The fact that the Rikti Invasion is over for the time being does not mean that the other-dimensional invaders are cleansed from the city. In fact, quite the opposite is true.
No one knows for sure how many Rikti still lurk beneath the streets of Paragon City and other great battleground cities like Rome and Kuala Lumpur. Some estimates put the number at a few thousand.
Others suggest that there are ten or twenty times that many still menacing the planet. While the danger of total worldwide enslavement to an alien race seems to have passed for the time being, the Rikti still present a daily and ever-growing threat.
The affect of the Rikti on human culture and society has not been entirely negative. The world they come from is quite a bit more advanced than our own, technologically speaking.
During the war and in subsequent raids on Rikti cells, heroes have recovered literally thousands of tons of Rikti technology. From spaceships to handguns, the Rikti brought a startling array of weapons and other technology with them.
Ever since the first alien energy rifle fell into the hands of a human scientist, we have been learning from their scientific discoveries.
The war walls that divide up Paragon City employ force fields based on Rikti technology.
Vanguard has begun to employ a prototype 'rapid response' portal system designed after Rikti teleporters and many heroes benefit from an emergency teleportation system that sends them directly to a hospital when their life signs reach a critical level.
Once they get there, they find themselves rejuvenated by hospital beds that repair damage at a cellular level using a system inspired by the Rikti transmogrification vats.
The benefits reaped from Rikti technology have only begun to appear and are certain to transform our entire world in the years to come. Right now though, they pose a problem as well.
Not all of the discarded or lost Rikti technology fell into the hands of the heroes and governments of the world. Every month, more and more of it makes its way into the hands of Paragon City's criminal element.
The black market for alien artifacts is booming, with even a simple side arm or communication device selling for tens of thousands of dollars.
An early attempt to auction a Rikti helmet on eBay™ got a high bid of $35,320 before the government cracked down, arresting the seller and fining the company. A more serious problem came when a local gang found a stash of Rikti assault weapons, turning them overnight into a group with the firepower to level a city block in a matter of minutes.
Fortunately, a group of young heroes captured the gang as they attempted to rob a liquor store, but the potential danger was obvious to everyone (except perhaps the dimwitted thieves).
Current international laws clearly state that any artifact of alien technology must be immediately turned over to the local government who will then turn it over to the Vanguard.
The Vanguard - in addition to its other duties, has taken on the role of clearinghouse for captured alien technology. They then apportion out the finds to different research facilities around the world.
Vanguard security personnel are stationed at each of these labs, both to ensure their safety and to see that the scientists share whatever discoveries they make with the rest of the world community.
Many private research and development firms now operate under government contract to help unlock the potential in captured Rikti tech. Among the most significant is Crey Industries, who made some of the earliest and quickest advances in Rikti research.
They hold the patent on the emergency teleportation system that so many heroes use every day in their fight against evil.
However, Crey recently lost all of its contracts and was forbidden to work on Rikti research after the Vanguard discovered that the company possessed a number of Rikti weapons and rare suits of advanced combat armor that the rest of the world knew nothing about.
The Countess Crey maintained that it was simply a clerical error, but the Vanguard remained unimpressed and seized all the alien artifacts known to be in Crey's possession. Crey has assured the UN that it no longer has any interest in alien research and is pursuing its own projects from now on.