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Witch
post Jun 19 2010, 03:31 PM
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I've recently purchased a number of basic Shadowrun books (Core Rulebook, Runners Companion and Street Magic) and am planning to start running my very first Shadowrun campaign ever sometime soon. I'd like to set it in the former Belgium, though, and I was wondering whether there was any information on that. I've heard that a book called 'Shadows of Europe' has some useful information, but is there anything else?
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Rand
post Jun 19 2010, 05:49 PM
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I imagine the Sixth World Almanac will have a little something, but I cannot imagine it having a lot on Brussels (which is a real pretty city - at least the on in our world is....).
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Rand
post Jun 19 2010, 05:52 PM
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Oooh, just remembered: when I was in Heildburg, Germany I was in a book store and saw a German version of the Germany Sourcebook for SR3 (or maybe it was SR2) that was hardback and, at least, twice the size of the one we got in the states. Maybe there is in German a book that covers Brussels in more detail - and all you have to do is learn german, or get it translated somehow. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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KarmaInferno
post Jun 19 2010, 05:56 PM
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I don't like their sprouts.

That's all I've got.




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Martin_DeVries_I...
post Jun 19 2010, 06:00 PM
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QUOTE (KarmaInferno @ Jun 19 2010, 09:56 AM) *
I don't like their sprouts.

QFT.

Brussels is a fairly important city in Shadowrun, actually, as it is the headquarters for the New European Economic Community. Shadows of Europe has a couple of pages on Brussels and its relationship with the NEEC, which should give you a lot of ideas for storylines you can set there. I would definitely pick it up.
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Witch
post Jun 19 2010, 06:12 PM
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I had a few ideas for the city, but I'm not sure how viable they are - if you've any ideas about this, please let me know. I've read the Sixth World Wiki on the United Netherlands, so I have some vague idea of what went on there.


Basically, I had in mind that Brussels would still be governed by the Belgian Royal Family, who could only watch on as the country collapsed around them. At first, they merely maintained a symbolic rule over the city (while still pretending to the title of 'King/Queen of the Belgians'), as the European Union governed the city. During this period, the monarchy mysteriously acquired significant amount of funds and invested these in a number of corporations, including weapons manufacturers, security corporations and public relations. (Those who are in the know strongly suspect that these funds may come from the Vatican, as the Belgian monarchy is associated with Opus Dei, a radical Catholic organization) By ~2050-2060, Queen Elisabeth would have established an absolute monarchy as the royal family controls the security forces and another few number of essential services. Since the establishment of the NEEC, the monarchy strengthened its position by lobbying and playing the different corporations against one another in a direction that bolsters the monarchy's position.

Is that in any way plausible?
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Martin_DeVries_I...
post Jun 19 2010, 06:19 PM
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It's been a while since I read about NEEC/United Netherlands, so as far as the books say I don't know how well that fits in. But it's your campaign, and that's what really matters, not what the books might say. That said, I think you've got a pretty good idea, and some nice interplay between aristocarcy/corporations/the church.
I do know that across Europe, the aristos have been working hard to put themselves back into power, so that does tie in to your idea there.
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Hagga
post Jun 19 2010, 06:29 PM
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Given it's status as Lofwyr's NEEC baby, security would be through the roof, and the entire place a jurisdictional patchwork. You could probably make a case for refluffing hoing kong and upping police presence. There wouldn't be much 'original character' left, people will have knocked down the buildings.
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Grinder
post Jun 19 2010, 09:02 PM
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QUOTE (Rand @ Jun 19 2010, 07:52 PM) *
Oooh, just remembered: when I was in Heildburg, Germany I was in a book store and saw a German version of the Germany Sourcebook for SR3 (or maybe it was SR2) that was hardback and, at least, twice the size of the one we got in the states. Maybe there is in German a book that covers Brussels in more detail - and all you have to do is learn german, or get it translated somehow. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)


No, there isn't. Germany/ AGS got covered during SR3 with a couple of sourcebooks (with one being very detailed and thus with a high page count), but the whole Benelux only got little attention in it.
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LabRat
post Jun 21 2010, 11:38 AM
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If we would have done "Cities of Intrigue" as originally intended, I would have pitched a Brussels E.C. proposal, covering and updating the NEEC stuff. Pity...

I personally expect Brussels' shadows to be quite euro-centric with a lot of jobs in the pan-European political and corporate field (politics, rads, economic interests, access to funds and grants).

Gives the GM quite an opportunity to do a lot of stuff in the city itself, but take the runners to other European capitals and corporate enclaves as well.
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Witch
post Jun 21 2010, 05:23 PM
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I've managed to take a quick read through a friend's Shadows of Europe, and I think I've got the following few ideas:

King Baudoin II (r. 2066 – present) functions as head of state of Brussels and maintains a claim to the entire country of Belgium, although he has never issued a threat to either the government of France or that of the United Netherlands: his claims have been uttered only on a diplomatic and P.R.-level. He delegates the majority of governmental powers to his Principal Private Secretary, Baroness Aline van Ypersele de Strihou.

Queen Elisabeth I (r. 2034 - 2066), Baudoin's mother, ceded the throne in favor of her son after having renewed the throne's strength by investing a great deal of capital in numerous AA corporations, including Uniforce (a security corporation named for the Belgian slogan 'L'union fait la force'), A.G. Chemie, Fabrique National, Endemol-Woestijnvis and the Brussels Academy of Alchemy. During her reign, her siblings assumed direct control over these entities. Prince Gabriel, a skilled mage, is still Dean of the BAA, Princess Eléonore still sits on the board of A.G. Chemie while Prince Emmanuel has retired and left his position as head of Uniforce to Elisabeth's daughter, Princess Isabelle. Positions on the boards of of A.G. Chemie and Fabrique National, as well as direct control of Endemol-Woestijnvis, are distributed amongst the political circles of Brussels/Belgium. Those in the know notice that many of them are ostensibly deeply religious Catholics, associated particularly with Opus Dei and the Charismatic Movement. All of them go to the same Church as the Royal Family, which isn't accessible to the general public – some rumors claim that this is merely because of the family's desire for privacy, while others maintain that occult practices go on during these services.

Although the Royal Family maintains a tight grip across the city, this power is interwoven strongly with the power of the corporations. Uniforce patrols the streets, borders and the airport, as well as the corporate and governmental compounds in the European District. Major roadways into Brussels are leased by megacorporations, who in turn supply a security force for the borders, which is supervised by highly equipped Uniforce teams. Only a small number of roadways into Brussels are accessible to non-corporate-affiliates, and these are secured more thoroughly. SINs allowing entry into Brussels are delivered only by the King's authority (as exercised by his administration) and reviewed at every checkpoint by Uniforce agents. It is as of yet unknown why the corps allow this prerogative to the Belgian/Bruxellois government – theories range from Lofwyr's interference to the idea that a relatively impartial party may be most effective security-wise.

Although they attempt to hide it, a few of the appointees on the policy commissions are associated with Opus Dei and the Charismatic Movement, two of them even being rumored to visit the same church as the Royal Family. It appears that these two are on the Social Policy Commission, which is where all but one of the other religiously affiliated appointees are found as well. Some in the shadows speculate that even the European Supreme Court may have one of Opus Dei's members among its ranks.


Any thoughts?
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Grinder
post Jun 21 2010, 05:43 PM
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Iirc Belgium got swallowed by the Netherlands and France completely?
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Witch
post Jun 21 2010, 05:48 PM
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All but Brussels, but the King still claims legal authority over the entire territory, even though he only has de facto control of Brussels.
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Grinder
post Jun 21 2010, 05:51 PM
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I see. Thanks for the clarification. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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Dr.Rockso
post Jun 21 2010, 05:54 PM
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QUOTE (KarmaInferno @ Jun 19 2010, 12:56 PM) *
I don't like their sprouts.

That's all I've got.




-karma

I like the cut of your gib.

In all honesty I was about to post that when I saw the title :o
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Lugburz
post Jun 21 2010, 06:41 PM
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One other thing you could do is check out the German Shadowrun wiki- it's much easier to translate. In my experience, its articles on Europe have had significantly more information than the English Shadowrun Wiki.

But as a couple other posters mentioned- it's your game. Your ideas sound good, so if you like them, go for it.
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