Published in Sci-Fi

Gloom Trench - British Empire

In an alternate 1926, the British Empire's use of devastating RAM weapons ignites global conflict, unleashing horrors from the fabric of reality itself.

By Fickle Dice Games

By AD 1926, the British Empire wages war across the globe.

On the Western Front, the war between Great Britain and Germany has escalated to a horrific level. Not only are the Germans now equipped with new and deadly laser weaponry, but the British continue to exploit their recent breakthroughs in RAM technology.

Named after the scientists Rutherford and Moseley, this technology allows RAM weapons to focus energy in a destructive beam. Whilst these weapons are extremely effective, they are not without drawbacks. Each discharge from a RAM weapon—be it a beam projected by a firearm or a burst from a bomb or shell—weakens the fabric of reality. Whilst the erosion of that fabric is minute, prolonged exposure to RAM emissions eventually leads to a tear. It is through these tears that the Scourge make their sorties.

Demonic and hungry for flesh, the Scourge are an indefatigable enemy. They are also ferocious and very, very durable. An incursion by even a lone Scourge warrior is enough to make some units route, and raids mounted by multiple Scourge are the stuff of nightmares.

But this is not the only side-effect of RAM technology. A thick, freezing fog emanates from the tears they create. All that are exposed to the fog enter varying states of acute melancholia, suicidal depression or homicidal mania. Britain’s continual use of RAM weaponry has led to swathes of Europe and Russia being consumed by this so-called Fog of War. The fog is so all-consuming on the Western Front, for instance, that the French have been forced to abandon their homeland and flee to their colonies in Africa.

And yet the British continue to exploit their RAM weapons. Whilst some maintain this perseverance is born of either arrogance or sheer disregard for human life, others are wise to the fact the British are now fighting in many theatres. Not only does it remain locked in battle with the German Empire on the Western front, but its armies—ably supported by its navy and neophyte air force—also campaign in Russia and America.

Rejoining a battle they abandoned in 18th century, the British Empire has invaded the United States. The reasons for its invasion includes America’s demands that Britain should abandon RAM weaponry, U.S. advances in the field of laser technology and a suspicion that, in long term, the British Government and Monarchy may have to abandon the British Isles in the face of the spreading fog. With its Canadian, Indian and Australian subjects—all armed with RAM weaponry—fighting alongside British companies, the Empire has unleashed its full fury upon the United States. However, hopes for a swift and decisive victory have been dashed by determined resistance from America’s army and militias. Now the combatants find themselves embroiled in an all too familiar war of trenches and artillery barrages.

In Russia, the British Army—keen to ensure Germany is unable to invade and secure resources from a Russia destabilised by revolution—continues a labourious and protracted invasion. Although it has enjoyed success with its Rift weaponry, it is beset by multiple enemies. The revolutionary Bolshevik and royalist White armies are just as keen to expel the British invaders as they are to fight one another. Furthermore, the newly-established Motherland of Rus—led by the mystic Rasputin and his supernatural allies—also resist the British advance.

And so Britain wages its Great War. Alone but no less resolute, it means to win and will win by any means. If it is doomed to failure, however, it has vowed to take the rest of the world with it.

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