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Time Line

Today is Friday May 19, 0282

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The time line up through the start of the war.

This page contains portions of an article originally published in Dragon Magazine issue #71, called "Before the Dark Years". It was written by James M. Ward and Roger E. Moore. I have added my own entries to adapt it to my own game.

First use of atomic bomb in warfare. 70,000 people killed from bomb.

Sputnik 1, the first artificial Earth satellite, launched by U.S.S.R.

Luna 1 launched by the U.S.S.R. Was first probe to successfully escape the Earth's orbit and did a fly by of the moon.

First manned spacecraft Vostok 1 launched.

Mariner II space probe launched to Venus. Flight is successful.
Mariner IV space probe launched to Mars. Flight is successful.

First manned lunar landing made by Apollo 11 spacecraft.

Pioneer X space probe launched at Jupiter. Flight is successful.

Recombinant-DNA technique (gene splicing) demonstrated.
Pioneer XI space probe launched at Saturn. Flight is successful.
Mariner X launched at Venus and Mercury. Flight is successful.

Voyagers I and II launched on trajectory that will take them past several planets then out of the solar system.

First major nuclear reactor accident (Three Mile Island) occurred. Radiation contained before being released into the environment.

American space shuttle service begins (Earth orbit).

Chernobyl nuclear facility explodes releasing large amounts of radioactivity into the atmosphere.

1991 - 1993
Union of Soviet Socialist Republic's government collapses. Majority of Soviet states create democratic governments.

Soviet states unify into United Soviet Democratic Republic. USDR economy and technology base shows dramatic improvement.
First clone of a large mammal (sheep) accomplished successfully.

World population passes the 14 billion mark. Scientists have warned that planet cannot support this many people. Blights destroy many crops, worldwide food shortages result along with increasing political tensions between countries. The have-nots demand that the haves share their resources.

World War III; worldwide general conflict between Third World and Superpowers, limited nuclear weapons exchange before cease-fire. 1/3 of the world's population has died due to a combination of the war, disease and famine.

First self-aware "think tank" computer activated.

First manned space flights to Mars launched - USS Ares I & II; primary base established at Mariner Valley.

Cold fusion technology perfected. Makes internal combustion obsolite. Oil companies are quick to jump on the band wagon by introducing their own cold fusion power plants.

Work begins on cleaning up environmental polution created by decades of internal combustion engine usage.

First privately-owned AI computer activated at University of Southern California.

First room temperature super-conductor created. Will revolutionize all industries which have high energy needs. Makes space flight much more affordable.

Fusion power becomes a reality.

Next generation of space shuttles goes into service. Much more energy efficent engines allow shuttles to carry fuel on board, eliminating need for booster rockets.
Fusion power plants begin to replace fission power plants.

American, Chinese, Indian and Soviet international conferences lead to establishment of the First World Council. A unified world government, it lasts 5 years. The government collapses because of squabblings by third world countries.

Maglev mass transit established in many major cities.

First artificial person 'born'. After much fighting, it is determined by the world courts that artificial people are the property of their sponsor corporations.

Rise of the first commercial business block to control a country. Exxon openly establishes control of Ecuador.

Fusion drive perfected by USA. USA allies are quick to aquire the technology. Complete restructuring of views on space travel. Travel becomes very economical.

First commercial spaceport opens, Florida Space Complex. Established on the site of Cape Kennedy in Coco Beach Florida.

Florida Space Complex grows to encompass most of central Florida. Now more than just a spaceport, it is the first Megalopolis to be established in the world. American government entices Floridians to move into the complex to live permanently. Many Floridians make the move, which allows the state to begin reclaiming Florida land for natural preserves.

Costruction on First Texan Space Complex, the first commercial spaceport in Texas, begins.

First Earth-orbital commercial space factory assembled.

Establishment of USA Space Navy. First of its kind, the navy boasts 2 cruisers, 3 destroyers and 7 corvettes. Within months, all other superpowers also have space navies.

American and Canadian governments unify and form United North America.

First orbital city established. Atlantis is the first permanently orbiting structure to house both astronauts and their families. City is a marvel of American ingenuity and engineering, with the habitation ring more than 10 miles in diameter.

Orbital city Atlantis becomes first politically independent space colony; moves to Martian orbit.

Columbus, Magellan and Marco Polo unmanned interstellar probes launched from Earth orbit.

Brazil establishes SAEU (unified South American government).

Columbus reaches Alpha Centauri and maps local planetary systems. Discovers habitable planet, Sphere.

Establishment of Mount Olympus and Mount Arsia colonies on Mars.

Robots become available for use at home.

Theoretical terraforming process developed by Dr. Robert Clark and Dr. Magesh Pillai.
Marco Polo arrives at Bernard's Star and maps local planetary system. Discovers habitable planet, Bernard IV.

Magellan reaches Tau Ceti; discovers terraformable planet, Gaea.

All Martian colonies gain political independence through treaties; Federation of Mars established.
First attempts to terraform Martian moons attempted. All attempts fail.

SAEU collapses after civil war. Civil war rumored to have been started by Exxon.

Mutiny aboard International Station One (first true space war); arrest and execution of mutineers.

Genesis project started. Re-terraforming of Earth eco-system. Most of the population has been moved into megalopolises similar to the Florida Space Complex built back in 2017 or on orbiting space cities. Large areas of land are set aside for reclamation.

First Venerean terraforming project attempted, but fails.

Luna population reaches 10,000 at Tycho Center moonbase.

Human limbs begin to be grown in labs and lost limb replacement becomes common.

Genesis project completed.

Terraforming of larger asteroids begins.

The Three Suns, the first manned interstellar spacecraft, launched toward the Alpha Centauri system.

Widespread civil disorders in China, Korea and Vietnam lead to formation of Asian Coalition.

Thoruim fusion propulsion system perfected and goes into system wide use.

The Three Suns arrives at Alpha Centauri, established first extra-solar human colonies at Gargarin, Armstrong, Greenwood and Sorokin.
Second Venerean terraforming project attempted; project crew lost in satellite collision.

Mexico partitions for membership in United North America and is accepted.

Squabbling by third world countries and their colonies in Sol system causes system wide war. War lasts 2 weeks.

First alien contact revealed as hoax perpetrated by college students.

First bean stalk goes into service in United North American owned Kuala Lumpur.

Other world nations complete bean stalk projects around Earth's equator.

Dr. Nathan Spears developes gravitics technology.

Dr. Fuji Takahashi, a leading Japanese scientist creates the first Faster Than Light drive.

July 18, 2178
The Rising Sun, first FTL star ship, makes maiden voyage to Alpha Centauri. Travel time is approximately 1 day. Other nations are quick to make trade agreements with Japan for new technology.

August 3, 2178
Dr. Emile Philips unveils the first U.N.A. FTL ship, developed separately from Japanese technology. Named the Constitution, the ship makes a successful voyage to Alpha Centauri. U.N.A. allies apply for new technology.

The Rising Sun disappears on a normal run from Earth to Alpha Centauri. Ship is never seen again.

Super powers release claims on most existing territories in Sol system. Begin colonization of surrounding star systems.

European economy takes drastic drop. It is rumored that Cyberdyne has hand in decline of the economy.

Countries of Europe form the Euro Common Market. Formation of ECM causes increase in European economy. France, Germany and Italy are the major proponents in the formation of the ECM.

Dr. Emile Philips theorizes the development of the Jump Gate. A large antenna-like structure which will duplicate the effects of the Hyperdrive. If perfected, the Jump Gate would allow non-star ships to travel to other solar systems at the same rate of speed that a ship using a Hyperdrive would travel. This would mean ships would not need to carry the fuel necessary for the Hyperdrives, leaving more space for cargo, passengers and crew.

Squabbles by third world countries intensify.

Hyperdrive 2 technology discovered by Heinrick Von Straus. Begins to go into use with all countries.

Positronic neural network circuitry developed by Dr. Amanda Walker.

Anagathics discovered on the planet Canopus in the Beta Hydri system. Fruit from the Jup Tu tree when properly processed increases life span.

First android created.

Cybernetic neural networks developed which improve memory, allow the instantaneous learning of new skills and allow direct communication between the human brain and computers.

First Jump Gates built between Earth and the Centauri Systems. Works as well as Dr. Philips predicted. Within 5 years, Jump Gates are built linking all settled systems of the combined Earth governments.

Anagathics artificially synthesized.

Experimental design of AI computer incorporating laboratory-created human brains developed.

First broadcast power facility brought on-line.

First force field projection unit successfully built by Dr. Boon Toe.

Powered armor perfected by the military.

Anti-radiation serum created. Stops degenerative effects of radiation sickness. Brings about a great change in the views of nuclear weapon use in war.
Control of all lunar facilities, except for various military defense bases, is centralized at Tycho Center.

First stasis chamber built and tested. Meant to be used for the incurably ill.

League of Free Men form to promote single world government.

Hyperdrive 3 technology discovered by Professor James Shaw.

First recorded evidence of "Canopus Plague." Discovered on planet Canopus in the Beta Hydri system.

Autonomists form in response to the actions of the League of Free Men. Directly oppose the formation of a world government.

Hyperdrive 4 technology discovered by Professor James Shaw.

Team lead by Dr. Mark Rimer develops life chamber.
Man-portable force field generator units perfected.

Star Voyager II returns on robot drive with crew infected by "Canopus Plague;" ship destroyed after infecting crew of Earth-orbital spaceport.

Several major outbreaks of "Canopus Plague" throughout Sol system; Iapetus colony sealed off and destroyed.
Public informed that all infected stations are destroyed, but Le grange Station Alpha left intact so that plague can be studied.

5,000 members of the League of Free Men die when a small neutron bomb is set off during a convention. It is believed that the Autonomists are responsible for the attack.
3,000 people killed by the release of nerve gas in an office building housing the Autonomists headquarters. Several hundred Autonomists leaders are also assassinated. It is believed these attacks are in retaliation for the attack on the League of Free Men.

Commando outfit Tango-Delta 8 of Lift Company 386 given orders to rescue U.N.A. civilian hostages held by the Swords of Alah, a terrorist group operating out of Iraq.

July 18, 2306
UNA patrol vessel Prometheus, on station near Pluto, is given orders to investigate the appearance of an alien vessel in near orbit around Pluto.
Captain of Prometheus given instructions to have commando unit Tango-Delta 8 recon the vessel. UNA Theodore Roosevelt Task Force dispatched to assist Prometheus. Arrives 3 days later.
A large number of vessels from various governments of Earth are in route to the site.
Incident between Panamanian battleship, Revolution, the Theodore Roosevelt and the alien space craft ends in the complete destruction of the Revolution, after the alien space craft fires weapon of unimaginable power at the Revolution.

August 1, 2306
Scientists successfully communicate with AI controlling the alien ship. AI informs scientists that unless re-fueling of ship commences soon, all power will be lost and it will suffer irreparable damage.
Re-fueling effort begins.

August 3, 2306
AI's automated systems take over re-fueling efforts.

August 7, 2306
AI tricks scientists that a reactor breach is imminent and ship will explode within 30 minutes. After last of the scientists have left alien ship, it activates unknown FTL drive and jumps to light speed. Leaving a confused scientific and military community.

August 9, 2306
Public outcry at the destruction of the Revolution and allowing the escape of the alien vessel causes panic and unrest across the globe. Tensions continue to rise worldwide.

September 16, 2309
Rioting and terrorism spread as so called social alliances gain power. League of Free Men and Autonomists are major instigators of world-wide conflict. Start of Social Wars.

Apocalypse issue their ultimatum:
People of the world, you appear bent upon the destruction of a civilization that has taken centuries to build, and the extinction of all life on Earth.
If that is your will�so be it!
We, The Apocalypse, demand an immediate cessation of this insane violence, or we will end it for you�with a force you cannot conceive.
We have the power!
The choice is yours!

September 23, 2309
Hostilities continue.
The Apocalypse destroys the capital of every nation on Earth.
Earth's governments band together against the new threat. Military forces find and attack Apocalypse base.
The Apocalypse counter-attack from a hidden base.
Automated defense systems world-wide start counter-attacking and soon the entire world is engulfed in global war.

October 28, 2309
Social Wars expand into space with terrorist strikes against Earth-orbital colonies, Tycho Center, other spaceports throughout Sol system.

January 13, 2309
Social Wars begin to expand to other settled systems. Megacorporations use this opportunity as a way to settle disputes.

April 7, 2581
Start of the Valley of Life campaign.

�2001-2024 John E. Gunter, johnprime.com

The material presented here is my original creation, intended for use with the GURPS Atomic Horror/Space systems from Steve Jackson Games. This material is not official and is not endorsed by Steve Jackson Games.

The Gamma World campaign setting is only used as inspiration for my campaign world all conversions to the GURPS system are my own and are not offically endorsed by Wizards Of The Coast.