Photos from Alternate Worlds II (read FAQ first)

Discussion in 'Alternate History Maps and Graphics' started by Petike, Jul 11, 2018.

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  1. Andrew Boyd Resident Rail Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2018
    The Boyd-Verse: Part 9

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    The Kurdistan War is one of the most triumphant chapters in the history of Kurdistan, situated between Turkey and Iraq. Where with the support of the USA and UK Commonwealth, Kurdistan fended off Iran AND Iraq from taking over their homeland.

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    For many Disney fans that disliked, or were otherwise indifferent to The Little Mermaid two years later, Rapunzel (1987) is considered the true start of the Disney Renaissance. The time period where Disney's animated films finally began to once again trounce those of its two principle rivals, Warner Bros. and Universal, at the box office. Ironically enough this would the last of the major collaborations between director Don Bluth and composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, mostly because the latter wanted to return to his roots on stage musicals.

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    Norfolk & Western 611 and 475 stand on display at the 1995 NRHS Convention in Lancaster, PA. They were the first of many engines from the Pennsylvania and its subsidiaries to arrive for the big event, with other stars being K4 Pacific #5399, R2 Keystone 4-8-4 #7216, and T1 Duplex 5522. What's notable here is that the 475 was not dressed in its traditional western-style garb, which has been her default appearance since 1957.

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    New York Central Hudson # 5452 went on to become the main star of the 1998 NRHS Convention in Syracuse, NY. Where the NYC allowed this photo to be made in the style of photos from railfans in the 1950s.​
     
  2. theg*ddam*hoi2fan Beware of the Leopard

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    Under a bridge, handing out business cards
    Fire in the North

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    Västerås, Sweden. This picture was taken on 30 November 2020, just prior to the displacement in time of the city and its hinterland to 30 November 1700, just after the Swedish victory at the Battle of Narva.
    While the city would face significant challenges, it was perhaps one of the better-equipped Swedish cities to come through such an event, not least because of the large number of power generation facilities in the city, including Sweden's largest combined heat and power plant. Moreover, once King Charles XII realised just what the city of the future had to offer, he would make ensuring its feeding and survival a priority of his reign - especially due to the fact that immediately prior to the Displacement, elements of the Swedish Army, in particular the Life Guards and the Skaraborg Regiment, had been taking part in exercises around the city's hinterland...

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    The two Saab Gripen fighters that had had to land at Stockholm Västerås Airport just prior to the Displacement, thanks to apparent atmospheric interference (now believed to have been a warning sign of the Displacement). The fighters would both later see action during the remaining phase of the Great Northern War, alongside the combined 8,000 troops of the up-time Swedish Army and Home Guard who had found themselves in the past, and were strongly credited with having utterly broken the morale of Russian forces with low-level strafing runs. The fighters would be retired due to lack of spare parts, but by that stage the Kingdom of Sweden was already manufacturing airships...

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    Charles XII, by the Grace of God King of Sweden, the Goths and the Vends, Grand Prince of Finland,Duke of Estonia and Karelia, Lord of Ingria, Duke of Bremen, Verden and Pomerania, Prince of Rügen and Lord of Wismar, and also Count Palatine by the Rhine, Duke of Bavaria, Count of Zweibrücken--Kleeburg, as well as Duke of Jülich, Cleve and Berg, Count of Veldenz, Spanheim and Ravensberg and Lord of Ravenstein (reigned from 1697 until his death in 1766). This photograph was taken by Erika Hansen - a photographer for the re-established post-Displacement Dagens Nyheter - on the occasion of the signing of the Treaty of Poltava, between Charles and Tsar Alexei of Russia in 1704, that finally ended the Great Northern War and secured permanent Swedish hegemony in Northern and Central Europe and the Baltic.

    A deeply religious monarch, Charles would take the Displacement as a heavenly intervention to preserve the Kingdom of Sweden and as a sign to him personally. Following the war, he would return to Sweden, there to oversee the Swedish Industrial Revolution and the beginning of the Second Golden Age of the Kingdom. Industries and medicines created by the up-timers would lead to standards of living for all those in the Swedish Empire skyrocketing, while he would be able to use up-timer support to utterly undermine the power of the nobility, ultimately rendering them toothless. While he would remain an absolute monarch for the entirety of his reign, he would take the signs of the future to heart and would gradually reform the Riksdag of the Estates to become a democratic, parliamentary body. When his son Charles XIII took power, the process of gradual transition to a constitutional monarchy would properly begin.

    While Charles was, on occasion, shocked by some of the ways of the future, he was pragmatic enough not to interfere with the laws and internal governance of future-Västerås - sensible, as the city and the up-timers were his path to victory - and over time, the Swedish Empire would see great changes radiating out from the displaced city.
    A/N: Why? Because Sabaton, that's why...

     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
  3. theg*ddam*hoi2fan Beware of the Leopard

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    Fire in the North II

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    Stridsvagn 122 Main Battle Tank of the up-time Swedish Army. Fourteen of the tanks, plus a similar number of other armoured vehicles, were transported back with Västerås in the Displacement. They would quickly be pressed into service against the Russians along with other elements of the up-time Swedish Army, and would quickly prove utterly lethal against the downtime Russian forces. This photograph was taken during the Battle of Poltava in 1703, which saw the utter shattering of the Russian Army and the death of Tsar Peter the Great. The war would officially drag on for a further year, but would be effectively ended at Poltava.

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    Carolean troops of the Kingdom of Sweden, just prior to the Battle of Poltava in 1703. The Caroleans of this era had just begun to receive breech-loading rifles, but were retaining their standard tactics. In the battle, they followed in the aftermath of up-time tanks and vehicles - after the Russian ranks had been utterly smashed and scattered by artillery, armour, long-range rifle fire and on occasion strafing runs from above, the ranks of the Caroleans would sweep up what remained.

    By 1706, Carolean tactics had changed to match their new rifles, though the soldiers would strongly resist changing their uniforms - it would take the personal orders of King Charles to ensure they did so.

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    A soldier of the Swedish Home Guard - this particular woman is believed to be a down-timer from Uppsala. The Home Guard would see major growth in the time following the Displacement, with many former conscripts in Västerås joining up to endeavour to protect their home from the threats of the time. They would also open up to down-timers, with a sizeable number of women taking advantage of up-timer practices to join.

    While the down-timer Swedes would be...perplexed by the up-timer forces allowing women and foreigners to join, the Home Guard would silence such criticism with a sterling performance on the battlefields of the Great Northern War.​
     
  4. CJD Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    Hey old friend,
    I know you’ve got a lot on your plate recently with the Consortium but you need to take a look at this:

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    The locals call ‘em Bio-pyramids and according to the recon team there all over Earth 1250-Sigma. The rest of the report goes into further detail but I think we should make formal contact with these people and see if their open to trade, it seems like it could be a good deal for us to see what else they have to offer
    -Director McAdams.

    (Based of this concept: https://inhabitat.com/bio-pyramid-t...gigantic-desertification-fighting-skyscraper/)
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2019
  5. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

    Joined:
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    Southern Idaho
    This reminds me of 1632 and the Axis of Time series for obvious reasons. Wonder how the rest of Europe handles the Displacement and how quickly uptimer technological info started to spread.

    Actually it puts me in mind of an old idea I had about Earth getting hit by a "time storm" and getting turned into a mix mash of various era's. (Vikings riding motorcycles, Roman Legions marching with ww2 Italian weapons, Mongols eating Mammoth meat, Teddy Roosevelt hunting dinosaurs with an M14, Winston Churchill having tea with Queen Elizabeth and Victoria etc.)
     
  6. Danthefan28 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2018
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    Havana, the capital city of the state of Cuba, circa 1960. Havana and many other Caribbean states are highly popular holiday destinations in the United States.
     
  7. theg*ddam*hoi2fan Beware of the Leopard

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    Fire in the North III

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    HMS Carolus, the Swedish Navy’s first ironclad warship at the time of her launch in 1705, photograph taken by a camera made post-Displacement. Though she was assembled at the naval yard in Stockholm, the steam engine, main guns and armour were designed and built in Västerås. She would be joined by other ironclads over the course of the decade.

    The ironclads had two effects. Firstly, they would hasten British work to adapt up-time technology, as the entirety of the Royal Navy now looked to be obsolete. Secondly, it is believed that their existence would finally convince Denmark to acquiesce to joining the Second Union of Kalmar in 1706.


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    Swedish airship Oxenstierna, shortly after her first flight in 1706. Built in Västerås, using scavenged engines from cars, it and the airships that followed would take pressure off the Gripens and in combination with the ironclad fleet would firmly secure the Baltic against naval attack.

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    Linda Bergström, a police officer in Västerås at the time of the Displacement and later Queen of Sweden following her marriage to Charles XII in 1704, following the signing of the Treaty of Poltava. The two met when she was part of the monarch’s security detail on his first visit to the displaced city, and ended up saving his life from a down-timer assassin. The two began a sometimes mildly-argumentative but increasingly close correspondence over the following years and met on a number of other occasions, developing mutual feelings...though the king asked that they not marry until the war was over, as he did not wish to risk leaving her a widow.

    Queen Linda would serve as a singularly active queen: though she would scandalise the court in Stockholm with her up-time ways, she would become beloved by the peasantry and merchant class not only for her charitable work, but for championing major reforms that saw conditions greatly improve for the non-noble classes. She also leant royal patronage to and worked hard to assist in planning a unified national police force for Sweden, and ultimately across the Union. Recent years have also revealed her to be behind the creation of the ‘Valkyries’, an Intelligence organ of the kingdom that was made up largely of women and answered directly to her and the King.

    Though she and Charles occasionally clashed thanks to their different backgrounds, their marriage was a happy one, and both were deeply in love...as evidenced by their six children. In later years, the Queen would joke that the two truly fell in love when she introduced His Majesty to the music of Sabaton.​
     
  8. Ukron Cyber-Burgundy King

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    Holy European Federal Republic in 2019.
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    Soviet soldier with captured M16 during the Russian-Pakistani border conflict in 1986, this low-intensity conflit turns bad for soviet union as US military hardware supplies makes the difference, resulting into the Indo-Soviet diplomatic reconcilitiation.
     
    CJD, Danthefan28, EbolaMan131 and 2 others like this.
  9. S. Marlowski Writer of an upcoming fantasy series

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2018
    Location:
    Backwoods of Wisconsin
    Prelude to the German Civil War
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    Ernst Rohm, who was the head of the National Socialist or Nazi Party called the Sturmabteilung or the SA, also known as the Brown Shirts. Rohm was for a long time a personal friend of Adolf Hitler, but after Hitler's rise to power, other friends of Hitler were beginning to fear Rohm and the influence that he had.
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    Heinrich Himmler, the leader of the rival organization known as the Schutzstaffel or the SS, was the main rival of Ernst Rohm and the SA. Which would lead to Himmler and Goering to pressure Hitler to do something about Rohm.
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    By 1934, the SA had about 4 Million members in their ranks, many of whom are veterans of the Great War.
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    In comparison, the SS was far smaller in membership, and very few had actual combat experience.
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    The Reichswehr, who was most of it's commanders were Pro-Hitler, had about 10,000 soldiers, which was due to the restrictions imposed by the Treaty of Versailles and much of it's weapons were of Great War vintage.
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    In 1934, Ernst Rohm and the rest of the Sturmabteilung Leadership had all started planning for a Coup'd'etat as they feared that Hitler was going to eliminate them soon.
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    SA Troops in a truck reading themselves to storm the Reichschancellery in Berlin to overthrow Hitler in Potsdam, circa 1934.​
     
  10. theg*ddam*hoi2fan Beware of the Leopard

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    Under a bridge, handing out business cards
    Why thank you :D

    Shock, awe, some people think it's a miracle, others some kind of unexplained wonder of science.

    As to how quickly...to varying degrees, I think. Initially, I see Britain being the quickest and most successful, because they've got enough 'breathing space' away from potential enemies to really start gearing up. The Netherlands would likely be relatively close behind. The countries that Sweden's just defeated, OTOH - Russia, Denmark and Poland-Lithuania...not so much. They'd want to, but after their crippling defeats they likely wouldn't have the money...plus in Russia's case, Peter the Great is dead. Which means his reforms have been stopped, and more conservative elements - especially among the Don Cossacks, who OTL rose up between 1707 and 1708 - will use this as an opportunity. Russia's in for...severely hard times, and won't be in much of a position to modernise any time soon.

    I can see Britain, the Netherlands and probably France getting better guns within the next few years, and Britain definitely getting a start on steam engines by 1709/1710, though it'll be a slow process.

    Ooooohhh...that sounds very cool.
     
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  11. theg*ddam*hoi2fan Beware of the Leopard

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    Under a bridge, handing out business cards
    Fire in the North IV
    Butterfly Beneficiaries


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    Julie d'Aubigny, Mademoiselle la Maupin. Renowned opera singer, infamous duellist, scandalously open bisexual, and a celebrity of the 18th-century Kingdom of France. In 1704, she and her lover the Marquise de Forensac would, out of curiosity, travel to Sweden to see the city of the future for themselves. They would ultimately spend much of their lives in Sweden, coming to greatly enjoy the ways of the future. La Maupin, in particular, would come to greatly enjoy the music of the future and would become the lead singer of the operatic metal band Timequest, composed of one other down-timer and three up-timers. The band would prove to have great appeal to down-timers, thanks in large part to La Maupin's voice, and would embark on a number of tours of royal and noble palaces in Europe...something that allowed La Maupin to work as a spy, gathering information on behalf of both the King of France and the Kingdom of Sweden. Indeed, it is known now that La Maupin was a member of Queen Linda's 'Valkyries', though she made it clear from the outset that she would not work against France. This would actually prove greatly beneficial to the developing relationship between both realms, as it would constitute a very interesting means of 'intelligence sharing'.

    Although she became somewhat more settled in Sweden, La Maupin would still be a rather wild individual, having frequent run-ins with the Västerås police as a result of duels. In addition, recently-declassified information on her intelligence exploits indicates a number of men dead at her hands, including agents of Russia, Poland-Lithuania and Great Britain...

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    Marie Louise Thérèse de Senneterre, Marquise de Florensac. Described by an up-time historian and many of her era as the most beautiful woman in France, as well as a woman with great wealth and powerful connections she would travel to Sweden in 1704 in the company of her lover, the infamous Julie d'Aubigny...and would find it so much to her liking that she and d'Aubigny would remain there until d'Aubigny's death in 1759, taking advantage of the up-time laws of Västerås to marry and adopt a child. She would use her connections to secure the changing Sweden a close relationship with the Kingdom of France, ensuring good trade relations between both nations and allowing France to gain easier access to future goods and technologies. She became a good friend of Queen Linda, and would indeed be remembered as a friend of the Swedish realm.

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    Anne Stuart, Queen of Great Britain (1665-1727). Despite the reserved relations between Britain and Sweden - in particular thanks to the Swedish construction of ironclad warships - Queen Anne would personally benefit from the Displacement. While her seventeenth pregnancy had ended prior to the Displacement, as had the life of her son William, in one of the 'butterflies' of the Transition she would fall pregnant again shortly after the arrival of Västerås...and thanks to the intervention of an up-time gynaecologist, one Doctor Sadiq Khan, she would give birth nine months later to a daughter, who she would name Mary. Thanks again to gradually-circulating up-time medicine and healthcare, Princess Mary would ultimately grow to adulthood and be crowned Queen in 1727.

    Anne enjoyed a longer life than in the world Västerås had come from, but ultimately general ill-health and poor lifestyle choices would catch up with her.​
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019 at 5:39 AM
  12. S. Marlowski Writer of an upcoming fantasy series

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    Backwoods of Wisconsin
    The German Civil War Part 1: Battle of the Reichs Chancellery
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    The appearance of the SA Stormtroopers that assaulted the Reichs Chancellery.
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    Members of the Liebstandarte Adolf Hitler, the SS organization to serve as Adolf Hitler's bodyguards. Defending the Reichs Chancellery from the attacking SA forces at improvised barricades.
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    Reichswehr troops on the way to the Chancellery to help in it's defense.
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    Following a 12 minute shootout, the SA troops began to withdraw, and pursuing them was the Reichswehr.
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    At the same time, the Sturmabteilung launched raids on Government buildings in Munich, effectively seizing the city and leading to the found of the National Socialist Independent State of Bavaria.
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    The flag of the Sturmabteilung countrolled country of the National Socialist Independent State of Bavaria aka the Independent State of Bavaria.​
     
  13. pattontank12 Better Dead than Red!

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    Southern Idaho
    There wouldn't happen to a Swedish-British "Great Game" down the line by chance?

    The history of colonial America will probably diverge hugely since the British will be looking at what happened to their future counterparts and take moves to prevent any of the major losses or falls that happened OTL. Hopefully we won't be seeing any seven year or Napoleonic type wars with gatling guns and airships anytime soon.
     
  14. BlackentheBorg Just like Dylan's Mr. Jones

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    Llareggub
    Don't mind me I'm also just gonna do my own Dinosaur-related thing here

    The Sound Of Thunder

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    A scale replica of "Bibi", the juvenile Kasai Rex that was shot and killed by President Theodore Roosevelt during a hunting excursion to the DROC in 1915. Roosevelt infamously returned from the trip missing an arm, which he blamed on an attack from the mother, which would later result in his untimely death due to infection of said wound.

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    Yusuf, one of the few remaining Mokele-mbembe currently left alive, photographed by a National Geographic liaison accompanying the ZCTF on a routine patrol of the Likouala Special Reservation in 2015. Following their discovery in 1910, conservation efforts helped resuscitate the species dwindling numbers. However, due to runoff effects of climate change and changes in migration habits, their numbers have begun to shrink once again. At the time of this photo being taken, the exact amount of wild Mokele-mbembe was estimated to be in the tens.

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    One of the best known photographs of a Kaiaimunu, a notoriously solitary creature native to the Kombes of Papua New Guinea. Due to their status as increasingly hostile, zoologists still disagree on if the animal is in fact extinct, what with their limited sightings over the last 50 years. Local fishermen still rave about giant crocodiles bursting through the water, stealing their hauls and walking onto nearby beaches on their hind legs, but these are mostly unsubstantiated accounts.
     
  15. S. Marlowski Writer of an upcoming fantasy series

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Backwoods of Wisconsin
    German Civil War Part 3: The Battle Lines are Drawn
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    President Paul von Hindenburg, a general during WWI, was the President of the Germany when Rohm and the Sturmabteilung declared war on the Government.
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    Chancellor Adolf Hitler was the head of the National Socialist Worker's Party when Rohm and the Sturmabteilung attacked the Reichs Chancellery in Berlin in 1934. Both Hitler and Hindenburg lead the so-called "Loyalist" or officially the Government Forces, who were mainly in much of Central Germany, as well as parts of Silesia and Prussia.
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    With the takeover of Munich, Ernst Rohm had declared himself as Fuhrer of the Independent State of Bavaria. The Sturmabteilung also had forces in much of Silesia, Brandenburg, Schleiswig-Holstein, Prussia, Pomerania, and Hanover regions of Germany as well as parts of Berlin.
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    Ernst Thalmann was the leader of the KPD when the SA began fighting with the German Government. Seeing it as an opportunity for a Revolution, the KPD rose up in arms in much of the Rhineland as well as in Saxony and in parts of Berlin.
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    Prominent German Anarchist named Erich Muhsam had formed an Anarchist Militia in the city of Hamburg following their attacks on Government offices in that city.
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    The German Monarchist Forces, whom opposed both the Hitler Government and the SA along with the Communists were led by former Crown Prince Wilhelm of the House of Hohenzollern.

    Map of the Conflict linked here.
     
  16. BlackentheBorg Just like Dylan's Mr. Jones

    Joined:
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    Llareggub
    The Sound Of Thunder (pt. 2)

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    A Kongamato (Nemicolopterus) is photographed ambushing a group of Thick-billed seedeater Finches (Serinus burtoni). The species was originally isolated to the forest areas of Mwinilunga, West Zambia, but in recent years has flourished after the efforts of conservationists within the Likouala Special Reservation. Additionally, they have shrunk in size since their protected status was introduced. Zoologists are routinely baffled by their continued shrinking, some arguing that it is an evolutionary response to ecological changes, or changes in diet.

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    "Susan", a three-year-old Struthio Arica adjusts to her new interior enclosure. The raptor was seized by illegal game poachers in her native habitat of the Atacama desert in South America, intended for sale as a high-class pet, and found by authorities sedated and stuffed inside a shipping container in New York. She has since been rehoused in the Prospect Park, with intentions to reintroduce her back to the South American desert within the inside of two years.

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    While not considered wholly on the same spectrum as other creatures in its genus, the New Zealand Moa (more specifically the Pachyornis elephantopus) was thought to be extinct until their rediscovery in 1886. Since, they have been granted specific territories in the Fiordland region of the South Island by the Department of Conservation, entering which without a special permit is punishable by imprisonment. In the time left alone the population has boomed.

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    The a pair of Koddoelo graze somewhere in the bushes of Kenya. First misidentified as the Nadi Bear, Buffalo Lion or Atlas Bear, is actually a larger variety of Giant Folivora, more commonly known as Ground Sloths. Colonists originally thought they were predatory due to their aggressive behaviour and elongated canine teeth, but the oversized teeth were actually used for stripping leaves off of branches. Their American counterparts, Megatherium, and their European counterparts, the Lesovik, have been suspected as extinct as early as the 1950s, although sightings persist to the current day. What fascinates scientists more is how exactly the group managed to find itself in Sub-Saharan Africa and even Russia when most, if not all, of the Giant Sloth species were isolated to South America.

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    Speaking of Russia, the Siberian Mammoth (Mammuthus Primigenius Beryozovka) if often used as a symbol synonymous with Russian nationalism, the beast being present on the Tsarist-era royal crest. They too are a species constantly under threat, not just due to changes in climate, but from poaching for dubious medicine trades as the species move further south towards the Ussuri River in search of food. As a result of their treatment, they are naturally hostile towards humans.
     
  17. NiGHTS BMC-14

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    Sankt Zulieferer, Marsreich
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    Repulse the German Occupation!
    All of Italy for Italians!



    Propaganda poster featuring the leader of the Italian terrorist group La Fondazione, Nessuno. These posters would have the simple message of getting the Germans out of the all lands considered "Italian", and uniting all of these lands for the Italian people. The thing that made these posters nasty , was that the Northern Italian lands had been annexed to Germany since the 1880s, while the Central Italian lands , up to and including Rome, have had special military and economic deals since that same time. It's only recently in the late 1920s that Germany had annexed them, leaving only the South entirely free of Germany. And in those years, many Germans had immigrated to those regions, most particularly in the North, but also not so insignificantly in the central lands. So, to call for the end of German Occupation and making Italy for Italians would implicitly call for the expulsion of people living there for generations in addition to ripping apart mixed families. Nonetheless, these La Fondazione posters would attract thousands of recruits, and the terror and power of the group would increase until its ultimate collapse.​
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019 at 4:37 PM
  18. NiGHTS BMC-14

    Joined:
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    Sankt Zulieferer, Marsreich
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    Propaganda poster featuring the international Asian terrorist Amon. His actual nationality is unknown, though he vaguely states he's from "East Eurasia". He calls for the downfall of all hierarchy and wants the abolition of all nations in favor of a United Earth that provides equal rights and direct democracy for all. Though most posters are in German, Spanish, or Chinese, among other languages ,this edition is in North American ("West") English.​
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019 at 3:53 PM
  19. Andrew Boyd Resident Rail Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2018
    The Boyd-verse: Part 10

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    British forces pause for a nice rest after beating back Spanish forces from Portugal during the Second Great War.

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    Santa Fe 2-10-4 #5018 leads a coal train over the Peoria Subdivision. Which splits from the original mainline at Chillicothe, runs via the Northwest Side of its namesake city, and then reunites with the original main line at Galesburg. This mainline was normally used only by passenger trains and local freights, though here an accident on the original Chillicothe Sub had forced freights on to this line.

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    Almost immediately after The Third Franco-German War, a French Senegalese private shares cigars with German troops.


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    The Nazi German army marches through Berlin after its liberation from Stalinist Russian forces.

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    German Chancellor Adolf Hitler (right) and French President Pierre Laval (right) are often divisive figures outside of their respective home nations and abroad. Critics of Hitler cite his anti-Semitism and how his refusal to stop resulting hate crimes made him little better than Stalin. Laval's critics complain about how he turned France into a third monarchy with him as the Napoleon. Those who are more forgiving point to how the two were able to set aside national revanchism and have themselves pull most of the weight against Stalinist Russia.
     
  20. BlackentheBorg Just like Dylan's Mr. Jones

    Joined:
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    Llareggub
    The Sound of Thunder (pt. 3)

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    An adult mother Thunderbird (Argentavis Tonitrualis) protects its chick from a stupidly brave coyote. The species etymology comes largely from Native American tribes, who routinely came into conflict with the animal when it would take off with their kills. After colonisation by English settlers, Thunderbirds were almost hunted into extinction by colonists, who saw them as a danger to their growing communities. This, coupled with a dwindling amount of sizeable prey, has kept them on the threshold of total extinction, with their numbers currently barely in the hundreds. Conservationists have had immense difficulty encouraging the species' preservation due to their immense size and ferocity.

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    A beached Black Devil Shark (Carcharocles Cacodaimonion) draws quite a crowd of onlookers on Rosarito Beach, Baja California. Whilst the size of the sharks are, of course, quite impressive, what betrayed the presence of the dead sea creature was the unbearable stench, which could be smelt from several miles inland. The presence of this particular beached shark caused particular worry for the Mexican government, as a Black Devil Shark had not been seen this close to the shoreline since the twenties. This is also concurrent with the noticeable decline in Gray Whale pods along Los Cabos.

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    Since the early 1900's residents of Scotland have reported seeing Plesiosaurs in the waters, as far out as the Faroe Islands and as far inland as Inverness. This is highly unusual, as the waters in and around the British Islands are logically too cold for a reptile as large as these to inhabit for long. This overall confusion is furthered by the documented extinction of all other European plesiosaurs. Regardless, locals up and down the Scottish Highlands all commonly agree that their inlets play host to some unknown pod. The above, taken by a fishing vessel in 2003, has drawn plenty interest from the scientific community due to the fact the Albertonect featured in the photo was green -- most European plesiosaurs were varying shades of blue to match their aquatic environments.

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    Zhìzhě, originally known as Makalu, one of three living Gigantopithecus Stochastis, colloquially referred to as 'Yeren') currently in captivity. After the Soviet Union initiated a state-sponsored purge against the creatures (following the deaths of nine hikers in the Ural Mountains during 1959, still hotly debated as reason for their extermination), several attempts were made to preserve the species. They were mostly met with worsening results; Yeren did not function well in captivity, often becoming despondent and openly hostile towards their handlers -- a handful have even taken their own lives out of grief, a behavior also found in few other higher-intelligence mammals, such as dolphins. However, a certain few did manage to adjust, insofar as they became withdrawn and tolerated their surroundings. Zhìzhě is one of the more prominent Yeren in recent history, photographed staring down Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji duing a state-sponsored visit to the Chengdu Research Base, where he has been housed since the late 80s.

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    The North American Yeren (Gigantopithecus Stochastis Hirsutus) while equally as solitary, has had a much more pronounced presence in Western culture. For one thing, the creature was also hunted by President Roosevelt, although unsuccessful after days of tracking. More commonly, they are used to further the idea of convergent evolution from a common (as yet unknown) ancestor. Native to the pacific midwest, settlers quickly took too referring to the animal as 'Bigfoot', due to the size of their rather large soles. Their numbers have also been dwindling since the turn of the century, in part due to deforestation, illegal big-game hunting and the sheer amount of food needed for an animal their size no longer being present in the advent of controlled deer populations.
     
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