Blade Runner Timeline

Final quarter of the 20th Century - humanity has started to colonise other worlds. The drive units for the colony ships have strange effects on time and space, but reduce the travel time to other solar systems from millennia down to just under two decades. Artificial life forms called replicants are developed in the private biolabs of transnational corporations such as Tyrell.

1995 - The Salander 3 sets out for the far colonies at Proxima, apparently carrying Anson and Ruth Tyrell on a science mission. However, both are specially-engineered replicants created by Tyrell Corporation as a part of an experiment to see the effects of such travel on individuals. (Blade Runner 3: Replicant Night)

1996 – At a hospital nursery, a number of babies are selected by military officials, based on specific genetic characteristics, for Project Adam. (Soldier)

1998 – Twenty boys are monitored by military officers, psychologists and scientists, as the children are subject to vartious conditioning and stimuli.(Soldier script)

Anson and Ruth are able to produce twin girls, but a part of Anson’s programming is activated: the Stepfather Syndrome forces him to try and murder his family, but empathy overrides this after he kills Ruth. He then commits suicide. Rachel has been hidden by Ruth in a stasis capsule before she dies, while Sarah survives the incident. (Blade Runner 3: Replicant Night)

2000 – Certain individuals within the group display violent tendencies, which are not discouraged by the supervising adults, only monitored. (Soldier script)

2001 – The children in Project Adam are shown a vicious fight between three dogs and a boar: Todd tries to look away but he is forced to watch. (Soldier)

Only having reached a sixth of the way to its destination, the Salander 3 has returned to Earth: three-year-old Sarah Tyrell seems to be the only survivor. The Salander is stored in a secret dump, while Sarah is adopted by Eldon Tyrell, who ensures a cover story hides the true facts behind the mission. Having tested the Stepfather Syndrome, the programming is to be used in future replicant models to prevent procreation. (Blade Runner 3: Replicant Night)

World War III breaks out on Earth, with extreme environmental pollution and devastation resulting. Many animals and birds are wiped out, beginning with owls. The war last at least three and a half years, leaving bitter veterans such as Bob Gorsky with many scars and disabilities. Animals become a precious commodity and their special status is enshrined in law in many parts of the world. Artificial animals become available. (Blade Runner PC game)

2003 – The United Nations launches it own colonisation program, with exclusive rights going to the Tyrell Corporation to supply slave labour in the form of early model replicants. (Blade Runner 3: Replicant Night)

2004 – The Project Adam children are trained to complete complex puzzles, with constant monitoring from their supervisors. Todd, one of the children, seems to excel at these. (Soldier)

2006 – The military training and conditioning continues for Todd and the other test subjects. (Soldier script)

2008 – Intense training includes physical and weapons combat for Todd’s group. Weaker subjects are weeded out, leaving only the toughest subjects to continue with the training. Although physical fit and very intelligent, emotional aspects have been either curtailed or eliminated in the military’s pursuit of a perfect soldier. (Soldier)

2012 – While Todd develops excellent reactions, his conditioning has not allowed him to always distinguish between an enemy target and that of an unarmed civilian. His comrade, Riley, hesitates when confronted with the latter. The group sees action in the Perdition Flames War, the Antares Maelstrom War and the Nubian Moon Campaign, as well as the Shoulder of Orion, and at the Battle of Shanghai. (Soldier/Soldier script)

2013 – The Project Adam group reaches the end of their training. Each has his names and numbers tattooed on his face. (Soldier)

2015 – The Bolivian War is fought, with Todd’s platoon fighting in the jungle during the Bolivian Coup. The loss of some of his comrades does not seem to affect Todd in any discernible way. (Soldier/Soldier script)

The United Nations colonisation administration puts pressure on Tyrell Corporation to make the next generation of replicants more human. (Blade Runner 2: The Edge of Human)

2016 – Riley is injured in the Montana Incident/Insurrection, with Todd saving his comrade’s life despite being injured himself. (Soldier/Soldier script)

The Nexus Six replicants are mass-produced by Tyrell Corporation.

January 8th - incept date for Roy Batty.

February 14th - incept date for Pris.

June 12th - incept date for Zhora. (Blade Runner)

After a bloody mutiny by a Nexus 6 combat team in an Off-world colony, Replicants are declared illegal on Earth, under penalty of death. Special police squads called Blade Runner units have orders to shoot to kill, upon detection, any trespassing replicants. (Blade Runner/Workprint)

2017 – April 10 - incept date for Leon. (Blade Runner)

Batty takes part in a battle at Tannhauser Gate and the Venezuelan Moon Massacre. Zhora retrains as an assassin.(Blade Runner)

2018 - Todd’s platoon spends two years in the Saudi Campaign, experiencing extreme conditions and bloody fighting in the desert. (Soldier script)

Problems have arisen over the Nexus 6 replicants, some of whom have rebelled against their human masters. Tyrell works on the Nexus 7 model, which has human abilities in terms of strength and intelligence, but has memory transplants to reduce the personal identity issues seen in the Nexus 6. This new model also lacks the four year lifespan. Memories are transplanted from Sarah Tyrell to an experimental model called Rachel. Sarah Tyrell finds her uncle growing more distant, with his favouring the replicant over her. Following the success of this experiment, other models are produced, including Rick Deckard: his memories include that of an ex-wife and a career history as a blade runner. (Blade Runner/Blade Runner 2: The Edge of Human/Future Noir: The Making of Blade Runner)

2019 – The off-world emigration programme continues to try and persuade people to leave Earth. With the provision of a free replicant model, colonists can emigrate to other planets in the solar system such as Mars, or further afield to the likes of the Shimata-Dominguez colony. All applicants have to pass health checks and possess sufficient qualifications in order to apply. (Blade Runner)

October – On an Off-world Termination Dump, Roy Batty and a group of replicants emerge from a pile of bodies awaiting cremation, killing the attendants and hijacking a shuttle to travel to Earth. They aim to try and obtain a longer lifespan. Killing the crew and passengers on the shuttle, they abandon it off the shore of California. (Blade Runner/ Blade Runner script 15/12/80)

November – Two replicants, Mary and Hodge, are killed when trying to infiltrate Tyrell Corporation. Holden, a blade runner, is performing Voight-Kampff tests on new employees at Tyrell Corporation when he is critically injured by Leon, who takes exception to his line of questioning. Holden is taken to hospital, but is alive.

Ray McCoy, a newly-qualified blade runner, investigates a series of animal murders in Los Angeles. During his investigations, he finds an arms dealer who supplies replicants with weapons. McCoy is framed for a murder by his boss, Lieutenant Guzza, when the blade runner becomes a threat to Guzza’s corrupt activities. On the run, he encounter a pair of replicant twins who are trying to extend their lifespans. As former genetic engineers at Tyrell Corporation, they are trying to improve the quality of life for all replicants. From them, McCoy is able to obtain evidence of Guzza’s activities, forcing the lieutenant to rectify the false accusations. McCoy encounters Clovis, the leader of a band of rogue replicants in the city, as well as Leon and Rachel Tyrell.

Rick Deckard, a former blade runner, is forced out of retirement by his old boss, Harry Bryant. He is to track down Roy Batty and his group of replicants. Deckard travels to the Tyrell Cororation headquarters to validate the Voight-Kampff machine. Eldon Tyrell insists he provide a negative first and volunteers his niece, Rachel. However, the machine shows, at length, that she is a replicant, although she is not aware of this. Deckard visits Holden in hospital , where the pair discuss the nature of the Nexus 6 replicants. Their conversations are monitored by Bryant and Gaff.

Batty and Leon force their way into the lab of Chew, one of Tyrell’s genetic engineers. From him, they learn of JF Sebastian, another engineer. Pris is dispatched to open up a means of access to Sebastian and, subsequently, to Tyrell himself.

Rachel goes to Deckard’s apartment to confront him about the test, but leaves in a distressed state when he provides evidence of her real status. Deckard tracks down and eliminates Zhora and Leon, while Roy finally confronts his creator. Unable to obtain what he needs, Batty kills Tyrell and Sebastian, only to return to find that Deckard has killed Pris. He pursues the blade runner but saves him from a rooftop fall in a final act of empathy.

Deckard returns to his apartment to find that Gaff has been there and let Rachel live: he leaves a message for Deckard to say that Rachel is not the only replicant. The two flee Los Angeles. (Blade Runner)

2021 – Deckard keeps Rachel in a cryogenic capsule in order to extend her four-year lifespan. He is visited by Tyrell’s real niece, Sarah Tyrell, who has inherited the remnants of the corporation. She asks him to help locate evidence that the UN put pressure on Tyrell to make the Nexus Six models more human, thus sowing the seeds of the rebellion. The UN and police are blaming Tyrell Corporation though, with the elimination of blade runner as a part of a plan to instil panic in the general population and ferment opposition to the corporation. Deckard travels to LA, but finds that his old boss is dead and bearly escapes a trap.

Holden is kidnapped by a mercenary who resembles Roy Batty, who informs the blade runner that, as all replicants have genetically-engineered supervisors, that blade runner themselves are replicants. This includes Holden and Deckard. Batty suspects the latter to be the missing sixth replicant from Roy Batty’s original team and thus the key to the whole situation. Holden escapes from his handler and meets up with Deckard at his old apartment, but fails to convince his old colleague to join him. Holden leaves, but Sarah Tyrell arrives soon afterwards. Holden witnesses her arrival, making assumptions about Deckard. With his organs deteriorating, he is forced to release Batty in order to gain access to new ones.

Tyrell’s employees remove Rachel’s cryogenic capsule from Deckard’s home.

Deckard is ambushed by Batty and Holden, but he identifies the former as a replicant after the mercenary makes an inhuman jump across a chasm: Holden shoots him. Deckard leaves Holden and travels to Tyrell Corporation, where he locates what appears to be Sarah Tyrell. However, she appears on a video monitor to inform him that the woman sleeping in front of him is Rachel. Deckard accuses her of being behind the entire “sixth replicant” charade. She concurs, saying that Eldon Tyrell loved Rachel more so than her. The UN learn of this and destroy the Tyrell pyramid: Deckard and Rachel escape, with Holden rescuing them at the last moment.

However, as Rachel and Deckard go off-world under new identities, Holden finds Rachel’s corpse still in the cryogenic tube. Sarah Tyrell continues her masquerade. (Blade Runner 2: The Edge of Human)

Sarah Tyrell settles on Mars, while Deckard moves to the far colonies. He becomes a consultant for a movie studio, which is making a film based on his life as a blade runner in LA. The studio includes a full-scale replica of the city as it was in 2019. However, a replicant based on Leon’s model is retired as part of the filming, forcing Deckard to confront the director. However, the director has not sanctioned the killing.

Holden has followed Deckard, acting as a courier to deliver a briefcase, which contains an AI based on the mercenary, Roy Batty. However, he is captured and confronts a Leon replicant, who kills him. Deckard and the director, Urbenton, arrive to find a man called Marley retiring the replicant. Unable to do anything about the situation, Deckard takes the briefcase and leaves.

Sarah Tyrell is visited by two representatives from the remnants of the Tyrell Corporation. Representing a phantom part of the organisation, they aim to resurrect the corporation, with sarah Tyrell at its head.

The Batty AI purports to represent replicant sympathisers on Earth, who want to reactivate a number of “modified” replicants. John Isidore modified the replicants so they could pass the Voight-Kampff test, but they also had the memories of who they were removed. Using a secret code, the replicants could be made aware of their true identities. Deckard’s job is to take this information to specific replicant sympathisers in the outer colonies for decryption, which can then be communicated to their counterparts on Earth. Once reactivated, the replicants could become part of the ongoing rebellion.

In order to revive Tyrell Corporation, the agents want to Sarah Tyrell to revisit the Salander 3, which is stored at a secret location on Earth. The ship may contain secrets that may either help or hinder the project, with Sarah being the only one who can locate this information. The first-generation drive units have decayed, creating strange pockets of time and special distortions. She finds a ten-year-old girl called Rachel, who Sarah thinks is an effect of the drive units. She takes the child back to the two agents, who learn more about Anson Tyrell’s psychosis. They want Sarah to go back into the ship, but she demands to have a weapon this time. They give her a gun, but she kills them and leaves with Rachel.

Deckard uses a hallucinogenic drug from the briefcase to interact with a virtual representation of JF Sebastian, who informs him that the UN is planning to wipe out all replicants in the colonies, which is why his mission is so important. However, there are other issues at stake, such as the real differences between humans and replicants. Deckard wakes up to find a small first-aid kit in his hand, which he keeps.

Travelling to Mars, he encounters Sarah and Rachel, asking the latter about the Salander 3. Sarah’s paranoia goes into overdrive and she tries to shoot Deckard, but he escapes with Rachel. Urbenton arrives shortly afterwards and informs Sarah that they have a common interest in Deckard’s termination.

Deckard is ambushed by Marley, but the man explains the truth behind the briefcase. He shows Deckard the film based on his life on a TV, but the character’s likeness has been altered. A relief to the ex-blade runner, it is also in the interests of the UN not to have his likeness broadcast across the colonies. That would interfere with his mission to deliver the briefcase. Marley says the briefcase is not from the replicant sympathisers, but originates from the UN itself. The UN has found that, like Anson and Ruth Tyrell, replicants can breed once outside the influence of the central colonies and Earth, while humans become sterile. Rather than containing information on sleeper replicants, the briefcase has the codes to activate the Stepfather Syndrome in all male replicants.

Marley extracts a photograph from the first-aid kit, but UN troops invade the bar and shoot him. Before he dies, he destroys the briefcase. The troops take Rachel with them, leaving calling card from the movie studio. Deckard follows and walks into Urbenton’s trap, which should culminate in Sarah Tyrell killing him. However, he confronts her with the photograph, which shows Anson and Ruth Tyrell with her their twins. Deckard explains the age difference between the two, as well as the true objective of the Salander 3 mission. Overwhelmed, Sarah lets Deckard live and commit suicide instead, allowing Deckard to leave the studio with Rachel. (Blade Runner 3: Replicant Night)

A Blade Runner called Iris is informed by her boss of the decline in replicants returning to Earth. She is offered a job to track down an owl, which is outside of her field of work but takes it anyway. She uses a surresper to investigate the information she has on the owl: she uses a virtual reality simulation to examine a recording of the interview between Rachel Tyrell, Rick Deckard (who she is unfamiliar with) and Eldon Tyrell at the corporate headquarters.

She makes little progress, but encounters a man called Vogel, who claims to know the whereabouts of the owl. They locate a disused theatre, guarded by men with illegal weapons. Iris does not trust Vogel and begins to doubt her boss, Meyer, as well. Iris gains access to better weapons at the police armoury, apparently monitored by outside observers. Vogel and Iris get into the theatre and capture the owl, but the blade runner leaves Vogel there and escapes.

Back at her apartment, she is drugged into unconsciousness, while a man steals the owl. She wakes up in the hospital, only to be told by her boss that she has been sacked for losing the owl. She is left with the bird’s perch chain, which seems to have a GPS coding etched on to its surface. This leads Iris to the ruisn of the old Tyrell Corporation. Vogel meets her there, only to be shown details of the Blade Runner documentary, where the replicant playing Rachael Tyrell is identical to Iris herself.

The director monitoring all this comments that this is not in the script. Vogel makes a similar comment and the pair escape from the ruins, pursued by others. Iris is captured and taken to a remote base out in the desert. There she meets Carsten, who represents a number of replicant manufacturers. He relates how the UN virtually destroyed any competition to Tyrell and utilised him as a puppet for their colonisation plans. In addition to this, the replicant creation process was not developed by Tyrell, but by the UN itself. The idea behind their creation was to continue Tyrell’s dominance of the market through a series of Eldon Tyrell replicants, each with a four year lifespan.

Tyrell himself discovered a way to transfer the essence of each individual to a replicant copy: prior to this, the replicant tended to go insane due to flaws in the process. His main backup was not a humanoid replicant, but the owl called Scrappy. This is why so many people are trying to locate it.

Carsten continues to explain why Roy Batty returned to Earth: not to extend his own lifespan, but to exact revenge on Tyrell for forcing the replicants into slavery. Batty was aided by the UN, who resented Tyrell’s discovery. Roy destroyed Tyrell’s eyes as that is how the essence of the individual is transferred between one copy and the next. Carsten shows Iris some Tyrell replicants: all are missing their eyes. Another casket contains an eyeless copy of Sarah Tyrell. Iris instinctively shoots it.

The director and cameraman observe this reaction with interest, although the latter has doubts about Carsten’s version of the story.

Vogel and Meyer appear and kill Marsten, as well as the others at the base. Iris is able to hide, resulting in Meyer thinking that the dead replicant in the casket is Iris. Emerging after a while, she encounters Deckard and the girl, Rachel. With them is the owl. Deckard explains that it was him who took the owl from her apartment, which was for Iris’s own safety. She asks to be taken back to LA, but Rachel points out that she cannot return to a place that she has never been to. The stars above them are not those that are visible from Earth. Iris, Rachel and Deckard leave the gargantuan movie lot, taking the owl with them. (Blade Runner 4: Eye and Talon)

– Todd’s platoon leaves Earth to take part in a battle at Tannhauser Gate. (Soldier script)

2024- A colony ship bound for the Trinity Moons crashlands on Arcadia 234, with the survivors adapting to the harsh environment of the planet. (Soldier)

2034 – Todd’s platoon takes part in War of the Six Cities and the Moscow Incident. In the latter, there is a direct echo of his training days, where he is willing to shoot through civilians to eliminate an enemy target.

2036 – Todd is promoted to Sergeant, with his platoon being deployed to the Argentine Sector, where they are involved in the Battle of the Argentine Moons. They see combat in space and on colony worlds such as the third of Dresden’s moons. The war ends and, returning to base, the platoon is visited by Colonel Mekum, who introduces the soldiers to what are essentially their replacements. Although these new soldiers lack combat experience, they possess exceptional physical and mental stamina. The two groups are pit against each: while Todd claims the eye of his rival, he and his counterparts are apparently killed. The remaining older soldiers are seen as obsolete and are demoted to menial tasks. Todd is still alive and escapes from a waste disposal ship. He finds himself on Arcadia 234, a dumping ground for waste from various colonies and organisations. He locates the survivors of the colony ship, but his previous experiences and training prevent him from integrating with the colonists. He is exiled with some food and water. Colonel Mekum arrives with his platoon as part of a training exercise, but they use the “illegal” colonists as target practice. With the help of his old comrades, Todd defeats the Colonel and his soldiers, with the survivors travelling on to Trinity Moons. (Soldier)