Ad Astra Per Aspera is an alternate timeline that diverged from the real world timeline after the American Civil War. From this split, the United States, the German Empire, and the Soviet Union became global powers. As the three empires expand into space with the advent of faster-than-light travel, an apocalyptic nuclear war occured on Earth in 2239. Offworld colonists are cut off from their Earth-based governments and each other, sparking a period of galactic anarchy known as the Collapse. From this catastrophe, three interstellar superpowers emerged from the ashes, consisting the Coalition of Western Republics, the Conseil of Workers' Systems, and the United Technocracies of Man.
- Main article: Timeline
The point of divergence from the real world is 1868, United States President Andrew Johnson was successfully impeached by Benjamin Wade, an affiliate of the Radical Republicans, who became his successor for six months. Under Wade, the Wade-Davis Bill was passed that lead to increased tensions between the northern and southern states, as well as increased militarization. Subsequently, the U.S. began favoring towards militarism after their victory in the Spanish-American War and proving the world of its power in helping Russia in defeating the Japanese in the Russo-Japanese War.
The Russian Empire, influenced by its victory against Japan, embraced a nationalistic movement that stretches its sphere of influence in the Balkans that further threatened the Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman empires. In 1916, war ignited in Europe when the Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia was fatally stabbed by a Muslim fanatic during a visit in Serbia and set off the European alliance system, between the Entente (Britain, France, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire and Japan) and the Allies (Germany, Russia, and Italy), in what to be known as the Kaiser's War. The war lasted until 1920 with Germany becoming the unofficial hegemon of central Europe and the Russian Empire collapsed and succeeded by the Soviet Union.
The post-war left many Entente soldiers dissatisfied and felt their sacrifices were all for nothing. Many veteran organizations, usually overtly right-wing in nature, arose throughout Europe and giving birth to croixism, a nationalist ideological movement to counter Soviet communism and American international capitalism. At the same time, American nationalism was reaching its peak and the threat of international communism was played up, along with anti-European sentiment, into gearing America into another war.
Built up by the bitter aftermath of the Kaiser's War and fervent nationalism, begins the Great War. America and Germany allied against the British, French, Austria-Hungary, and Japanese empires while the Soviet Union aggressively expand into the Middle East.
Coalition of Western Republics
- Main article: Coalition of Western Republics
Conseil of Workers' Systems
- Main article: Conseil of Workers' Systems
United Technocracies of Man
- Main article: United Technocracies of Man