Victoria 3 - Dev Diary #1 - Pops

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lachek

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Dev Diary 1.png


Hello everyone! I’m Mikael, Victoria 3’s lead game designer - and oh boy does it feel good to finally be able to say that out loud! Today I have the pleasure to reveal some details about that one feature everyone thinks about when they hear “Victoria” - the Pops.

Pops were introduced in the very first Victoria game to represent your country’s population. Pop mechanics have since snuck into other Paradox titles like Stellaris and Imperator. But this in-depth population simulation is what Victoria is about, and we’re going to bring you a system with more depth than ever before!

In Victoria 3, Pops are the country’s engine - they work the industries, they pay the taxes, they operate the government institutions, and they fight the wars. They’re born, they die, they change occupation, they migrate. And they organize, get angry, and start revolutions.

Every Pop is visualized so you can see which demographic sports the best moustache. Note that Pop portraits are very much a work in progress!
ClergyCrop.png


You, the player, might be in charge of the country, but you’re not in charge of the Pops and can’t manipulate them directly. Yet everything you do to the country affects them, and they in turn will react in what they perceive to be their own best interests. A large part of your game will consist of trying to sate your population’s appetites for material goods or political reform. But most actions you will take aren’t to the benefit of every Pop in your nation, and by making life better for one part of the population you may inadvertently upset another demographic.

The most important aspect of Pops are their Professions, which reflects the types of jobs it carries out in the building where they work. A Pop’s profession determines its social class and can affect its wages, political strength, what other professions it might qualify for, and particularly which political Interest Groups it’s prone to supporting (which you will hear lots more about in future Dev Diaries.) Some of the Pop professions you will encounter in Victoria 3 are Aristocrats, Capitalists, Bureaucrats, Officers, Shopkeepers, Machinists, Laborers, and Peasants. Investing in industries that provide job opportunities for the kinds of professions you want to encourage in your country is key to the “society building” gameplay of Victoria 3.

Every variation of Profession, Culture, Religion, and Workplace in the world gets its own unique Pop. At any given time this results in many tens of thousands of Pops in the world working, migrating, procreating, and agitating.
Aristocrats.png


The people that make up a Pop are distinguished into Workforce and Dependents. Members of the Workforce keep the buildings in the game operational and collect a wage from them in return. Those who cannot or aren’t permitted to be officially employed are considered Dependents. They collect only a small income from odd jobs and government programs.

Laws affect who is included in each category. At game start most countries do not accept women working and collecting a wage outside the home but by reforming laws governing the rights of women more Dependent Pops will enter the Workforce over time. By abolishing child labor, the amount of income Dependents bring home will decrease but will make it easier to educate your populace, increasing their overall Literacy. After a bloody war many Dependents of soldiers may be left without sufficient income, and you may decide to institute pensions to help your population recover.

In short: nothing in your country runs without Pops, and everything about your country affects those Pops, who in turn provide new opportunities and challenges during your tumultuous journey through the Victorian era and beyond.

I have oh so much more to say, but that is all for this week! You will hear much more from me in future Dev Diaries. Next week Martin will return to explain something quite central to the game - Capacities!
 
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lachek

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If I give more rights to women, will they start to show up as the visual representation of pops or are they always male no matter what?
We're experimenting with a few things. Stay tuned!
 
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There are two figures for population on this screenshot, with a huge discrepancy. Is the value on the left (7.97k) for a specific area (state, province?) within the country, as opposed to a nation-wide figure on the right?
Yes, to be clear the depicted Pop is just representing the Turkish Sunni Aristocrats who own the Subsistence Farms in the state of Diyarbakir. Across all of the Ottoman Empire there could be dozens or even hundreds of different Aristocrat Pops, of different cultures/religions, states, and workplaces.
 
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Wizzington

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So are thursdays dev diary day for Vicky 3? Or is it not yet set?
Yes, barring any future change due to unexpected circumstances of course.
 
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How moddable will Pops be? I know it's broad, but I'm curious how freeform the pop system will be for modders.
Very moddable, you can easily add new pop types etc
 
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Will a single pop hold one unilateral opinion on a topic, or could it be divided on the issue?
Individuals within pops make their own decisions on things like which Interest Group to back.
 
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Will all pops be represented by male avatars? if not what will determine the gender of the avatar? randomness, equality laws?
We aim to have female portraits as well, details beyond that we'll go into later.
 
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Didn't women work outside the home quite a bit in this period? My sense is that cultural (not legal) strictures against women working outside the home began in the very late 19th century, and only really applied to upper class women at first.
Crossposting this from another thread on the topic so it isn't missed:

Dependents earn an income, this income is less than the workforce earns but still incredibly important to poor pops if there isn't minimum wages/social programs. Also, more liberal countries start with at least some women in the workforce to represent female factory workers, etc. So we are definitely not aiming to simulate all women as housewives.
 
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lachek

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Didn't women work outside the home quite a bit in this period? My sense is that cultural (not legal) strictures against women working outside the home began in the very late 19th century, and only really applied to upper class women at first.
Totally accurate - or, at least, to my knowledge it is accurate for many European cultures, at least for specific professions! This is one of the reasons why we've differentiated between Workforce and Dependents, rather than Men, Women, Children, Seniors etc. There are too many idiosyncratic cultural variations - and cultures changing over the eras - to model gender norms correctly in every context.

The gameplay effect we're after here is that in the early game, a large number of Pops (whoever they may be) aren't able to contribute to the country's industrialized workforce, can't vote, can't become soldiers, etcetera. Their meager income is considered to be earned outside the dominant industries and cannot be tracked and taxed by the state, and is affected by laws like Child Labor and Pension institutions. If the country reforms its views on women they gain (among other things) greater access to workforce that can work these formal, taxed, often urban professions. But there will always be a lot of Dependents in every Pop.
 
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lachek

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Three things I notice there is no nice table with all the information about demotion/promotion statistics of a given pop personally I found that very important in Vic 2 so it would be nice to know there is some easy way to view it.
Secondly I can't see any mention of political ideologies? It was mentioned there will be simulated are they not based on pops themselves?
Thirdly are there no pop attitudes (Plurality, Consciousnesses, Militancy) in Vic 3?
We'll talk more about our approach to giving the player access to aggregate information about Pops in their country in another DD. There are many, many ways of seeing information about your Pops in the game, in ways that are more actionable than scrolling through enormous lists of individual Pops. For this DD I wanted to zoom in on individuals, to focus on the properties of the fundamental "atom" of the simulation.

As for Ideologies, these don't reside on the Pop level directly but are rather associated with Interest Groups, which act as the Pops' political representatives. Pops determine what Interest Group to support based on their properties, particularly their Profession but also how wealthy they are, how educated they are, etc. A single Pop can split their support between multiple Interest Groups, too. Attitudes are modelled a bit differently - Pops can have Radicals and Loyalists, Interest Groups have Approval ratings, Literacy affect Political Participation, and so on. We'll get into that more when we get to talking about the political system, but you'll have to be a bit patient there since we have to cover a few other topics first.
 
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In general I'd like to say: We know you want to know more about how everything Pop-related works, but if I did that it would be the whole game, basically. We will be talking about migration, qualifications, literacy, radicals and loyalists, assimilation, consumption, wealth, fertility and mortality, and much much more in the weeks to come, but each of these is basically its own dev diary. Patience! <3
 
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tl;dr: Remember that we represent every individual workplace in each state as well, so we actually have substantially more granularity to Pop "location" than in previous titles.

I don't think they mean "States" as in "US States"; California would likely be broken up into several states, like in EU4.

We do actually! With respect to the USA, each current US state corresponds exactly to one named state region in the game (although in some cases state regions can split into multiple states owned by different countries.) Pops can move freely within workplaces in their state, while they need to undergo migration in order to move between states.

With respect to granularity though, there's really no downside to having Pops be able to move freely within their state rather than having to migrate between a handful of provinces within the same state as in previous titles. We still represent the urban/rural divide by permitting many, many different types of industry in each state, including both manufacturing and resource industries (as opposed to one static "RGO" per province) and service/governmental/infrastructure/military workplaces. These different industries and workplaces are visually grouped on the map such that you can see the urbanization and growth of some parts of your state compared to others.
 
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.

This has been one of the biggest concerns for me, is this system able to model things like San Francisco's population getting huge but its surroundings being essentially empty, though? It seems to me like this is incredibly inflexible and will be unable to truly model the rural -> urban migration that happened at the time, while also seeming unlikely to be able to model the opposite if we take our country down that path.

Another very important thing:
The way the equivalent to RGOs appears to work implies we only have one per state though, right? I can't have both coal and iron in one state, for example?
That'd make the statement that we have more and more varied workplaces available still hold true, but it would be a lot less RGO-equivalents across the world than Vicky 2 had. Nearly the same amount of RGO-equivalents as Vicky 2 had states, even. This would greatly limit how interesting the economy aspect can be especially for smaller countries who'd like to focus on resource gathering and exporting.
It would also fail to represent areas that historically had both, rich iron and coal resources or rich farmlands and rich grazing lands and so on.
A single state can support numerous variations of different mines, agriculture, plantations, logging, fishing etc and you can definitely have a state where almost the entire population lives and works in the urban area.
 
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