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The year is 2097. There are 25 billion people alive on Earth and each month fifty million more are born. Border disputes erupt into chronic wars; refugees of changing climates circle the globe; disease and starvation spread and refuse to disappear. Rich governments, rich corporations, rich people have all turn inward, building up their own slice of the world while keeping the rest out. Eventually, even these will begin to fight over resources and room. It is only a matter of time before a local conflict goes too far and nuclear fires cleanse the world.

But there is some sort of hope. One day, a starship will be built, and the new worlds that it reaches will be the salvation of humanity. Someday, star travel will arrive, but it is anyone's guess whether it will arrive in time. Meanwhile humanity survives, plummeting into the future, not knowing whether to prepare for star flight or extinction, knowing only that, one way or the other, this Dark Age will end soon. Welcome to the Chron X universe!

Just as the 20th century could be described as a conflict between two major powers (the East and the West), the events of the 21st have been influenced mainly by five major powers: the Corporate Hierarchy, the Former United States, the United Nations, the Monasteries, and the Nonames. In many ways, each power is a world onto itself, sometimes sharing the same physical space, but never wholly interacting with each other.

The Nonames

The 21st century brought about a splintering of global society like none other. Nations collapsed, entire coastlines vanished underwater, wars claimed millions of lives and displaced countless others, and yet during that time the world's population grew by a factor of five. The inevitable result was the creation of a global caste of disenfranchised peoples; citizens of no nation and employees of no corporation. This group, by far the world's largest, is known as the Nonames.

With the upper class protected by corporations, and the middle-class retreating into walled-enclaves, the unskilled and the refugees were left outside to fend for themselves. Surviving on the margins, and with no formal allegiance, the Nonames are organized into competing clans.

The Nonames have no government or territory to call their own, yet there are groups among them that have organized in an attempt to carve out some part of the world for themselves. Some of these groups, such as the Arell Cartel and the Quo Sung Syndicate, are dedicated to profit and exploitation. Many groups find causes; the Red Claw Movement and the Mother Earthers hold extreme environmental philosophies, while the Levellers fight against technology which they believe has brought the earth to ruin. One of the more powerful groups is the Black Army, whose goal is simply to survive in a dangerous world.

While they don't have any fondness for the other four domains, the Nonames reserve most of their anger for the United Nations. As refugees, millions of Nonames have been sent to UN "relocation centers" or forced to become Venusian colonists. Many don't survive such treatment, but those who do never forget and never forgive.

Timeline

  • 1997 Death of Deng Xiaoping precipitates secret power struggle in China.
  • 2005 United States officially leaves the United Nations in protest over ruling that condemns unilateral US intervention in North Korea.
  • 2008 Japan and Germany join un Security Council as permanent members.
  • 2008 United Nations Military Command established.
  • 2009 Sino-Japanese War starts.
  • 2011 End of hostilities in Sino-Japanese War. Beginning of China's Great Sleep.
  • 2017 Accidental detonation of nuclear weapon in Alaska (Elmendorf Accident) leads to calls for complete destruction of all nuclear weapons on us territory. Joint Chiefs support destruction of nuclear weapons in exchange for accelerated development of dak munitions.
  • 2022 Brazil and India join UN Security Council as permanent members.
  • 2023 Japanese government acknowledges experiments using Neanderthal dna and human embryos. Extent of research is unclear.
  • 2023 UN imposes World Tax to pay for unmf and Global Warming fund. In response, Corporate Hierarchy initiates an embargo on all un countries.
  • 2027 After heated debate, un General Assembly amends un charter to strip veto power from Security Council permanent members. Voting rules changed to two-thirds majority. Britain, France, and Russia leave United Nations in protest.
  • 2036 Russia re-joins UN.
  • 2042 Corporate Hierarchy begins the colonization of Antarctica.
  • 2044 UN attacks Antarctica colonies.
  • 2046 Antarctica Armistice signed by un and Corporate Hierarchy.
  • 2059 Chinese astronauts land on the moon. First human beings to land on another world since Apollo moon landings.
  • 2061 Britain rejoins UN.
  • 2075 Eros conflict, us becomes Former United States.
  • 2079 Eros Peace Treaty signed.
  • 2082 ComForce Treaty signed by the members of the fus.
  • 2091 Present time. Chron X starts taking place in this year.
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