The Gateways Setting
On October 31st, 1988, the world as we knew it changed forever.
At 0437 CST, a pair of enormous winged creatures appeared in the skies over a small Midwestern American city. Within moments of their arrival, the two creatures engaged in a massive battle that inflicted hundreds of millions of dollars in damages and cost the lives of sixty-nine civilians. A squadron of Air Force F-35 strike fighters responded to the incursion and killed both creatures in pitched aerial combat.
The media and the public erupted with endless speculation. Photographs and video, shot by amateurs and local media outlets alike, spread across the world and ignited a firestorm of near-panic and confusion. The visual proof of the incident appeared undeniable, and the interpretation of the footage was universal: two dragons fighting one another.
The appearance of these mythological creatures ultimately led to discovery of interdimensional travel — travel between our reality and other realities. By 1997, humanity acquired the technology to open artificial portals known as gateways.
The year is 2022. In the decades since the dragon battle, the world has changed. The existence of gateways led to discovery of new worlds connected to our own. We discovered new resources, and most importantly, we learned a startling truth: we were not alone in the universe.
In the intervening twenty years, the face of the world has changed in countless ways. We now share a world with creatures pulled straight from mythology. Our understanding of the world has undergone a series of radical shifts to accommodate the existence of dragons, magic, werewolves, and alien civilizations. Put simply, the universe turned out far more complicated and wondrous than we ever expected.The revelation of the existence of other dimensions ushered in a new era of scientific discovery, exploration, and achievement. At the same time, the cultures, traditions, beliefs, and hopes of the world suffered enormous and relentless pressures. Ancient beliefs and strongly held convictions sometimes proved incapable of surviving this new world.
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