What about Politics?

The idea of some sort of political aspect to the game I feel would be really cool. Especially as a city management-esque game. Being able to have a mayor (Or General) even, to focus more on the army side of the town or more on the domestic side of the town, building on the whole idea of choosing harvesting over having your guys go to war. Or whether you want to try to maintain peace treaties with the factions, etc… Also buildings like jails, where you can capture enemies, and let them free with promise of peace or trade resources, etc…

I haven’t looked around on the forums as much as I would like quite yet, so if there’s info about anything politically related already please let me know!

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Interesting question, i would also like to know how this system would work and you got some really good ideas on it already I wouldnt be surprised if some of them went in game

Perhaps, if you build a certain structure, dedicated as a town hall or what have you, your pals could go in and designate their own roles in the government, whatever those may be, via an in-game election they would hold, and perhaps depending on what classes they have leveled, they would be more suited towards specific roles, Soldiers as the General or Jailer and so forth. Vaguely like in Guilds II.

There seems to be some idea of politics and diplomacy in the system. The Pirates, Ninjas, and Politicians stretch goal seems to have a lot to do with this. In fact, I feel like that stretch goal is essentially what “unlocked” politics. I don’t think this will be a political simulator by any stretch, but I think politics is definitely a concept within the game. I also expect it to be modded in if the devs don’t make it.

I’m not sure what the exact answer would be though. We’ll have to find out.

The question was asked in the most recent Livestream and Tom was intrigued by the idea of diplomacy… even with aggressive factions like goblins. I think there will eventually be many different ways to play the game.

There’s basically two dimensions to politics, as I see it; intra-faction (player’s city) politics and inter-faction politics. I think some level of inter-faction politics is a given; we already have the Rabbits to deal with, and as mentioned above Tom seemed to be interested with the idea of some level of engagement with the other more hostile factions.

Intra-faction politics are where things are going to be interesting and also currently unknown. I’m not sure how this would play out, to be honest, as you appear to have very complete control over your civ. Maybe there’s some level of happiness/attitude that has to be managed, and unhappy workers either work slower or stop working. Different political choices could end up influencing the happiness of workers, and maybe you can also have your crafters build luxury goods to shore up the happiness level. Maybe there’s some ‘ruler’ class tree that creates a specialist that will also help mitigate happiness issues (and the tree could split between peace and war orientated ruler classes).

It seems to me that the Pirates/Politicians/Ninjas goal aren’t ‘politically’ orientated per say, but attack your settlement indirectly rather than trying to burn it down. But one way they could influence the settlement is your happiness level.

Anyway, that’s just a couple of thoughts.


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@wminsing Tom mentioned in the first Livestream that they were interested in having some form of happiness in the game. However, they didn’t want the player to get bogged down managing the happiness of their citizens. With that said, I really like your take on politics in the game and support the idea of some sort of ruling class.

@Lvl0User I figured some form of faction holding would be in the game diplomacy-wise, but I think it would be even more cool to have a form of an election in your city that would promote one civ as a mayor, which would allow you abilities like maybe choosing between getting advanced trade goods via policies denoted by the mayor, or the ability to get access to somewhat more upgraded weapons if the mayor ends up being more of a general with a knack for fighting rather than peaceful trade/resource gathering. and that would 'cause your town to either be lead by a mayor or a general, sorta speak. It’s just a very rough Idea, but I like the idea of a mayor/general class, to give those particular civs a promotion and the ability to either enhance your trading or resource gathering of some sort or something that might have nothing to do with trade or resources since I’m not sure what all is in the game. Or the General who would enhance certain fighting classes or give you access to something along the lines of military stuff.


@GammaGoblinz I like that. In addition to monarchy there could also be democracy. :wink:

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@Lvl0User I agree that too much micro-management would make it a drag. IF such a system were implemented I’d like to it see a bit like how Tom (I believe) described Farming; if a player was ‘into it’ they could set up a very effective farming system that produced lots of surplus food for trade, etc, or if they didn’t care they could set up the bare minimum amount of farming needed to get by and leave it at that. In a similar vein, a player who really wanted to manage happiness for maximum productivity could spend his time creating a utopia where everyone was happy all of the time, but if the player didn’t care he could just get a couple of crafters building nice wooden chairs and appoint a decent mayor and leave it at that.

@GammaGoblinz I think some sort of civ-wide bonus could be neat for ‘leader’ classes. It might even be something that scales with the size of your civ. A very small civ only has room for a single chief, a larger civ could support a monarch and a couple of ministers, etc. A leader would provide a bonus based on their class and their position in the government.



Just make it like Civ V. Your population needs more “happiness” as it grows, which can be provided by a few types of buildings. Things like brewers can help provide the happiness, and then if they level up, they provide more happiness without the need to add new buildings and the like.

I think something like happiness NEEDs to be in the game if it’s a city building sim. The best ones have it.

Simcity (I know people hate it, but no flame, it’s not the point) has a simple system of parks/commerce for happiness, yet it at least adds the illusion of depth. You don’t need some heavy-laden, overly complex system to express it.

@DAWGaMims Tom has already said that they are not interested in having a city management system that is so heavily dependent on happiness. However, they are interested in possibly having some sort of happiness/attitude system in the game. We’ve just been “spitballing” to come up with decent concepts that kinda mesh with what the devs have in mind. :wink:

@Lvl0User What you just said doesn’t contradict anything I suggested. In fact, the point have having the sort of system I’ve mentioned would be specifically because it’s simple.

Yet it would also make if “feel” deeper, or at least increase immersion.

“Yes my alehouse produces salves and potions in the form of mead and beer, but it also makes my people happy!”

@DAWGaMims I actually hate CIV 5’s happiness system with a burning and fiery passion, but I agree that whatever Stonehearth does it can be kept fairly simple. I’d prefer it to NOT be a ‘you need x happiness, and you have currently have y things that give happiness, and if x > y then your people are unhappy’ system; if happiness providing objects are easy to acquire than you spam them, and if they are hard to get there’s no good way to manage it. I’ll have to think a little bit more about a viable alternative.


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@DAWGaMims All I can do is to repeat the sentiment that Tom shared when the Civ V happiness system was brought up… it wasn’t good. :wink:

@wminsing @Lvl0User I definitely don’t think it’s a perfect system, but the point is the symplicity, which I think is the part you all agree on.

Any ideas on how a happiness system or other related thing could work?

Perhaps it could be a “quality of life” sort of thing… like rather than a strict happiness system, if people have access to buildings/items that produce happiness, they get bonuses. Builders build faster, fighters fight harder, etc. It would be a natural way to make certain buildings a “necessity” without it tacking on an unnecessary system that nonsensically punishes you (ie~ Civ V).

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@DAWGaMims Ah, that sort of idea I really like; as it give benefits for creating happiness rather than penalty for not creating it. I think that would fit into the vibe of Stonehearth better, from what I’ve gathered; players should be rewarded for following a particular path instead of penalized for NOT following it. So as I mentioned above, if you want to put a lot of time into building nice things for your people then you’ll reap the benefits, but if you don’t want to bother you aren’t going to suffer from it. And it’s definitely possible to go down the middle path. So I think we’re agreeing here. :smile:


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@DAWGaMims Now we’re talkin’! You should only do extra beneficial things that will make your citizens’ lives better and never worse. And if you choose to do nothing extra, then nothing extra should happen… including penalties. I hate it when an RTS punishes you for doing nothing wrong.

I umm… I feel as though this topic has strayed at length away from the actual topic of the idea of politically related promotions in the game. I don’t mind debates and what not as they fuel creativity, but If someone would like, they could start a… “What about a Happiness system?” topic of some sort… maybe?

at least for me, the idea of happiness is closely linked to politics. After all, what is politics other than giving the masses the illusion of happiness? I also think happiness is an aspect of politics since, if people aren’t happy, it could lead to revolts and what not. In fact, this is the crux of “politics” in other, lesser games (Total War series, for example). It’s an important element to be discussed because it could define the parameters around how politics actually works.

Building off of my previous post, perhaps you could add objects within buildings or modules to buildings or buildings in general that would produce special units. Generals would give armies a boost, while a “department of finance” (for lack of a better term) would help organize taxes/crops. Or maybe you could have a guild system, where the head villager of the alehouses, hospitals, temples, etc. could make demands of the player and if the player completed these quests they’d be gifted some sort of benefit.

Diplomacy is the best way I can see “politics” working, but I’m not sure the OP (original poster… I don’t know if that term is used outside of the Escapist :stuck_out_tongue: ) is wishing to discuss diplomacy.

Besides that, having a some sort of political game where you appease factions within your settlement would be hard. Perhaps you could do it tropico style, with subdivisions of “military”, “religious”, “scientific” etc. people all have certain demands/requests and the player has to meet them. Still, I’d be concerned that a system like this could take away from the game, and a more “baseline” happiness system like the ones we’ve discussed might suit this game better.