THere is not a single "right" ending. They presented 4 or 5 options and let the storyteller decide. THere was an options that all Vampires eventually lose all powers and die, humans never really learn something is go on to an ending where the world dies leaving nothing. THose are the two extremes and the others are somewhere in the middle.
Now, I can't help you with Hunter, Changeling and Mummy, as I neither read these chapters nor have the required knowledge about the game lines to really get what's going on even if I did read them. That said...
What follows are naturally very brief, dry summaries. The actual stories are quite interesting and offer many more options than mentioned below. So details may vary quite a bit from the below - every playing group can have their very own end of the world.
BTW, you'll need to be quite familiar with the game line in question to follow the below; it's by necessity quite full of jargon.
3 possible endings:
Twilight of the Gods:
The Earthbound unite against the Fallen. Many battles are fought all over the world. No matter who triumphs in the end, the world is probably broken and humanity is all but annihilated. If the player characters survive, they can help humanity start over and do a better job this time around.
Better to Rule on Earth:
This scenario is all about the power struggle between the greater demons. If they can't put their differences aside, though, the Earthbound will smash them. In the end, the Earth is left a burning ruin and humanity is reduced to virtual extinction. The player characters, if the have survived, can either stay and help humanity start over or cast off their human bodies and take to the skies with their brethren.
Luficer leads an army of mortal believers against his Fallen brethren, whom he considers quite mad due to Torment, and the Earthbound. The player characters can enter a temporary alliance with the Earthbound against their common enemy - or not. If the characters help the Earthbound to assassinate Lucifer, his maddened followers wipe out the Fallen and humanity is a tattered handful of maddened, starving souls. If, on the other hand, they get on Lucifer's good side, they and the other remaining Fallen can eventually restore Creation to its former glory - even ushering in a new Age of Wonder.
Kindred of the East
4 possible endings:
The Rising of One Hundred Clouds:
The Wall becomes stronger and stronger, trapping many shen outside of the Middle Kingdom. Eventually, more and more Kuei-jin ancestors meet this fate. Most of the shen are gone after a while. Also, no new Kuei-jin draw the Second Breath. Then, the Kuei-jins' enemies - Shih, SF0 and/or Kin-jin - use their moment of weakness to strike. Eventually, the Kuei-jin either slowly fade away (which allows later chronicles with these few survivors) or are wiped out in a blaze of glory.
Serpent Bites the Hand:
Oliver Thrace enters a pact with a Yama King (Mikaboshi or Tou Mu). He and other Tremere then enact the Screaming Plague, a powerful ritual that breaks the Kuei-jins' ties to their corpses, sending them to Final Death first in their dozens and gradually in the hundreds. If the player characters themselves enter a pact with a Yama King, they can defeat Thrace and his Tremere but it's too late to save the Kuei-jin as a race, as most have already died by this point. The remaining Kuei-jin aren't numerous enough to offer much resistance to the Yama Kings in the coming Sixth Age. Alternatively, the Yama Kings continue the ritual but the characters might eventually escape, roaming the world as the last Kuei-jin.
The Trumpet of Mount Meru:
The Celestial Emperor empowers the Shih. Led by their returned champion, the God Slayer, the Shih then systematically wipe out the Kuei-jin. The player characters possibly have a slight chance to switch sides and then march against the Yama Kings alongside the Shi as the Sixth Age begins. Either way, they'll fall in battle in the end - the only question is when and how.
The Yama King Mikaboshi's influence steadily grows. He has control over SF0 and soon sends SF0 teams and akuma against the Kuei-jin. Soon, most SF0 agents will be corrupted by fighting too much near broken mirrors. At this point, the broken mirrors expand and the Wicked City invades the Middle Kingdom like a cancer, eating away at reality. Soon, all major cities are part of the Yama King's domain and the Shen living in them must swear allegiance to him or flee. Lots of Kuei-jin become corrupted. Demons of Iron and Violence and SF0 agents hunt down the surviving Shen. Bakemono and other nasty critters roam the lands, too. This story can end in a variety of ways - absolute victory of Mikaboshi, the PCs defeating Mikaboshi but turning the world into a wasteland in the process, or even the PCs becoming a guerilla force in the Yomi World after Mikaboshi's triumph.
All these KotE chronicles can be continued with new chronicles set in the Sixth Age.
Thanks, Darkness. Can you tell me anything about Vampire, Werewolve and Mage?
About Vampire I heard only small fragments: Cain returns, completely insane from his long un-life, and starts to devour his childer. Also I heard something about all vampires only being a puppet of the Wyrm.
About Werewolf, I don't know much, either: The Wyrm appears, and they start fighting it somehow (but I also heard that the thing is as big as Eurasia).
Mage had one story that was treated as "official" and a bunch of others that, well, weren't.
The official one ("Judgment") is kinda hard to summarise, but basically features
Voormas trying to remove death from reality and force his own view of Ascension upon the universe. The Tenth Sphere (judgement itself) sends emanations back through time to bring about an end to existence as we know it, while the Traditions and the Technocracy struggle to survive in the face of a vanishing Gauntlet. The characters are given the chance to unite with spirits of judgement in order to survive the chaos and take the fight to Voormas. Heylel's children crop up in reincarnated form, as does Caine's knife (in a variety of possible guises). This scenario ties off a huge number of Mage metaplot items in rapid succession and is really the material for an extended chronicle, rather than an end-of-the-world scenario. The scenario ends with Ascension itself, ideally allowing each soul in existence to experience personal perfection in unity with all other souls, none of which contradict the other.
Apologies to fellow Mage fans for butchering that - can't imagine how you'd summarise it in a single paragraph, heh heh.
"The Revolution Will Be Televised
is a Technocracy-based story that plays upon the rifts within the Union and presumes that the characters are battling against dystopian elements for the betterment of humanity. Again, the Gauntlet falls with predictable results. The story allows for a "victory", saving the world for humanity and defeating Union hardliners, but also leaves the options open for a world without magic at all, technomagic included. This scenario is better served, imho, as an addendum to whatever other elements are used from the other scenarios, as it is a tad limited in scope on its own. Although, if you have been running a Union game, it will fir it very nicely.
"The Earth Will Shake"
is straightforward enough and has a massive asteroid that hurtles towards the Earth. It has a living umbral manifestation with which the mages interact and learn that Earth/Gaia desires celestial union with this force from the stars. In the final analysis, mages can (at best) prevent Earth from being blown to smithereens - instead it suffers an impact that merely ends civilisation as we know it. Otherwise there is a planet-killer style impact and nothing survives. The Dreamspeakers help some to flee into the Umbra, but the world itself dies. Oh, apart from some amoebas. They do OK. An interesting twist allows for a lesser impact to save the Earth from a later doom in 2012 from a passing comet, which might make for a nice epilogue.
"A Whimper Not A Bang"
is a very strange tale that has aliens from another universe stealing avatars and magic in order to forge another reality. Our own universe spirals into mundane stasis and mages wind up trying to save abducted avatars from interdimensional predators, but not for the benefit of Earth. Paradox itself vanishes and the best hope for mages is to become shepherds of a new universe. A great idea, although possibly too radical a departure if the chronicle has no touched on anything like this before the end-times roll around.
"Hell On Earth"
is reminiscent of some of the Gehenna scenarios. The Unnamed, First Fallen, Number One Nephandus institutes the Descent of Creation, an inverted Ascension that turns Earth into Hell itself. Dividing the globe up between his hellish accomplices, he kills the Axis Mundi, destroys the Gauntlet, flattens Horizon Realms, reveals that the Tenth Seat belongs to him and creates everlasting damnation for all souls. As you do. It leaves the mages to battle against this or succumb, with the hope that the wheel will turn again, allowing for a new generation of willworkers to take back what was once theirs. And then it ends amidst the ruins. Pretty cool, actually.
Ascension is a great book and should probably be read at the start of a chronicle by any Storyteller planning to run an extended Mage game, as its best moments come from the resolution of old plotlines. If the new Awakening game can manage anything near this, it will have done well indeed.
Right, Mark Hope provided summaries of Ascencion, so I'll deliver summaries of Apocalypse.
The first story is "The Last Battleground" where the battle takes place solely in the Umbra. First the three scions of the Wyrm are sacrificed, the scion of Eater of Souls was that Antediluvian that woke up and got nuked during the Week of Nightmares. His death summoned the Red Star. Then Zyzhak dies fighting King Albrecht, they both drown in blood from the hundreds of people she kills in some small town. That summons the Second Red Star. Then BSDs abduct the Perfect Metis, torture/rape/abuse it for a week before killing it. Defiler joins with "Eater Of Souls" and "Beast of War", and the Wyrm goes on a rampage through the Umbra. The Garou Nation allies under the banner of Margrave Konietzko to face the Wyrm and its hordes in the Umbra. Lots of realm hopping trying to find what help you can to try and win this impossible fight.
Second is "A Tribe Falls". This chapter is really a toolkit more than anything else, giving you possible scenarios for each tribe falling to the Wyrm (with a sidebar for Weaver), and what sort of an Apocalypse it could trigger. A really open scenario that leaves huge amounts up to the ST.
Next comes "Weaver Ascendant". This one is by far my fave, it has the most scope for Changing Breed involvement at any rate (I loves my Corax!). It starts with some other company BUYING OUT Pentex, and seemingly starting to undo its damage. Until the purges start, at the hands of Drones (if you've read Posessed, you know how scary these things can be!). The Gauntlet starts SHOOTING up, several tribes are near exterminated, and the Wyrm's in as much trouble as Wyld and Gaia. The Perfect Metis reappears, fully grown, announcing itself as the Harbinger of Balance Wyrm. An unholy alliance is needed to effectively tear the world down to save it from Weaver. The Wyrm must be free. It gives the players full liscence to run amok and cause as much mayhem as possible to try and slow the strangulation while others try and find a way to pierce the Gauntlet for one huge trek to Malfeas.
Did I mention, the Ananasi are making their move too. Their Metis are loose, they're going to try and free Ananasa.
Last is "Ragnarok". This one is truly nuts and over the top, I love it almost as much as "Weaver Ascendant" It starts with Rorg, Incarna of the Asteroid Belt, hurling his Claw at Earth. The moon shatters, the skies go dark, the Wyrm's hordes run amok. All hell breaks loose, and things go from bad to worse to OH MY GOD! If you want to go out with a bang, its hard to top this one.
I love this book. Not only does it give some great ideas, but its full of useful summaries of things, and has lots of great Ron Spencer artwork too. My only gripe is that it refers frequently to other books, especially "Possessed" and "Rage Across the Heavens". Too bad if you don't have them.