By Adam Smith on January 17th, 2013 at 4:00 pm.
When he isn’t mounting gratuitous battles between war-vehicles of various sorts, Cliff Harris likes to model the political world. The next project from Positech will be Democracy 3, which will benefit not only from updated code, being 95% written from scratch, it’ll also update its political world to incorporate the events of the last five years. Much has changed since Democracy 2’s release and the new game will include reflections on the global credit crunch, Occupy movement and Arab spring, while also reflecting technological and scientific advances. An updated GUI and stronger modding support are also set for inclusion when the game is released “sometime this year”. I enjoyed the previous version, so colour me intrigued.
Cliffski explains his return to political engineering:
I think it’s my most original and innovative design, in terms of both mechanics and GUI. I don’t think any other game I’ve made has been so ‘out of the blue’ as Democracy. I also find it very interesting (although incredibly difficult) to work on. basically it’s a custom-build neural network with a cunning GUI on top of it. I’m also a bit of a political geek, with views that range all over the spectrum, so I enjoy the analysis and research involved in working on the game.
I’m fascinated by games that are packed with data to nudge and play with, and the political theme wins my vote as well. Areas of the political model will also be revamped:
The game had no good system within its simulation to reflect the private sector with regards to social services such as health care, schools and pensions, and tended to require state provision in those areas. This is a shortfall which skews the game more than I would like into a specific political direction.
The game has been in development for a while and a working version already exists, so hopefully we might see something of it sooner rather than later. Democracy 2 has a demo, so if you fancy meddling right away, I am powerless to stop you.