Tears of Blood
Nuclear holocaust ignited the destruction of the world as we know it, but it was not the primary instrument of destruction. The sudden destruction of a billion people triggered a surge in the ley lines. All that psychic energy released at once. The sudden influx of psychic energy (P.P.E.) sent the energy rippling through the mystical crossroads of earth like an earthquake. Ley lines flowed with energy that had not been felt for a million years. The energy surged and pulsed and crisscrossed across the planet at the speed of light. At ley line intersections (nexus points), rifts in space and time tore open, releasing even more energy. The earth shuddered and heaved. Millions more died, increasing the energy level of the rifts.
The oceans leapt from their basin and washed over the land. Hundred of millions more died, their psychic energy (P.P.E.) drawn into the ley lines, and the natural energies doubled again. A chain reaction was unleashed that could not be halted.
The continent men called Atlantis leapt from its watery grave and rose to the light of day for the first time in millennia. Its rebirth changing the very face of the planet. In its wake, the eastern coast of the United States was engulfed by the ocean, sending the energy of millions more into the relentless rifts.
From the rifts spewed forth energy that tore through man’s citadels of steel and concrete like a tornado through a city built out of matchsticks. For every million or billion of lives lost, the ley lines surged and destroyed billions more; a nightmare in geometric principles.
The ley lines and the rifts that they opened were not some insidious evil, nor a plot of some malignant intelligence from another world. It was an aspect of nature that science did not even know, let alone understand. Like a child playing with matches in a pool of gasoline, humankind dropped a match into the pool and was instantly engulfed. Once the match was lit and dropped, there was nothing that could be done to undo what had been done. Yet in a strange way, all this death was part of the birth of a new age. And through it all, humankind would persevere. Even the cosmic fury of a world gone mad could not completely eradicate all human life. However, it would take mankind hundreds of years to crawl out of the abyss that swallowed him. It is at this moment, as humankind finally crawls back into the light of a new dawn that our story unfolds.
Rifts is a role-playing game that explores the earth created by the rifts. An earth that has been irreparably changed and is still changing. An earth more alien than any world one might find in another galaxy. Worlds where man must not only conquer himself and the environment, but a place where the environment is ever changing and the life forms one must compete against are not human.
The whole of South America was thought to be hit by a huge tidal wave, due in large to the rising of Atlantis. Earthquakes and tornados devastated the whole continent as thousands of rifts opened at the same time. The Amazon swelled and divided the land into two halves leaving thousands of islands in it wake. The north is dominated by jungles covered in tropical forests that stretch for thousands of miles. The many rifts allowed all manner of exotics species and D-bee life forms access to Rifts Earth. The southern half remains mostly and unexplored wilderness.
Even before the Coming of the Rifts the Amazon River was the largest in the world (4000 miles long, 150 miles wide at points). After the great Cataclysm the Amazon was transformed into river the likes of which the Earth has never seen, over 15,000 miles long, at a minimum 3 miles wide, at the widest well over the horizon. The river has two main branches, the lesser and greater Amazon. Strangely the whole body of water is fresh rather than salt water and home to all manner of strange creatures, including a multitude of magical and supernatural water beings.
The rain forest remains but has grown denser, and is home to all manner of exotics flora, fauna and beasts many of which with latent psychic and magical powers, which have been awakened by emergence of ley line energy.
The main languages in South America are Spanish, English, Creole (Spanish, Portuguese and Indian) with Dragonese is growing fast.
The Pirate Kingdoms
Scattered along both sides of the Amazon River are hundreds of islands, many inhabited by violent raiders and marauders, all members of the so-called Pirate Kingdoms. Many criminal and D-bee’s are forced out of more civilized areas to his land, becoming pirates, thieves and cutthroats to survive. The inhabitants range from scum with canoes all the way up to powerful clans and kingdoms with ports, fleets of ships. From here raids are conducted across South America and as far a field as Africa and the Mediterranean. The slave trade is a key aspect of the pirate’s wealth, which are sold to the Splugorth, the main slaver buyers who supplement their own raiding parties with independent slavers.
El Dorado – The Three Cities of Gold
There had once been three cities hidden in the Amazon jungle, from pre-rifts times. The oldest and wealthiest had been founded by True Atlantean refugee’s eons ago but had been transported elsewhere so as to stay hidden. The second was home to the great South America Jaguar god. That city had always dwelled elsewhere and communicated with Earth. The third city was a huge transdimensional market. The Cities of El Dorado exist in different areas of the mainland Amazon rain forest where they grow increasingly violent towards each other.