Thursday, March 24, 2005

Since my last post I've actually got some good beta feedback, so I am now tweaking and balancing. This is going to take a long time, but I'm fighting the urge to avoid balancing and put in new features.
It's a very difficult game to balance. We aren't talking about balancing a few different units against each other here. There are hundreds of different variables, all affecting each other over varying periods, with compound effects. I'm suffering heavily from the 'chaos theory' phenomena of complex sim game design.

For example:
If I increase the boost that gambling has on GDP, this might make gambling more attractive as a policy. But it also increases GDP. GDP affects the mood of capitalists. If capitalists are happier, it reduces the effective cost of policies that upset them, such as child benefit. This makes it easier to keep parents happy, which means I don't have to implement policies like maternity leave. Maternity leave can cause a wasteful workforce situation which reduces the GDP. This then makes capitalists upset which...... etc etc.

This is going to be astoundingly hard to balance AND make fun, and allow the game to feedback to the player the causes of his actions...
Its still great fun to play though :D And anyone who enjoys complex sims will love it.

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