The Political Machine 2016 Sims Presidential Pratfalls

Half the fun of politics simulators is that you get to mess about and see how silly you can be without your head ending up atop a pike. Every four years, Stardock simulate the US presidential election with their Political Machine, but I don’t know if it’s worth the effort this time. What a lineup of jokers, eh? Games couldn’t be sillier than the real race, right? Yeah? Little bit of politics there ladies and gentlemen, little bit of politics.

If you fancy hitting the campaign trail, The Political Machine 2016 [official site] is out… in Early Access? Ooh, this modern world!

The Political Machine lets folks play as real-world US Presidential candidates or create their own, then steer them through fundraising, campaigning, press interviews, and so on to try and win The Big White Chair. It’s a bit fluffy and silly, and a bit cheap and cheerful, but then so’s the current candidate lineup. Little bit of politics there, ladies and gentlemen. Little bit of politics.

So how come the fourth entry in the quadrennial series has turned to Early Access? Stardock say:

“We are constantly iterating and trying out new ideas and we need players to help us through that process in order to deliver the best game possible at release. In addition, Early Access gives us time to incorporate the ongoing zaniness of the primary season into the game through new issues and events.”

Yeah, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if some amazingly daft things happen soon. Little bit of politics there, ladies and gentlemen. Little. Bit. Of. Politics. They also plan to add multiplayer and random events.

The Political Machine 2016 is £6.99/$9.99 on Steam Early Access or direct from Stardock. Stardock also sell an upgrade from earlier versions for $5. An inside tipster tells me Marsh is prematurely evaluating the game and will tell us all about it on Monday.


  1. Solidstate89 says:

    Trump is a giant something alright.

    • pepperfez says:

      Stale cheesepuff?
      Tabby cat’s hairball?
      Fuligo septica colony?

    • RabbitIslandHermit says:

      Part of me is hoping that Trump wins the nomination so the Grand Coalition of the Relatively Sane (aka the Democratic Party) can win easily in November, the other part of me fears that he may be the kind of blowhard idiotic strongman that swing voters love.

      Scary part is that immigration aside he’s actually the most moderate viable Republican candidate.

      • Distec says:

        I have to do a double-take every time Trump says something that isn’t completely batshit insane – possibly approaching reasonable. He very much plays “A Man of the Right”, but then breaks that mould in some unexpected ways. It’s certainly different from the usual: where every Republican candidate is basically in lock-step agreement on all the major issues and then they quibble over who’s more conservative than the other.

        I’d be tempted to call it refreshing. But that would be ignoring the acrid stench that has permeated that side of US politics and their ridiculous nomination proceedings.

      • TheAngriestHobo says:

        Scary part is that a man with zero understanding of geopolitics has a half-decent chance of taking the White House. He’s got a serious broner (no, that’s not a typo) for Putin, and it’s pretty likely that he’ll give that maniac carte blanche within his own backyard if elected. Two bombastic assholes with massive arsenals buddying up, what fun!

        • RabbitIslandHermit says:

          Eh, buddying up with horrible assholes isn’t exactly a new frontier in US foreign policy and I’d rather that happen than get into a ground war in Syria and play the nuclear brinkmanship game with Russia (as the more Serious Republican candidates promise), so count me on Team Trump on this one.

          Kill me.

  2. toastmodernist says:

    President forever is really the game you want to be playing in this genre. It’s presentation and ui are a lot more spreadsheety but pretty much everything else is a lot better.

    link to

    • RabbitIslandHermit says:

      Yeah, I haven’t played 270soft games since Congress Forever (I was not a fan of the engine change but that may be because I just hate change) but if you’re looking for serious but still fun election sims their games are really quite impressive. Dunno why they haven’t tried to get on Steam, they probably could make a fair bit of cash.

    • AngoraFish says:

      Colour me interested…

    • RegisteredUser says:

      Seems like games like that should be free for students/pupils so as to at least give someone some fun and enthusiasm around voting again.
      Its a shame these are sold, especially if they are good enough to be integrated into university courses etc.
      (aka: Wow I’d love to play this but it isn’t worth 20$ to me)

  3. icecreamjones says:

    This game is so stale, its a reskin of the same Political Machine they’ve released every 4 years since the dawn of time.

    • icecreamjones says:

      (Also Stardock sucks, owner/operator has literally threatened staff members with punishment if they vote non-republican in the past)

      • leeder krenon says:

        He probably is a Trump voter.

      • Distec says:

        Is there any truth to this or is this just some more bullshit people are trying to stick on Brad Wardell?

        I can’t find anything regarding this, so my guess is it’s the latter.

        • RabbitIslandHermit says:

          AFAICT he only supported some other jackass CEO’s right to do that.

  4. yan spaceman says:

    They appear to have been very restrained in the rendering of Donald Trump’s hair.