The Western Hemisphere has been crucial in the development of the Human Race. After our crossing over Beringia, the rich Native american cultures filled the continents. Various Nordic and possibly Muslim colonies brought new diversity to this land, and eventually the Europeans destroyed the Native population. This would later lead to the birth of some of the most important countries in world history, including The United States. But what if there was no Western Hemisphere to colonize, no Natives to burn, no colonies to exploit. How would the world be different today?
A Note on Progress...
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Point of Divergence
The POD comes around the extinction of the dinosaurs. A massive beast, with webbed, mammalian wings and godlike powers flattened all of the land on the North American, South American, Caribbean, Cocos, Nazca, and Scotia Plates. This mean that most of the Americas, as well as a large portion of Eastern Russia, Northern Japan, and Western Iceland, are all leveled under about 10 feet of water. No human will ever be able to explain what happened to these land masses, and no major life seems to live there.
The Age of Desperation
The Age of Desperation was a direct offshoot of this event. Most history was rather unaffected by the missing lands in the Old World, until the early 1500s. Columbus' Famed Voyage fails, where the whole ship capsizes somewhere in Central America, having not been able to find Asia, or anything for that matter.
With this, the European Powers considered their options. After years of no contact, it became obvious Columbus wasn't coming back. This hampered things. Christendom still had to either travel through the Middle East or Russian wastes to acquire trade with the Far East. The North Sea was frozen over and dangerous, and the Portuguese route around Africa was dangerous and resource intensive.