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Politics and economy.

Discussion in 'StarLife' started by Malakal, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. Malakal Arcane

    Malakal
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    Lets discuss politics and economy in this planned game, as both are extremely important areas that usually are under-represent. Luckily both MoO2 and 3 did include some of those with somewhat good results so we can see it could be fun.

    I. Politics:
    Politics would be all about government and about who wields power in a particular race. They would not only be a set of bonuses and penalties but actually have an important influence over the gameplay.
    Government types - depending on who wields power:
    1. Dictatorship - one being wields supreme power in the race. Corruption runs rampart, economy is hardly efficient but military always gets enough funding (more about that later on) and the player can influence almost everything. Direct control at the price of effectivity. Free willed races tend to strive to topple this form of government so its not exactly stable. Revolution and rebellion prone too.
    ++ control
    +++ military
    ++ industry
    - corruption
    -- economy
    -- research
    -- stability
    Main subtypes:
    a. feudal (aristocratic, caste system) - society is divided in groups some of which are favored and serve as the ruling class (aristocracy). Feudal societies are VERY stable and conservative. Public opinion is weak and the ruler has only to gain favour of minority.
    +++ stability
    + military
    + control
    -- corruption
    -- research
    -- economy
    +/- industry
    b. authoritarian - one being is a father/mother to the race. His/her rule isnt tyrannical but benevolent. More relaxed than dictatorship.
    + control
    + military
    + industry
    - corruption
    - research
    - economy
    - stability
    c. monarchy (empire etc) - one dynasty rules due to divine right. Often employs the elements of feudalism. Stable and can evolve further.
    + control
    + military
    + stability
    - corruption
    - research
    - industry
    +/- economy
    d. tyranny - one being rules with force, backed up by the military or and certain interest groups.
    ++ control
    +++ military
    -- corruption
    -- economy
    - research
    - stability
    2. Oligarchic government - a certain group of influential beings rules over the race. Interests of this group tend to come first. Bonuses and penalties change depending on the group.
    ++ in groups main focus (research for technocracy, economy for meritocracy, military for a military state etc)
    + control
    -- stability
    - corruption
    3. Democratic government - people rule themselves with election and their chosen representatives. All forms of democracy suffer from military negligence and stability penalties but enjoy a solid boost to their research and economy. Player however has limited influence over the economy and not always can channel its output where desired.
    - military
    - stability
    -- control
    ++ economy
    ++ research
    + industry
    Government subtypes would most likely be republic, federation, corporate etc.
    4. Hive mind and other exotic - people are either mindless drones serving the queen or somehow connected as a greater thing (pheromones, hive mind etc). Those governments tend to b extremely productive and stable but very ineffective at research and economy.
    +++ control
    ++ industry
    +++ stability
    + military
    -- economy
    --- research

    Governments would form a base for players actions and decisions and his influence over the economy of his race.

    II. Economy:
    In general the more freedom people enjoy the more money and goods they make. But wars are not won with silky stockings but with planes and tanks (or space planes and space tanks). This is where control comes in.

    Economy would be divided into public sector and private sector. Both sectors can produce exactly the same but they are developed differently. Public sector is developed by government funding and controlled by the player, private sector grows by itself. At their base private sector is about 20% more effective but effects of corruption reduce the effectivity of public sector two or three times as much as it does to the private one.

    Public sector:
    - represents industry and state sponsored research,
    - cost maintenance and only generates money if it produces things for sale either for export or for the private sector,
    - if buildings will be present they will be public sector, if not then a percentage of planets economy and this percentage further divided into industry areas

    Private sector:
    - develops by itself based on cycles depending on population size, relative freedom of action and behaviour, openness of trade,
    - only produces to generate income,
    - if player wants to use it it has to be paid for,
    - generates money from taxes.

    Income for the state:
    - taxation of population (based on size, its freedom, tech, relative size of private sector - workers there earn more),
    - taxation of the private sector (based on the size and production),
    - sold and traded production from the public sector

    Industry:
    - heavy industry - shipyards, military factories, energy - produces fleets and armies, both for public and private use, very limited demand from the population, in public sector player picks how much of the heavy industry he wants,
    - light industry - military manufacturing, goods - produces fleets and armies but not very effective at this, also cant build bigger ships, big demand from the population, can be built in the public sector but then competes with the private one,
    - services - services provided to the population - only serves to produce income and to actually manufacture something, favourite of the private sector.

    So to summarize a bit:
    If you play a democratic nation your private sector will be big and your public sector will be based on heavy industry to produce military equipment. When needed the player will be able to purchase a lot from the private sector and to mobilize it for war. Think USA in WWII.
    If you play a tyrannical dictatorship your public sector will be huge but ineffective. However you will have great production capacity at the expense of small income.
    If you play a hive mind you will most likely only have a barter based economy and almost no private sector. Public sector will be effective tho.
     
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  2. Cassidy Arcane

    Cassidy
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    Don't hard-code x economics for y politics. Do it like in Alpha Centauri where you can have a Democracy with a planned socialist economy and thought control future society or Green police state and Eudaimonia.
     
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  3. Grunker RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    Codex 2012 Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Agree with Cassidy. Also, I'd tie economy to "random" events. The choice between a focus on the public sector or the private sector should yield different random events. For example, a lean towards a free market might produce growth and gain in the short run (this benefit you know), while making chances of an "economic collapse" or other event causing instability bigger in the long run (this is random, but your choice of focus on a free market increase the chances). On the other hand, a lean towards the public sector will decrease wealth in the short run but also decrease chances of instability events.

    Obviously it can be made much more complex and better than this, with much deeper nuances between the two ways of running a state. If you go through with a system like this, I'd be more than happy to write (not code) the events. I have a degree in political economy.
     
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  4. tiagocc0 Arcane

    tiagocc0
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    Very interesting.
    I'm in love with the idea of private and public sectors since I played Distant Worlds.

    I like the idea that the government would not only give start bonuses, I will definitely keep this post in mind. But maybe we could define some basic stats that would them one government apart from the other. Then start defining everything else to make them complete/realistic.

    I liked how Alpha Centauri played, minus their research tree.


    That would be great, I definitely want to use an event system and expand it to the entire game.
    Have you played King of Dragon Pass?
     
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  5. Grunker RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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  6. tiagocc0 Arcane

    tiagocc0
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    It had a very interesting event system.
    The thing would keep you occupied for quite a while.

    I remember one event that really impressed me.

    I had a village of what would be Nordic people, they really liked to attack nearby villages but I was trying to avoid conflict so I went and attacked a very distant land to the east. In this game those distant land were occupied by monsters or semi-human beings.

    After my attack party came back they said one of them died, he was left behind and must have been tortured to death.

    After a couple years (I think it was 16 turns if I'm not wrong, it's two turns for each season), a monster appeared and wanted to talk to me, I could kill him, shove him off, talk to him or call him names (I can't remember all the options but it was more or less like this). I decided to talk to him but I as advised by my clan members that I really should not.

    Then I discovered that he was the guy that was left to die on enemy lands, he was about to die and asked for help, their gods felt sorry for him and let him live but he turned into one of them.

    So he asked if he could come back to the village, I let him come back.

    After a couple years he starts complaining because when we where raiding nobody guard his back, he had to fight alone and when we won there was almost no spoils left for him. So I went and talked with the village so they wouldn't treat him differently.

    More years passed by and he wanted a wife, I could force someone from my village to marry him but I decided to look into the neighboring villages, I found one ugly gal and they married.

    Even more years later he had a son, but his son was semi-human the same way he was, he then asked for help because he didn't want all of his family to be like him, so I went and performed a ritual to cleanse him.

    And finally after a couple of years he had a daughter that was human and he thanked me.

    This is where I stopped playing, I don't know if there was more events, but this was the longest event I'd found. There was a lot more events, some were short, others were long.
    But I really liked how they played, how they would come back, how three to four events would be active popping in my screen every two, three turns.
     
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  7. Grunker RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    Wow. That sounds impressive. And time-consuming to code ;)

    Writing complex events, I suspect, is easy if you have ideas and a pretty good foundation of knowledge. Which is why I'm volunteering. But I suspect the coding the damn things will be work that piles up quickly!
     
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  8. tiagocc0 Arcane

    tiagocc0
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    On king of dragon pass the events are quite complex because they are the main feature of the game.
    That's right, it can become quite a hassle.

    We could try writing some basic events to test them and see how it goes, but it will be a while before I can code the event system.

    I gladly accept your help.
    Feel free to take the course you find more appropriate. :thumbsup:
     
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  9. Grunker RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    Alright, I'll give it a few days for this discussion to come to a middle, and write up some samples.
     
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  10. oscar Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    oscar
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    King of Dragon Pass :love:
     
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  11. Malakal Arcane

    Malakal
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    This. A great game. If some events like this could be added it would be wonderful.
     
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  12. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    I think the best political system for a 4X would be something like Alpha Centauri, indeed.
    But you can't stay bound to our convential, feijão-com-arroz politics, you need to look for other possible methods of government.

    AI rule is a oldie but a goodie.
    The Imperium of Man in WH40K is a good example of a peculiar, odd and familiar form of government. The best description for it I saw was "Descentralized Feudal Totalitarian Theocratic Empire," which is pretty good because the Imperium is like a mix of the HRE, Nazi Germany, the USSR, The Papal States, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the Chinese Empire, all in one. Even the SMAC Social Engineering System probrably could't nail down the Imperium (Fundamentalism/Planned/Power/Thought Control?).

    Also, don't forget future advances in all sciences may create new forms of government and social behavior. SMAC covered that with the Future Governments.
     
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  13. tiagocc0 Arcane

    tiagocc0
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    I think by the time humanity really starts colonizing other planets they probably will be unified one way or another, so probably humans should have one or two types of government at max and they will be completely different or resemble a little current types of government.
    And with time other types of government would arise.
    Unless humanity splits in two, three factions of course, that would be extremes (completely different from one to another).
     
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  14. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Depends on how easy FTL is and how early it is obtained.
    Also, humans are desunited and tribal by nature. The whole "humans unite, go into space" is a dead horse trope, probrably created/inspired by H.G. Wells and the most Optimist sci-fi writters.
    Can't see all humans kowtowing to one rule in a world of FTL. Of course, maybe the government says they're only government of humanity, but are actually lying.
    Of course, there's space limitations, and other human factions can always appear as customized races.
     
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  15. Destroid Arcane

    Destroid
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    We are gradually consolidating. China holds the allegiance of one in every five humans, India near the same. Of course these are federations rather than monoliths, and a federation is a reasonable expectation of a global government.
     
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  16. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    We're actually balkanizing. And Consolidating at the same time.
    In 1914 there were like 50 nations, today we have something like 180 U.N official recognized U.N members and something like two hundred nations in total if you count non-recognized nations.
    On the other hand, Globalization and Commercial Blocks connect countries more. Weird, huh?
     
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  17. tiagocc0 Arcane

    tiagocc0
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    If you count countries as states from a bigger global country then you get the direction we are going to.
    The question may be if we are going to get one global country or several of them.
    They might be represented by a political party, a philosophy or a mega corporation.
     
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  18. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Knowing how humanity is, it will probrably be all of them. At the same time.
    Not to mention that all these people that will want to set up on far-away worlds and asteroid belts and create their own little -ist utopias away from "The Man." And that's just for humanity, imagine races where every world is so divided and quarrelsome that it makes Sub-Saharan Africa looks boring. Hell, that may actually be a good thing for them depending on how they work.
     
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