Elections are an important part of any democracy. For many citizens who aren’t active in civil society, it’s the only time that they really exercise their democratic powers. In most games, including Democracy 3 until this DLC was released, you simply run your country and if you do a good job, you will be reelected. However, watching what goes on during the extended election cycles lately, this is not an accurate picture, which is something that Electioneering seeks to correct.
The Electioneering DLC for Democracy 3 isn’t active throughout your reign in the game. If you try to write your manifesto or give speeches too soon, you will be instructed to instead focus on running your country. If only that instruction were given to more politicians… Then again, this DLC addresses one of the major issues of the game – groups vote too closely along the lines of how policies have affected them. The poor will vote for you if your policies have targeted their problems, without any thoughts about your other policies or what your public image has shown. Electioneering finally deals with the concept of voter perception.
Once active, Electioneering gives players a variety of campaign-related activities. These can include giving speeches, making campaign promises and even pulling media stunts. This can boost the perception of you, the dear leader, in the electorate and improve your chances of getting re-elected. Struggling to convince the capitalists to vote for you? How about making a promise to improve the country’s GDP along with a speech saying how you hate unions? That should help. Need to prove you have the military chops to run the country? Land on an aircraft carrier!
The options add more to the election period, and prove that it’s hard to divide your time as a leader. You will still spend your social capital to give a speech or work on your manifesto, the same resource used to govern the country. Spend too much on speeches and publicity stunts and you won’t be able to fix unemployment or deal with a crime wave.
Electioneering only really affects a small portion of the game. You only have a short time to change the public’s opinion of you before they head to the polls. Thereafter, you will need to deliver on your campaign promises or risk disappointing your voters. But does it really matter? I mean, usually in Democracy 3 you only serve a couple terms maximum, and I tended to face a higher chance of getting assassinated than losing an election. It certainly adds more fun gameplay, especially in the periods when your country is just starting to shift. Usually by the time elections took place, I was sorting out unemployment and crime, leaving me plenty of social capital to give speeches and woo the electorate. Of course, following the elections, new problems would pop up and I’d have to deal with those instead of necessarily delivering on my campaign promises. It adds some extra complexity to an otherwise uneventful aspect of the game.
However, it’s not a particularly expansive or fulfilling DLC. It doesn’t add more hours, and I’m not sure that those who have played Democracy 3 to their heart’s content in the past couple of years will necessarily dive back in for more than an hour or two with Electioneering. It’s not an expensive DLC, costing only R65, but I’m just not sure how much value it will add to the Democracy 3 experience, especially considering that the earlier DLCs are only R55 a pop and add whole new policies and technologies that completely change the gameplay. If you can get Electioneering as part of a DLC bundle, it’s fun, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy it.
Last Updated: August 4, 2016