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Build a city, enhance allegiances, and expand control using worker dice in this dystopian-themed board game for 2-6 players.
Build a city, enhance allegiances, and expand control using worker dice in this dystopian-themed board game for 2-6 players.
4,765 backers pledged $309,495 to help bring this project to life.

The Apocalypse Cometh

Posted by Jamey Stegmaier (Creator)

Thank you all for another amazing, euphoric day. A number of you told me today that you really appreciate the way I'm running this Kickstarter campaign, and that meant a lot to me. If you're one of those people who like the way we do things at Stonemaier Games, I would recommend that you Like us on Facebook--it's a great way to stay in touch with us after the campaign (don't worry, I'll still send out project updates too).

I have a story to tell you that is inspired by the results of the Tournament of the Apocalypse that took place earlier in this project, as well as your comments that followed. This story takes place in the not-so distant future.

The future is often depicted as a dismal, overpopulated scrapyard, but that isn't the case in this story. Thanks to advances in biotechnology, humans are embedded with an organic microchip at birth that grows as they develop, resulting in a full-functional computer enhancement to every brain.

The Org, as it is called, brings people, businesses, and entertainment to a new level of connection and efficiency. 99% of the technological interfaces we interact with today with our hands are now embedded into people's minds. All communication is instantaneous. Business transactions great and small are authorized with thought passwords. Every network--electric, internet, roads, etc--are connected in real time to every user.

When Org was being developed by a top-secret research team at Washington University in St. Louis, a political debate raged on about where the massive Org server hub should be located. Not only would it generate thousands of jobs, it would need to be the most secure server in the world. The future of human thought was dependent on the Org server.

So it was decided in the end that the server would be located on the moon. In addition to the benefits of isolation from the rest of the world, the moon's cold surface would act as a natural coolant to the immense heat generated by the Org server. The server would be powered by a fusion reactor buried deep in the core of the moon.

Cut to several decades later, with Org fully operational in 95% of all humans. Most have forgotten the time before Org, just like it's hard for us to truly remember what it was like before e-mail.

Several new pockets of society emerged as a result of Org. The first is a new upper upper class occupied by those who designed Org. The biotechnology made those researchers rich beyond comprehension, and their inexhaustible resources, they built a golden city just south of St. Louis. They invited the wealthiest people around the world to join them in Euphoria, as they called the city, enticing them with lavish private skyscrapers and an Org 2.0 network exclusive to the city.

Meanwhile, another group emerges. At the time, they identify as Luddites--those who eschew technology in favor of a simpler life. With no place in the ever-connected society (try having a conversation out loud with someone who communicates entirely through thought), the Luddites find commune with one another in the foothills of the Ozarks.

On the run for a crime she didn't commit, a woman known simply as "The Outlaw" discovers that the only way she can hide from the law (given that her Org serves as a tracking device) is to escape underground. After hearing of stories of the caverns under St. Louis, she finds herself in a subterranean world. Soon others join her, and together they begin to build a new life while the Org-connected world continues above them on the surface.

This brings us to the select group of individuals chosen to run the Org server. The Icarites, as they call themselves, operate a space station halfway to the moon. They make sure that Org has 100% uptime, a goal they accomplish without fail for many years.

That is, until the Incident.

Without warning, the fusion reactor in the middle of the moon imploded. Within seconds the Org server and the moon itself are reduced to space dust.

People will tell you that they remember that day, but they are lying. When the moon imploded, every single person with Org embedded in their brains blacked out. 95% of the world instantly went to sleep. The vast majority of them never woke up.

For those who are able to recover from the Incident, they get to experience the end of the world firsthand. Every network in the world is down: stock markets, electric grids, automated food transportation, name it, it's gone. People freeze. People starve. People die.

Meanwhile, the earth itself changes. Tidal patterns are forever altered, and the world is stricken by natural disasters and extreme weather conditions. Most coastlines are underwater, and the disruption of migratory patterns in birds and bees causes widespread crop failures.

The lucky few are those who weren't dependent on the Org server. The Euphorians with their private server. The Luddites--now called the Wastelanders--and their lack of technology. The Subterrans, oblivious underneath the earth. And the Icarites, who suspiciously saw the moon implosion coming and had been weening themselves off the Org for months.

It is those four groups that form the new world. Each takes harsh measures to sustain their way of life and ensure the future of humanity. Will you join them--especially the apocalyptic recruits, the Philanthropist, the Luddite, the Outlaw, and the Astronomer--in building a better dystopia?

  • Image 270788 original.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1


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    1. Christopher Hoganson on

      @Bobby Liu - perhaps a Freudian slip that our Overlord Jamey used the spelling of weening often tied to "overweening pride" :)

    2. Steve on

      I must echo what many others have posted! Amazing job on this backstory. I really enjoyed how the story evolved from severed lines in the ocean to this pleasantly well blended story! I actually found myself a little said that the story was not expanded into at least a short 50-100 page novella. I guess reading a story and having your only complaint be that you wanted it longer and more in depth is all any writer could want:o)

    3. Christopher Hoganson on

      Fantastic narrative: that story sounds vaguely familiar! Again, I see your attempts to re-write history in order to validate the current Dystopic state of affairs! I am sure this story is somehow meant to maintain your iron control over the Betas, but the workers will unite, will study the ancient artifacts, and will learn for ourselves, as Brother Jason clearly has, your true allegiance to the arches of Gold! This, I am sure, is why our Euphoric Betas dig and dig and dig for your precious gold, it is to once again raise the mighty arches over the land! I warn you now my brethren, "Fear the Secret Sauce!" Although, it would be nice to see a million backers served!

    4. HotMayoSandwich

      You know there are other cities in the world besides St. Louis. Did that have to be the setting for.. well... everything?

    5. Jason Williams on

      The most beautifully futuristic McDonald's sign I've ever seen.

      That's it, I've figured it out!!! McDonald's is behind the moon implosion and destroying the internet, thus concentrating the only population of the world in a small city which happens to be backed, ran by, and formed, via the McDonald's Future City Initiative. But... no one knows.. they're all blind by this Euphoric feeling that has swarmed them making them feel at peace with life... until they learn the truth, they talk with other fellow workers... and realize McDonald's is behind it all!

    6. Imre Hauszknecht on

      Well done Jamie, well done! Great!

    7. Tom D.B. on

      Nicly done. Very kewl background story!

    8. Missing avatar


      Great. I would love to see the entire backstory offered for his game.....I would even pay for another add-on to get a copy.... Or perhaps it deserves its own kickstarter after this keep the "euphoria" for this great game going. And offering more pictures, and a story line, etc, it would be popular even from those that are not gamers I would venture to

    9. Taylor Dewey on

      Well done! ::applause:: Even more excited than ever to play this game.

    10. Bryn Edwards on

      This is brilliant! Well done

    11. Don Riddle

      i must say, this story is a brilliant way to bring those 2 apocalypses and the game together. nicely done.

    12. Katy Adams on

      I really enjoyed the story! (Once again I stayed up way too late waiting to see the update.) I'd be lying if I said I wasn't hoping to see it somehow make its way into the box with the game, although I'm happy to see it here if that can't happen.

      The Org technology sounds strikingly familiar to something that I read about in a novel somewhere, but it had a different name. Also, really liked the sketch with the Arch since I'm a sucker for anything that nods back to St. Louis. :)

    13. Sarah Reed

      Awesome! Great combination of both stories, which makes it a much stronger disaster in my opinion. Definitely hope you'll write the full story some time.

    14. Kenny B

      Oooo, shiny!

      Yes, yes I will!

    15. Dagda

      Great background story.

    16. Icarus Must Burn on

      Awesome. There is a future for a Euphoria source book and novellas for the mythos to cross over into various styles of RPGs.

    17. robert stencel on

      Well told backstory, like it.

    18. Bobby Liu on

      I love the way you combined the two finalist scenarios into a plausible future event. My only nitpick is that you probably meant weaning (meaning gradually reducing dependence) instead of weening (which my internet research shows is an archaic word meaning to think, suppose, or intend).