to city-state politics, Italy, southern France, and southeastern Europe fragement into hundreds of tiny sovereignties.
- A coup ousts President McGoldrick of Ireland. The coup was subtly masterminded by Laim O'Connor, whose Tir Republic Corps rose out of a dying IRA. Liam is asked to impose a state of emergency by acting President McCarthy. Liam uses this request to his advantage and creates a Tir out of Ireland: Tír na nÓg.
- The first "gray market" cyberdecks become available.
- The government of Brazil topples in the aftermath of an attack by Awakened forces, including three dragons. The Awakened declare the new state of Amazonia.
- The Confederate American States (CAS) declared their independence from the UCAS and are immediately recognized by Aztlan, itself recently separated from the NAN.
- On May 1st, the Elves of the Pacific Northwest secede from the NAN, declaring themselves the nation of Tir Tairngire (Land of Promise) and confiscating Indian land for themselves. Their borders, which had previously been open to all metahuman refugees, snapped shut. Violent clashes between Indian and Elven tribes break out.
- The Tsimshian tribal coalition withdraws from the NAN.
- A small community of Awakened beings in rural Ohio is napalmed by Alamos 20,000, a terrorist group dedicated to destroying all metahumans. Over the next 15 years, Alamos 20,000 is linked to the deaths of a thousand metahumans and openly sympathetic supporters.
- Fuchi Corporation markets its own third-generation cyberdeck, the desktop CDT-1000.
- California declares independence from UCAS and it's immediately recognized by Japan. The powerful Japanese Imperial State land troops to protect their interests.
- Texas secedes from the CAS and makes an unsuccessful attempt to seize portions of southwestern Texas ceded to the tribes of Aztlan by the Treaty of Denver. Four months later, a frustrated and embarrassed Texas applied for re-admittance to the CAS.
- The Great Dragon, Lofwyr, appears with a staggering 63 percent of Saeder-Krupp's outstanding stock shares. He immediately votes himself Chairman of the Board, CEO, and president, effectively becoming the megacorporation.
- The Night of Rage. Racial violence breaks out in major urban centers of North America. Thousands die, most of them metahumans and their supporters.
- EuroAir Flight 329, en route from London to New York, is destroyed over the Atlantic, killing all passnegers and crew. Though garbled, the last transmission seems to indicate that a dragon attacked the craft. Many believe the flight was sabotaged to retaliate for the Night of Rage.
- Policlubs, youth-oriented associations devoted to spreading various political or social philosophies, first appear in Europe. Each club hopes to recruit the masses to its own viewpoint and thus play a leading role in the European Restoration.
- With his Chiban vat-job complete, Lobo begins his indentured service to Saeder-Krupp's newly formed black operations division.
- Liam O'Connor, State President of Tír na nÓg, dissappears. His wife of two years, Brane Deigh, proclaims herself "Queen" of the Seelie Court, a non-legislative body said to influence the spirits of elves, rather than their minds or bodies.
- Four new chapters of the Universal Brotherhood, an organization espousing a philosophy based on EST, New Age pseudo-mysticism, and a healthy dose of Madison Avenue marketing smarts, open in California.
- Former gymnast and newly signed Ares Predator, Hana "Rita" Moritaka takes the Urban Brawl scene by storm. An instant media favorite, she is dubbed, "Ricochet Rita."
- Aztlan nationalizes all foreign-owned business. Semi-open war breaks out as some corporations fight to retain their holdings. Under cover of the fighting, Aztlan annexes most of what is left of Mexico execpt for the Yucatan, where Awakened forces halt all takeover attempts.
- The Universal Brotherhood opens a chapter in Seattle.
- The first simsense megahit, "Free Fall," starring Honey Brighton, eventually sells 50 million copies.
- The policlub idea spreads to North America, but with violence in its wake. The Humanis Policlub, in particular, attracts a major following that cuts across economic, social, and political divisions. In a series of paid advertisements. Mothers of Metahumans (MOM) denounces Humanis as an army of the shadowy Alamos 20,000.
- Rita (as Ricochet Rita, Razorgal) begins engaging in black operations, including wetwork, for Ares Arms.
- Tir Tairngire is admitted to the United Nations.
- Rita and Lobo cross pathes, while raiding the same Renraku facility. Rita is recognized by a brawl-enthusiast, security guard. After the run, Rita uses her "bonus money" to quietly purchase half interest in the Big Knobi Klub.
- The Governor of Seattle signs an exclusive trade deal with representatives of Tir Tairngire. Seattle, already a major cultural and economic center for the UCAS, NAN, and large segments of the Awakened, now takes on new importance as the only access to Elven goods and services.
- The seventh generation cyberdeck is introduced, now down to keyboard-size.
- Cyber- and biotechnology continue to advance as a significant percentage of mankind chose to distance themselves from the faults of natural flesh.
- Gislan the Wrench ends Lobo's corporate contract. Freed but incognito, Lobo assumes the name, "Fenris."
- In October after being barred-for-life from Urban Brawl, Ricochet Rita forms the Outcasts for a retailatory strike at Ares Arms. The media later dubs it, "the Halloween Heist."
- Major advances in cyber- and biotechnology. More and more humans and metahumans choose to enhance their bodies. To wit, Fuchi begins work on their prototype, eighth-generation, cranial cyberdeck, the " C² ".
- Rita's Outcasts are decimated by a Renraku Red Samurai strike force, as a responce to her actions in 2048.
- First reports of an active mage with bioware enhancements leak to the Seattle-based megacorps, nearly causing a city-wide corporate war.
- Insect-siprits infest Chicago. The UCAS military detonates a subtactical nuclear weapon to destroy the primary hive, creating chaos as well as destruction. The military quarantines the city, sealing it off from the rest of the country.
- A Hawaiian nationalist group attempts to gain control of a magical site, intending to exploit it to oust the corps from their islands. Though their attempt fails, magic in the world spikes to a higher level.
- The UCAS congress formally recognizes the great dragon Dunkelzahn as a legal citizen. The famous "handshake" between Dunkelzahn and President Thomas Steele sends the Technocratic ticket to the top of the polls.
- December: the Election results of 2056 are found to have been rigged. The House Speaker declairs the election null and void and announces new elections. Congress approves the short campaign season of under 8 months, with Election Day rescheduled to Tuesday, August 7, 2057.
- January: assorted people declare themselves candidates for president. Five are widely recognized as viable contenders.
- 15 March: Dunklezahn announces his intention to run for President on a historic broadcast of "Wyrm Talk."
- Campaign season rocks the UCAS. Top five contenders jockey back forth for the winning position.
- 10 July: Republican candidate, Gen. Franklin Yeats, is assassinated in a Seattle hotel room. His running mate, Anne Penchky, declares that she will honor his memory by fighting on as a Presidential candidate.
- 7 August: on Election Day, 11:23:34 pm EST, Dunkelzahn is declared the winner by a narrow margin. Metahumans and other pro-Awakened citizens celebrate in cities across the UCAS.
- 9 August: on Inauguration Night, the newly sworn-in Dunkelzahn is assassinated as his Presidential limo leaves the Watergate Hotel. An astral rift appears above the site of his death. A UCAS military mage becomes its first casualty, when her astral body is sucked into the rift. The site is declared a public hazard and government mages post astral "warning signs."
- 10/11 August: Riots begin to gather momentum in most major UCAS cities. Rumors of a second Night of Rage are quickly squelched as the UCAS military, local police, and some 'hush-hush' support from ARES' security forces quell the heavy violence. The riots show no signs of ending.
- 15 August: Dunkelzahn's will is read at the Watergate Hotel. Within seconds, Matrix copies begin to appear in various on-line user groups, specifically the Neo-Anarchists' Shadowland node. No indication exists to even hint at where this text version came from nor who sent it.
- Captain Chaos begins to upload the matrix's first "shadow information" on the will, including a series of investigations into the items bequeathed by Dunkelzahn.
- Welcome to The Present, chummer. Hope ya survive the trip!