Prior to WW2 – No deviations.
1944 – Germany, while transporting their first (and only) nuclear weapon, accidentally sets it off. The cause is (obviously) unknown, but paris is no more.
1947 – US government covers up a meteor strike in Roswell, NM by creating an elaborate conspiracy theory about an alien crash, causing most citizens to dismiss the claims as the rantings of the insane. In actuality, the meteor did carry extra-terrestrial life to the planet – bacteria which forms in semi-sentient colonies (intelligence levels similar to human children). These bacteria are capable of inhabiting a host body (now known to be nearly any living being) and form a symbiotic relationship, providing access to supernatural abilities in exchange for performing strange requests at the behest of the bacteria. These “contractors” were at first dismissed as the stories of superheroes and mutants, but with the emergence of the information age their knowledge became more widespread. To protect themselves, most hide their powers from the public. Government organizations exist to try and identify these individuals, but many remain unknown.
1983 – While NATO was running an Able Archer 83 exercise, when Russians – convinced this was a ruse to hide a first strike – launched into war. World War 3 consisted of 3 Major alliances – the Chinese, the Russians, and the US/Euro Alliance, and was non-nuclear.
As the casualties rose the militaries realized they had far more capabilities to kill than to preserve their own troops. Hundreds of thousands of soldiers were limbless, blinded, or deafened. Scientists on all sides raced to find ways to keep these soldiers in the battle – and all succeeded. The first cybernetic prosthetics began to appear in the late 1980s and the early 1990s, though it was too slow to stem the tide of destruction. In the end, the war ended in a stalemate, when no side was willing to commit to attack their heavily fortified defenses. All sides, having suffered great losses, agreed to an uneasy treaty, drawing new lines that represent the map today. The treaty was signed in 1991.
On account of a 3 faction war, no nations turned to nuclear weapons for fear the other two would combine efforts against the offender to quickly eliminate the threat.
1993 – the first working Brain-Computer interface is created. The technology progresses rapidly, by the beginning of the 21st century neural interfaces are common-place among heavy computer users.
2010 – As the post WW3 baby boomers begin to hit young adulthood and having children of their own, it is becoming quickly abundant that Earth is running out of space and resources to support this population. While the population as of this year is roughly 8 billion people, models predicted this to reach 15 billion within less than 100 years. Similar to the early 2000’s “global warming” scare, unfounded propganda launched a space-race. Unprecedented cooperation between the nations produces unprecedented results.
The first, and short term solution is the “Orbital City” – in current days it has just recently reached a phase where it’s become habital. Nearly 3 million people live in orbit above the north pole, and more travel by the elevator every day.
The second was the goal to Terraform Mars. This has only recently begun, and currently there are crews (mostly robotic) on the Martian surface drilling towards the center to restart the core.
The third, seen as the most long term solution, was the search for Faster than Light travel. Eventually, a team of researchers discovered the solution to this – the first (and thus far, only) “Magi-tech” (technology based on the effects of contractors) – we have created vessels capable of entering darkspace – a seperate dimension where physics work a bit differently, essentially allowing infinite accelleration. Darkspace received it’s name because this is where the observed effects of ‘dark matter’ and ‘dark energy’ derive from.
FTL, ironically, was the 1st of these projects to complete, in the year 2014. Probes were sent out to seek habitable planets. The cosest of these systems, at just over 20 lightyears away is Gliese 581. Scientists belived the 4th planet in this system to be possibly earth-like, and they were quite correct. Upon arrival, our probe was retreived by the inhabitants, who traveled to Earth to congratulate us on our success in creating FTL travel and to welcome us to an “Intersolar” Alliance – much like the United Nations of earth. While it took our probe nearly 8 years to reach their world, these ‘Proteans’ returned to ours in just over a week. Their psionically powered ships literally dissamble and reassemble at a new location.
2022 – The Second Great Depression. In the wake of alien contact US stock markets crashed abruptly on the fears these aliens would take over the world. This was the straw that broke an already failing economies back. In the midst of this crisis, the year 2023, the San Andreas Fault shook the Los Angeles basin. The US could not afford to rebuild, but Japan – in the midst of an economic boom from their production of ever increasing cybernetic technology – could. The US sold its west coast to Japan. Japan has made payments for over 10 years now, eventually bringing the US out of its depression and making Japan a superpower, as Los Angeles has become a focal point of corporate power.
2036 – Current date.