The Area Boys is a gang from Lagos (Nigeria).
The Area Boys are a large gang that dominates the streets of Lagos, whose members come from the Igbo tribe. It has a presence on most streets and recruits youngsters as young as 8-9 years old. Despite being called "boys", many of its members are in their 20s. The gang has a pyramidal organization in which members of each tier are required to earn a specific amount each day to pass to their superiors, with the leader of the gang living far away from the teeming streets of Lagos in a mansion on Victoria Island. It's involved in a variety of low-level street criminal activities. The gang makes its money from street sales of drugs, thievery, protection rackets, taxing the residents, and child prostitution.
Few in the gang have cyberware and those who do are often in the higher echelons. Likewise the gang has few street shamans, as those with magical abilities in Lagos work for the wealthier tribes. What the gang has are sheer numbers (1000s of members) and lots of guns (e.g. AK-47s), with which they overwhelm their rivals and therefore dominate Lagos. When waging war against rival gangs, they shoot indiscriminately, killing scores of civilians. Battles with rival gangs often involve hundreds of Area Boys.
The Area Boys is an actual gang in Lagos, which has been around since the 1980s in Lagos. Though unlike in Shadowrun, there appears to be no hierarchy (See external link).
- Feral Cities, 84-85
- Wikipedia: Area boys