Developer Diary 24 – The Lower House

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Having diverged dangerously into economics in recent developer diaries, let’s get back to politics. We’ve talked about the upper house in the previous developer diaries. Now it is time to talk about the lower house. For those of you who played Victoria the lower house will be a very familiar concept. Victoria 1 had the concept of a ruling party which had policies that placed various restrictions on what you could and could not do. In Victoria 2, the restrictions on what you can do with reform have been moved to the upper house, leaving the lower house to worry about things like tax. Essentially, we have the upper house for long-term decisions and the lower house running the day-to-day stuff.

Time to look at some of the changes. Firstly, like in Victoria we have a government form, to which we have added restrictions on who can be the ruling party. If you are a Proletarian Dictatorship you can appoint any communist party you want. Similarly, absolute monarchies cannot appoint communists, who are determined to put them into the dustbin of history, as a ruling party. Although I am sure you can all argue till the cows come home about the relative historical merits of a pack of reactionaries or fascists running a proletarian dictatorship, we decided to draw line at this because it just felt too weird. We have also added two new government forms. We have the Bourgeois Dictatorship, which means we do not have to worry about a reactionary presidential dictatorship deciding it is time to go anarcho-liberal. Yes, your bespectacled, moustachioed middle class ruling committee now get a government type to call their own. We have also added a second form of Constitutional monarchy, which we have dubbed Prussian Constitutionalism. Unlike the standard constitutional monarchy, the only extreme party they allow are the Reactionaries. We see it is a slightly more authoritarian version of the constitutional monarchy where certain undesirables are disenfranchised. It should give more scope to allow countries to develop in a historical manner.

Next up, let's see how votes work out. I have given a brief run down in a previous developer diary about this, but now I feel it is time to go into more detail. Firstly, what the voting system does is look at each of your noncolonial provinces and calculate the number of voters. In Victoria 2, not all voters are equal, some voting systems disenfranchise certain income strata, leaving them with 0 votes, while others give more worth to votes from people of a better class. We also have a citizenship policy, that weights votes according to the culture of the POPs. Thus, a Germany with residency as a citizenship policy will see North German votes worth the most, South Germans worth less and for the rest nothing. This in turn creates a Germany that is dominated by North German and thus Prussian interests. Then good old rotten boroughs do their bit to increase the worth a province has in the voting system. This gives you the weight each province has in the eventual outcome. This would in real life translate into seats, but for our purposes it is just its percentage worth of the province for the final result.

Having calculated how many votes our POP will get we then need to decide whom our voters will vote for. Each POP splits up its vote between several parties depending on how these parties compare to his issues. If two or more parties have the same issue he then splits according to his ideology. If there is a case where two parties have the same ideology and issue, the POP will split it according to the number of votes these parties already have in the province (POPs love to back winners). If there is no match for a POP issue it splits that part of its vote by ideology, dividing its vote between parties of the same ideology using the formula above.

Next we take a look at what creative measures the government is taking to keep itself in power. This is then used as a multiplier for the number of votes the ruling party gets in the province. Gerrymandering and harassing opposition parties to make sure they find it difficult to campaign all contributes towards helping the government of the day. Finally, we check to see if machine politics is in play in this province. A political machine does it bit to ensure that more voters, living or dead, will get out and vote for whoever controls the machine.

Once we have whom our POPs have voted for we then need to decide how much each party actually gets in the lower house. We have three different ways of calculating this. First Past the Post, where one party wins the province. Then two forms of proportional representation, the difference between the two is how they treat minority parties. The first system, the Jefferson Method, likes to screw over minority parties while a pure proportional system does not. The results from each province are added up and the winner calculated, in Victoria 2 there is no requirement for a majority, just to come first.

Finally, let’s just mention what these kind of lower house policies actually do. For those of you who have played Victoria this section will be very familiar. Trade policy determines your theoretical minimum and maximum tariff, although this is then modified by administrative efficiency to give you a real value. Economic policy sets your tax limits, what the government can and cannot do economically and it also modifies how expensive it is for Capitalists to be in the business of being capitalists. The military policy sets how much you can spend paying soldiers and officers. Those are the big three. Then you have two minor policies; citizenship and religious. Citizenship policy affects the vote weight of POPs not of your primary culture while religious policy influences how effective the Clergy are at keeping the ignorant and superstitious, ignorant and superstitious.

So there we have it, how the lower house works.
 

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Nice, but screenshot should be different. As far as I remember, there is almost the same one in one of the previous DDs:p.
 

telesien

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Nice, but screenshot should be different. As far as I remember, there is almost the same one in one of the previous DDs:p.

Not exactly, you can see more info here and new stuff added :)

On the other side: You will still be able to ban certain parties, right? Will this be somehow limited?
 

King

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Not exactly, you can see more info here and new stuff added :)

On the other side: You will still be able to ban certain parties, right? Will this be somehow limited?

this limited we assume that if you ban a party they will still stand but using a different name. You know like those independent MPs you see.
 

Dagfinn

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Nice!

Two (three:D) questions to the screenshot:

1. Could you elaborate abit about the "Rebels" section of the screenshot?

2. I see you have the option to build the Panama and Suez Canals.
a. Is it possible to build the Nicaragua Canal?
b. Do you have to controll the province to get the option?
 

telesien

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this limited we assume that if you ban a party they will still stand but using a different name. You know like those independent MPs you see.

So no chance of getting rid of communist or fascist parties?
 

King

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Nice!

Two (three:D) questions to the screenshot:

1. Could you elaborate abit about the "Rebels" section of the screenshot?

2. I see you have the option to build the Panama and Suez Canals.
a. Is it possible to build the Nicaragua Canal?
b. Do you have to controll the province to get the option?

1. Those current active rebel factions who are organising
2. No, there is one canal option between the Pacific and the Atlantic, the historical one. No you do not have to control the province, there ar always alternatives.
 

King

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So no chance of getting rid of communist or fascist parties?

Depends on your government form. If you are an open democracy you are just going to have to acccept those clowns are about.
 

Colon

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Economic policy sets your tax limits, what the government can and cannot do economically and it also modifies how expensive it is for Capitalists to be in the business of being capitalists.

And also what to what extent the government can influence the economy I presume. Are the differences between the various economic policies the same as in Vic1?
 

King

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And also what to what extent the government can influence the economy I presume. Are the differences between the various economic policies the same as in Vic1?

yes from totally hands off all the way through to you do it all.
 

unmerged(82045)

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Is there a way of seeing at a glance which party wins which province in FPTP countries? A map mode perhaps?
 
Last edited:

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This gets better and better!
 

Arilou

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So you can't ban parties "on the fly" anymore? Government-types instead comes with "pre-banned" parties?

Or does the "cannot appoint" mean just that, and that eg. the commies can still win an election in a prussian constitutionalist state and thus overthrow the system that way?

Citizenship policies would mean that once a party favouring restricted citizenship comes into power it would tend to stay there, right? (since minorities wouldn't be able to vote it out)?
 

King

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Is there a way of seeing at a glance which party wins which province in FPTP countries? A map mode perhaps?

You don't get to see that I'm afraid.
 

King

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So you can't ban parties "on the fly" anymore? Government-types instead comes with "pre-banned" parties?

Or does the "cannot appoint" mean just that, and that eg. the commies can still win an election in a prussian constitutionalist state and thus overthrow the system that way?

Citizenship policies would mean that once a party favouring restricted citizenship comes into power it would tend to stay there, right? (since minorities wouldn't be able to vote it out)?

The communists cannot win a lower house election in a Prussia Constitutionalist state, there is nothing stopping them winning the upperhouse and doing it that way. However, everyone knows real communists take power, none of this election business.

No, they would also need to ensure that their Primary culutre POPs keep thier issues as well.
 

Weijun

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Are there any circumstances under which pops vote by ideology over issues?

Are there any benefits to minimizing corruption in the voting process?
 

King

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Are there any circumstances under which pops vote by ideology over issues?

Are there any benefits to minimizing corruption in the voting process?

If no party matches their issue, since no party matches a reform want as an issue wanting reform will make a POP vote on ideology

It makes it harder for your current ruling party to keep power.

Edit: Also POPs will want reform of the voting process as a refrom.
 

unmerged(82045)

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Does a country start with a set number of political parties which can be elected or do parties get founded and dissolved over time according to voters' interests/ideologies?

Also, what is the fist icon, and the two percentage indicators below the "HMS Government" sign?
 

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If no party matches their issue, since no party matches a reform want as an issue wanting reform will make a POP vote on ideology
I understand what you mentioned above. Rather, I was wondering whether pops with certain ideologies (e.g. communists, fascists) or pops with certain levels of consciousness or militancy would vote ideology over issues. I take it the answer is no.


It makes it harder for your current ruling party to keep power.

Edit: Also POPs will want reform of the voting process as a refrom.
I was hoping there might be some bonus (e.g. decreased militancy) if you kept gerrymandering and the like to a minimum. Again, I take it the answer is no.