Not sure if these are implementable/moddable in D2, but maybe for D3. I’ve tried to avoid redundancies or non-original thoughts by reading through as many posts as possible. That said:
- Political Capital and Policy Implementation: i think there is a better way to do this. rather than having new policies based on what appears ot be linear math, policy costs should be slightly exponential (or near exponential) both in the amount of capital required to begin them and in the amount of capital required to change them and in the amount of time required to implement them. in other words, small change, small cost, big change, big cost. it should consequently also be easier to make ‘promises’ which are really ‘empty promises’ that get you a minor change from certain groups and cost little political capital and no time (since they’re almost substanceless)–this would also have the effect of greatly increasing the voter cynicism which Cliffski has talked about. however, the larger a policy, the more capital it should cost. proposing a health care system that offers, say, only consultations, compared to one which purports to handle everything for an entire population, is a MAJOR difference politically. this would be something like having a ‘base’ number for the cost of the policy, which is then modified +/- by the strength of the policy, on a curve–forcing players to make minute adjustments to multiple policies and save up more capital for the really big decisions.
one of the major reasons for proposing this is that, at present, there is little incentive to introduce ‘moderate’ policies or to tweak policies in moderate ways when playing the game–after repeated playthroughs many of my policies head to one extreme or another.
this also ‘concretizes’ your scenario countries so that players cannot radically readjust them so easily to suit their own tastes. the policies that form that society’s basis will be much harder to drastically change or get rid of. (of course, you’ll have to adjust Zambeezia slightly so it is actually winnable in that case )
particularly egregious examples of this problem are items like the Carbon Tax. does anyone NOT use this? it’s easily worth double-digit billions with no consequences to the wealthy or capitalists, only a minor hit to GDP–which can be offset by an extreme use of Import Tariffs or somesuch. really? last time i checked, there are certain major interest groups whose entire careers (and profit margins) are dependent upon stopping things like carbon taxes in Canada, America and China due to fears of capitalist collapse ( or a few million less in stock options).
the liberal reaction to guns is wrong. liberals tend to be more anti-gun, not pro-gun. it isn’t seen as a ‘personal rights’ issue, it’s seen as a common safety issue–more like ‘the right not to get shot at’. it doesn’t make sense to have liberals hate a police force with guns but not be worried by the kid at the 7-11 holding an Uzi. in reality, most liberals see controls on guns and licensing as a good idea–something that stops Patriots and Conservatives from acting like Dirty Harry/vigilantes. they would be horrified by a ‘no laws’ system, lightly pleased with registration and controls, and probably annoyed by complete banning. if this can’t be curved like this, than i think you should at least err on this issue in the other direction.
on the policies screen, and under the assumption that more policies will continue to be added, and other people have mentioned similar thoughts to this, i think there should be a brief ‘polling’ item or such that tells you what the expected reactions from concerned parties are. governments rarely introduce a new policy without checking how groups will react. however, beyond this, i would also identify certain policies–especially cheaper ones, as microeconomic, and other policies as macroeconomic. with the introduction of smaller policies, and the ideas contained in #1 on my thread, this would allow players to set up their major macroeconomic policies and then introduce or fine-tune smaller ones–some of which, as was also discussed in other threads, can be consequences of/triggered by the macroeconomic policies.
as a basic policy, one of the major missing ones (that does not need to be implemented in any especial way) is ‘freedom of press.’ taking it as a given is a Western standard, but controlling the press is common in developing countries. slider could be something like ‘state propaganda–state-owned–independent, state censored–totally independent.’ you could also do something similar with media ownership that vacillates between public ownership and private ownership.
of course, this could also be used to impact voter cynicism and the general reaction of the population (ie: a free media causes a slightly more positive reaction in good times for the country, but amplifies the negative if the country is falling apart)
- the impact of foreign relations in the game seems almost completely negligible to me. maybe i’m missing something? does it only relate to random events? i don’t see any benefits to positive international relations. show me the money.
beyond that, for a D3, maybe consider having a list of major infrastructure items in a country and whether they are controlled by national or private interests, which would set some of the base values for groups in society (things such as: energy, roads, church/state, environment, etc.)
i think it’s a great game and really enjoying it. thanks for your dedication.