Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

Autobalancing Democracy 3 (part 2)

So it turns out that we already have about 2,000 games of Democracy 3 being played every day by actual players, rather than some hacked-together AI of mine, so I thought step 1 might be to grab data on how those games are being played to see if I could spot any obvious balance issues. I started collecting a few basic stats at the point of elections yesterday and already have a ton of data here:

I have a few pieces of data I was interested plus a snapshot at elections as to which of the best known situations are active during victories and during defeats. So for example 1% of people who won the election have gridlock, but 10% of losers do. Average GDP during an election is 51% but 55% if you win, and so on…

Actually extrapolating balance issues from this data will be a bit tricky though, as I likely need more data to back up my assertions, but right now, from the current data I am tempted to proclaim the following:

  1. The game is too easy (85% of elections are won. Granted some people get assassinated beforehand…but still..)
  2. Unemployment at victories is still 28%. Maybe unemployment is not having enough of a negative impact?
  3. 20% of people have eliminated poverty entirely (got it to 0%). That seems high. This should be harder.
  4. Gridlock is only a problem for 1% of victories. Maybe this should be harder/slower to fix?
  5. Teacher shortage never seems to be much of a problem, this should trigger more?
  6. Armed robbery is generally very rare, even when losing. This should maybe trigger more?
  7. Corporate exodus is actually higher during victory. This may actually make sense, as people are ‘buying’ the public support despite a huge debt?

Its going to be pretty difficult to get the exact data I want. For one thing, the game NEEDS situations that are *bad* but only crop up in later terms, and I don’t currently track which term we are in. Democracy 3 Africa has a very cool mechanic where people arent bothered about some issues until more pressing issues have been fixed. I suspect I may need to introduce an element of that here.

My main worry, a bit like a doctor is that I need to ensure I ‘do no harm’. Its better for me to leave Democracy unbalanced but hugely popular than tweak it and break it…so I#’m nervous of any big changes.

4 thoughts on Autobalancing Democracy 3 (part 2)

  1. Hello.
    D3 is grait but once you get the hang of it it’s easy. Usually I want to remove deficit from the country. So I raise taxes and just make them suffer. But on the flip side I invest heavily in economic policies. And usually it always works. I found that if you apply policies that people like in majority, you will get good results very quickly. I think some policies should be more expensive especially Healthcare and education and public transport and so on.
    I think unemployment should have a greater impact on the economy. I don’t know exactly the full mechanics of the game but it is at least in my country we have 2 million people in our country but not everybody is eligible for work. Also the total population never changes regardless of what you do. Young people usually leave countries with no employment opportunities. And down the line that affect the economy and the Texas. I know you cannot make a hundred percent accurate simulation and there has to be an element found in it but still I think it’s worth the shot. It is true I’ve never experienced gridlock event in the game I don’t even know that existed :-) I think it would be hard to repay back the public debt and I think it should be more expensive and you should have to deal with politics more often. Maybe even change the type of government from democracy autocracy dictatorship Etc.
    Teacher shortage again I have never seen that happen in my playthrough. That is an issue especially in my country. It’s hard to simulate every single country in the world with one template but I guess that’s why mods are made for :-)

  2. I was disappointed at how easy D3 was, D2 was much more of a challenge (it was far too easy to win elections despite implementing radical left or right wing policies). This is the reason I haven’t bought D3:Africa

  3. Well, for starters it is too easy to have all the voter groups liking you at the same time. We know that never happens in real life. Anything that makes Liberals happy should upset Conservatives and vice versa. Likewise, anything that Socialists like should be hated by Capitalists and vice versa.

    The two most glaring offenders policywise are Prisons and Abortion Law. I think that the Religious group should be unhappy with anything over Life Threatened. Watching the fallout from Roe v Wade here in the states has shown me that nothing will satisfy both sides at once. As for prisons, I think that poor prison living conditions should make Conservatives happy and Liberals angry, and good living conditions the opposite. I know from experience that conservatives hate the rehabilitation focus; prisons are supposed to be harsh and painful in their view.

    I have some ideas for new situations that could pop up in the late game, but I am sure that is better suited for the Workshop.

  4. I would recommend not making it too hard. For me, games like D2 / D3 are fun because you don’t have to spend a lot of time on it. They can be casually played for a little bit at a time, and after you “win”, you can try for different things (no red dots, for example: If it gets too difficult, it may become frustrating. And we already have that in real-life politics, where every choice has dire consequences.


Comments are currently closed.