Overwatch: General World Info
Overwatch is an alternate world not too different from ours until the dawn of the 21st Century, when humanity discovered they were not alone in the universe.
Aliens arrived in force in 2015, though old records show they were probing Earth well before then. They arrived in vast numbers and with hugely advanced technology and they did not come in peace. XCOM was a world-wide organization created to fight the invaders, made up of the best and bravest from around the world. They fought pitched battles in rural deserts and shattered cities alike. Despite their heroism and courage, dedication and sacrifice they lost - less than two years after their first arrival, the aliens shattered XCOM and conquered the planet. Cities were destroyed and hundreds of millions of people were killed.
In the past twenty years, the aliens have set up a world-wide government, used their technology to eradicate war, poverty, many illnesses and greatly reduced crime. Clean, new, safe cities were re-built on top of the old. Religious dogma that generated hatred and fear has faded into obscurity, nationalistic fanaticism abandoned in favor of a world-wide, humanitarian government. Skilled propaganda and ruthless persecution of any resistance means that most people believe that the aliens came in peace and were cruelly attacked by xenophobic human 'nationalistic fanatics' and the blame for the worldwide destruction placed squarely on the old human governments and militant fanatics like XCOM.
The day Earth unilaterally surrendered is celebrated across the globe as 'Unification Day'.
The New World
Vast changes happened in the past twenty years and the aliens have used every tool in their considerable arsenal to ensure that most humans believe that their alien masters are entirely benevolent and that they came in peace, only to be spurned by humans mired in the primitive mindset of the past. Advances in technology, medicine, government, education and culture can all be directly traced to alien oversight. They rebuilt Earth cities to be safe, clean, tidy and ... tightly controlled.
The aliens encourage human migration to the new cities where advantages like universal health care and education, inexpensive housing, and rewarding careers are available. Stubborn people who refuse to move find their towns and homes starved of resources and infrastructure, plagued with mysterious disappearances, raids by Advent forces, and more. It's simply easier and more sensible to move to the beautiful cities.
All humans are issued an ID number and card at birth, or registration, which allows access to various services. Traveling without your ID is both extremely difficult and illegal. In the past three years, Advent has made things even simpler for everyone by inserting a painless iDot into every child's left wrist on their first day of school. iDots contain all the identity information of an ID card, without the risk of getting lost or stolen!
There have been huge technological advances; clean energy, ecological rebuilding, nano-computers and devices, linked AI machines, gene therapy and more. The world is nearly idyllic; the average work week is 20 hours, children are educated for free in Advent schools and the elderly, disabled and needy are cared for with compassion and respect. Humanity has entered a new golden age, all thanks to their alien overlords.
The aliens administer Earth and humans as their 'beloved charges' via the Advent Administration. This encompasses security, public health, and pretty much every government function you can think of. Most Advent employees are average people, with no greater understanding of the underlying realities of the world. Higher ups in Advent become progressively more aware of the hidden agenda - promotion beyond a certain level is closely monitored by the Envoys.
Envoys, a group of aliens who work closely with humans, are the ones in all upper level positions in Advent.
Former world governments are powerless cultural curiosities, little more than historical amusements. Citizen participation in government policy and decision is non-existent and the very concept of such things is fading from public consciousness. What need is there for that kind of stress when the Elders are so devoted to human advancement and comfort?
Beneath the Surface
Nothing is what it seems. The aliens came to Earth not as benefactors but as monstrous conquerors and their current plans for a defeated world remain mysterious - but are assumed to be nefarious.
In the initial invasion, the aliens targeted major population centers, though they now blame the human militaries of the world for practicing a 'scorched earth' policy. They fielded troops and equipment that made it clear they were here for war, as well as talented infiltration agents that sowed discord and confusion among human organizations.
In the twenty years, they have rebuilt Earth into a peaceful world, with a population who genuinely believes the aliens are here to help. Envoys are seen in the media constantly assuring humans of their cherished place in the universe and the benevolence, mercy and kindness of the alien Elders. Propaganda is churned out via every available method, schools induct children into the proper way of thinking and history is being re-written by the victors.
However, scratching the surface begins to reveal something much darker.
The universal education provided so freely indoctrinates humans into a firm belief that the aliens are our benefactors, and a sense of awe at the thought of them. The Advent Administration - for a peace loving government in a peaceful world - has huge numbers of military mechanoids and Advent security, the 'police' for a 'crimeless' civilization is also huge. 'Troubled individuals' and terrorists disappear into rehabilitation faculties, few are seen again. The media, except for a few pirate stations, is a mouthpiece for Advent and their alien overlords.
There is increasingly hostile pressure to force the diminishing rural populations into cities by both peaceful means (infrastructure neglect, subsidies for moving into the nearest city) and hostile ones. Missing persons are common all over the world, but especially in the rural areas - there are stories of entire towns disappearing.
No one knows what the alien's plans are, though if you believe their lies it's to uplift humanity to the stars, as companions and partners in the grand galactic civilization that is - supposedly - out there.
This is the world of Overwatch and XCOM has its work cut out for it.