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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

What was the Sixty Minute War in Mortal Engines?

sixty minute war mortal engines

What was the Sixty Minute War?


The Sixty Minute War was a global battle that took place hundreds or thousands of years before the events of the Mortal Engines Quartet and the Fever Crumb Series.

The name conveys that the war took only an hour to begin and end - this was due to the speed and efficiency of the weapons of mass destruction used.

This is because of the way nuclear war scenarios work. And also why that to date, no nuclear weapons have been used to attack another country. Say Country A decides to wipe out Country B. B can detect the launch. They have time to understand that even though their country is about to be wiped out, they can get their own bloody revenge on Country A.

So they will launch their their own missiles at Country A ensuring that it is destroyed too. This is called mutual self destruction.

While the Soviet Union played brinkmanship games with the US (think the Cuban Missile Crisis) no country has crossed the line as they know there's a large chance that they will lose everything themselves.

So in the book and movie of Mortal Engines, there was of course a 'cold war' between various nations that directly led to the war's start. The mutual self destruction concept played out and when the first strike was launched, the other nations responded in kind.

And once the arms were deployed, some from the land, some from orbiting satellites in space, the so called 'war' was over and done with in an hour.

This was the classic doom's day scenario leading to a desolate Earth where most of humanity was destroyed.

Two of the weapons were known as the MEDUSA, which features in the first novel and the second, ODIN, is first featured in the third novel of the Predator Cities Quartet, Infernal Devices.

If you think this concept from Philip Reeve's book was interesting, check out his theory of municipal darwinism.

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