National Service fixes

The “National Service” policy currently has a couple issues:

  • It’s too expensive in Political Capital- making it virtually impossible to implement. At 50 cost, it’s almost impossible to afford even if you have >95% support and save up Political Capital to your cap (which is almost always less than 50). The same goes for any policy costing 50, for that matter: no policy really ought to cost much over 40 Political Capital with the way the caps are currently balanced.

  • It’s not clear it increases the strength of your military, even though it represents a large injection of additional manpower (particularly reservists that can be called upon in a crisis) and a bit of money into your military. Having National Service, and having it at higher strength levels, should help prevent events to do with having a weak military.

  • For South Korea (which, like in real life, starts with National Service active), National Service doesn’t reduce “North Korea Threat” at all. It absolutely should, especially considering the North Korean Army consists of huge numbers of underequipped and poorly-trained conscripts. South Korean conscripts are still likely to be of vastly higher combat effectiveness than their northern counterparts, due to South Korea’s much more advanced Technology (which statistic should also influence this threat) and better-funded military. So, especially given that one of the primary disadvantages of conscripts is definitely not applicable here (being outclassed by better professional soldiers in enemy armies), National Service should unquestionably affect “North Korean Threat.”

  1. You can achieve 50 max PC if you do really well. Fanatically loyal ministers with post-election loyalty boost will give 25 PC / turn. Emergency Powers can be another way too.
  2. There are some potentially bad events related to weak military. I understand some ppl want to see concrete benefits of strong military but I think it is rather intangible and occasional. Though, I’d agree that more events/dilemmas requiring strong military.
  3. Definitely agree on National Service - NK Threat link suggestion. One of the most common criticism on ‘abolish conscription’ or ‘replace with volunteer’ arguments is threats from North Korea.
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I think you miss my point: I know these “weak military” events exist (I regularly lower Military Spending to just above the threshold to avoid them, through trial/error), and they should be avoidable at a lower Military Spending level if you have National Service active.

Conscription is unpopular with some voter blocs, but there is little question that it DOES actually make militaries stronger in the real world.

Nobody ever forces generals to call up the full number of reservists available at any given time, or give them heavy equipment (or give all the Active troops combat equipment and send them out, rather than putting some on duty back at base, or protecting low-value targets, with minimal equipment), they call up the number they feel will help them best meet mission goals (balanced against the political unpopularity of mobilizing reserves in some cases), and equip them as they see best.

Arguments all-volunteer militaries are always stronger than armies augmented with conscripts (volunteers and conscripts can and do often both serve in the same militaries, sometimes in distinct units with different roles…) are disingenuous and inconsistent bad logic, at best, malicious attempts to weaken the military of a country fueled by foreign-funded activists or pacifism, at worst.

It’s honestly reasonable to have conscription be basically impossible to implement without a crisis. Remember, emergency powers give a lot of PC. Regardless of your own opinion on conscription, the reality is that a population who aren’t accustomed to conscription simply wouldn’t stand for it without a crisis. Even the troops wouldn’t be particularly happy. I spent 15 years in my nation’s military and I wouldn’t want to trust a conscript to have my back.

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A conscript wouldn’t need to have your back as a volunteer. The concerns you mentioned are precisely why conscripts are typically kept separate from volunteers, the latter of whom serve in all-volunteer units.

And, it doesn’t matter what your personal opinion is of conscription as a soldier. Politicians have historically shown a great ability to push highly unpopular measures through when they have an extremely loyal cabinet and very widespread political support among the population beforehand.

I’m not saying it should be easy to pass conscription. But 50 PC is a high enough of a cost that you can almost never afford it even when building up PC for 6 months (2 turns) with an almost-all Fanatically Loyal cabinet, >95% political support, AND a post-election PC boost. THAT is simply unrealistic.

The cost needs to be trimmed a little (even 42 or 44 PC is extremely high, and requires nearly-all Fanatical cabinet ministers, tons of public support, AND a post-election boost to PC to achieve in most cases) or players need to be able to save up PC for slightly more than 2 turns (2.5 or 2.4 turns worth of cap would be a bit more realistic- representing highly controversial issues, like Obamacare was, that take more than 6 months to push through the legislature…) or get some kind of discount on upfront PC costs by initially implementing a policy only at the lowest strength.

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I have in the past advocated for systems which allow the player to go over 2 turns worth of PC at great cost through some sort of “national debate” process, a recent example would be Britain’s exit from the EU. That could work as a reason to be able to implement something like conscription, but the costs and risks would need to be high.

I would not support lowering the PC cost for conscription, it SHOULD be something which requires a crisis and cannot be implemented under normal circumstances. Populations who are not accustomed ro conscription simply wouldn’t stand for it without some substantial crisis to justify it.

Regarding the matter of PC point generation, I do feel like PC from majority isn’t working properly as it rarely grants any PC point.


I guess maybe ‘won by X% majority’ was intended to grant 25*X% PC/turn for the rest of the term, considering the simconfig file.