Greetings, users! I’m a bit new here, but I’ve been trolling (traditional) the Discord for some time now, and those of you might be familiar with my intent to make dossiers on every machine type (Runner, Seeker, Hunter, etc.) and how each machine behaves on their own and with each other in more detail, and then a design philosophy (Prototype, Military, FNIX, Apocalypse, Reaper) covering each different level so to speak of the machines regardless of type, and what their doctrine is.
If it wasn’t obvious by now I take a serious stance on realism, even where it doesn’t make any sense for it to be. But since this game is an alternative history, it makes sense to me that there’s some realism to be had, and I see it’s my job to expand upon existing reasoning and create new reasoning for things.
If none of that interests you at all, I understand, but it’s something I enjoy doing nonetheless, and I would ask you to give this a try.
Today I’m covering something different from the overarching dossier work I’m used to. I’m going to ask a simple question. You might think it foolish at first, trivial. I want you to hold such rebukes for now and wait until I’m done.
Look at this picture.
This picture is of the aftermath of some event unseen by players in the time between the last update and the current one, which introduced several new crafting features, and the launch of the Stridsmaskin 90 “Liemannen”, the Grim Reaper.
The crater is of an as-of-yet unexplored complex that stretches beneath the Farmlands region and likely beyond, as besides F23 there are no nearby bunker complexes capable of this scale, as the blown open tunnels have burning trucks and shipping containers, handfuls of various munitions crates scattered inside and out, and even the remants of radiological waste or byproduct, as seen by the glowing green puddles of slag.
The crater is swarming with FNIX class machines and even a few Apoc stragglers, and the whole area gives me the sense of an ant nest that’s been disturbed, with ants crawling out. However, the site is closed, as the tunnels that were exposed are mostly collapsed, with one exception being the tunnel you find the Reaper schematics in, and a door with a card scanner that doesn’t open, but seems to be functional.
The area around it is devastated, with the majority of foliage and trees being torn out and mostly absent as debris, several nearby aboveground structures being scorched if not burned down, and a few destroyed by cement or concrete rubble likely thrown from the crater in the event.
However, some trees remain and are not burnt down, knocked over, scorched, or leaning away from the epicenter of the crater area. Structures nearby that were not on fire before are now heavily damaged, and little besides a few walls, ashes, and the foundations remain.
There were some damaged buildings from before the event, the Stora Dyrbo location is not far from the site, but the location was previously damaged from a skirmish during D-day between the army and the machines, as there were Military Tank wrecks all over the structures and a few Strv-103 (the Swedish tank at the time) wrecks as well, likely from the skirmish that took place further to the southwest. However, there are no more intact Tank wrecks at that site, and it seems to be a little more on fire than usual.
Oh, and the crater is not centered on that weird Bunker 66(6) fight pit or whatever it is, that’s a little northwest of the epicenter, and as far as I’m aware, is completely unrelated.
So here’s my question. What caused this crater?
Take a moment to think.
I think that it’s fair to say the Reaper is involved somehow in this, but I have doubts that it caused the amount of destruction seen. I’ll touch lightly on the subject later, but let’s move onto two possible, if basic, causes of the destruction in the area.
1: The destruction was caused in a single and sudden event, like the detonation of a large explosive device.
This one is the most probable in my eyes, but it has some issues.
The first is that if it were from an explosive of some kind, the blast area would be more decimated, and there’d be no trees standing, especially if a tactial nuclear device (small nuke) was detonated.
Second, while I’ve spent some time — as of the time of this writing — looking at instances of explosion craters to guage what the causes were, or at least how big the crater is in comparison to other craters, I run into a lot of issues of where the explosive device would be, in the tunnels, above ground, or in the air as an airburst type.
The closest explosive comparison to the amount of damage caused and the size of the crater leads me to suspect that if it was a detonation of an explosive device or other material, then it would be similar in scope and volatility to the explosion in Beirut just this year.
That is to say, a 1.1 kiloton explosion at ground or just below ground level, as any deeper and the crater would be sharper and less shallow a climb. But I haven’t even gotten into the earth science and geology regarding how such an explosive would crater the ground with a placement above or below ground, so there’s also issues with that.
So to stop from spiraling out of control, we’ll move onto the second possible cause.
2: The devastation was not caused all at once, and was instead done over the course of several hours time, if not days or weeks depending on the method.
This one is less probable as it has many more holes that are not as practically answerable as the ones regarding the first.
And before anyone pops off and says “The Reaper did it” I know it probably did if the second possibility is true, but we have many more questions of how and why.
First problem — I am trying to limit spoilers, but if you’re here and you haven’t played for that long to know what I’m saying, what are you doing? — the entire military complex belongs to FNIX (for various reasons) save what we have disabled over time (won’t say where), and we did not know of the existence of this section of tunnels, which are large, likely expansive, and do not have any obvious entrances, let alone any players could have sniffed out over time.
So since it’s not likely players could do this, and we assume the Reaper did it over time in some kind of fit of rage, why do it to FNIX’s own territory and resources? This part of the question goes for both cause one and two, but it would be more wasteful for the Reaper to cause such destruction like that.
Follow up argument might be “it was in the tunnels and had to get out”.
But then we get to the issue of if it was sudden or not, and that’s problem two: since if it wasn’t one big boom (which even the Reaper can’t do if you go to the crater and examine the scale for yourself) then it had to dig itself out, which I doubt, and then carve out the crater like it was an explosion.
And the surrounding area. Which makes no sense. Because if the job was to get out, it could have blown a small hole, crawl out, and then tear away from the exit in one direction, not make a pit of destruction around where it emerged and call it home.
The Reaper is the pinacle of machine warfare. It’s tough, and mean, and nearly indestructable if all you’re doing is panicking and firing wildly. And FNIX is smart enough to understand that with something like this, and a few escort machines, it can demolish any obstacle of its choosing on the map.
So if it did, for some reason, forgo any normal deployment and make its way to the highest populated area on the map and smash it, why would it waste time scouring the area above where it came out? To my knowledge there wasn’t anything there before, not even a safehouse or a farm larger than housing for a handful of people.
Since this has turned into a rant of sorts, I’m going to leave it at this, and ask you. What was the cause of the crater? Take a trip for yourselves, go there, see the destruction, and the scope of it. Think about it. Try and look at what’s left and tell me what you see.
Just go there, and see for yourself. Because despite the crater not changing, a lot of people see different things. And