IronWinds Timeline

   The Ironwind Campaign is a d20 Future Point-Buy setting, designed for a campaign based around military mecha pilots. It’s mostly anime-inspired, drawing on the various Gundam and Robotech series, among others. It’s designed for use with Eclipse: The Codex Persona and The Practical Enchanter (also available in Shareware editions, HERE and HERE).

 

The Media Ages:

   This period of mankind’s history is – oddly enough – both better documented and more disputed than any other. With the spread of communications technology, immense numbers of records were produced – but even those living at the time seemed to be unable to agree as to what was going on and as to which records were accurate, which fictitious, and which were (worst of all) some combination of the two. For later historians, working from records which were badly damaged during the Psyker War, the task is nearly hopeless.

  • 1920’s -40’s: The Great War, A.K.A. “The Blood War”: References to “Blood Magic”, Cloning, and Brain Transplants may indicate the undisciplined use of psychic potentials.

  • 1945: The Trinity Event: First release of nuclear energy. The Ortholic Church claims that it was a direct act of god, designed to end the Great War.

  • 1960: The Philadelphia Incident: The USS Enterprise, said to have been powered by an experimental nuclear hyperdrive, is launched from Philadelphia. The ship ceases to report halfway through it’s mission, the project is abandoned, and the technology lost.

  • 1973: Lungfish: Henry Gray patents the first practical long-term, self-sustaining, space colony design.

  • 1992: Biodome: The first sucessful Biosphere long-term sealed environment and artificial ecology experiment succeeds.

  • 2008: The Global Warming Initiative: A firm commitment to climate control, coupled with the early signs of the onset of fossil fuel exhaustion, lead to numerous biotechnology projects, a massive dependence on nuclear power, a crash program of fusion research, and plans for space colonization.

  • 2024: Sunco First Ignition: The first commercial helium-3 fusion reactors are brought online. A laser-launch facility swiftly follows. With limited reserves of Helium-3, this is recognized as a stopgap measure and a solar power satellite program is put underway.

  • 2033: Heinlein City: The first permanent lunar colonies are founded and a mass-driver system is set up to provide raw materials for the production of solar power satellites.

  • 2047: Project Prometheus: The full digitization of the worlds museums and libraries is complete. Actual printed or material works become anachronisms, and begin to fall into disuse.

  • 2052: The Lief Erickson Disaster: An experimental drive aboard the laboratory ship Lief Erickson is tested, and fails spectacularly. Something – most records suggest an exotic energy field, but there were later claims of “Midiclorians” and “Element X” – is either generated or somehow imported during the event. Much of the earth is exposed.

  • 2053: The X-Factor: Rare individuals – about one in five million – with spectacular “psionic” (as opposed to the lesser – and still observed – psychic) powers and abilities appear. For a time, this is hailed as the next stage in human evolution.

  • 2055: Project Carter: With the gradual exhaustion of Helium-3 reserves on earth, and the difficulties in extracting it from the lunar surface, fusion technology falls into disuse. The resulting energy shortages are obviated by the Wormhole-Coretap systems created by a Psionic researcher. These supposedly drew directly on the core of the sun to supply superheated plasma to an MHD system for power generation.

  • 2064: Thus Spake Zarusthra: A private colonizing expedition boards comet Zarusthra on its way out of the solar system in an attempt to colonize the Oort cloud (and eventually the galaxy). They leave practical communications range in 2069 and are never heard from again.

  • 2076: The Psionic Control Acts: Gathering political backlash against the threat and activities of rogue psionic humans – or simply “Psykers” – leads to a series of draconian control measures being instituted. Unsurprisingly, the Psionic population resists.

  • 2077: The Psyker Wars: While these are actually fought as a series of skirmishes, commonly with Psionics on both sides, the destruction is still massive. The Psionics superhumanly enhanced skills, abilities, and powers allow them to revise records, spread false information through the net, and manipulate public beliefs with ease. Much of the confusion about the previous century stems from this period.

  • 2078: The Fall of Icarus: The Deadalus laser launch facility, the last functioning spaceport on earth, is destroyed, bringing an end to conventional methods of space travel for several centuries.

  • 2079: The Apollonian Exodus. With the last of the renegade Psionics defeated or fled, the Olympian League (the final alliance of helpful Psionics), unable to negotiate a peace with Earth’s somewhat hysterical governments, withdraws to the failing lunar colonies rather than confront the Earth’s remaining military forces. A crash program of nuclear bombardment of the lunar surface is instituted, but the Olympian League broadcasts an announcement that they – and the remaining population of the moon – are leaving, and will be blocking the use of high-order psionic abilities throughout the solar system thereafter. While the lunar colonies are breached and destroyed shortly thereafter, modern archeology on the moon does seem to indicate that they were empty at the time. Unfortunately, the Wormhole-Coretap systems of Project Carter cease to operate at the same time. With the lost of most of the power satellites during the war, along with the chaos sown in the global network, civilization begins a slow collapse.

 

The New Dark Ages:

   Between 2080-2489 most records were lost or badly scrambled and various plagues – medically- suppressed for centuries – swept through the human race. Small areas of industrial civilization persisted near hydroelectric, tidal, geothermal, and surviving satellite-receiver power supplies, supplemented by Biofuels and the remaining dregs of fossil and nuclear fuel supplies, but most of humanity dropped back to a low-power – and low artificial illumination – lifestyle. The global population fell to under a billion. A functioning global government was established in 2193, but it never extended its authority to the primitive tribes and survivalists (old-style “hermits”) occupying the unpowered wild areas of the world. Unable to advance for lack of power, human civilization stabilized. Large-scale warfare became obsolete, although smaller squabbles continued. Research into the Psionics, and their abilities, was effectively banned by the belief that it was attempting to exploit such abilities that destroyed civilization. Psychic powers also fell under the stigmata, but were still used.

 

The Inesco Renissance:

  • 2490: The Second Foundation: Leon Inesco designs, and manages to get built and bring into operation, a functioning hydrogen-fusion power reactor. While hugely massive and extremely expensive, the human race – at least in the more civilized areas – has access to cheap and plentiful power again, and begins to rebuild civilization. Due to resource exhaustion on Earth, great efforts are again directed towards space colonization.

  • 2545: The Selene Launch Facility: The first modern laser-launch facility is built. With easy access to space, over the next 20 years the lunar colonies are soon re-established, asteroid mining is initiated, and the process of moving asteroids into the earth-moon lagrange points to serve as materials for colonies and industry is initiated.

  • 2573: The Jovian Extraction: With the increasing need for smaller fusion reactors for individual space colonies, the exploitation of the Helium-3 reserves of Jupiter is begun to supply fuel for smaller, hybrid Inesco-Sunco reactor designs. The Jupiter colonies and a transport fleet are established.

  • 2598: Mother Gaia: Half of the total human population now lives in space. Gaism, the philosophy that the Earth is sacred and that humanity should leave it in peace, begins to spread.

  • 2632: The Retrenchment: Out of a total human population of 8 billion, 7.2 billion now live in space, the vast majority in the lagrange colonies. Smaller populations exist in the asteroid belt and on the moons of Jupiter. The development of new colonies is greatly slowed due to administrative concerns.

  • 2654: The Murith Decision: The Earth Federation rejects a general motion for colonial autonomy.

  • 2667: Independence: The colonies begin to proclaim their administrative, if not full political, independence. This is grudgingly accepted by the Earth Federation.

  • 2674: 11’th Periodic Upgrade: The Earth Federation modernizes and expands its military forces. Perhaps unfortunately, they remain little more than a police force. Older equipment – like several generations of older equipment before that – is mothballed. The population of the solar system is now fairly stable, at roughly 2 billion on Earth, 8.5 billion in the lagrange point colonies, and .5 billion in the various other stations, in the asteroid belt, and operating the Jupiter atmosphere-mining colonies.

  • 2678: SETI: The astronomical society announces the possible detection of intelligent activity near the galactic core by one of their deep space probes. Given that this is tens of thousands of light years away, and that the evidence is ambiguous, this is little more than a nine days wonder.

  • 2686: Observation: Olbrecht Mikan, of the L2 Physics Society, discovers the Mikan Effect – a spacefield which can be used at low-levels to distort photon transmission over a considerable area and at higher levels to contain and redirect electromagnetic energy. Applications will eventually include small-scale fusion reactors, anti-laser shielding, military sensor and communications scrambling, short-range plasma weapons, and the near-elimination of long-range precision weaponry. Warfare is suddenly a short-range affair once again.

  • 2689: Independence: The L2 colonies declare themselves an imperial state, the Righteous Hegemony, and establish their own military force. The Earth Federation imposes economic sanctions against the Zeon Principality. Several other colonies follow, albeit with less fuss and publicity.

  • 2692: Seig Heil!: The Righteous Hegemony develops prototype Mikan-Effect jammers, weapons, and fusion reactors and proclaims (yet another) “master race” theory.

  • 2693: Espionage: Earth Federation agents manage to obtain much of the basic information on the Mikan effect. The Earth Federation secretly begins to develop its own advanced military gear. Unfortunately, while the Earth’s resources are far greater, the Hegemony has a considerable head start.

  • 2695: Robotechnology Tests: The Hegemony completes the first prototype piloted anthropomorphic warcraft – a Mecha. By now, much of the Hegemony’s society is completely militarized.

  • 2697: The Secret War: The Hegemony creates the first production model Mecha. Nearly 800 are produced. Additional models are rushed into production, but the numbers are still very limited.

 

The System War:

  • 2698: The One Day War. The Hegemony launches a surprise attack and destroys major Earth Federation military bases, and their associated colonies in L2, L4, and L5 as well as on Luna. NBC weapons are used indiscriminately, killing nearly 3 Billion people in the initial assault. Asteroid drops – screened against long-range detection by Mikan jamming fields – devastate much of the Earth’s surface and set off an impact winter. Further operations in the following weeks bring the total to some 6 billion deaths. The other surviving colonies rush to declare themselves neutral. While they are aware that the Hegemony’s beliefs demand their destruction as well, they hope to buy time to prepare for the attack.

  • 2698: The Invasion. As a follow-up, the Hegemony invades Earth, making up for their lack of numbers and resources by deploying highly-advanced Mecha. The Federation deploys its (minimal) security forces and re-commissions immense amounts of mothballed equipment to supply hastily-recruited Militias. Casualties are better than 30-1 in favor of the Hegemony – roughly the ratio of the forces. Both sides claim a (pyrrhic) victory.

  • 2699: The World of Warcraft: With much of each sides forces destroyed, the Hegemony is reduced to holding actions and strategic strikes while they scramble to gather resources, recruit, and resupply their forces. The first Federation Mecha units are deployed to reinforce the remaining defense forces. Characters enter play at L5 in the European Theater after their (prequel) selection as Mecha Pilots.

 

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