Democracy 2

$24.82

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Description

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Complete Review & Description

If you’re like me, you’ve found yourself talking about the government – no matter who is currently in power – and asking “why would they do that?” or “why won’t they do this?” Things that seem obviously good for the country aren’t implemented, while other more bizarre policies get shepherded through. You get the feeling that minority groups, whoever they may be, get pandered to – while the voice of the students, or maybe the smokers, or the farmers, just doesn’t get a say.
Then again, maybe you don’t think about these things. Once you’ve played Democracy however, you probably will – or at least you’ll quite likely develop a more forgiving attitude towards politicians. It’s hard work keeping everyone happy!

Democracy is a political-simulation game from the guys at Positech (http://www.positech.co.uk/). It puts you in the driver’s seat, of the country of your choice. It’s then up to you to implement policies that you think are going to be good for your country. Be careful, though, because you’ve got elections to think about, as well as groups that can quite easily become disgruntled with your leadership style, and who will even try and remove you from power, if you don’t pay enough attention to their needs.
With Democracy, you’re presented with a bare-bones interface, which shows the various groups which make up your voters, your current popularity, and what percentage of the population would vote for you at any given time. The rest of the screen displays your policies, and certain areas of concern, such as unemployment, life expectancy, etc. Each of these policies influence your voters, and likewise influence the other areas of concern (such as GDP), which in turn re-affect your voters (capitalists are concerned with GDP; parents with life expectancy, pollution and asthma epidemics).
Every three months you can make two changes to your budget or policies. You can increase tax, decrease spending, introduce new policies, decrease or increase funding of policies, or shut them down altogether. Every change you make will please some people and displease others. It’s up to you to juggle what you think is right with the demands of everyone else. Did I mention this game is tricky?
For example, the first country I played was Sweden. I thought I would go for the traditionally socialist, clean, green approach. Within the year my parliament was bombed and I was put into hospital. Game over. I tried again with Australia. The capitalists weren’t happy with my Luxury Goods tax that I’d implemented, and so staged a coup! I wound up hogtied in South America.
This game is fascinating. There’s no graphics or animation to speak of, everything is turn-based, and yet it is strangely addictive – a little like Positech’s other game, Kudos. What I like about it is that these guys are creating some interesting new simulations which have been well thought out. The interrelationships between policies, areas of concern, and voters, are really interesting. They have managed to simulate how budgets work, how certain policies (and the money that you do or don’t throw at them) also affect people.
I’m not 100% sure who this game will appeal to. It’s a tricky market. Yes, it is a clever and interesting game, but its static nature may not appeal much to those who are into high-action, high-animation games.
And yet, it’s addictive. Every time I get bombed or taken over, I’m determined to play again, to start afresh, and get it right this time. I suspect that’s how every politician feels once they’ve been re-elected.

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