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Advice on undecideds


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Just a question in relation to a post I made on the Game Feedback forum:

In President Forever 2008 + Primaries, it would be great if the scenario designer could set a target number for undecided % on the day before the primary. At the moment, this veers between 20-30% in scenarios like United State - 2008. Although we can manually reduce undecideds in the percentages for each candidate, it rapidly trends upwards to that range of figures. That makes early campaigns a waste of money, because your poll numbers inevitably turn into Undecided, and the winner is almost always the candidate with the most momentum on the day of the primary, because they capture a huge number of the undecided voters.

I know some players enjoy big swings, but an option to reduce the uncertainty in scenarios we ourselves design would be very much appreciated.

Has anyone else noticed this happening? I was always aware of it, but it didn't really figure until I started designing my 2012 scenario, which feature a very divided Republican field, and I want the results to reflect the alienation people feel towards, say, Mike Huckabee in New Hampshire. But with the current model, Mike can and does win over more NH-ish candidates like Romney, Crist, etc. The only way to fix it at the moment is to reduce greatly the proportions of undecided and leaning voters for each candidate, but that makes it difficult for candidates to move their numbers. I'd like a situation like the one in Prime Minister Forever, where numbers move between candidates without creating huge undecided figures.

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Have you tried raising Huck's alienated percentage?

In theory, that shouldn't matter. It reduces the percentage of the candidate's vote to a small figure; it doesn't reduce the undecideds. My problem isn't that candidates do well in certain places, my problem is that high proportions of undecided voters wreck the game.

In practice, I tried it with Huckabee alienated all the way down to 0.2% in Iowa. He stays around 2% until primary day, when he wins on 22% of the vote, because he had +3 momentum and there were lots of undecided voters. Game-wrecker.

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