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Release: President Forever 2012 Alpha v. 1.0.7


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Can I just say that I absolutely love the idea of having voting blocks be modeled in a much better way. That was one of the things that has always frustrated me. I've been on the fence about getting PF12 but if it contained a more true to life way of sorting the different factions that would probably push me over.

A few more details (again, these might not be implemented, but feedback welcome on it). The game currently uses a relatively simple "committed-leaning-undecided" model, where each candidate has a certain starting percentage of each, and it is relatively difficult to move committeds than the other categories, and leanings than undecideds, to another candidate.

To more accurately model the dynamics of, say, the 2012 Republican primaries, there would be favorability numbers attached to each candidate. These numbers would then vary by 'blocks', which would be exclusive and exhaustive (probably) groups specified in, say, the percentages.xml file. For example, on the Republican side, there might be the 'Tea Party' block, the 'Evangelical' block, the 'Financial Conservatives' block, and so on. Each block would then have a certain average favorability rating for each candidate generated, based on the block's issue positions and then modified by campaign efforts to increase or decrease favorability of various candidates. There could also be customized favourability adjusters to account for factors not easily captured in issue positions - the suspicion among some Social Conservatives about Romney based on his past positions, for example.

If things were done this way, then you could see the bouncing around of a block between candidates while more or less ignoring more ideologically distant candidates, as well as rapid increases and collapses in support when favorability numbers reached thresholds vis a vis other candidates.

Again, this may not be implemented.

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I think Electability should be added as an issue, alongside Leadership, Integrity, etc.

Also, you mentioned a while back that the bug that existed in P4E2008 (going from primaries to general election and dropping 30 points) won't occur. My question is, how much do ads and everything during the primaries effect the general election numbers and if Obama runs an ad against say Romney in the primaries will that only effect the primaries or will it also influence the general election?

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Right now, there is an 'inter-party' variable, which controls voter flow between the parties. It can be set to a very low value for the primaries, such that attacks during the primaries will have a limited effect. What the value will be (if we go forward with the current way electorate flow is modeled) would be determined by game testing.

Also, you mentioned a while back that the bug that existed in P4E2008 (going from primaries to general election and dropping 30 points) won't occur. My question is, how much do ads and everything during the primaries effect the general election numbers and if Obama runs an ad against say Romney in the primaries will that only effect the primaries or will it also influence the general election?

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One thing missing I think is how much a candidate is liked. This was in President 2000 and was useful. As I recall, more Americans agreed with Al Gore's policy platform but more Americans liked George W Bush. 'Liking' seemed more important than 'agreeing'.

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Thanks for the feedback - right now, I am considering adding 'Favorability' ratings to the candidates. This would be similar to how much a voter 'Likes' a candidate, but would be a composite, involving both affinity to the candidate's platform, the candidate's attributes, and other factors, as well as changes due to ads and so on. Changes in Favorability would cause changes in percentages.

One thing missing I think is how much a candidate is liked. This was in President 2000 and was useful. As I recall, more Americans agreed with Al Gore's policy platform but more Americans liked George W Bush. 'Liking' seemed more important than 'agreeing'.

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