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Halliston 1998


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Halliston's politics used to be the most boring in America: the Civic Party, thanks to competence, talent, and an entrenched machine, have run the city uninterrupted since the 50s. However, over the last decade, things have started to go wrong. At first, there were just just minor scandals--lost documents, indiscreet officials, and corruption within the machine. However, two weeks ago, a scandal emerged that rocked the government: millions of dollars have gone missing, civil servants are dipping into petty cash for thousand-dollar vacations, a school has collapsed due to poor maintenance, and the deputy mayor has fled to Mexico to escape charges of conspiracy and embezzlement.

The traditionally-tiny Conservative and Social Democratic parties saw a huge surge off these developments, and a group of Civic councillors have broken off to form the League of Electors. This election will decide the fate of the city: can the incumbent mayor convince the population he's ready for change, or will the opposition end fifty years of Civic rule?


This campaign is available in two flavours: a short two-week campaign, and a longer month-long one. You can download both of them here. :)

Background -- Parties

The Civic Party have run the city since 1952, without interruption. Broadly competent, broadly popular, broadly moderate and slightly corrupt, despite these scandals, their machine is still the strongest. Mayor French has decided to stay on, hoping to convince the people of Halliston that he can bring the changes necessary to regain their trust. Will he be successful?

The League of Electors are a group who broke off of the Civic caucus after the deputy mayor incident. Most of them are formerly backbenchers (if they were councillors at all), so they aren't particularly experienced, but they have attracted a lot of attention in certain circles, and may just seize the Civic throne. They are led by Ken Money, a councillor.

The Social Democratic Party ("The Sodees") have historically stood for very left-wing principles--and as such, they've been limited to a few downtown ridings at best. However, with the scandals shaking the Civics, can they branch out into the inner suburbs, and perhaps cobble together a large enough caucus to form a government? Julie Pringle, a young councillor, has led the Sodees for the last six years.

The Conservative Party emerged from Republican voters in a town that was forcefully amalgamated into Halliston in the late 80s. In a city dominated by moderates, the Conservatives are in an excellent position to eat the Civics' lunch in the centrist-right inner suburbs and maybe even crack the outer downtown. Amy Larkin is a veteran councillor who has a well-earned reputation for being incorruptible.

Background -- Geography

Until the 1970s, Halliston was a relatively small city on the side of a lake. However, by 1985, Halliston had begun a process of amalgamation that drove it north: not only did it take over its suburbs, but a number of hamlets and villages were sucked in, too. As a result of this process, Halliston also acquired the series of islands located about 20-30 minutes away by ferry.

Rule of thumb: as you get further away from Halliston Center, you get more conservative. This covers most of the city. There are some exceptions, however:

- The minor islands are isolated from the rest of the city, and the Civic machine is still running strong.

- Port Island is dominated by artists and the creative industry, and is a lock for the Social Democrats.

Most of the city is decidedly in-play:

- Halliston Center is where the Sodees and League of Electors battle it out. All of these seats are competitive, and it's very likely to be a sweep for one party or the other. The Civic party can also do well here if conditions are right.

- West Halliston & East Halliston are inner-city residential areas where the League of Electors is performing well--however, historically the Civic Party had their strongholds here, and they may experience a resurgence yet.

- North Halliston has chunks of all its neighboring regions, and each party has several competitive seats here.

- Lorraine and Gaspard contain the suburbs and office parks that prefer competence over ideology--Civic advantage, but the Conservatives and League can both do well here.

- New Albion and Wright contain the outer suburbs and a good deal of bitterness at being forcefully amalgamated into the city a decade ago. The Conservatives do well here, but the Civics can win, too.

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In the longer version of this scenario I get a message inviting me to buy a full copy of the game. I am already using the full version and haven't had this issue with any of the other scenarios. The short one doesn't seem to have this issue. I enjoyed the short version, anyway. Many thanks :).

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