Victoria 3 - Dev Diary #8 - Institutions

dd8.png


Let’s talk about Government Institutions! These are the “services” your government provides to its Pops - and I use scare quotes here because while that does certainly include things like schools and workplace safety controls, it also means conscription offices, militarized police, and poorhouses.

While Laws are political hot buttons with your Interest Groups, Institutions are a side effect of those Laws, and it’s not as politically fraught to expand your pre-existing health care system as it is to establish or dismantle it. But the Laws that bring an Institution into existence also govern what side effects they have, and Interest Groups will care a lot about those.

As we all know, Institutions run on Bureaucracy like gamers run on caffeine (I would have said “cars run on gas”, but that isn’t universally true anymore, is it?). Bureaucracy comes from Government Administration buildings, which employ Clerks and Bureaucrats that consume Paper (and later on other goods, like Telephones) in the process. The more Government Administration buildings you have, the more and larger Institutions you can operate at once.

Running a positive Bureaucracy balance is great for remaining responsive to your people’s evolving needs. In the meantime, any excess Bureaucracy will be used to marginally improve construction efforts around your country.
dd08_1.png

The cost of Institutions, or the cost of one level of an Institution, is dependent on the size of the population across your Incorporated states. An important aspect of Institutions is that the effects and benefits they apply only affect Incorporated parts of your country - if you have any colonial frontiers, contested territory, or recently annexed land you haven’t Incorporated yet, these do not pay taxes to you nor do they cost you Bureaucracy, but they also can’t access your awesome hospitals.

Ways of decreasing the cost of providing Institutions to your people include:
  • Passing Laws to decentralize your Bureaucracy with elected rather than appointed officials
  • Society inventions like Behaviorism that provide insight into people management
  • Refraining from Incorporating colonies and conquered territories
  • Sending a whole bunch of people to their deaths in terrible wars (warning: side effects may vary)
dd08_2.png

Currently planned Institutions are:
  • School System - educates your populace
  • Health System - increases your population health
  • Police - decreases the effects of Turmoil
  • Workplace Safety - reduces workplace mortality
  • Social Security - impacts how poor your population can get
  • Home Affairs - counteracts revolutionary sentiment
  • Conscription - lets you recruit civilians as conscripts during wartime
  • Colonial Affairs - advances your colonial frontiers

To establish these Institutions you have to have sufficient Bureaucracy for their operation, and then enact an enabling Law. There are always several different Laws that enable a certain Institution, and which you choose will “flavor” the Institution accordingly. For example, the Colonial Affairs Institution will generate colonial growth in all your established colonies in relation to the size of your Incorporated population, by encouraging people to move and invest there. But if you have the Colonial Resettlement Law each level of it will also provide increased colonial migration pull to entice your population to move there, while the Colonial Exploitation Law will increase the throughput of colonial industries while reducing the Standard of Living of Pops who live there.

Switzerland has 3 levels of Religious Schools, 1 level of Local Law Enforcement, and 1 level of a Private Health System with a second level currently in progress.
dd08_3.png

The Bureaucracy you invest into Institutions can be redistributed as needed, but this takes time. For example, if you have a level 3 Health System and level 2 Home Affairs, and a per-level cost of 142 Bureaucracy, you’re paying 710 Bureaucracy for the privilege which you have to generate from Government Administration buildings. But if your population grows such that each level costs 173 instead, maintaining these levels will cost you 865. Assuming this puts you at a deficit of -155 Bureaucracy, you will suffer a pretty hefty Tax Waste penalty, which causes a percentage of all taxes collected to never quite make it all the way to your treasury.

In response to this disaster you may be forced to reduce the level of one of these Institutions, which will restore your Bureaucracy balance to +18 while you expand your bureaucracy to be able to regain the lost level. If you took the level from the Health System, your Pops will suffer reduced health in the interim, while if you reduce Home Affairs, you better hope you have no anarchist bomb-throwers lurking around in the shadows. Since Institutions expand gradually, restoring your lost level will take some time, so if possible it’s best to stay ahead of the change and expand your Government Administration proactively if you experience strong population growth or immigration waves to your incorporated states.

That’s all for Institutions! Until next week!
 
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lachek

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This comment is reserved by the Community Team for gathering Dev Responses in, for ease of reading.

Al-Khalidi said:
That's very interesting! I'm curious, whether providing good health care will be possible in fact only for socialists like in vic2? I plan for autocratic monarchy with public schools and good health care :)
There are a number of different Laws that can enable the Health System Institutions, which are supported by different Interest Groups. For example, the Industrialists support a Private Health System. It's also quite common that Institutions enabled under one administration remain after that administration drastically changes, for example after an election. The new government is on the hook to support the existing Institution with its current properties, although they may be inclined to change the laws such that they operate more along their own ideology.

Palna Thoke said:
Will none of these institutions cost the government money as well? For example public schools, social security, hospitals, police etc? Who is paying for all of this?
The Government Administrations that provide Bureaucracy is the cost, and it's a substantial one.

General_WCJ said:
So are unincorporated states completely useless?
They produce and consume goods in your market while costing very little to maintain, so no!

RTCsmile said:
When I conquer a land with institutions already been established, will I be able to directly use them? Or I have to build new ones?
If you conquer land with Government Administrations, you can use these to expand your existing Institutions. But the Institutions themselves are bureaucratic and legal constructs that only make sense in the context of a particular country, so you won't be inheriting them directly by conquering land.

ImperatorLJ said:
What will modding be like for institutions? For example, can we make extra institutions to detail very specific concepts (like work safety levels for each industry)?
Yes, you can. Like Laws and Production Methods, the effects of Institutions are represented as modifiers. You can mod in more Institutions easily enough by determining what modifier effect it should have, what Laws should enable it, and what effects those Laws should have on it.

As it's come up a few times I want to address the feedback that certain Institutions, like schools and hospitals, are more suited to being Buildings than nation-wide Institutions.

There is nothing fundamental in the game's core mechanics that prevents this. Institutions have an effect on states, and Buildings can be scripted to have the exact same effect on states. Furthermore, Buildings can take varied input goods (such as medicine for hospitals and small arms for police stations) and require varied Pop professions, such that building Hospitals could employ more Academics (Doctors) than Bureaucrats, and so on. A modder could replace any Institution in the game with the equivalent set of Buildings with no adverse side effects in a couple of hours. Buildings can require Laws in order to be constructed and have Production Methods that can only be turned on during different Laws, so all of the functionality in the current system can be ported over to the Buildings system. So why haven't we done this?

There are a number of reasons, actually. The foremost of them is that enacting a Law is a promise. If the Petit-Bourgeoisie are upset at the lack of Police and Poor Houses to keep the rabble off the streets, they'll be pleased when you enact a Law that enable these Institutions, and once enabled you have to pass a Law to abolish it to get rid of it and its administrative costs. If we instead had a Police Station building and a Poor House building then the P-Bs would be pleased once the Laws that permits you to build them are passed, but you're under no obligation to build and pay for them. This is pretty cheesy and creates a disconnect between the political gameplay and the economic gameplay.

Another, related, aspect is that Bureaucracy is intended to discourage sprawl and reward countries who choose to build tall. If you're a militaristic superpower who aggress your way across a continent, you're going to have a hard time extending all these guaranteed government services to your newly annexed lands. "Incorporation" of a state is a permanent choice of declaring a state an official core part of your nation, thereby taxing the population in exchange for extending all your Institutions to them. All this costs Bureaucracy, so smaller, tighter countries have a much easier time providing services to their population than vast empires do. Again, this dynamic doesn't work if you can just choose who gets access to how many government services and who doesn't.

The final major reason is the large amounts of frankly boring micro this would require many countries to engage in. Chances are very good that once you have a Health System you're going to want to extend its function to at least most of your states. Spamming Hospitals in every state and then keeping up on what level they are in order to ensure they provide the right amount of health care to all the people who live there sounds awesome on paper, is a terrible game experience for larger countries, and frankly isn't a very interesting choice. Now multiply this experience with all the different Institutions you'd rather have as Buildings.

Having said all this the system is very flexible, and if we find in playtest that, the above reasons notwithstanding, a certain Institution would in fact work better as a Building it is relatively easy to rework it!
 
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Will religion make more of an impact on Pops compared to Vicky2? Perhaps on assimilation?
 
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Al-Khalidi

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View attachment 743983

Let’s talk about Government Institutions! These are the “services” your government provides to its Pops - and I use scare quotes here because while that does certainly include things like schools and workplace safety controls, it also means conscription offices, militarized police, and poorhouses.

While Laws are political hot buttons with your Interest Groups, Institutions are a side effect of those Laws, and it’s not as politically fraught to expand your pre-existing health care system as it is to establish or dismantle it. But the Laws that bring an Institution into existence also govern what side effects they have, and Interest Groups will care a lot about those.

As we all know, Institutions run on Bureaucracy like gamers run on caffeine (I would have said “cars run on gas”, but that isn’t universally true anymore, is it?). Bureaucracy comes from Government Administration buildings, which employ Clerks and Bureaucrats that consume Paper (and later on other goods, like Telephones) in the process. The more Government Administration buildings you have, the more and larger Institutions you can operate at once.

Running a positive Bureaucracy balance is great for remaining responsive to your people’s evolving needs. In the meantime, any excess Bureaucracy will be used to marginally improve construction efforts around your country.

The cost of Institutions, or the cost of one level of an Institution, is dependent on the size of the population across your Incorporated states. An important aspect of Institutions is that the effects and benefits they apply only affect Incorporated parts of your country - if you have any colonial frontiers, contested territory, or recently annexed land you haven’t Incorporated yet, these do not pay taxes to you nor do they cost you Bureaucracy, but they also can’t access your awesome hospitals.

Ways of decreasing the cost of providing Institutions to your people include:
  • Passing Laws to decentralize your Bureaucracy with elected rather than appointed officials
  • Society inventions like Behaviorism that provide insight into people management
  • Refraining from Incorporating colonies and conquered territories
  • Sending a whole bunch of people to their deaths in terrible wars (warning: side effects may vary)

Currently planned Institutions are:
  • School System - educates your populace
  • Health System - increases your population health
  • Police - decreases the effects of Turmoil
  • Workplace Safety - reduces workplace mortality
  • Social Security - impacts how poor your population can get
  • Home Affairs - counteracts revolutionary sentiment
  • Conscription - lets you recruit civilians as conscripts during wartime
  • Colonial Affairs - advances your colonial frontiers

To establish these Institutions you have to have sufficient Bureaucracy for their operation, and then enact an enabling Law. There are always several different Laws that enable a certain Institution, and which you choose will “flavor” the Institution accordingly. For example, the Colonial Affairs Institution will generate colonial growth in all your established colonies in relation to the size of your Incorporated population, by encouraging people to move and invest there. But if you have the Colonial Resettlement Law each level of it will also provide increased colonial migration pull to entice your population to move there, while the Colonial Exploitation Law will increase the throughput of colonial industries while reducing the Standard of Living of Pops who live there.

Switzerland has 3 levels of Religious Schools, 1 level of Local Law Enforcement, and 1 level of a Private Health System with a second level currently in progress.

The Bureaucracy you invest into Institutions can be redistributed as needed, but this takes time. For example, if you have a level 3 Health System and level 2 Home Affairs, and a per-level cost of 142 Bureaucracy, you’re paying 710 Bureaucracy for the privilege which you have to generate from Government Administration buildings. But if your population grows such that each level costs 173 instead, maintaining these levels will cost you 865. Assuming this puts you at a deficit of -155 Bureaucracy, you will suffer a pretty hefty Tax Waste penalty, which causes a percentage of all taxes collected to never quite make it all the way to your treasury.

In response to this disaster you may be forced to reduce the level of one of these Institutions, which will restore your Bureaucracy balance to +18 while you expand your bureaucracy to be able to regain the lost level. If you took the level from the Health System, your Pops will suffer reduced health in the interim, while if you reduce Home Affairs, you better hope you have no anarchist bomb-throwers lurking around in the shadows. Since Institutions expand gradually, restoring your lost level will take some time, so if possible it’s best to stay ahead of the change and expand your Government Administration proactively if you experience strong population growth or immigration waves to your incorporated states.

That’s all for Institutions! Until next week!
That's very interesting! I'm curious, whether providing good health care will be possible in fact only for socialists like in vic2? I plan for autocratic monarchy with public schools and good health care :)
 
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Lamartine

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Just to be clear, all nations can unlock the ability to use all eight institutions, if they have the right tech and laws?

Or, if I want o create an education institution do I need to remove an existing institution to make room?

Edit: forgot to ask. Are there negatives for too much bureaucracy? Surely an overly large government has *some* drawbacks.
 
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ajokitty

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How are institutions expanded, and how long does it normally take?

Do laws impact how many levels of an institution can be active, or just whether it exists?