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LoneWolf23k 02-11-2008 07:42 PM

Updating GURPS IST
 
Just got the GURPS IST pdf, and I'm loving it, although quite a bit of the timeline is now sorely outdated by now. Fortunetly, Robert M. Shroeck updated his timline through the 90s, but it could still use a bit more updating, into the 2000s.

Now, the major historical point to handle would be 9/11 and the subsequent War on Terror. Since IST's U.N. has dealt with radical islamic groups more aggressively then in our world, no doubt the U.N. itself would be targeted by Al Qaeda, and 9/11 might well include an attack on the U.N. assembly building along with the World Trade Center.

As a result, the War on Terror would be a joint U.N. campaign to root out Islamic terrorism, rather then it being a U.S.-led effort (not that the Americans wouldn't be asking for a piece of the action). Since Iraq is already under U.N. allied control, there also wouldn't be an invasion, although the War on Terror might spill-over into the country nonetheless.

Now, there are other possible divergences.. For starters, Katrina might not be so disastrous if IST New Orleans gets into action...

Eltharon 02-11-2008 09:19 PM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Thats quite a bit of alternate history...most of 2001+ needs to be re-written if 9/11 and the Iraq War turn out differently. I'd imagine the US economy would be much better without the Iraq War, and with ISTs tracking down Bin Laden...he might be already captured.
Iran would still be a problem, of course.

LoneWolf23k 02-11-2008 09:44 PM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
True, although I could see Iran and other rogue nations forgoing the pursuit of Nuclear Weaponry in favor of artificial metahuman creation, in the hopes of forging super-soldier armies capable of challenging IST's might.

Mind you, my idea for handling Al-Qaeda in the ISTverse involved boosting it's power level a bit to make it a Cobra or NOD-like super-terrorism organisation. Or perhaps we could replace Al-Qaeda entirely.

David Johnston2 02-11-2008 10:00 PM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Not so very different. After all, in Schroek's timeline operations bigger than 9/11 are a regular occurance, and the United States has replaced Saddam with Castro as the loudmouth who is behind everyone bad.

Rocket Man 02-11-2008 10:03 PM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by LoneWolf23k

Now, the major historical point to handle would be 9/11 and the subsequent War on Terror. Since IST's U.N. has dealt with radical islamic groups more aggressively then in our world, no doubt the U.N. itself would be targeted by Al Qaeda, and 9/11 might well include an attack on the U.N. assembly building along with the World Trade Center.

As a result, the War on Terror would be a joint U.N. campaign to root out Islamic terrorism, rather then it being a U.S.-led effort (not that the Americans wouldn't be asking for a piece of the action). Since Iraq is already under U.N. allied control, there also wouldn't be an invasion, although the War on Terror might spill-over into the country nonetheless.

Or for an even bigger divergence, the ISTs could pre-empt the 9-11 attacks. A more aggressive stance on groups like Al-Qaeda combined with a couple of precognitives can do amazing things. At the very least, it could be the seed of an interesting campaign set circa 2000-2001 -- can the players Save the Day, knowing what the cost will likely be if they fail?

And of course, if the attacks do go through, does that then draw the attention of the Blue Demon? As if the firefighters and rescue crews didn't have enough to worry about ....

knarf 02-12-2008 12:34 AM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Let's not underestimate Y2K.

As mentioned on Robert M. Shroeck's timeline, a precognitive barrier called The Wall was blocking any precogs from seeing anything in the year 2000 and beyond. This is supported by the flavor fiction in the IST-2000 chapter of GURPS Y2K.

Presumably, during the year 2000, all hell breaks loose. The Harvesters from GURPS Monsters are the closest official answer to what happened, but I'm not sure it has Mr. Shroeck's seal of approval.

I'm running an IST campaign myself, so I've given this quite a bit of thought.

Here's my take:

All hell breaks loose in Y2K. millions, if not billions, of people are killed in a variety of cataclysmic ways. The ISTs realize that they do not have the level of resources needed to combat the threat. It's at this point that the Deep Pockets research (mentioned in the timeline) starts to pay off. Contact is quickly made with other, nearby timelines (which oddly enough have supers) and outworld heroes are quickly imported to help (In classic DC tradition).

The heroes manage to save the day. However, the nascent parachronic technology goes flooey around August, moving the IST timeline out of it's previously accessible band. This means that several non-native heroes are stranded on IST Earth (plenty of grist for the story mill there). This also explains the complete inability of precogs to read anything past August (as mentioned in the timeline).

Manhattan Island is completely leveled in the crisis. The UN buys it from the cash-strapped US and rebuilds it into a city of tomorrow (and neutral territory). Using more stable parachronic technology, the UN explores it's new demesne, finding at least one resource rich world. Interworld resources, along with Meeranar trade contracts, replace fusion power as the UN's tool to encourage compliance. They realize that this situation will not last forever, so they are doing their best to use this opportunity to create international cooperation as best they can.

This basically means that the world is a very different place, and the 9/11 attacks are highly unlikely. Even if someone tried, there are enough supers in New York that someone with the ability to do something about it would intervene very quickly.

My characters are in a mostly reconstructed San Francisco, so I haven't dealt much with world politics

Gold & Appel Inc 02-12-2008 05:33 AM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Eltharon
Thats quite a bit of alternate history...most of 2001+ needs to be re-written if 9/11 and the Iraq War turn out differently. I'd imagine the US economy would be much better without the Iraq War, and with ISTs tracking down Bin Laden...he might be already captured.
Iran would still be a problem, of course.

I think we can keep the events closer to OTL in three easy steps if we really want to.

1) Give Bin Laden one Super Ally, a fanatic whose only power is the ability to Obscure all known forms of super-detection (magic, ESP, etc) in a decent radius around himself, with No Signature.

2) The US keeps accusing Iraq of running illegal metahuman-creation research programs, and of violating the limits on the size and scope of the thinly-veiled national team everybody seems to have.

3) Iraq refuses inspections and eventually drops out of the UN in protest. Long before the UN tires of the diplomatic route the US, Canada, and UK invade, insisting that they must find the WMDs (Warlike Metahuman Developments) but accused of all sorts of ulterior motives, and we now return you to your regularly-scheduled cluster-f$#&.

LoneWolf23k 02-12-2008 05:36 AM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Following with the cataclysmic scenarios, another possibility could be an alien invasion, or even a transdimensional invasion, using forces that create a psychic backlash, thus explaining the Y2K Wall.

robkelk 02-12-2008 07:31 AM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by LoneWolf23k
Now, the major historical point to handle would be 9/11 and the subsequent War on Terror.

What happened on 9/11 in the IST world?

Quoting from this thread:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robert M. Schroeck on his own forum
Good question. The roots of 9-11 appear to lie in the US presence in Saudi Arabia (home to Mecca, the holy city of Islam) post-Gulf War One. In the IST world, that war ran very, very differently. One of the differences is that there is no residual US presence in the Middle East from it -- which takes away al-Qaeda's number one issue. Al-Qaeda may still form and attack, though, if they take similar offense against the IST embassies in Islamic countries. It's something to think about. However, assuming I use my expanded timeline from my website, with the threat of a Chinese-backed WWIII looming, MidEast tensions may seem like small potatoes.

Considering what Bob said there about his setting, I have to think that most of the discussion in this thread might be moot. What happened in OTL doesn't really matter to IST.

(If you really want Bob's opinion on something, subscribe to his forum and ask. He reads it almost every weekday, and he's quite approachable...)

robkelk 02-12-2008 07:41 AM

Re: Updating GURPS IST
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by knarf
Presumably, during the year 2000, all hell breaks loose. The Harvesters from GURPS Monsters are the closest official answer to what happened, but I'm not sure it has Mr. Shroeck's seal of approval.

At the moment, nothing regarding the Wall has Bob's official seal of approval. Or if it does, he hasn't told us.

I believe "what's responsible for the Wall?" may be a Canon Area of Doubt, left for individual GMs to answer in their own games.

Quote:

Originally Posted by knarf
Here's my take:

All hell breaks loose in Y2K. millions, if not billions, of people are killed in a variety of cataclysmic ways. The ISTs realize that they do not have the level of resources needed to combat the threat. It's at this point that the Deep Pockets research (mentioned in the timeline) starts to pay off. Contact is quickly made with other, nearby timelines (which oddly enough have supers) and outworld heroes are quickly imported to help (In classic DC tradition).

If you're looking for alternate IST timelines, this thread on Bob's forums is about as official as we're going to get any time soon...


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