The Viking World is much like the real world, but diverges at the choice of just one man. Rather than standing by his original plan, Bjarni gave in to his crew's request to explore a newly discovered world after being blown off course. His visit to his parents would have to wait.
985 AD Real WorldEdit
When Bjarni Herjólfsson was en route to Greenland to visit his parents, he was blown off course, discovering a land covered in trees. Eager to visit his parents, he decided to turn around and continue his way to Greenland. When Bjarni reported his findings, no one seemed to show interest until he returned to Norway. Leif Ericson bought Bjarni's ship and begun an expedition to rediscover America with a crew of 35. However, there were no permanent settlements, leaving other European nations to take claim.
985 AD Viking WorldEdit
Giving into the demands of his crew, Bjarni stayed and explored this newly discovered world. He spent several weeks charting out the local area. When Bjarni reached Greenland to report his discovery of a treasure trove of natural resources, he was met with invigorated interest.
When word of this new world reached Norway, Leif Ericson led a large crew of 100 settlers to establish settlements in Vinland. The colony in Greenland was soon abandoned as Vinland was developed, although they faced numerous challenges. Unlike the English and Spanish, the Vikings did not possess deadly diseases that could spread to the natives, forcing them to coexist with the indigenous tribes.
Having beat the rest of Europe 500 years earlier, the Vikings successfully established a hold on North America.
In the Viking World, the USA and Canada do not exist. With Norway exploiting America's resources at an earlier point in time, the country mustered the military strength to conquer the rest of the Germanic tribes as well as England. In response to this, France and Spain became interested in colonizing the new world.
The era of imperialism saw no immediate end. The resources of the Vikings as well as their development in relative isolation allowed them to maintain a firm grip on their colonies even after one of them started to fight for their own independence.