There comes a time in a man’s life when explosions just don’t satisfy any more. I’d imagine that outspoken one-man Brit-studio Cliff ‘Cliffski’ Harris reached that point after releasing Gratuitous Space Battles, Gratuitous Tank Battles and a ton of expansion content for them over the past few years. In a post on his official development blog today, he announced that he’s returning to his roots and dusting off his relatively successful Democracy series, and updating the formula, political focuses and figures involved to modern standards. Times are changing, after all.
“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedies.” —Groucho Marx
While I’ve only briefly dabbled in the series in the past, the general vibe surrounding the games seems very positive. National and global-level politics is something very hard to simulate effectively, but there are enough moving parts and interrelations involved in Democracy that the game feels convincingly detailed, if not 100% realistic. The earlier games in the series are starting to get a bit long in the tooth in places (locked to 4:3 aspect ratios, and politicians these days aren’t quite as worried about gangster rap as they used to be), so now seems as good a time as any to polish things up and keep up with modern political trends.
New World Order
It’s very early days yet, and there’s nothing graphical to show at all aside from the work-in-progress logo for the game (as shown above). Despite Democracy 3 being coded almost entirely from scratch, Cliffski estimates that the game will be rolling out sometime this year, although nothing is set in stone at this point. It promises to be immediately accessible to fans of the previous games, which makes sense, and given the polished UI in his more recent games, I can only imagine that it’ll be more accessible to newcomers as well. We’ll be keeping an ear to the ground on this project, and following it as it develops. In the meantime, you can find Democracy 2 on Steam, if you don’t mind it being a little old and creaky.