London in the Shadowrun Universe

London Sourcebook (Shadowrun, 7203) - Carl Sargent

It is strange how once you have visit a place your understanding of that place changes quite dramatically. Until a couple of years ago the only thing that I knew about London was from what I saw on television, read in my history books, and in a way, from this book. However, once I went there I discovered a lot more things,: the Ministry of Sound Nightclub sucks; London is such an incredibly expensive city to live in that unless you have a high paying job you have to share a house, even if you are in a live in relationship; and that there is such a place as the Westover (which is an elevated motorway heading west out of London from the end of Euston Road, though it is actually call the Westway).


The Westway


Mind you, while the natives were not necessarily the nicest of people that I had encountered, London still had this really magical feeling about it. The fact that you can wonder through a graveyard and discover the grave of John Bunyan and William Blake (which happen to be next to each other), walk across the famous Beatles crossing, and knock on Sherlock Holmes' door, is simply amazing. Also, you can go for an hour's drive (not counting the time it actually takes you to actually get out of the city) and discover the place where Thomas Beckett was murdered, where J.R.R Tolkein lived and drank beer with C.S. Lewis (and I had a beer in that exact same room).


As for this book, well it was interesting and after reading it I decided to write a Shadowrun adventure that was set in England. Basically the story went that the players had learnt that there was this plane that was invisible to radar but the knowledge of how to make it was lost, so they went on an adventure around the world to discover where one. On their way they went to England where the king had also become an ork, and because there were a group of people that did not like orks (or anybody that wasn't a human) they created a Republican movement to get rid of the king (and make the leader the ruler of Britain). Mind you, the fact that I knew little about London at the time did not undermine the coolness of this adventure, but then I also found it somewhat easier to set adventures in parts of the world that I knew (which up until a couple of years ago pretty much limited to me south-eastern Australia). Now that I have been out of Australia, and travelled around Europe, I find my understanding of the world has expanded somewhat.