- "The humans of Sera built a glorious civilization, but humans are not destined to create. They ultimately did what they do best, destroy. But this was nothing, compared to a new threat from below. An enemy that will force humanity to take their last, inevitable steps, toward extinction."
- — Queen Myrrah addressing the Locust before Emergence Day.
Emergence Day, otherwise known as E-Day, was a swift, full-scale, coordinated, and unprecedented planet-wide assault on the surface of Sera initiated by the subterranean race of the Locust Horde. Six weeks after the end of the Pendulum Wars, nearly every major city on the surface of Sera was attacked by the underground forces from the Hollow, using both bio-engineered weapons and stolen human technology. All breaches were along the ground line, known as Emergence Holes, in what was a campaign of rapid dominance in a textbook military invasion. There were massive casualties reported everywhere the Locust arrived. Over a quarter of the total human population was killed within the first twenty-six hours, and millions reported missing. The goal of the Locust Horde was to exterminate the human race, allowing them to colonize the surface in order to escape the Lambent, an Imulsion-based infection that was spreading in the Hollow. The attacks signaled the beginning of the Locust War.
In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, the Coalition of Ordered Governments responded by countering the Locust invasion with its entire military arsenal. The Locust Horde was able to deploy huge numbers of their forces into major cities on the surface at once. They were able to defeat all organized human resistance for over a year. and had used the spoils of war to gather all available military and civilian technological equipment and resources to use against the COG and the few UIR nations that still existed after the Pendulum Wars. The Locust Horde's onslaught and assault continued for a year until the Hammer of Dawn strikes, in which the Hammer of Dawn technology was deployed under the newly elected Chairman, Richard Prescott.
The origins of the Locust Horde can be traced back during the early Pendulum War-era, when the health effects of Imulsion arose in the form of a fatal disease known as Rustlung. The Coalition of Ordered Governments Department of Health opened the New Hope Research Facility under the Monroe Administration to research, and cure Rustlung. Children of Imulsion-poisoned miners were housed and studied in the facility under the Director, renowned geneticist Doctor Niles Samson. One of the children, a female named Myrrah, was discovered to not only be genetically immune to Imulsion, but benefited from exposure to it, such as resistance to aging. Dr. Samson attempted to replicate her immunity in the other children, but was unsuccessful. Dr. Samson then attempted cross-species genetics, by mutating the children with the DNA of indigenous creatures of the Hollow, who he believed were immune to Imulsion. This transformed the children into Sires; distempered, sterile, and aggressive mutated humans. Due to the unethical experimentation and attacks by the Sires, the staff at New Hope began leaking details to the public and government. Chairman Monroe discovered the workings at New Hope and demanded it shut down and all involved to be indicted.
Unknown to Monroe, a fringe political party within his administration believed Dr. Samson's work could not only cure Rustlung, but also create an army of super-soldiers for the Coalition and help end the Pendulum Wars. The group offered him a facility in Mount Kadar where he could continue his research. Dr. Samson agreed and relocated dozens of his subjects and remaining loyal employees to the facility. At the Mount Kadar facility, Myrrah's embryonic stem-cells were combined with Sire DNA and created the first Drone of the Locust Horde. It was discovered that a Hivemind had been established by the Locust, and that Myrrah was able to control them. Sometime later, Myrrah conceived a human daughter named Reyna with geneticist Dr. Torres. However, Dr. Torres became concerned that Reyna would be experimented with and suffer the same fate as the other children. He then escaped the facility with Reyna. Dr. Samson was unable to recapture Reyna, and therefore lied to Myrrah that Reyna had been killed during the escape. Grief-stricken, Myrrah assumed her place as Queen of the Locust Horde and compelled the Locust to rebel and slaughter the scientists.
Queen Myrrah and the Locust escaped the facility and went deeper into the caverns of Mount Kadar, after gaining their independence, to build their own civilization. During the Pendulum-era, the Locust Horde built their capital, Nexus. They also began kidnapping humans from the surface to repopulate their people. Genetic experimentation was then used by the Locust to enhance the Hollow Creatures to use as transportation, equipment, and weapons. However, by 7 B.E., the Locust began becoming infected with Lambency, which possessed and mutated the infected to kill or infect all living organisms around it.
Queen Myrrah's declaration of a genocidal war against the humans of Sera was evidence of her motivation. The reasoning for invading the surface was due to an epidemic of the Lambent, a mutated race of Locust who had been infected by Imulsion, and waged the Lambent War in 7 B.E. The war caused considerable casualities in the Locust and were losing territory in the Hollow to the Lambent.
Fueling the motives to destroy humanity came from Queen Myrrah's hatred of humans for imprisoning, experimenting, torturing the Locust, forcing them underground, and for the supposed murder of her infant daughter. She feared that humans would not accept the Locust and attempt to control or kill them if she revealed themselves. Her motives were also caused by humanity's failure to assist the Locust, as Queen Myrrah employed Professor Adam Fenix to cure the Lambency, but was unable to produce one.
The attacks were conceived by Queen Myrrah, who first presented it to Professor Adam Fenix in 4 B.E. At that time, Queen Myrrah did not want to attack the humans due to both sending her army into another war and, despite her hatred, the pity she had for them. However, she saw it as necessary in order to escape the Lambent, and not believing the humans would help in their aid, nor ever accept them.
In early 0 B.E., the Lambent War reached a crucial stage in which Vold RAAM had the same desires as Queen Myrrah to invade the surface. Arranging a coup against the High General at the time, Uzil Sraak, Vold RAAM expressed his belief in the futility of the Lambent War and the future they could have on the surface. Queen Myrrah then promoted Vold RAAM to Uzil and revealed that she, too, had been planning the attack on the humans. Queen Myrrah and Uzil RAAM then began to strategise their emergence.
Their plan involved to strike against all major cities on Sera, especially capital cities and those with substantial military or industrial involvement. In order to secure occupation of the city, Seeders were used to ink the skies with Nemacysts to create Kryllstorms - allowing the Kryll to kill all humans in a city during the daylight. After eradicating all military and cilivian presence, the Locust would be able to occupy a city and strip it for resources and weapons.
In 9 B.E., biologist, Doctor Elain Fenix, was studying the mutations of Rock Shrews in the Inner Hollow when she discovered the Locust Horde. In her journal, she studied them and planned to make an announcement on their existence. However, Doctor Fenix was found by the Locust Horde and executed.
In 5 B.E., Professor Adam Fenix, Doctor Fenix's husband, followed the tracks of his late-wife. Professor Fenix met with Queen Myrrah, who revealed that her people were being killed or infected by the Lambent. Queen Myrrah expressed her plans to invade and colonize the surface in order to evade the Lambent. Professor Fenix promised to help aid in her research to cure Lambency to keep the Locust underground and from committing genocide.
However, Professor Fenix was called on by the Coalition of Ordered Governments to prepare the Hammer of Dawn, an orbital laser beam weapon, in order to end the Pendulum Wars against the Union of Independent Republics. Professor Fenix also discovered that nearly all biological cures would fail against the Lambent mutagen, and other physical measures that would kill the Lambent would also harm the Locust Horde.
Professor Fenix was successful in completing the Hammer of Dawn and was used to end the war against the UIR. A few UIR holdouts were still continuing the fight, but most of Sera was celebrating the end of the war. However, Queen Myrrah lost faith in Professor Fenix and revisited her plans to launch her army onto the surface.
- "Mayday! Mayday! Something just came out of the ground! Repeat, they just came out of the ground!"
- —A soldier during the Emergence Day attacks.
Six weeks after the signing of the peace treaty between the COG and the UIR, the Locust Horde emerged and launched an attack on all major cities on the surface in a surprise, coordinated, full-scale, all-out assault upon the human race. There was no discrimination between race, gender, or age as men, women, and children were slaughtered by the Locust.
The first city attacked was Jannermont, Tyrus, which held a large army base within the city. The battle was personally led by Uzil RAAM and Kantus Skorge of the Locust Horde. After the eradication of the Jannermont Base, the Locust forces moved into the city and began slaughtering civilians. Among other major cities attacked in Tyrus was the capital city of Ephyra. However, a natural bedrock of granite, the Jacinto Plateau, spared many cities in Tyrus from the scourge of the Locust Horde, namely Jacinto City. While Ephyra was attacked due to natural fissures in the bedrock as well as subway and sewage tunnels offering access to the city, the COG managed to fill access points with gas and cement, and were successful in blocking the Locust out of Ephyra, as well as other cities on the plateau.
Other locations on Sera were spared due to natural defenses as well. Islands such as the South Islands, the Lesser Islands chain including Vectes and Azura were spared due to abyssal trenches and difficulty digging under the oceans. As for the mainland, all major cities outside of the Jacinto Plateau were attacked and destroyed by the Locust Horde. The Republic of Gorasnaya, the only UIR country to not surrender, fell on Emergence Day to Zamil Karn with the aid of the Shibboleth. Other countries once belonging to the UIR, including Pelles, Ostri, and Vasgar fell to the Locust Horde.
List of Cities Attacked
- "It seems that our city has just experienced an earthquake."
- —Unknown female reporter on the epidemic of earthquakes.
- "These images are from our affiliate in Ephrya, just a few minutes ago. Similar attacks are reported all across the world. Eye witnesses attest these monsters strike from underground, without any warning. COG forces are waging a valiant defense, however - Emergency response services are completely overwhelmed. Some may ask, could this be the end of the world?"
- —Initial news reports during Emergence Day.
In the days before the Locust emergence, an epidemic of earthquakes and tremors were reported across Sera, puzzling scientists and journalists. After the first emergence, initial reports by the press and news media attested that grey monsters were emerging from the underground and slaughtering civilians, as told by surviving witnesses. In the early hours of Emergence Day, many believed that this was an elaborate hoax or promotion for a new science-fiction film. Others, who took the threat seriously, initially believed that the Pendulum Wars had started again, or that the Gorasni were attacking, until Chairman Tomas Dalyell made an announcement that a new and foreign enemy was attacking the surface from the Hollow. One of the first cities to have reports of an unknown enemy attacking was Jannermont, where the death toll would reach over 100,000. Images of the massacred on the Jannermont highway were shown on news networks across Sera. More reports revealed that Porta Ogari was attacked along with cities in Pelles, Vasgar, Gorasnaya, and Ostri. Emergence Day would eventually end and the Locust Horde would continue advancing across Sera, destroying everything and killing everyone in their path.
- "I'm still trying to confirm... It seems like reports saying that untold masses of men, women, and children have been butchered since last night's emergence... are true..."
- —A female news anchor revealing the death toll of Emergence Day.
Shortly after Emergence Day, census across Sera revealed that billions, specifically 25% of the entire human race, was killed in the initial onslaught of the Locust Horde. Millions more were declared missing; with people either lost in the chaos, their corpses not found, or many being captured by the Locust Horde. The rumors of the missing since E-Day were ranged from the Locust eating humans to the Locust taking prisoners.
In reality, the Locust did capture millions of humans. Many of the captured were used by Locust scientist, Ukkon, to replenish their numbers by transforming humans into Locust Drones. Another major use was enslaving humans into labor camps. Humans were also used to feed the Locust creatures, such as the Bloodmounts. Due to the Locust's hatred and sadism, the enslaved humans were put through various methods torture known as processing - which resulted in either lobotomy or death.
- "And the Locust were set forth upon the world. And they want to rid the world of all the sinners. And only the pure shall survive the purge. Everyone else, beware."
- —A preacher professing his belief of the Locust's purpose.
Due to both overload in communications and the abandonment or death of those in command, the Global Communications Network crashed,as well as the COG Civil Protection Service. Phone lines also went down, almost completely ceasing civilian communication for weeks. With such high percentages of casualties, hospitals were quickly overwhelmed and forced to turn away more incoming wounded. In Tyrus and other countries, transportation networks were crippled with railways shuttered and all civilian air traffic grounded. Official politicians and reporters told the public to remain indoors and remain calm, believing that the authorities and the military had the situation under control. However, many of the humans believed this to be an apocalypse event, signaling the end of the world. Religious groups claimed that the Locust were sent from Hell to rid the world of all the sinners, and that only the "pure" would survive the "purge." While on the home-front, Chairman Tomas Dalyell ordered the Cougars in Hanover city to continue with the scheduled Thrashball game for a morale boost since Hanover was not attacked.
- "Citizens, we don’t know what these creatures are, other than the fact that they’re not human. We don’t know where they come from. We don’t know what they want. But they’re tunneling under our cities and emerging to slaughter our people. Our combined forces throughout Sera have been mobilized to with them. I ask you all to remain calm, as you have done through so many years of war. Stay in your homes unless ordered to evacuate, and listen for emergency information on all broadcast stations. That, my fellow citizens, is all I can tell you until the situation becomes clearer."
- —Chairman Tomas Dalyell's speech to the people of Sera.
- "Please stay calm and stay in your homes. The military has things under control."
- —News reporter alerting the public to stay indoors.
After Chairman Tomas Dalyell's speech, the entire COG military mobilized all of their forces, resources and other assets and sent them to the cities to battle the Locust. The 25th Sherrith Cavalry was called back from leave along with many other units. The COG was then able to secure most of Tyrus. However, no other military force across Sera had any situation under control; the Locust dominated the human forces and annihilated everything in their path. As Emergence Day continued to unfold, the Locust began to mercilessly hunt down and butcher civilians in their homes, businesses, and on the streets. The Locust refused to distinguish between men, women and children, and relentlessly pursued everyone they found with an unquenchable blood thirst. With the general public being unarmed and with most of the COG armed forces on leave after the Pendulum Wars, the civilians of Sera were almost helpless to defend themselves. In just twenty-six hours, a quarter of the human population was killed, with many cities and towns completely annihilated.
- "The lucky ones died on E-Day."
- —The saying of a post E-Day Sera.
Because of the horrors experienced in the aftermath of Emergence Day and the years following, the survivors believed those who were killed on E-Day were fortunate enough to not witness what Sera had become. The saying among the survivors of E-Day on Sera was known as: "The lucky ones died on E-Day."
Emergence Day was such a significant event in the history of mankind that the age old calendar system was abolished in favor of a year marking system that involved counting the years before and after E-Day, i.e. B.E. = Before Emergence / A.E. = After Emergence. The year of Emergence was designated as the year 0, with events that year marked as 0 B.E., before Emergence, and 0 A.E., after Emergence.
Less than a month after E-Day, the Minister for Social Welfare, Natalya Vreland, began to question how the COG was going to be able to deal with the refugees from destroyed cities, who were already putting a strain on resources. A year after E-Day, Chairman Dalyell passed away from a heart attack and Richard Prescott was elected into office. He attempted to unite humanity for a counter-strike against the Locust Horde, but was unable to gain support from the COG member states, forcing him to undertake the single greatest imminent loss of life during the war.
Prescott instated the Fortification Act, and gave Serans three days to retreat to Ephyra before he fired the Hammer of Dawn. At great cost to human life and infrastructure, the Locust were driven back by orbital weaponry and chemical warfare, effectively denying assets to the Locust Horde. However, they were not defeated. Over the next decade, the Locust would continue their persistent onslaught against humanity - finally breaching Jacinto Plateau at the East Barricade Academy ten years after Emergence Day, and putting Jacinto under siege five years after that.
- "A new horror. A new enemy. A new war. By nightfall, hundreds of thousands were dead. Emergence Day had earned its name. Like many of you, I was only a child, then. It was a dark, difficult time. And our victory was in no way assured."
- —First Minister Mina Jinn on Emergence Day in 42 A.E.
Every anniversary of Emergence Day is recognized as a day of remembrance and grief. This day is also recognized on Victory Day, in which the human race celebrates the end of the Locust War while also honoring those that died on Emergence Day and reflecting on how it changed the world. On the 25th anniversary of Victory Day, in 42 A.E., First Minister Mina Jinn delivered a speech honoring the Gears who fought during the Pendulum Wars and Locust War. In her speech, she spoke of Emergence Day - specifically the Emergence in Ephyra. First Minister Jinn reflected on how she, like many others that survived that time, were only children then, and that the victory of the human race was in no way assured, and faced the possibility of extinction.
Behind the Scenes
- The first image of Emergence Day was noted as being taken within forty-five minutes of the first emergence, according to Defense Research Agency scientist Nevil Estrom.
- The Rise of RAAM
- Gears Tactics (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War (First appearance) (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War: Ultimate Edition (Appears in flashback(s))
- Last Day (Appears in flashback(s))
- Hollow (Appears in flashback(s))
- One Day (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War 2 (Appears in flashback(s))
- Coalition's End (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War 3 (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War 4 (Appears in flashback(s))
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant - Locust were able to strip all military and technological resources from the COG until one year and one month after E-Day when the Hammer of Dawn counterstrike denied the Locust of all spoils of war
- General RAAM (Action Figure) Toys R Us Exclusive figure packaging
- Gears of War: Destroyed Beauty
- Gears of War: Coalition's End chapter 5
- Gears of War: PC - The Timgad power station was being used by the Locust and had the power sent into the Hollows
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant - The Republic of Gorasnaya never surrendered, but was eventually completely overrun by the Locust Horde
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant
- Gears of War: Coalition's End pg 48
- Inside the Mind of Marcus Fenix: Sera
- Gears of War: Coalition’s End pg 52-65
- Gears of War: Coalition's End pg 65
- Gears of War: Coalition’s End pg 52
- Gears of War: Coalition’s End pg 105
- Gears of War: Aspho Fields pg 40
- Last Day
- Inside the Mind of Marcus Fenix
- Gears of War: Coalition’s End pg 101
- Gears of War: Coalition's End pg 174
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant pg 53-55
- Gears of War: The Slab pg 29