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What are Eurostar's strategy, logistics, operations, and tactics?


AlgaeNymph
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We know that Eurostar are the dangerously competent villains who brag about wrecking economies, but how do they work towards their goals?  What do they ultimately need for endgame success?  How do they support their projects?  What do they prefer to target?  How do they fight that's so different from everybody else?  Questions like that and more.  Might even help me figure out how other practical villains (or heroes) might work as well.

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Well, what Eurostar does is shaped first and foremost by Fiacho's motivations, both intellectual and emotional. As far as I can tell from his backstory and activities, Fiacho believes that Europe's inherent potential for greatness is being held back by all its nations' entrenched political, economic and cultural structures, which keep it divided and weak. Fiacho seems to have decided that those structures need to be irrevocably smashed before a new united Europe can arise. I don't get the impression he's thought through what specifically should replace them. It's as if Fiacho makes an almost Marxist assumption that something better will inevitably evolve once the old order has been swept away.

 

Of course a lot of Fiacho's philosophy is rationalization for his personal anger, bitterness, disillusionment, and resentment. He wants revenge on a system he feels failed and betrayed him, and his campaign is his intellectual excuse for venting. It's no coincidence that he recruited violent psychopaths for his team. They follow him out of a combination of their natural predilections aligning with Fiacho's activities, personal gratitude and loyalty, his persuasive charisma, and the wealth and power they expect to get out of his campaign.

 

I would imagine Eurostar's activities generally follow the pattern of most normal human terrorists, to cause death and destruction targeted at a particular group in order to sow confusion, doubt and fear in that group. Of course their superhuman power allows them to be more direct and obvious than normal human terrorists. Their specific targets would likely fall into two main categories. One would be the power structures underpinning European society: governing bodies and political parties; law enforcement and the military; industry, banking and other linchpins of the economy. The other would be symbols of the standards and values of the old order, and of its aura of strength and continuity: national monuments; great achievements in technology and engineering; particularly prominent and famous politicians, business people, intellectuals, and media/entertainment figures.

 

Because Fiacho resents America's economic and cultural "imperialism" in Europe, that's more than enough justification for Eurostar to cross the Atlantic to strike at similar targets in that country. So you don't have to confine their depredations to the Old World. ;)

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Wrecking Economies. Well, there's the Australian method. Never, ever, invest money in 2ndry industry and watch as your economy becomes more and more backward. I mean, when did "value added" ever add value to anything?

 

Culturally specific economics jokes* aside; if I were a super villain and I wanted to wreck an economy I'd focus on choke points in the logistics chain. A choke point is by definition smaller and therefore more easily destroyed by a handful of super villains. Honestly can't think of a European example but the Malacca Strait (between Sumatra and the Malaysian peninsular) is an absolutely key point in world trade. Current events give us the Suez Canal as another example, one that does affect Europe now I think of it. Maybe the straits between Denmark and Sweden? Bound to be a fair bit of shipping go through there.

 

Port facilities are another good option. Again, they're choke points in the logistics chain.

 

Getting away from logistics... how about hitting local stock exchanges? Once again, they're choke points but this time in the flow of capital. Plus I suspect that Fiacho would gain a certain amount of personal satisfaction from hitting somewhere so full of moneyed-up suits.

 

Broader damage to economies probably require WMD. So Eurostar would probably love to get their hands on some of those. I would lean toward biological weapons as even Fiacho should think twice about reducing the world to an atomic glow in the dark cinder.

 

The there's the big flashy options like hitting national monuments and leaders. Not much in way of economic damage but good damage to the national (international) morale.

 

They'd probably support their activities with good old fashioned heists. Cash. Diamond exchanges. Bullion. I don't see them doing mercenary work; they work for themselves, not others.

 

*and was there ever a more hilarious category of jokes?

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I've always thought of them as destructive terrorists.

 

For example, they'd probably be ticked at Great Britain for Brexit, which could be seen as a step in the wrong direction for a unified Europe. 

 

They'd go after national monuments that the world thinks of when they think Britain: Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, etc.

 

Or they'd go after the fictionalized politicians or parties which enabled Brexit.

 

Or they'd go after the financial structure of Great Britain like the London Stock Exchange, Lloyd's of London, etc.

 

I wouldn't play Eurostar as being geniuses at being effective at achieving any goals beyond destruction and chaos. They're getting rid of whatever it is that they don't like. They're not personally responsible for building a better tomorrow, just the wrecking ball creating space for someone else to build it.

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1 hour ago, drunkonduty said:

Culturally specific economics jokes* aside; if I were a super villain and I wanted to wreck an economy I'd focus on choke points in the logistics chain. A choke point is by definition smaller and therefore more easily destroyed by a handful of super villains. Honestly can't think of a European example but the Malacca Strait (between Sumatra and the Malaysian peninsular) is an absolutely key point in world trade. Current events give us the Suez Canal as another example, one that does affect Europe now I think of it. Maybe the straits between Denmark and Sweden? Bound to be a fair bit of shipping go through there.

 

Kind of overlooked the Strait of Gibraltar. ;)

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Agreed, I don't see them building anything after they've achieved their goals (whatever that might look like.) Although now I say it I'd like to know Pantera's idea of the correct model for social services, it'd look like Hunger Games and Running Man mashed together.

 

Just thought of something else Eurostar could do - cause trouble at well known flashpoints.  

 

Umm... the following touches heavily on real world politics, so, um, let me know if you want it removed.

 

Eurostar could cause trouble in Crimea, probably in Sevastopol itself, and leave evidence to make make it look like they were operating with Ukraine encouragement. Russia, whether they believed it or not, could use that as a casus belli

 

Cyprus is a long standing point of contention between Greece and Turkey. Probably wouldn't take much to set off a war. Assassinate someone important to the peace process (either someone working for it or against it, really wouldn't matter, as it could be spun in whatever way works.)

 

They could send funds to terrorist organisations and let them act as cat's paws and just generally cause trouble.

 

There's countries with long, and in some cases recent, histories of war and hatred. It should be easy to come up with similar plots to the above and apply them to whichever countries you like, real or fictional.

 

And somehow I've forgotten oil and gas. D'oh. Russia is, I'm pretty sure, the largest supplier of natural gas to Europe. Rupture a pipeline! Or better yet, I mean this is Eurostar, destroy a refining centre or an oil rig. Pretend there's an oil rig in a disputed border region. Blow it up!

14 minutes ago, Lord Liaden said:

 

Kind of overlooked the Strait of Gibraltar. ;)

 

D'oh! 

 

Fill the strait full of hi-tech, homing, stealth sea mines. How will the pot dealers in Morocco get their stash to Spain now?

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56 minutes ago, drunkonduty said:

D'oh!

 

Fill the strait full of hi-tech, homing, stealth sea mines. How will the pot dealers in Morocco get their stash to Spain now?

 

Needn't be that high-tech. Use powerful explosives to crumble the land on either side of the Strait and fill it with enough rubble to block it to deep-water shipping. But any way you make Gibraltar impassable, you're blocking 300 cargo ships per day.

 

But that isn't even the busiest water route in Europe. That honor goes to the English Channel, most-traveled trade line in the world.

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13 minutes ago, Lord Liaden said:

 

Needn't be that high-tech. Use powerful explosives to crumble the land on either side of the Strait and fill it with enough rubble to block it to deep-water shipping. But any way you make Gibraltar impassable, you're blocking 300 cargo ships per day.

 

But that isn't even the busiest water route in Europe. That honor goes to the English Channel, most-traveled trade line in the world.

 

I'm pretty sure the Strait of Gibraltar is too deep to be simply blocked. But... Yeah, knocking the Rock of Gibraltar into the strait and jamming it is pretty much peak super heroes. 

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Boring targets: power stations (and distribution grids). Dams. Bridges, road and rail tunnels, mountain passes... There are some really interesting examples of all of these in the Alps, in particular.

 

It goes: "pay us Buckets of Money or we will destroy Target".
"We don't negotiate with terrorists".

"Good". Destroys Target.

 

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6 minutes ago, assault said:

It goes: "pay us Buckets of Money or we will destroy Target".
"We don't negotiate with terrorists".

"Good". Destroys Target.

Kidnapping/Assasination threats of important people symbolic of the old order, or just filthy rich supporters of old money. 

"Pay us, and nothing we do will harm or kill you."

"We don't give in to terrorists demands."

"Good."

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That's the thing about Eurostar. They're not in this for the money, although I'm sure they find plenty of incidental opportunities to cover their expenses. They wouldn't negotiate even if you begged them. Most supervillains threaten to make terrible things happen if they don't get what they want. For Eurostar, making terrible things happen IS what they want.

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Monaco is on the small side as is Andorra, San Marino and Liechtenstein. Monaco brings in gamblers and the rich from all over the world. It would let them pick targets and at least spy on them, plant bugs on them, People gong to one of the other countries would need an excuse but Monaco has gambling all year round.

The big targets would be Russia, France, Germany and Great Britain.

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2 hours ago, assault said:

I'm sure if somebody was lame enough to pay up,  Eurostar would take the money, and mark their targets as soft.

 

I disagree. Eurostar wants to be feared, to spread terror. If someone succeeds in paying them off, even if only temporarily, it makes them less frightening.

 

You need to stop thinking of them, especially Fiacho, as criminals trying to score as much personal profit as they can. Fiacho is a fanatic and the whole crew are psychopaths.

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1 hour ago, Lord Liaden said:

 

I disagree. Eurostar wants to be feared, to spread terror. If someone succeeds in paying them off, even if only temporarily, it makes them less frightening.

 

You need to stop thinking of them, especially Fiacho, as criminals trying to score as much personal profit as they can. Fiacho is a fanatic and the whole crew are psychopaths.

Eurostar needs no money. They need fear. "Do as I say...or else!"

 

If they ever offer a bribe, it would either be something they need to spread more terror, or to offer a lesser of many terrors. The most likely one to do this is Der Visgoth, and only on a solo mission for himself., if Fiacho allows it.

Just now, steriaca said:

Eurostar needs no money. They need fear. "Do as I say...or else!"

 

If they ever offer a bribe, it would either be something they need to spread more terror, or to offer a lesser of many terrors. The most likely one to do this is Der Visgoth (warning: may of misremembered his name), and only on a solo mission for himself., if Fiacho allows it.

 

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Y'know, every terrorist organization needs a more legitimate political arm that disavows them while seeking the same political goals peacefully.

 

Similarly, even terrorists understand the benefits of offering carrots as well as wielding sticks, and curry favor with a particular group or other, or paint themselves in a better light so that those sympathetic to the cause don't feel so bad about supporting them.   Thus terrorists end up running charities, both as a way of getting resources from sympathizers who can claim ignorance of the charity's terrorist associations, and as a way of getting resources to those they're in some sense fighting for.  

 

Eurostar wanting to unite Europe sounds a little out of date, given how integrated the EU has become, but there could be political parties in the member states seeking greater unity, either in general or issue-by-issue, and they could coordinate efforts with Eurostar, offering political European-unity solutions to problems Eurostar highlights or manufactures through their attacks.

 

And, all the above could do with a lot of money.  

 

Finally, even if Fiacho & co are so crazy they don't care to do anything but psychotic terrorist attacks, themselves, someone could be bright enough to piggy-back on their cause.

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If they want to strike terror across Europe, one place they could lay waste to (or just rob in a showy fashion) is Vatican City. There is a treasure trove of gold, jewels and historical artifacts that could be looted from there, and Fiacho murdering a Pope on worldwide television would be quite a spectacle for the press. Millions of Catholics would be affected across Europe and this might inspire the different countries to unite against a common threat (Eurostar). Maybe this would be (quietly?) cheered by anti-Catholic groups in Europe.

 

Of course, I am not certain what kind of superhuman defenses the Vatican has in the CU, but they might have enough resources in place to delay Eurostar until reinforcements arrive.

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3 hours ago, Lord Liaden said:

 

I disagree. Eurostar wants to be feared, to spread terror. If someone succeeds in paying them off, even if only temporarily, it makes them less frightening.

 

You need to stop thinking of them, especially Fiacho, as criminals trying to score as much personal profit as they can. Fiacho is a fanatic and the whole crew are psychopaths.

 

I agree.  If they commit a crime to get money, it's not going to be something like blackmail. It's more likely to be straight-up theft, and almost certainly a theft that hurts Fiacho's enemies. 

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3 hours ago, Opal said:

Eurostar wanting to unite Europe sounds a little out of date, given how integrated the EU has become, but there could be political parties in the member states seeking greater unity, either in general or issue-by-issue, and they could coordinate efforts with Eurostar, offering political European-unity solutions to problems Eurostar highlights or manufactures through their attacks.

 

I made a similar point in another thread about Eurostar's "Unite Europe" goals being dated in this day and age.  In 1983 that seemed like a quixotic goal, especially with the cold war going on.  In 2021 it's more or less accomplished.  If Fiacho is still upset that the various members of the EU aren't doing enough to work together I maybe could see that but its not as good a "big goal" as it was in older editions.

One interesting variant on what Opal mentions is for Eurostar to become the self-appointed, psychotically violent "defenders" of the European Union.  Every time someone chooses to put their own needs above the Union or a member state passes a piece of law or a treaty that isn't sufficiently Pro-EU, Fiacho starts blowing stuff up.  The legitimate governments of the EU want nothing to do with this, but Eurostar would probably have sympathizers.


If you did want to bring modern politics into it, Eurostar is probably going after anyone and everyone publicly in favor of Brexit, trying to intimidate anyone else thinking they may want to leave the EU and punishing the UK for having the temerity to go it alone.

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The other thing to note is that Fiacho spends a lot of time currying favors from other superhumans so that they owe him when the time comes for Eurostar's "inevitable" takeover. It's also noted that Eurostar hates non European supers. That could be a new theme if you want to get away from the "United Europe" trope. Perhaps they strike out against "American Imperialism".

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7 minutes ago, Dr. MID-Nite said:

The other thing to note is that Fiacho spends a lot of time currying favors from other superhumans so that they owe him when the time comes for Eurostar's "inevitable" takeover. It's also noted that Eurostar hates non European supers. That could be a new theme if you want to get away from the "United Europe" trope. Perhaps they strike out against "American Imperialism".

 

That would actually give them a worldwide scope and bring them into more opportunities for conflict with PRIMUS and American superteams. Not just America, since they could also strike out against Chinese and Russian efforts to expand their control in the world.

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