[Mod] DES Pack - PCGamer.com Mod of the Week

[size=150]Disaster and Emergency Situations Pack[/size]
A Democracy 3 Mod
By Elinor

[size=150]PCGamer.com’s Mod of the Week, 3rd December 2013.[/size]

(I recommend reading the rest of the column too! It gives a really good sense of what the mod contains, and is also generally super nice!)

[size=150]Download link: http://www.mediafire.com/download/f3lrtosyzz7yz5l/DESPackInstall.exe[/size]

Or in zip format:DESPack.zip (97.2 KB)
The Disaster and Emergency Situations Pack is a collection of 4 new policies, 4 new dilemmas, 12 new situations and 26 new events. All of these are about what happens to your country when things go horribly wrong!

The mod is intended to both add more variety and more challenge to the game, by adding a number of new national level disasters such as major flooding and wildfires. It acts as a balance mod to stop you getting complacent and stop you ever quite reaching too much of a comfortable plateau.

While I don’t want to spoil all of the surprises, the pack now means that almost everything in the UK National Risk Register for Civil Emergencies (gov.uk/government/publicati … 13-edition) is implemented in one form or another in the game. The things that aren’t included are things that are less likely to apply to all countries, like severe snowfall.

However, with all of this doom and destruction, there is a little hope. Four new national agencies can be put in place to help mitigate the effects of these disasters and other national level problems. While these will do little to help with your everyday problems like crime or poor health, they help build up resilience to major disasters. And, when things do go wrong, they step in to help coordinate a national response, further reducing effects. However, they take a long time to get established, so you may find yourself spending a lot of money on them for something that may never actually happen.

It is worth highlighting three things about the pack in particular:

  • The pack includes a new kind of event that triggers situations. These events will show up in your quarterly report (such as ‘A new disease is spreading!’) and may have some initial effect, but will be followed by a situation that appears as a red icon on your main view. This keeps the serious disasters in your vision, and allows for their effects to be mitigated (or worsened…) through policies and other simulation values.
  • Terrorism has received a major upgrade, both in dangerousness and complexity. Assassination is no longer the most serious terrorist threat. The new terrorist attacks are now managed behind the scenes, and you find that they will tend to come in waves and have the potential to get more dangerous if left uncontrolled. The threat can be managed through the application of force through security policies, such as wiretapping or police drones. This makes liberalism is now a little more risky as an option unless you manage threats to your nation other ways, such as managing your racial tension and foreign relations.
  • Events can now trigger ongoing situations which can lead to further events and to dilemmas. After some tourists are kidnapped abroad, will you send your troops to attempt a rescue? And the choices of your dilemmas may have multiple outcomes. The rescue might succeed, bringing the hostages home, or it might fail, leading to them being killed in a firefight.


The National and Organised Crime Agency (NOCA) deals with the kinds of crime regular police have more difficulty with, targeting organised criminals and the infrastructure of crime. While they don’t assist with day to day crime, but in the long term they tackle the big problems of organised crime, black markets and armed robberies.

The Ecological and Natural Disaster Resilience Agency aims to protect the public and businesses from problems such as flooding and wildfires. While they generally cannot be prevented, the effects of natural disasters can usually be reduced.

Widespread diseases amongst humands and animals can reach a level where a local response is insufficient and a coordinated answer is needed to minimise the damage and loss of life. That is the job of the Centre for Pandemics and Major Disease Control (CPMDC), to provide support and coordination to tackle the worst case diseases.

CERR Task Force
The Civil Emergency Resilience and Response (CERR) Task Force aims to prepare the public and businesses for disasters and emergencies, offering advice and coordination to minimise effects and to hasten recovery from everything from plane crashes to major terrorist attacks.

To install, just run the installer and point it at your Democracy 3 directory.
Alternatively, if it’s from the zip, unzip it to where you installed Democracy 3.
In both cases, this will be the folder that contains ‘Democracy3.exe’ (or the equivalent if you’re on Mac or Linux, not sure how either of those work)


  • Terrorism balance changes have occured to stop the patriot population getting quite so out of control.
  • Which disasters will occur now depends more on the situation in your country. For instance, large CO2 emissions increase the chance of wildfires and flooding over time!
  • 4 new terrorist attacks added for greater variety.
  • 2 new disasters added for a little more variety and completeness.
  • 2 new events that increase and decrease the chance of terrorist attacks added. Thanks to DancingEngie for your suggestion and input on these!


  • Added new dilemmas and events for the dilemma-event chains.
  • Decreased the frequency of non-terrorism disasters
  • Increased the connections between new policies and existing parts of the game
  • Made some events more preventable and more manageable.
  • Changed the ENDRA icon.
  • Some balance changes around terrorism.

This mod is also available in the Steam workshop!


Hoo-hoo! Interesting times indeed…

Well, I’ve had my first playthrough. Thematically, I love this to bits - Elinor, you can be my coalition partner anytime. My initial thoughts:

  • Non-terrorism disasters seem a bit common. I was getting roughly one every two years on 150% Britain. Possibly reduce the frequency there. While to some extent these are completely uncontrollable, I think some of them should be influenced by player actions. It’s a bit of an abbreviation, but I think CO2 levels should have a long term effect on the likelihood of flooding and wildfires, given the link between global warming and sea levels. Weirdly, I think that a space program should help with recovery from CME’s. My argument would be that investment in space improves solar observation which helps with early warning? The country should recover faster from pandemic outbreaks with a state health service, as they will be on the front line in dealing with it.

  • I’ve not checked the exact values, but there seems to be some of the eventuations/policies which are thematically very similar to existing ones. Specifically, NOCA/Security Services; Foot and Mouth/Mad Cow Epidemic; Pandemic Outbreak/Bird Flu. Is it the case that you needed new options to work your event-situation combos, or do you see genuine differences between the behaviours of these pairs?

  • I like the variety of new terrorist actions. The main issue I’m having is that it’s quite hard to work out who’s gunning for me? I’m not sure if there’s something you could do with a [Terror Group] filler, or if you’d need a separate message for each group? The filler obviously saves work; the separate messages would allow you to tailor the attacks to the group. For example, perhaps the Traditional Values Alliance bombs a gay club, while the Warriors of Gaia blow up the headquarters of an oil company? The differences between the attacks could be cosmetic (just a different message covering a given ‘tier’ of attack), or functional. I also found I had a couple of car bombings when the intelligence report had every group listed as a minimal threat - not really sure of the cause of this.

  • I haven’t the faintest how to begin drawing new icons so my criticism is of limited use. The only one I flat didn’t get without careful study was the ENDRA icon; perhaps simplify that to a wave on one side, and a wall on the other?

  • At the moment, the four new policies are too disconnected from the rest of the game. There ought to be some more linkages. I’d suggest that the CPMDC have a positive effect on health due to constant low-level reaction to disease outbreaks before they reach pandemic stage. I feel like farmers ought to have an opinion about them, but I’m not sure what it is. On the one hand, these are the people protecting your livelihood from disease. On the other hand, they’re the people ordering you to slaughter the rest of the flock just because one animal is sick. Not sure. The NOCA seems similar to Security Services, if internally focused, so I’d suggest adding a boost to conservatives. The CERR is probably liked by patriots, and possibly opposed by capitalists? Similar to the farmer query, they probably like that someone is thinking about keeping the country running, but don’t like having to participate in time-consuming National Preparedness exercises? If ENDRA’s remit was expanded to cover environmental issues more broadly (think DEFRA in the UK), then they could reasonably have a positive effect on the environment, and a boost to environmentalist happiness?

  • Please write some dilemmas. Your last offerings were great, so I’m eager to see what could be done here. Given that you’ve already experimented with having situations trigger from events, have you consider having said situations trigger dilemmas? In order to prevent them drawing too much focus, I’d have the existence of the situation be the sole factor producing the dilemma with a high, but not certain probability. This means you have a good chance of that dilemma being triggered when appropriate, without it being the only thing your government focuses on during the crisis. As an example, a fairly major terror attack could give something like:

New intelligence suggests that the masterminds behind the recent bombing are hiding in a neighbouring country. The other country states that they cannot extradite the suspects without seeing conclusive evidence linking the men to the attack, which we cannot presently provide. Military chiefs have presented a plan for a snatch-and-grab raid across the border. While this offers a chance to seize the men responsible for a heinous crime, violating national borders like this will cause an international incident.

A - Order the raid. Terrorists cannot feel safe mere miles away from their atrocities by hiding behind a foreign powers skirts! We will bring these men to justice whether our neighbours like it or not. Significant boost to patriot happiness, angers ethnic minorities and liberals, dumps on foreign relations.

B - Maintain diplomatic pressure. While it is galling, we cannot trample roughshod over international law. We will build our case and maintain the rule of law. We must not sink to the level of these criminals. Angers patriots and conservatives, pleases liberals and ethnic minorities.

This looks like a really exciting mod. Kudos for the innovative linking of events and policies to allow us to have an effect on the aftermath.

Rick, this is all great feedback, thanks!

  • There is a hidden system and set of variables that manage the disaster frequency. The main driving factor for this is how well you’re doing, and if you’re doing well disasters are more likely. However, it might be this is a little too extreme at the moment, so I will have a look at turning it down a bit and see if I like it. Also, the players actions do affect the likelihood of some of the events, but I agree this could be done more and made clearer.
  • Unfortunately, this is a reflection of the current limitations on mods, as the existing events cannot be changed to work in the mods systems. Cliffski has suggested this will be changing in an upcoming patch, though, and if it does I’ll definitely look at getting everything working a bit better together.
  • This is again a little bit of a limitation of the systems available. There’s no way I can see for modders to directly see how many people are in domestic terrorist groups, or which ones. There is an overall terrorism measure, however, which the mod uses and adjusts for its own disaster management systems. This include foreign terrorism too, so if you don’t have domestic terrorists, check things like your foreign relations or your racial tension. I’ve had some ideas on how to improve this, though, which I will be experimenting with. Also, interestingly, the car bomb isn’t one of mine, that one is a default event.
  • I agree that ENDRA has probably one of the worse icons. I like your idea, though, so I’ll give it a go.
  • I see your point here. I like your ideas to improve it too, so I will have a play and see how I can make it better.
  • I actually have some dilemmas planned and partially written, but I wasn’t sure if they’d just be clutter or if they would add value. I’ll work on them a bit more and see if I can add some I like. Interestingly, one of the ones I have already is very similar to your suggestion. Great minds think alike/fools never differ (delete as appropriate).

Once again, thanks for the feedback. As the version number suggests, I see this as being far from finished and there’s lots more I want to do with it. I have a bunch of possible updates planned already. But getting it this far, and this balanced, was much harder than my first mod because it’s so much more complicated and wide ranging, so getting other people’s thoughts and ideas is going to be super helpful. So if anyone has any more thoughts, please share them! I’m very open at the moment to adding more stuff, changing stuff or even removing stuff, if you give some good feedback explaining why it’s a good idea.


  • Having trawled the code, while some stats are checked for the likelihood of events (ie high technology levels leaving you more vulnerable to CME’s) there doesn’t presently seem to be any countermeasures I can prepare beyond the relevant agencies, which is what I’m looking for ideally. Do you know what determines the ‘winning’ measure? It governs quite a few existing events (market meltdown, bane of my government…), but I couldn’t seem to find a sim value for it.

  • Yah, Cliffski, yah! Code faster!

  • As above. I’ve described the event poorly; it was the shopping centre bombing, which I’m pretty sure is new. How does the game determine which terror group opts to launch an assassination / gets to appear in your quarterly report? Can it be read from there?

I’m going to have to get my feet wet, I can see. Perhaps I’ll reclaim my policies from ulq…

Sorry for not replying for a while, I’ve just been looking into some of these issues…

Winning I think is primarily dictated by the percentage of the electorate that supports you, I believe. I think there are other facts too, but that seems to be the main one. Regarding the likelihood of events, one of the things I’m doing is improving the ability to have counter-measures, and have things that lesson the situations outside of the new agencies. For instance, the pandemic is now reduced by private and public healthcare to an extent.

The shopping centre bombing is new. Unfortunately after some experimentation, I don’t believe I can read the number of terrorists. It seems that is all handled internally away from the nice mod-able bits. So I think this will stay as is for now.

Also, on the dilemma side of things, I am experimenting with dilemma-event chains to try to make the dilemmas have more weight/interest? So for instance, an event happens where terrorists kidnap some people on holiday and threaten to execute them. Then you can get a dilemma about whether or not to launch a risky Special Forces mission to rescue them. If you choose to do it, a further event (or rather, one of two events) determines if the rescue succeeds. I’m kind of hoping this will make dilemmas more interesting because you won’t necessarily know what will happen 100% of the time, and it gives you more agency over the events that occur. Do people have any thoughts on this?


Hi there,

I want to compliment you with your mod. I have absolutely no knowledge of coding, so I don’t think I can be of much help.
If there is one point of feedback I like to give, it is that it feels like the CERR is not effective enough to make a difference.

Keep up the great work, you already have a original mod!


I have now updated to 0.2! See the original post, the change log shows the big changes. But in particular I want to highlight that this update brings 8 new events and 4 new dilemmas, on top of the 10 new events from 0.1. So that’s some content right there. I’ve played with these changes a lot and been doing a bunch of tweaking and I kind of feel like I can’t see the woods for the trees in terms of balancing now. As such, if you have any feedback regarding balance I would be super interested in hearing it! Thank you!

Also, thanks Grumpylion! I hope the update to 0.2 addresses your issue. CERR is now better linked to other things in the game, and will offer some help on more situations like major strikes or riots. They also do more to help with terrorism resilience, as I agree they were weak before.



I’ve just run 0.2 on Australia and Britain, 200%.

  • I saw quite a lot of the non-terrorist disasters, but almost nothing about terrorists. I had a shopping centre bombing and the police station attack near the beginning of one game. As the terrorist groups were all empty, I presumed it was foreign based, bumped up my foreign aid, and that stopped. It still feels somewhat disorientating not knowing who’s blowing up my citizens, but I gather that’s waiting on back engine capabilities.

  • The new policies now link in better, but they still feel overpowered with regard to the DES pack emergencies. Taking pandemic flu as an example. It makes sense to me that the signature policy (CPMDC) is the most effective counter. However, max power CPDMC is currently worth about 3 times as much as the NHS (which translates as ‘Some Prevention’ on state health IIRC) and private healthcare combined. It’s just too much - if you haven’t already implemented the counter policy, you’ll be done over for the next dozen turns. I haven’t actually done my sums and checked, but it seems that with the appropriate agency fully enabled, I can clear most problems in a few turns - or a dozen or more without.

  • Prevention is too cheap. I can buy top levels for every agency for approximately £20 billion - not chump change, but not megabucks either. For most of the agencies, any increase in cost will start to make them look overpriced. I’d suggest offloading more of the countermeasure effect to existing policies, where they exist. Keep the agencies in play, but weaken their effects. My suggestions, disaster by disaster…

Epidemic - your heavy lifter here is the State Health, as they’re doing the bulk of the treatment. Retain CPDMC as a significant countermeasure; let the epidemic situation start at a lower value if national health is high?

Volcanic Ash - shift some of the countermeasures to Rural Development Grants/Agriculture subsidies (government propping up failing farmers) and Rail Subsidies (Next best thing to planes). This one feels like it should be naturally fairly short lived - for all the drama over the Iceland volcano, it didn’t go on that long.

Foot and Mouth - I’m alright with CPDMC having the lead on this. I’d suggest a reduction for the Organic Farming Subsidy - happy hippy farming makes it harder for disease to spread?

Space Weather - should be rare but nasty (having seen the code later, looks pretty good)

Wildfire - Ok as stands. I’d like to see a reduced chance to trigger if we keep our CO2 levels down - less global warming, etc. Possibly let Rural grants help again?

Flooding - I’d like a CO2 link as above. How do you feel about a totally separate ‘flood defences’ policy? I ask because if you look at the costs to protect New Orleans or much of the British coast, it can be absolutely ruinous. This could be written into ENDRA’s mandate, and would justify a significant increase in the cost of that policy.

  • Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see the event/dilemma combos. Having looked at the code, though, they look great!

  • Similarly code-diving, various individual comments…

CERR now much more useful. Didn’t see this in my games as no strikes. Connections for all policies much more relevant.

Volcanic ash surely needs a GDP hit, if all planes grounded? No pre-existing secondary link.

Foot and mouth has somehow acquired the description from volcanic ash! More importantly, needs to lose its effect on Environment. Although D3 calls it Environment rather than Air Quality, it is still predominantly about the air. Even considering the environment as a whole, foot and mouth mainly hits livestock rather than the rest of the ecosystem. Having an outbreak of sheep disease trigger an asthma epidemic was amusing, but somewhat bizarre.

Sweet jesus, I’m glad I didn’t get a CME! I approve of this as the rare absolute killer - that crunch to technology will tear out your productivity as well.

Can you talk me through the progression of terror events (use a PM if you don’t want to spoil it). When I do get them, I seem to get the same couple each time. I’d also suggest upgunning the grand finale even further - if things have got this bad, you deserve to have it beating you round the head. I’d suggest a dump on productivity - if people are too scared to go out, then not much gets done.

Somewhat incoherent (I’ve been driving all day), but I hope it helps!

Hi, this mod looks like a great idea, I’ve uploaded the files to my server to make them safe and easy to download and re-did it as a positech installer (that way it’s signed and browsers are happier about allowing downloads). You can see it listed here:
Just let me know if it gets updated. Cheers!

is this mod compatible with other mods? (country mods?)

In reverse order…

Biscuit - Yes, it is completely compatible.

Cliffski - Thanks very much! I’ll let you know about updates.

Rick -

  • It sounds like you found an effective answer to the problem! The improvement to your foreign relations through the aid will likely be what fixed it. With the new modding tools released, I’m going to see if maybe it’s possible to at least separate domestic from foreign terrorism? So you can see if the problem is at home or abroad. But I make no promises, because I don’t know if it’s actually possible!
  • I’ll think about this, though I’m not sure I agree that the prevention is too cheap. It’s 20bn a turn for things that might never happen anyway, and you need to spend it for a couple of years before the policies become fully effective, so there’s a lot of up-front investment. It’s more a question of whether you want to spend the money over a long time to prevent big shocks later, or all at once when the disaster actually happens.
  • While state health is important for treatment, they can’t do very much to prevent the spread of a pandemic? That’s what CPDMC are for, to offer an organised national response to the problem. The impact of healthcare is somewhat modeled through how health is effected, while CPDMC determines how much of a problem it is to begin with? I think I will add health to effecting the likelihood of the event happening, though, because a healthier population is less likely to practice the bad habits that result in diseases spreading.
  • The volcanic ash is one of the shorter problems (about a year), though I would highlight that the event actually describes something a lot worse than the Icelandic problem. It’s closer to 1816, the year without a summer (or my favourite name Eighteen Hundred and Froze to Death) which saw starvation across Europe. It wouldn’t be as bad these days, and this event also isn’t quite as severe, but it would be bad still and reasonably long lasting.
  • I’m not quite sure why happy hippy farming makes it less likely for the disease to spread? I am not an expert on farming, however, so I may be missing something here.
  • I meant to add CO2 last time, but missed it, sorry! I will this time.
  • I like it when people tell me things about my own mods that I didn’t know. I thought volcanic ash did affect GDP, but you’re right, it doesn’t. I will change that.
  • Ack! Thanks for pointing out this problem with Foot and Mouth. I don’t know how that happened, and I will fix. Also, fair point about the air quality/environment thing. I will reconsider.
  • CMEs are both nasty and fairly short lived, yes!
  • I will send a PM on terror events.

Thanks very much for your thoughts! I’ll probably be doing a bit of a reasonable update following the updates to the modding tools, as soon as I figure out how to use them properly. So expect something substantial at some point.


Hi, quick bit of feedback from a first attempt (playing Greece). I’ve found a bit of an issue in that terrorist attacks caused Patriots to become upset enough to launch terrorist attacks, leading to an inescapable recursion of negative effects (to the extent that there was a terrorist event almost every turn for about 2 years)

Otherwise, great mod, thanks!

This has now been updated to v1.0 (and added to the Steam workshop)!

chrisawhitemore - Thanks! Having played a bit more, I can see where you’re coming from and I’ve tuned down the increase in patriot population created by terrorism quite a lot, so this should be less of a problem.

Ha! That’s kinda cool though. Maybe that’s how failed states get started…

So, Chris Livingston was kind enough to select this mod as Mod of the Week for his column for PCGamer.com! He has given it a really great write-up which I thoroughly encourage anyone curious about the mod to read. You can find it here: http://www.pcgamer.com/2013/12/03/mod-of-the-week-disaster-and-emergency-situations-pack-for-democracy-3/


Hey that’s fantastic congrats!!

Many congratulations, this is well deserved.