Questions tagged [alternate-history]

For questions that ask what might have happened if history had taken a different path.

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0answers
123 views

What if the 300 marines somehow somehow replace the 300 spartans at Thermopylae? [closed]

What if the 300 marines somehow somehow replace the 300 spartans at Thermopylae? Will they defeat millions of Persians?
4
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4answers
198 views

How do I preserve the Megafauna in my world?

Over 100,000 years ago giant megafauna roamed the earth such as mammoths, gigantopithecus, and giant sloths. fast forward to today and most megafauna are extinct (with the notable exception being in ...
2
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4answers
269 views

How long would it take to kill an army of 100k

The time period is similar to the crusade time instead of asia there is an entirely different island continent. The people on it are not homosapiens but some different earlier branch. they are though ...
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1answer
82 views

at what point in the ancient world would a world war be feasible? [closed]

According to our history books, there was a massive earthquake in the ancient world which left effects on a global scale. Millions of people were killed in this tragic point in history. However, the ...
24
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7answers
3k views

Would an enduring Inca Empire ever need paper?

In this alternate history, Tawantinsuyo resisted all attempts at conquest. The reason is not very important; let's say a fluke storm killed all of Pizarro's men shortly after they started engaging the ...
25
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19answers
7k views

Would common people in central Europe in the 15th century notice that the whole Asia disappeared?

We have earth at the beginning of the 15th century, and suddenly the biggest continent disappears. There is nothing left of it, no animals, people, lands, anything. I don't think the details of the ...
4
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3answers
219 views

Would it be possible for neanderthals to not go extinct, and perhaps build their own nation?

Let's say that somehow, enough Neanderthals survived after the last ice age to be able to form a centralized government, economy, etc. Would this even be possible? What events could lead to this?
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3answers
228 views

Convince 11th century people that I am from the future [closed]

I am a time traveller. I want to change the result of the Battle of Hastings. To achieve this, I need to learn king Harold Godwinson's (and his baronets') trust. To do this, I decide to reveal that I ...
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1answer
85 views

What would Alta California look like in 1900, 1950, and today if the Mexican-American War never happened? [closed]

Let’s say that the Mexican-American War never happened. Texas still joins the United States in 1845 and its borders are settled to contain only the undisputed portion of the Republic. What would Alta ...
2
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3answers
174 views

Near-future weapons taking designs similar to 17th century weapons

I am doing an alternate-history of Earth going into the science-fiction area. The split came with a portal to a new planet appearing around the 17th century. The portal deposited those brave enough to ...
6
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1answer
107 views

What change in China's history after the Korean War is needed to made the Democratic movement in 1989 a success?

Throughout the world, it is generally recognized that the Democratic movement in Beijing started as a public memorial of the former Chairman Hu YaoBang, who past away on April 15th, 1989 after being ...
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4answers
587 views

What would Europe look like if Chernobyl exploded?

In a scenario where the Soviets didn't manage to stop corium from reaching the water reservoirs underneath the plant, causing a detonation equivalent to a nuclear explosion, what would life in the ...
3
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2answers
145 views

200 commoners of varying gender/age from 1750 Europe are marooned in a strange land. What does population growth look like?

200 inadvertent settlers fall through a portal, and the portal closes. These 200 people were possibly the population of a small hamlet, transported against their will. They find themselves in a land ...
2
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2answers
103 views

What events caused the formation of the 18th century Dutch-Scandinavian Republic?

I'm in the early stages of an alternate history novel (and at a push a light fantasy) in which I like the idea of a unified Scandinavian Nation/Republic to compete with Britain and France for control ...
0
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2answers
145 views

How difficult would it be to invade Mainland China during WWII? [closed]

In an alternate history WWII scenario, the Republic of China became a fascist, one-party state similar to Nazi Germany (who they're closely allied with; Adolf Hitler IRL even considered the Chinese ...
4
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6answers
198 views

How could the Avignon papacy replace Rome as the center of power? [closed]

The medieval Popes ruled directly over the Papal States in Central Italy, and was an influential player in the affairs of European states. The Dark Emperor of France set in motion a master plan to ...
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2answers
147 views

What would life be if humans had a healing factor? [closed]

The main premise is that since homo sapiens evolved, humanity has possessed a healing factor similar to wolverine, but lesser. How would modern-day life be different?
3
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6answers
469 views

How far could the roman empire expand? [closed]

Assuming Rome never fell and the empire was never divided, how far could it have expanded? What would it take for them to have an empire whose size is similar to that of the british or Spanish empires?...
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3answers
156 views

How would a time-traveler maximize their profits with minimal impact on history? [closed]

A time traveler has a time machine that will take him back to any point in the past once, and they may choose to return to the present or stay. They have $100 in your possession, nothing more, and can ...
2
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2answers
117 views

How could Mao Zedong have won the Chinese Civil War before 1931?

I'm aware of the history of the Chinese Civil War, from the First and Second United Fronts formed to combat the warlords and Empire of Japan respectively between 1927-1945, but I'm curious if there ...
15
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10answers
3k views

How could the Empire of Japan and America be allies in WWII? [closed]

I am slowly building an alternate history story where America and the Empire of Japan are closely allied during the early 1940s instead of at war. They are so close, in fact, that Anchorage is seen as ...
6
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7answers
326 views

How would a Stone age society make use of gunpowder?

Given that the main ingredients for gunpowder(Charcoal, Saltpetre, and Sulphur) exist in varying quantities pretty much everywhere, I've been wondering how it wasn't discovered much sooner than the ...
1
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1answer
86 views

How to maintain a large empire with pre-industrial revolution technology? [closed]

Putting the corruption of the political system and internal strife aside. Lets assume a Roman empire, something like Trajan's border, type empire that has a decently strong central government, but ...
2
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1answer
119 views

what essential material or ingredients in modern gunpowder that if changed to be expensive or rare, can ruin the evolution of advance/modern gun?

as the title, what materials or ingredients in modern gunpowder that if change to be expensive or rare to get, can ruin the evolution of advance gun or can turn modern gun obsolete or undesirable ? i ...
3
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4answers
196 views

The German Empire refuses to back Austria-Hungary's declaration of war against Serbia in 1914. What changes from there on? [closed]

When asked by Austria-Hungary to back their declaration of war on Serbia, the German Empire refuses, stating that with how unstable Europe currently is a war would be disastrous. How could WWI play ...
3
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0answers
87 views

BCS: Chola Empire colonizes Australia? [closed]

So, here's the premise- in the mid 11th century, a Vellalar prince, looking to gain influence and power in the Imperial Chola court, funds and organizes a small colonial expedition to search for new ...
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4answers
294 views

How Could a Scientist Intentionally Discover Penicillin

In our timeline Alexander Fleming accidentally discovered penicillin by accidentally leaving petri dishs out over a long period of time. If a person from an earlier time, e.g. ancient Rome, woke up ...
6
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2answers
189 views

Can agriculture and megafauna coexist?

Some say that one of the reason humans developed agriculture is because megafauna (specifically the Pleistocene megafauna) were hunted for food to extinction and humans were forced to develop ...
6
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3answers
181 views

Woodpunk World- 'Super Wood' developed in the mid-late 19th century?

So, here's the premise- in this alternate 'woodpunk' historical timeline, primarily focused upon Japan, someone stumbles across this development far earlier on, in the mid to late 19th century (as ...
4
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4answers
175 views

Earliest viable modern battery

I'm building a world where high-density, low cost batteries are discovered far, far in advance of modern times, leading to a decentralised power grid. It has become convention for homes and buildings ...
3
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8answers
296 views

What kind of alternatively history events would have the most effect at causing a more advanced multiverse? [closed]

Starting July 16, 1945, our local universe has been fractured into a myriad of multiverses. In these multiverses (not this one you are reading from right now) a number of events cause things to turn ...
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1answer
109 views

Military Strength of an HRE in the 1940's? [closed]

How strong would a reincarnation of the Holy Roman Empire be during the 1940s? This includes all of the former Roman Empire's territory (before its collapse) and the Holy Roman Empire's territory.
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2answers
193 views

Could a Ancient Rome-like civilization develop with vastly different geology? [closed]

If, for example, they developed in a region known for its foggy forests and open highlands, could an empire similar to the Roman Empire? And would their military style also develop similar or would ...
3
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3answers
225 views

Decimating humanity though no daughters gene - when and where to introduce it?

At one point in the past, a man had a mutation on his Y chromosome. Anyone with the mutation would only produce Y sperm, and only have sons. My plan is to have this have a big impact that threatens to ...
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3answers
110 views

Could a stone age civilization independently figure out about quantum mechanics [closed]

I was thinking of a stone age civilization that figures out how to use Quantum Mechanics. This civilization figures out some of the equations that describe Quantum Mechanics, and comes up with first ...
11
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18answers
4k views

What information could a Time Traveller give to Nazi Germany to make them win WWII?

So, let’s say a certain type of person steals a Time Machine and travels to Berlin August 1st, 1939. He shows his time machine to Adolf Hitler, and tries to give him advice necessary to win WW2 before ...
2
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1answer
1k views

What drastic changes would occur if an architect went to ancient times [closed]

My character Ray was transported to the most fertile region of Africa about 569 B.C. He was born in into a small farming family and learned about the history and evolution of farming because his ...
7
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2answers
251 views

If humans evolved on Mars instead of Earth, how quickly would we have detected life on Earth?

Suppose that both Earth and Mars was booming with life in a similar way. Except that, on Earth, there was no hominid family, and no humans evolved. Instead, humans evolved on Mars. Assuming we had ...
1
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1answer
159 views

Native American Society in a World Where Beringia Is Still High and Dry [closed]

Multiple times in Earth's geological history, a bridge connected Asia to North America, bringing in an influx of colonists. Without Beringia, North America would never have the iconic Triceratops or ...
9
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4answers
195 views

Why would China and UK peacefully agree Hong Kong to be returned to UK?

At mid-night 1 July 1997, UK returned HK to China. Call my imaginary China's handover to UK "Patriation" - it must happen after 1 July 1997. As we know from real world 2019 protests, some ...
9
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4answers
220 views

what could be used for flexible piping in the 1780s

How and out of what could flexible, thin air-tight tubes be made of at around 1780? These tubes need to be around a centimeter wide, with a 7.5 mm tube going through it. It must also be heat resistant ...
6
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2answers
267 views

Will the Dinosaur Empire Still Stand Strong If Chicxulub Hit Earth at the End of the Jurassic?

66 million years ago, the dinosaur empire was in its death throes when its final nail in the coffin came hurtling down from the sky. A clump of rock the size of Mount Everest smashed into the Gulf of ...
11
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12answers
938 views

What are the most important factors in determining how fast technology progresses?

What are the most important factors in determining how fast technology progresses? And roughly how fast might that be under optimal circumstances? Innovations have to be dreamed up, but there must ...
2
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0answers
104 views

What if the partition of India were bottom-up [closed]

In 1947 suppose that, instead of attempting to draw a fair line between Muslims and non-Muslims, British India has a referendum asking each village, “With which of your neighbors (including native ...
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1answer
237 views

Medieval/renaissance superweapon [closed]

Using the technology available at the time, what kind of superweapon could the medieval or renaissance age produce?
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5answers
533 views

How NOT to Turn Volkshalle Into a Rain Factory

This is a model of Volkshalle, the People's Dome, part of a vision of "Germania" by Adolf Hitler. But the tides of war had washed Germania away, yet this and other architectural plans by Albert Speer ...
7
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3answers
233 views

Maintaining a Moon Suit

The Apollo-era A7L Extravehicular Mobility Units were used for less than eight hours at a time, within a few days, with a maximum of three moonwalks per mission. Assume a fictional moonbase with ...
3
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2answers
342 views

Demon Empire annexs North America. How would the world react in 1972? [closed]

I had an urge to make an alternate history, which is an alien space bats scenario. Here some worldbuilding that I made. In another dimension, a planet is divided by 4 space filling empires. Theis ...
1
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1answer
141 views

Alternate history where Italy finds oil [closed]

One of the most important resources in the world in the modern era has been oil, but arguably at no time more than during WW2 where many of the Axis' plans revolved around the procurement of a steady ...
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8answers
436 views

Aborting Abrahamism [closed]

Let's imagine that some powerful evil eldritch abomination decided to hijack Roman Republic 45 BC, saving Caesar in the last moment and fashion itself as Mercurius (Hermes), who was sent by Olympus as ...

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