I think a Rock Star-type spinoff focusing on politics could be really cool. Gameplay could alternate between election seasons and non-. Instead of friends/band members you would have senior campaign staff, maybe interest groups. Competing periodically for elections would add a cool dynamic. The Kudos jobs system could be expanded to allow the player to try to run for higher offices (or go back to a safer office after a big loss). The money management aspect of Kudos games would work well for a political game. It would obviously focus more on gameplay than being a ‘hard sim,’ but I think it could still be a lot of fun.
Events would probably play a much larger role, particularly office-driven events. A lowly local official may have the occasional controversy to deal with, but the president or a senator might have some dramatic events. The events system would probably need the most expansion of any Kudos game mechanic. If a modified Diplomacy 2 policy system applied while in office with effects on your Kudos-esque politician, we might have a candidate for best indie game ever
What do others think? I think another Kudos spinoff, with more new gameplay enhancements and more content out of the box (or at least a flexible and documented mod system to allow new content later) could be a huge success.
It’s funny, I had a very similar idea.
In my idea, you start off as an idealistic student at University, and you then play through joining a political party, getting noticed, getting selected as a PPC (a candidate in a General Election) (perhaps having first been a councillor at local level), getting elected to Parliament, making it into the Government and finally becoming Prime Minister.
There is a potential problem with that idea regarding sales outside the UK - perhaps there could be a UK or US version, or be based on a fictional country.
It would sort of follow the Kudos idea, but concentrated on being a “career politician” - getting to be Prime Minister/President/whatever. There would be various routes, perhaps - you could come straight out of University and go straight into party politics, or you might first get a job, get some life experience of the real world. You might work your way into Parliament through involvement with pressure groups or think tanks or unions.
Ideally, I think such a game would have to be designed with different political systems in mind: proportional versus winner take all voting, a Congress/President structure versus Parliamentary, etc. The game could be expanded to include other political roles, too; instead of being a candidate, maybe the player fancies being a campaign speech writer, building ties to powerful politicians and honing policy knowledge and writing skills to help them get elected.
The more I think about this idea, the more convinced I am that it could be a truly amazing game if Positech went all out. Hopefully the upgraded engine for Kudos 2 will have some new features that inspire even more cool ideas. If Cliff isn’t already planning a Rock Legend-type spinoff of Kudos 2, maybe threads like this can convince him he ought to be.
I think you’d need to make sure that the scope was appropriate - too wide and it would be too diluted, but also it would need to be wide enough to give people the flexibility for their path to pan out as they chose.
I think that the eventual goal should be to become Prime Minister/President/leader, but that there should be a number of routes to get there. So for example you would having:
- Organisations to join: Political parties, pressure groups, think tanks, trade unions, etc.
- Jobs: either completely outside of politics, giving you “real-world” experience (and cash), or within politics, including “party jobs” to allow you to work your way up through the party.
Throughout the game you would accumulate various things such as confidence, speech-making/debating ability, “life experience”, issue knowledge, etc., but especially contacts. You would get contacts through anything such as joining organisations, working, or engaging in social activities with the sole intention of making contacts. These contacts would be useful in working your way up the ladder - they may give you opportunities that you would otherwise not have had, etc., plus introductions to other influential people. Contacts may become valuable long after you made them - that person who you met once at a party may later become party leader and if you already know him, this may work in your favour. You would have to choose how much time you put into maintaining contacts, and of course which contacts you chose to prioritise.
The more I think about this, the more I think that it would be a great game, probably appealing to both Kudos and Democracy fans, and I don’t think there’s anything like this already out there. It would be great if Cliff considered this as his next game.