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DShomshak

Happy Tunguska Day! (A Day Late)

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On June 29, 1908, something seared and flattened 800 square miles of forest in remotest Siberia.

 

Orthodox science says it was an asteroid or comet exploding in the atmosphere.

 

In the CU, it was the Circle of the Scarlet Moon killing the Archmage, and getting a lethally bigger blast than it expected.

 

Just for fun, can we come up with other ways to work the Tunguska Event into a superhero setting?

 

(In my old campaign setting, it was an alien spaceship. The scientist who finally found the wreckage had an origin.)

 

Dean Shomshak

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The 4E version of the Champions Universe also went the "alien ship crash" route to explain Tunguska. In The Zodiac Conspiracy this was the origin of the being who would become Cancer of the Zodiac: an artificially-created crystalline soldier in an ancient interstellar war, whose fighter craft was damaged during battle. The ship and Cancer, both inert, drifted through space for many millennia before crashing to Earth, where Cancer was eventually recovered by Taurus, founder of the Zodiac.

 

BTW Cancer's origin would dovetail smoothly into the current CU. The Malvan-Elder Worm war is the right era and scope; and as the origin of the alien Cristobalites demonstrates (see Champions Beyond), the Malvans knew how to create crystalline artificial lifeforms who are essentially unaging. You'd just need to change the date and location of the crash.

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Always a good origin hook for Russian characters.

 

Could also be THE event that was responsible for the emergence of super powers, or a secret early nuclear device.

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I used it as part of the Vanquisher War. Between 1992 and 1997 there was a war between Earth and an army of supervillains called the Vanquishers who were a corollary to the existing team the Protectors. Inn one battle some of the heroes fled in a time ship pursued by The Voidmaster. The ongoing disturbance led to the ship travelling to 1908 and crashing in Russia with no survivors.

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I like the idea that in a Champions Universe our world's version of events qualifies as a conspiracy theory. "Right, a comet or meteor just happens to air burst over Russia and leaves no impact crater. Next you're going to tell me there's a world without super powers and magic."

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There's so much Champions Universe history that human scientists don't know about, and probably wouldn't accept the explanation for. I'd love to hear the theories from CU geologists for why and how the surface geography of the planet was suddenly and radically altered at least twice over the past hundred millennia. :sneaky:

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There's so much Champions Universe history that human scientists don't know about, and probably wouldn't accept the explanation for. I'd love to hear the theories from CU geologists for why and how the surface geography of the planet was suddenly and radically altered at least twice over the past hundred millennia. :sneaky:

 

Invaders From Below (1990) may hold a clue or two...

 

And let's not forget Krakatoa 1883!

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On June 29, 1908, something seared and flattened 800 square miles of forest in remotest Siberia.

 

Orthodox science says it was an asteroid or comet exploding in the atmosphere.

 

In the CU, it was the Circle of the Scarlet Moon killing the Archmage, and getting a lethally bigger blast than it expected.

 

Just for fun, can we come up with other ways to work the Tunguska Event into a superhero setting?

 

(In my old campaign setting, it was an alien spaceship. The scientist who finally found the wreckage had an origin.)

 

Dean Shomshak

One discussion of the Tunguska blast pointed out that if the Earth had been rotated slightly differently ... that is, keep the Earth and the bolide in their orbits and the intersection point remains fixed in a Solar System sense, but the time of day was different by a few hours when bolide entered the atmosphere... then you have that large destructive airburst over St Petersburg rather than some empty woodland in Siberia, at a time when Czarist Russia was going through a turbulent episode in their internal politics. Probably Twentieth Century hisory works out differently in such a case.

 

... Now throw in superheroes in that mix as well.

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One discussion of the Tunguska blast pointed out that if the Earth had been rotated slightly differently ... that is, keep the Earth and the bolide in their orbits and the intersection point remains fixed in a Solar System sense, but the time of day was different by a few hours when bolide entered the atmosphere... then you have that large destructive airburst over St Petersburg rather than some empty woodland in Siberia, at a time when Czarist Russia was going through a turbulent episode in their internal politics. Probably Twentieth Century hisory works out differently in such a case.

 

... Now throw in superheroes in that mix as well.

 

Who is to say that St Petersburg wasn't the intended target? Only timely intervention by Edwardian heroes against the dastardly Asteroid Ray of Comrade Chaos enabled them to deflect the perilous projectile into an area where it would do no harm!

 

And you could always shift that sideways so that Comrade Chaos was a time-travelling menace, if you want contemporary heroes on the scene.

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On 7/3/2017 at 1:56 AM, Cancer said:

One discussion of the Tunguska blast pointed out that if the Earth had been rotated slightly differently ... that is, keep the Earth and the bolide in their orbits and the intersection point remains fixed in a Solar System sense, but the time of day was different by a few hours when bolide entered the atmosphere... then you have that large destructive airburst over St Petersburg rather than some empty woodland in Siberia, at a time when Czarist Russia was going through a turbulent episode in their internal politics. Probably Twentieth Century hisory works out differently in such a case.

 

... Now throw in superheroes in that mix as well.

 

 

Interesting that you should mention the possibility that the object responsible for the Tunguska Event could have exploded over an

inhabited area -- a major city, for example -- rather than over one of the few places on Earth where such an event could take place

without causing the loss of human life; a book on the subject that I had the opportunity to read back in my high school days men-

tioned the possibility that, had the object arrived a few hours later, New York City would have been virtually destroyed (an artist's

rendition of what the city would have looked like following such an event resembled pictures of post-nuclear bombing of Hiroshima

and Nagasaki, with Manhattan Island completely devastated along with much of the city on the mainland). Given the estimated

yield of the blast -- 1.5 megatons -- it's unlikely that there would have been any survivors, save those on the outermost limit of the

affected area. By comparision, the bombs which were dropped on Japan near the end of WWII were in the 10- to 15-kiloton range.

 

 

Major Tom 2009 :shock:

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5 minutes ago, Major Tom 2009 said:

 

 

Interesting that you should mention the possibility that the object responsible for the Tunguska Event could have exploded over an

inhabited area -- a major city, for example -- rather than over one of the few places on Earth where such an event could take place

without causing the loss of human life; a book on the subject that I had the opportunity to read back in my high school days men-

tioned the possibility that, had the object arrived a few hours later, New York City would have been virtually destroyed (an artist's

rendition of what the city would have looked like following such an event resembled pictures of post-nuclear bombing of Hiroshima

and Nagasaki, with Manhattan Island completely devastated along with much of the city on the mainland). Given the estimated

yield of the blast -- 1.5 megatons -- it's unlikely that there would have been any survivors, save those on the outermost limit of the

affected area. By comparision, the bombs which were dropped on Japan near the end of WWII were in the 10- to 15-kiloton range.

 

 

Major Tom 2009 :shock:

 

On the other hand it could have landed in France.

 

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On 7/2/2017 at 4:30 PM, Lord Liaden said:

There's so much Champions Universe history that human scientists don't know about, and probably wouldn't accept the explanation for. I'd love to hear the theories from CU geologists for why and how the surface geography of the planet was suddenly and radically altered at least twice over the past hundred millennia. :sneaky:

 

"We thought about doing field research on this question, but everyone who goes out on survey ends up being eaten by slugs, possessed by ancient gods, or both. So we just shrug our shoulders and surf the Internet during our lab days. It's, like, have your soul drained by an entity from a failed universe, or complain about the President. I know what my choice is. It could be worse, you know. They actually recruit archaeologists on suicide hotlines, now. It's  unethical, but there's such a backlog of pre-human, non-Euclidean ruins waiting for rescue excavation before some developer can build a Club Med on the site that they've given up."

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Small point in relation to other target spots if it had arrived earlier or later - it wouldn't have been a simple case of the same latitude because of the Earth's tilt.

 

In June the northern hemisphere is tilting towards the sun, and the Earth rotates eastward, so (if I've worked this out correctly) the target spot travels southwestish over time (later arrival), or northeastish going back in time (for an earlier arrival).

 

If I have worked that out right, Europe was never in danger. One direction takes you over the 'Stans and middle east, the other is more Siberia.

 

Of course, if you change the impact time by days or weeks, it may well fall anywhere.

 

Ignore the above. I was confusing orbital tracks with much simpler things. It'll land east or west along the same latitude.

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