Campaign Timeline, part 1 - The First Apocalypse
March 3oth, 2010 - The age old question is answered - we are not alone in the universe. Aliens appear across the planet, somehow arriving without flying in from outer space. They appear in massive vehicles that resemble giant cuttlefish. They do not seem to notice the presence of humanity on the planet, instead focusing on the extraction of mineral resources on a scale never before seen on Earth. They appear at spots around the globe that have high mineral content and seem to be focusing on the extraction of gold, iron, silver, copper and uranium. All attempts at communications fail and several aggressive military expeditions are summarily annihilated.
April 1st - April 19th, 2010 - Large scale riots occur across the world as civilian populations grow increasingly restive with their government's impotence in the face of the alien invaders. Military expedition after military expedition only show that the technology of the aliens far outpaces that of Earth, including some sort of force-field that block every missile thrown their direction. The aliens continue to ignore humanity with the exception of destroying military units sent to confront them.
April 20th, 2010 - The nuclear-armed governments of the world jointly decide that this situation cannot stand, and launch a simultaneous nuclear barrage. Somehow, these missiles are redirected en-route by the aliens, perhaps suggesting that they had been paying more attention than had previously been thought to the actions of humankind. A terrible payload of nuclear devastation is scattered randomly across the world, but this is not the end of the day's tragedy. The aliens, finally motivated to do something about the pesky human nuisance, detonate some sort of neutron bomb in every major population center. These bombs destroyed living flesh but left inorganic material intact. In minutes, the population of the Earth was reduced by almost 75%, only those living in rural areas far enough away from any population center to escape the blasts surviving. The total collapse of civilization as we know it today also occurred almost instantly.