The world has changed.
In 2014, technology failed, society collapsed and millions starved. Many of the survivors of the rioting and unforgiving first winter then fell to a virus, an unnatural disease that kept the body alive but destroyed the mind. Those few who remained began to fight over the few remaining resources.
However, there are some shining beacons of humanity scattered across the country. Places where simply waking up is not punctuated by the screams of the dying, either at the hands of Raiders, Shamblers, or something worse. Safety from the disease, starvation and jealousy. Such places are few, but as the world becomes more dangerous, we look to rebuild.
Come, take your place by the fire, share your story and live to fight another day.
After a series of plane crashes and worldwide IT issues, a bacteria referred to as Metal Fatigue is discovered that eats metal. There seems no way of stopping it.
Food shortages, failure of banks and telecommunications plunges the UK into chaos.
Starvation and rioting kill millions.
A new disease sweeps the survivors, dropping the population to less than 5% of what is was a year ago.
Called "Vine Flu", the virus starts to raise those infected as deranged monsters, what we now call Shamblers.
The remaining UK military has gathered in Portsmouth for an operation to secure the Isle of Wight. While most nuclear reactors in the UK are shut down mostly without incident, a rogue nuclear blast destroys the city and all those in it. The 13th Rifles later form from the few scattered survivors.
Cornwall is annexed by unknown military forces. A fence of decapitated heads span the border as a warning, and no-one who travels within is seen again. Agents from within make contact with rest of the UK, stating they represent the "Dominion".
A blazing meteorite streaks across the sky, blowing out windows and hitting near Northampton, creating an impact that is clearly felt across the UK.
The World that Was
Taxes, rising petrol costs, profiteering bankers and hypocritical politicians.
Internet dating, buying on credit and evenings down the pub.
The NHS, teacher strikes, war in distant countries and the bloody neighbours.
We live it every moment.
In Altered Reality, petrol prices are rising, the planets natural resources almost entirely exhausted. A lack of economic foresight has led to power blackouts and people are protesting against the latest tax raises and miltary cut backs.
However, people were generally happy and content. Food was plentiful and safety taken for granted.
The First Plague
Although almost impossible to pinpoint exactly when and where, the world began to end. Over the course of many months, aeroplanes crashed, ships sank and computers began to fail. At first the cause was a mystery and could only be guessed at; terrorism, political or corporate assassinations and even aliens were proposed by a worried and ill-informed public.
When the cause was discovered, it was already too late.
A previously undiscovered bacteria, Metallilassitudine Archaea, had spread across the planet, microscopic and seemingly harmless to plants and animals, it ate away at metal, destroying circuitry and weakening metal structures. Little by little, the technology we depended on was being destroyed at a microscopic level.
As planes were grounded, ships retained at port and international pipelines burst, food became a growing issue. Supermarkets shelves became sparce, costs sky rocketed and rioting began.
Then the bacteria spread to computers, the stock market crashed, global communications began to fail, factories closed and even the manufacture of medicines started to be affected.
The Government became more and more powerless as rioting spread and the infra-structure of the country broke down. Starvation and lawlessness was rife.
The Second Plague
(Bovine Infectious Retrovirus)
With the failure of technology leading to starvation and rioting, the National Health Service was quickly overwhelmed. With modern pharmacuetical production methods now lost due to metal fatigue, people began dying of infections and injuries that would otherwise be trivial. Influenza and Cholera culled cities as quickly as people fled.
Then, it got worse.
Bovine Infectious Retrovirus, a recently discovered virus, began spreading through the population.
Symptoms were similar to "regular" influenza, only the death toll was extreme; by the time the NHS failed, one in ten had died from the virus. In death, the cadavers became even more infectious.
A growing number of victims seemed to fall into deep comas, only to wake with in an exceedingly violent and incomprehensible state. They attacked, killed and passed the virus onto those around them.
Armed Troops appeared on the streets towards the last days of the government, forming execution teams, shooting at the infected and rioters in a last attempt to bring control to the streets. Urban gangs began protecting themselves from the perceived menace. By the end of 2014, the Government had fallen, the military patrols no more, and there was nowhere safe left.