Ashen Dawn

The Sim

It all happened so fast...

The Berlin Wall came down, the Warsaw Pact was dissolved and we were all sure the Soviets would follow while the world was watching what was going on in the Persian Gulf...

But the Soviet Union didn't fall. Instead, they doubled down. By '92, the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were back under the rule of the Soviets. In '94, the Middle East was on fire again. The Soviets found new allies, willing or otherwise, and were gearing up for war. But NATO wasn't ready. No one was.

In May of 1996, Soviet troops were pouring into Poland, Poland was screaming for NATO support. Israel and Turkey were also demanding support. Sweden made it clear that if they were invaded, they'd join NATO. The initial NATO response was limited, but everything has to start somewhere.

The next year, war was breaking out all over Europe and even in Korea. And then the first mushroom clouds of nuclear war were rising in the Middle East, the results of a desperate Israel. But the end of days promised by opening Pandora's Box never quite happened. It was more gradual.

As the war drug on, both sides of the war began to inch closer and closer to total nuclear war, one would escalate, the other would match, and the cycle continued. By 1998, war had even reached American soil with Soviet, Cuban and Mexican troops striking California and Texas. But by this time, governments could not withstand the strain from within and without, civil unrest and martial law became facts of life. Even those places untouched by the war felt the effects as trade ground to a stop.

The final escalation came in November of 1999, when orders came to fire the ICBMs at major cities. But circumstances ensured it was reduced - orders were ignored or never received in many cases.

Then came Operation RESET in Spring of 2000. Promised by NATO to be the knockout blow to push the Soviets out of Poland and Sweden. But what it turned into was a slaughter. They were dug in, our units were a shadow of their former selves. It was like the tide smashing upon the rocks. And then came the final orders:

“You are on your own. Good luck and Godspeed.”

Now we have to survive in this world of ash and ruin.