Time Line


Earth's history is long and colorful, and it stretches back long before the rise of Human civilization.  And before the Earth arose from that primordial cloud of gas and dust, the Universe itself existed with a history beyond the knowledge of any Human.

The Pre-Human Era (13.7 billion to 5 million years ago): From the Big Bang and creation of the universe, to the evolution of the earliest hominids on Earth.  During this period many alien civilizations rose and fell, but none ever knew of that lonely little world called Earth.  But the Earth itself may have been home to at least one pre-Human form of intelligence, an intelligence doomed to extinction thanks to a blow from space, and their own narrow culture.

The Early Man Era (5 million to 10,000 years ago):  The rise of Humanity, from its earliest hominid ancestors, to the end of the last Ice Age, when Homo sapiens sapiens began to stake his claim on the planet Earth.  The Sivata came to the Earth and provolved a local population of Humans' sociological and technological finesse, making them partners in a high technology bid to explore the Solar System and beyond.  But the Sivata soon came to an end, and those scattered stellar populations of Humans were left to fend for themselves.  On the Earth, history rolled on and obliterated nearly all signs of this remarkable past.  Last updated April 26, 2004

The Earthbound Era (10,000 BC to 1957 AD):  Human civilization arises and spreads across the world.  Through many trials and triumphs, it eventually comes to the point when it realizes that one world is not enough.  Through the entirety of this age, Earth was once again lost to all other space faring races.  It is, as always, a big Galaxy.

The Expansionist Era (1957 to 2163):  The rise of high technology, allowing for great advances in nearly every field of Human knowledge.  The movement into space encompasses the total exploitation of CisLunar Space, and the beginnings of self-sufficiency on Mars and in the Asteroid Belt.  For the first time, the great nations of Earth faced competition in the the form of the new nation-corps, such as The Corporation, Sky Power Unlimited, and Dancer Nano-Industries. At the same time, the first hints of climate change began to be felt, but no one could yet say if this was a Man-made disaster, or the natural breathing of a planet that had been, for the past ten thousand years, remarkably calm in its average temperature.  Last updated February 2, 2004

The Commonwealth Era (2163 AD to 2515):  The rise and maturation of the Inner System Commonwealth.  Formed through a desire to see both the betterment of Mankind and his hold on the extraplanetary real estate that he had worked so hard to acquire, it saw many great advances.  Life spans reached a limit of over 200 years, nanotechnology began to replace much larger industries, and genetic manipulations brought about the many Tweaks, entirely new sub-species of Humans adapted to life in environments off of the Earth.  The Solar System out to Saturn became incorporated into Man's realm, while unmanned probes pushed the frontier out to the Kuiper Belt.  But perhaps most extraordinary, man began to expand outward to the stars.  The first steps were tentative dips into the cosmic ocean, following the lead of unmanned probes.  But later entire programs were devoted to seeding Man beyond the Earth.  But it seemed that this heyday had only begun when war erupted, fostered by decades of tension, and it ripped the very fabric of civilization asunder.  Several more long decades of darkness would follow.

The Hegemony Era (2515 to 2942):   Even as most of the Solar System had fallen into ruin, with many non-Terran centers of civilization failing altogether, the nations of Earth have begun to fall under the protection of the once politically powerful, and now militarily powerful New Church of the Ascendancy.  it does not take much for them to become a part of a new, singular government.  The initial decades of this time are spent gathering the tattered remains of the Solar System under the banner of the Hegemony.  It takes even longer for economic, technological, and sociological recovery.  But the Solar System is reclaimed, bit by bit, and the Hegemony will be known as the single greatest achievement ever garnered by Mankind.  Peace was the norm, and conflict was settled swiftly and fairly.  The resources of the Solar System came back to bolster Man's expansion, and in time civilization had spread out to the Kuiper Belt itself.  But it was the arrival of explorers from the world of Tsevorda that opened up the local stellar neighborhood.  Renewed Contact with the old interstellar colonies was initiated, and a new program of colonization among the stars was begun.  Alien intelligence was discovered, and the truth about Man's distant past was revealed.  And in the end, secret fear and paranoia leeched into the Church like a cancer, bringing about the eventual fall of the mightiest government in history.

The Dominion (2942 to 2985):  The Church fell, and in its place arose a fascist mockery, built upon greed and fear and paranoia.  The New Church Dominion closed its fist about many colonial worlds in an attempt to form an interstellar empire.  But even with the aid of faster than light travel, these dominated solar systems became little more than the playgrounds of sadistic governors, themselves truly pocket emperors.  Colonies were repressed, millions were killed, and two intelligent species were the victims of genocide.  But in the end the Dominion had become a loose net of feudal states, all paying homage to a true leader that commanded through fear and death.  In less than 50 years, it all fell apart as the secret of the ArcWays was discovered by rebels, and an insurrection seeped through the many worlds.  Many more worlds were left in the hands of those petty emperors, but they too would eventually come to an end, either by internal strife, or the eventual intervention of a new and mighty government soon to be born.

The League of Worlds (2985 to 3501):  The League of Worlds formed when Earth, Tsevorda, and Orra came together through the newly discovered ArcWay Network and strove to build a better world than what was left behind.  FTL ships still had to ply the great empty distances between the stars, but they soon began to carry the secret of ArcWay construction with them.  Worlds light years apart were suddenly less than a step away.  Technology advanced in leaps and bounds, and the limits of known space were pushed, at their height, to 94.3 light years, with the distant frontiers reaching out as far as 150 light years.  But at this height of civilization, as the Network grew, so did something else, something long trapped in those mysterious spaces between ArcWays, something given more and  more power as the Network grew larger.  And it eventually became obvious that the only thing more frightening than the prospect of the return of those who created the ArcWays, was the resurrection of that which had driven them into hiding in the first place. 

The Long Dark (3501 to 11,000):  A speculative portion of the Timeline, detailing a period of absolute regression, when all the colonies of mankind are separated and returned to a stone age level, and their long march back up the ladder of civilization.

The Pre-Dynastic Period (11,000 to 12,200):  A speculative portion of the Timeline, detailing the rise of the great civilization of Alpha Centauri A's world, Ghellhonus.

The First Empire (12,200 to 14,200):  A speculative portion of the Timeline, detailing the birth of the Centauri Empire, and its expansion into the solar neighborhood... including its conquest of long forgotten Earth.

The Great Hegira (14,200 to ????):  A speculative portion of the Timeline, detailing the fleeing of Humanity from the absolute chaos following the fall of the First Empire.  The old Local Neighborhood is abandoned, and Mankind spreads to the rest of the Galaxy.


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ArcBuilder Universe concept © John M. and Margo L. Dollan 2002-2004
This Page first uploaded April 29, 2004
Most recent update for this page April 29, 2004