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One Hundred Alternate Histories
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One Hundred Alternate Histories

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The concept of alternate histories has had a long and varied career in both science fiction & fantasy as well as roleplaying games, let alone popular hero-centric comics. Boiled down to a common denominator, most focus on a single point of divergence away from canonical history and explore the ‘what if’ factor for the future, given that that divergence happened. 

But there are frequently frustrating and localized limits to this approach. If person X were killed (or not killed), what would this do to the lives of the average citizen in your country?

In One Hundred Alternate Histories, we focus only on points of divergence that would have (or could have) had a very significant impact on the largest possible fraction of the population of the Earth!

Organized as a d100 chart the book is not just a one-liner per entry affair. On the contrary, each of the possible changes to the Earth's history is explored in a more detailed manner with possibilities outlined for the subsequent evolution of the planet, nations and average citizens.

The periods covered are comprehensive, and include:

  • pre-biotic (i.e. the period of Earth formation - what if the Sun were more massive - how would humanity cope with a higher flux coming at us on Earth?);
  • pre-history (i.e. before we had writing - what happens when the Neanderthals persist or if tectonic plates don't pull apart Pangaea?); 
  • up to 1000 BCE (in the era of the earliest civilizations, what happens when one civilization discovers the iron age much earlier than others? or megafauna are not extinct?); 
  • 900s-1 BCE (The Greeks and Romans take to the stage - or not as the case may be);
  • 1-900s CE (Rome falls, paper is invented and other significant events take place - or not!); 
  • 1000s-1600s CE (the medieval period - will bubonic plague hit hard? or are you more worried by Australians discovering Europe?); 
  • 1700s-1800s CE (Steampunk, Napoleon and the Industrial Revolution combined?);
  • 1900s CE (the League of Nations prevents war and Utopia ensues! maybe?);
  • Recent Era (the Millennium Bug proves far more costly potentially!);
  • Near Future (worried much about artificial intelligence yet? perhaps you should be!).

These can be combined for some highly entertaining combinations too! How about an alternate Earth that has a large axial tilt, where dinosaurs have survived and humanity has undertaken an extensive programme of cyber implantation. This, and other fantastical combinations can provide the basis for many adventures in roleplaying games that feature travel to and from alternate timelines, and chronomancy magic. 

This book is presented in a system-agnostic manner and is can be used with almost any roleplaying game if a GM needs to build a novel alternate Earth, or perhaps even a different planet completely.

Please note: some of the entries mention mature topics (e.g., violence, sex, war and death), hence reader discretion is advised throughout. 

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File Last Updated:
January 15, 2015
Cet article a été ajouté à notre menu sur January 15, 2015.