100 Decisions that would have spawned an Alternate History

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571] God looks at possible futures and realizes what his magical jealousy will result in. Jesus forms an adventuring party including the most powerful wizard, a rogue, and a paladin(one of the apostles). The current roman emperor gets slain and the second age of heros begins.

572. After witnessing the horror of Warriors Of The Wind, Hayao Miyazaki decides to never have another work of his dubbed into English ever again. His later releases are popular, but do not reach dubbie audiences. His works are never acquired by Disney, and he continues to work independently, being of slightly better humor, he never thinks of anime as being a mistake.

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573. For whatever reason, Harmony Gold decides not to sue FASA for using their designs in battletech. FASA continues to use Japanese designs for their mechs, and eventually makes use of designs from Mobile Suit Gundam. The origins of the designs becomes an open secret, and interest in Japanese animation experiences a slight uptick, with Japanese fans of the original series importing the game. Eventually FASA is approached by Bandai with the idea of creating a Japanese game system officially. It is well received on PC and later famicom. Just about every gundam video game uses this system, and later on, so do card games. The great houses/periphery/clan storyline is wrapped up tightly into the UC Federation/Zeon storyline, with Kerensky being replaced by Zeon Zum Daikum, and the trueborn of the clans being replaced by Zeon attempts to find and later create newtypes.

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574. Roger Sharp fails to pull off his famous trick shot in front of the New York City Council. As a result, pinball remains illegal. This has an unfortunate side effect of making standup coin operated video game machines illegal as well, and the arcade renaissance of the 80s remains quite small, as coin ops are found only in particularly grungy bars. Video games are associated with risque behavior; the salacious and psychedelic artwork that is regularly used in order to decorate the paneling does not help to improve its image. The only arcades that can be found with any regularity are in Atlantic City and Las Vegas and are only open to those above the age of 21. As a result, most video games reach smaller audiences and the technology associated lags. Even home computing is tarred, Bobby Fischer is seen as an embarrassment to the country for using a computer to learn better chess strategies, Russia does not hesitate to accuse him of self abuse (as he is playing with himself instead of a human opponent), and America never produces a player that defeats the Soviet Union at chess. A company by the name of Atari creates a complex and underground book detailing how individuals can create their own video game system with parts available at Radio Shack and other hobby shops; this book is seen as second only to the Anarchist's Cookbook in its associations with antisocial behavior, and is associated with the substance use that in real life was very well hidden among the company's computer programmers.
Nintendo, a Japanese company associated with love hotels and prophilactics, creates a "home entertainment system" in 1997. It is available only in the most scandalous of motels, along with pay per view adult entertainment.

575. The Supreme Court rules against the video cassette recorder, siding with the Motion Picture Association of America and similar bodies. Without home recording, broadcast television continues to enjoy its dominance in America; recordings of such shows are not commercially available. The DVD is never created, and cable television does not do as well in the face of a more vibrant, nigh unstoppable broadcast lineup. Family Guy is cancelled after its second season and never sees home release. Netflix and similar streaming services do not come into existence until the 2030s.

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576 What if that Lindhurst Dairy milk truck hadn't have gotten a flat tire in our driveway? Dad would not have had the extra hour with Mom, waiting for the mechanic to come and change the tire. Random chance or a high level of probability when you figure in sabotage. I don't care I'm here.

577. Rob Lowe is unable to get his hands on a camcorder the fateful night he gets lucky while campaigning for Dukakis. Without a shameful night to damage his career, Lowe is seen as a fresh faced political activist. Dukakis barely wins against Bush, serving a single term noted for a lack of political scandal as well as political direction.

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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

576 PaizoCon 2016: Erik Mona announces the development of a new edition of Pathfinder, tentatively titled Pathfinder: The Second Age to be released at GenCon 2018 after a year-long playtest.

There is a collective shock throughout the Pathfinder community, as it was viewed that PF1 had 'plenty of legs' if 'a bit of bloat'.

Due to this development, Starfinder was not pushed ahead, and the entire Paizo team is fully focused on the new edition and it is looking quite promising, perhaps even capable of wresting the tabletop RPG crown from WotC/Hasbro once more...

578- Instead of bringing in new characters for King of Fighter 94, the powers that be at Neo Geo decide to include characters from lesser known SNK games like World Heroes, Aggressors of Dark Kombat and Kizuna Encounter. The remodeled characters from these games increase the original roster by 3 countries, and bring new attention to these older, quirkier games. After the Orochi storyline is concluded, the game moves to these other "universes" and the attitude and style of the series goes through many alterations.

579- Lewis Hine gets too close to the truth during one of his investigative photoshoots and dies in an "accident" at a factory that makes heavy use of child labor. His camera is destroyed along with his film. Without his expose, child labor laws do not change for well over half a century when video enters prominence and excesses become harder to cover up.

580. Emanuel Augustus focuses a bit more on building muscle in his fight with Mayweather, and as a result uses his unique dance boxing fighting style to its fullest effect, knocking Mayweather out in the 7th round. Floyd Mayweather is no longer undefeated, and Augustus' unbelievably entertaining technique brings about a new interest in boxing.

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Relevant xkcd

581. The creator of Macross decides to have the earth completely destroyed when the Zentradi attack, making the crew and civilians of the Macross the last humans in the galaxy. Micronization of the Zentradi happens at a much higher though not universal rate, and the Zentradi that would have gone rogue due to a long period of inactivity on earth never do, as they are kept in service defending the ship from attack by other Zentradi forces. The crew eventually settles on a planet dubbed New Earth, and Lynn Minmay and Ichiro Hikaru marry not long afterwards. Another SDF class ship is built for discovery of other planets, and the series continues in a more exploratory and less space opera vein, with the sequel Macross Plus and Macross 7 series focusing on the discovery of other planets.

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582. Despite the high quality and rabid fanbase engendered by Image Comics, their high price point keep sales so low that the company shutters after only two years. Spawn, Wild C.A.T.S, and similar titles never become a household name, and are only familiar to niche comic book collectors. The lessons from that company being well learned, Wildstorm comics attempts to make a name for themselves years later, but fear of becoming a target for lawsuits- as what happened to Rob Liefield not long after Image closed when DC sued him directly and into pauperdom for trying to start a company with designs that were ruled to be too similar to what he created under contract while drawing for New Teen Titans- means the company languishes for years with low sales before teaming up with another low selling comic book company, CrossGen, to be a distant fourth as the big three of Marvel, DC, and Dark Horse dominate the comic book industry.

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583. A mere two years after his expulsion from the comics industry, Rob Liefeld is arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to Life + 199 years for racketeering and the manufacture & distribution of illegal mutagenic steroids. Government-funded research will continue for the next three decades+ in an ultimately futile attempt to cure the hundreds of thousands of Youngblood: The Next Blood Youngening #0 Ashcan Prismatic-Foil Cover readers illegally-dosed with these substances through skin contact with the comic ink.

In 2008, Michael Bay releases a documentary, Pain & Gain, chronicling the ongoing suffering and social stigma of Liefeld's steroid victims as they attempt to live normal lives feetless, with giant barrel chests perched on cantilevered spines, and covered in thousands of epidermal flesh pockets. Bay finds the documentary experience earth-shattering, renounces Hollywood film-making entirely, cosplays as a Steinway piano, and deliberately falls off a building to fatally crush Adam Sandler.

In the wild west, judges start the practice of allowing evidence no matter how it was obtained. Criminals start to flee east. The eastern states are forced to adopt the practice. Al Capone is executed early in his career. Many lawyers start to successfully argue that prohibition is encouraging violent crime despite the social scientist who made the study being an alcoholic. In any case, OJ gets life for murder and Donald Trump goes to jail for his crimes before the apprentice even gets made. His lawyers go to jail for attempted evidence tampering or negating.

585. Atari wins its lawsuit against Nintendo, which is held to be a monopoly due to its lockout codes and requiring licensing for third party companies to make games for it. The console wars become the developer wars instead, as video game companies no longer need to jump over the hurdles Nintendo crafts for them in order to make games. Super Nintendo, N64, and other consoles come out in different formats about two years after they come out in this timeline due to increased experimentation with existing technology.

586. Peter Gabriel never leaves Genesis. Many of his songs are instead released by the band and are only slightly less weird, and the band Genesis becomes incredibly popular in the early 90s among the politically minded college crowd, and they write several songs that lampoon popular political figures so badly that the very idea of George Bush Jr running for office never gets off the ground.

587. Kurt Cobain does not succeed in his suicide attempt, as an emt team was already in thr neighborhood on lunch break. With him surviving and recovering, the lawsuit filed against Nirvana by Killing Joke for using the music in their song "Eighties" to make "Come As You Are". While they do eventually settle out of court, Nirvana's reputation never recovers, and American Grunge is seen as a sellout version of British Punk.

588. Enterprising hackers that expose a certain mobile game's use of a lootcrate system that requires the user to place their thumb/finger on a phone scanner is actually directly linked to the user's pulse rate with a higher rate of excitement resulting in better rewards gets government officials to take a better look at lootcrate systems in games. Eventually a young senator begins to associate them with gambling and moves to have them removed due to their effect on impressionable youth as well as older adults. While this doesn't happen due to AAA game company lawyers working overtime, eventually many games with those systems in them are forced into the PEGI 18 or ESRB AO category, essentially ending the practice due to historically poor sales of games in those categories.

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589. In 1998, Warner Brothers doesn't cancel the production of Superman Lives. They finish making the movie, keeping with their course of casting Nicolas Cage as Superman and Christopher Walken as Braniac. In keeping with Jon Peters (the producer to whom the story was originally pitched) wishes, Superman does not fly in the movie, Braniac fights a polar bear in the movie, and the whole thing climaxes with superman fighting a giant robot spider. Tim Burton directs the movie, and they try to get Jack Nicholson to play Lex Luthor, but he says no. The movie is as terrible as you would think. His life's purpose to put a giant mechanical spider in a movie fulfilled, Jon Peters retires, and the movie Wild Wild West never gets made.

p.s. I am not kidding, all of that almost happened. Jon Peters tried to cram that giant spider into Superman Lives, Sandman, and Gaia only knows how many other movies he produced, before finally succeeding with Wild Wild West.

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590. Wizards of the Coast makes a last minute change and turns the Sorcerer into the 3e equivalent of a specialist wizard instead of a Charisma based spellcaster. This results in the upcoming Psionicist being reworked into a Charisma based class and the mathematics for power points much simpler. In 3.5, the psionicist becomes a new base class.

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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

591. At the height of the panic buying in April 2020 the entirety of the 'essential' retail workers walk off the job citing 'inability of management to protect their workers'.

The resulting riots as people are unable to purchase necessary living items for the lockdown period expand into general warfare, as retail giants attempt to 'draft' minimum wage or marginally better paid workers into service while paying the same 'normal' rates.

It goes about as well as one might think.

After the supply chain collapses, the infrastructure to support things like the Internet collapse shortly thereafter.

Against a wall and desperate for any good press, the President orders an immediate conscription of all retail workers 'for the duration of the crisis'. In a rare show of solidarity and because they were tired of having to handle ALL of the work middle management walks out in response.

The only things still operational yet struggling to keep up are small 'Mom and Pop' stores and the Post Office despite administrative efforts to dismantle it.

The election, given the situation, reverts back to previous eras, and Congress is not seated until April with a different President elected, someone who had been warning consistently about the pandemic but had not campaigned, just simply kept trying to get the message out about social distancing and wearing masks via shortwave radio -- Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Now in the second year of the pandemic, the world is slowly recovering, and the Internet just came back on last week.

592. After a few dreams due to a poor night's sleep, Tomino decides to make Camille female in Zeta Gundam. This results in a few of the series iconic scenes changing, and a quiet love triangle developing between Camille, Four, and Fa(for some reason Char isn't interested in the main character) although the storyline remains more or less the same. This brings more women into the series in general, and ZZ ends up being seen as a weak attempt to return the series to a shonen sensibilities. More female protagonists show up in more serious shonen/seinen mecha war epics, and the genre overall becomes more female based. Gunbuster, Bubblegum Crisis are still made but are less popular as they are seen as par for the course, although the shojo-ai aspects of the show are a bit more obvious due to the influence of Zeta Gundam.

593. Due to increased political infighting and a populace that spreads throughout the land instead of settling mainly in Prussia, Germany remains a collection of individual nation states lead by four kings, with the role of thr Kaiser never being officially created, although Otto von Bismarck remains a politically potent and respected entity. Some attempts at colonization and border redrawing remain, but these are at the behest of politically disparate kings and princes. World War I happens still due to distrust of Prussia and French and Russian alliances going wrong but it is a much smaller and more Chaotic conflict that America never bothers with.

594. The Russian army is met with truly awful weather during their March to intervene in Egypt moving against the ottoman empire and Mohammad Ali quietly becomes the caliph of the now Egyptian Empire. Realizing his vulnerable position, he quickly declares the Balkans free and exiles the Christians in the Ottoman Empire there to keep Russia and associated Christian nations from intervening in his new nation on religious grounds. War breaks our across the Balkans and various European nations intervene, leaving the Egyptian empire quite independent and strong.

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595- Similar to an earlier entry, TSR, hitting on the idea that people should play together rather than apart, decides to have the various planets of the various settings exist within the same gigantic solar system. While Athas is seen as akin to Mercury, and has a haze over the atmosphere that gives the Dark Sun setting its name, the remaining planets are within more reasonable distances from the systems single star, and the Spelljammer setting is more based in travelling to other planets "the old fashioned way" with a slightly more scientific approach(although it is still a highly magical campaign setting), while Planescape incorporates other planets through travel across other planes of existence. Players with dreams of invading other settings continue to do so, save with armadas of Spelljamming vessels moreso than mundane ones. Ravenloft is the only setting to not be given its own planet, as it is seen as a demiplane of existence, albeit a powerful one overseen by unknown Dark Powers.

596. Burger Chef decides to press their lawsuit instead of settling with McDonald's out of court. Winning their case, McDonalds is forced to remove the Happy Meal from their menu, and Burger Chef splits the market with their rival. Burger Chef quietly acquires Ronald McDonald from McDonalds, and Burger Chef appeals to children, while Mc Donald's appeals to adults. The appearance of a Burger Chef in a neighborhood is seen as akin to it being one made for new families, even as the presence of McDonalds in a neighborhood sees it slated for business. Attached to the American economic and city planning subconscious as they are, the companies eventually merge under the McDonalds heading but are even more widespread across the country, with McDonalds finally achieving their dream of being associated with a more mature sit down restaurant and Burger Chef being a platform for experimental fare aimed at children and then adults as the demographic ages.

597. Similar to an above entry, Capcom, after seeing the success of Street Fighter Zero/Alpha, decides to delve deeper into the history of the setting and does not have Zangief, Dalshim, Sakura or Rolento as characters in the game, but instead puts in Retsu, Joe, Mike and Lee from Street Fighter I as playable characters in Street Fighter Zero/Alpha 2. Their movesets are viewed as uninspired by fans but encourage players to use custom combos to create their own combos as opposed to using "supers"(although they do have them, each being "early" versions of Ryu's zoomed-in Shin Shoryuken style attqxk from Street Fighter III, with Retsu and Mike throwing powerful three part straight punches, and Lee and Joe throwing similar kicks, although it must be noted Lee's is officially a counter). Street Fighter Zero/Alpha 3 includes Geki instead of Balrog/Vega(although it illustrates him being trained in the style in Geki's ending as the character have the same movesets), Mike is revealed to change his name to Balrog in the US version(or that his last name is Bison in the Japanese version), and Max and Scott are revealed to be alternate/palette swap of Mike and Joe, with the latter 2 being the "V-ism" versions of the original characters as the originals are given more filled-out movesets and are A-ism "super" oriented characters(the endings for the paletteswap characters are humorous, remaking the famed Street Fighter 2 opening with witnesses confusing the characters names, although confusion with respect to Mike and Joe's race in a poor localization of an omake joke leads to many African American fans mildly protesting the characters, if not the game). Eagle and Gen appear in the game as playable with their full movesets, which results in every Street Fighter I character appearing as playable in Street Fighter Zero/Alpha. Dee Jay, T.Hawk, E. Honda, Blanka, and Cody do not appear in the series, although Cammy, Juni and Juli are available as hidden characters by selecting M. Bison/Vega and entering secret commands. When released for home systems, Sakura and Karin are introduced as semi parody secret versions of Ryu and Ken, though with their full movesets and endings, and one of each of the aforementioned chatacters(Dee Jay, etc.) appear as a console exclusive secret character for individual home releases, resulting in increased sales.

The character of Dan Hibiki is never created.

598. After a crisis on set due to an injured dancer results in less usable footage, Marsha Wash is included in the famed "Gonna Make You Sweat(Everybody Dance Now)" music video. A lawsuit never occurs, and although David Cole still passes away in 1996, the band continues to perform, making many, many more hits.

599. The 25th US Infantry Bicycle Corps is allowed to go to Minnesota and return to their point of origin on their bicycles after that, largely to give the colored regiment something to do as putting them on trains to return was seen as a headache due to segregation at the time. The increased information received from the return trip resulted in colored regiments being associated with bicycles, and although segregation remained a part of the US army, it became harder and harder to maintain as the information gathering and dissemination duties that make up the majority of the corps are next to impossible to practically share. As a result, segregation ends in the US Army during WWI, not WWII, and the fight to end segregation in the US overall meets with less opposition, although racism overall remains a problem.

600. Due to a squall, the communication lines between Burnside and Meade during the Civil War are disrupted. Burnside claims to never receive the orders from Meade refusing the use of the Colored Division as a spearhead during the Battle of the Crater. While they do undertake considerable casualties and Burnside's plans for an explosion do not work well either(although it does go off the first time as the troops assigned to it paid greater attention to detail), they still manage to split the Confederate army in two as planned as planned. The Colored Division is known as the Crater Division afterwards, a name that is used going forward in American military history and merged with the later known Buffalo Soldiers as Buffalo Bombers in WWI and II, as the actions of the Crater Division leads to the end of segregation in the US military during the US War with Mexico.

601. Abraham Galloway never contracts fever, and does not pass away at 33. He continues to serve as a fiery member of North Carolina senate. A few attempts are made on his life by klansmen and assorted bigots; he made use of the revolver he kept on himself and shoots several of the men involved, killing one, although the others flee. He begins to walk with two revolvers as a result, and he becomes known as the Two Gun Senator.

602. Rather than the ambitious generals of the late Roman Republic, i.e. Marius, Sulla, and Caesar, the last century BC (100 BC - AD 0) is marked by the rise of powerful consuls, who lead the revival of the Roman Republic rather than its transition to the Roman Empire, largely by instituting a series of strict regulations and checks on the powerful Roman army. Without the civil wars to divert military presence in the late Roman Empire, the revived Republic is able to better handle the rocky integration of some Germanic tribes (such as the Goths) into Roman society and the attempted invasions of others (such as the Visigoths), and as such, while Rome does eventually fall, it falls primarily due to increased balkanization rather than an external force. This leads to a more culturally unified Europe with less Germanic influence, as most states are fragmented Roman provinces with ruling structures influenced by the late Republic rather than fiefdoms led by the invaders.

603. The Mooninite Panic of 2007 in Boston results in far more than the film being banned in Boston, but the blowback due to concerns over terrorism is so bad that the film not only fails, but Cartoon Network is directly sued. The lawsuit fails, but Turner is so shaken by the reaction that they cancel the Adult Swim portion of Cartoon Network. Japanese animation in America reaches a much smaller audience due to the lack of a popular cable network and while there are still releases on Netflix and Hulu and other streaming platforms, it doesn't become as popular as it would otherwise. Several voice actors who would have had their careers take off otherwise are instead relegated to smaller circuits- all manner of animated series that would have debuted on Adult Swim are either never made or released to much smaller audiences and thereby fail. American Dad is never created, neither is the Cleveland Show, Rick And Morty, Archer or Critical Role.

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Freehold DM wrote:
American Dad is never created, neither is the Cleveland Show, Rick And Morty, Archer or Critical Role.

So what you're saying is that that's the good timeline, and we're in the bad one.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

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604. Realizing that their intended changes to OneDnD are already going to divide the gaming community, WoTC decides not to try to break the OGL 1.0a that has made D&D 5E so successful.

605- The Kingdom of Hawaii succeeds in adding the barely known Johnson Atoll to their kingdom during the guano and bird craze in July 1856, and the kingdom is far far wealthier when the US makes it a part of the United States as an annex in 1898. It never becomes a state due to its wealth, and becomes a Protectorate instead, similar to Puerto Rico. Pearl Harbor is still built there but it is much smaller and less prestigious, and while it is still attacked on Dec 7, 1941, the death and destruction are far smaller as the US keeps the bulk of its naval fleet in the contiguous United States.

606. Nintendo wins its lawsuit against Blockbuster Video, and video games cannot be rented by video rental chains. Nintendo then amps up their attempt to use an in-house video game "rental" technology that had limited versions of games that people could buy once a year when games were released, usually before the holiday rush. It does not work particularly well, and nintendo attempts to use their popular Famicom Network System worldwide as Nintendo Network, which later becomes Nintendo Net. As a result, the dot com 90s happen a little bit earlier, but with less of a bubble as an entire generation of people are more familiar with the technology behind the internet. More than a few kids all across the world become quite wealthy trading stocks using the internet precursor. AOL, Compuserve and similar early internet pioneers never come to pass, however, as Nintendo Net dominates the internet and all things associated with it. The Game Boy almost fails as it could not provide travel online gaming at launch; after a few years early wi-fi technology brings an early version of a cell phone via the Game Boy Network.

607. The original vision for the Star Trek The Next Generation episode "The Best Of Both Worlds" is kept, and Captain Picard remains Locutus of Borg. Commander William Riker becomes Captain Riker, and Lt Commander Shelby becomes the first officer of the Enterprise. The show takes a more militaristic theme as Locutus becomes a regular foil for the characters, with the Enterprise barely escaping doom each time. It culminates in the Star Trek First Contact movie which reveals Locutus and the Borg Queen in a relationship, and attempting to supplant humanity as before. The movie ends with Picard betraying the Borg Queen and she attempts to seduce data, remembering a small part of his humanity as jealousy drives him to turn on the gas.

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608. Cassius Clay becomes Abraham Lincolns running mate as his vice president, willing to bend as the Emancipation Proclamation is made a few months later than in our current time. Lincoln's election to public office is truly razor thin as Clay appeals to radical abolitionists who turn out in droves to vote for Lincoln as hardened pro slavery interests turn out to vote against. With the man known as one of the greatest duelists, if not THE greatest duelist in the country at his side, the assassination attempt against Lincoln almost never comes to pass but Lincoln is still shot at Ford's theatre. His assassin, John Wilks Booth, however, never makes it out of the theatre, as an armed and enraged Clay leaps upon Booth and beats him nearly to death, stopped for stabbing Booth with his famous bowie knife by bystanders, who realize, somewhat horrified, that they are restraining the actual president of the United States. The end war and post war periods go badly for the south, as Reconstruction never occurs, Lee is hanged for a traitor, and various political aims are undertaken to ensure slavery or anything equivalent to it never rises in the country again. The Pinkertons fade into obscurity as President Clay loudly and publicallly proclaims he doesn't need their services. The United States never purchases Alaska. While there is some furor over the United Kingdom and France joining with the Confederacy, it never happens, with many pro-slavery individuals instead moving to distant relations in those countries after the war ends.

Freehold DM wrote:
An armed and enraged Clay leaps upon Booth and beats him nearly to death, stopped for stabbing Booth with his famous bowie knife by bystanders, who realize, somewhat horrified, that they are restraining the actual president of the United States.

For reference

609. Terrence Howard's agent keeps him in the dark with respect to how much his co-star, Robert Downey Jr., made on the film. He remains in the series as War Machine, and brings a bit of a younger, peppier energy to the role.

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