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Release: President Forever 2012 v. 1.2.5


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I would suggest that it be set so that Endorsers hold at 99 rather than at 95; because it the number of points a CP grants is based on their Command Organization level, it becomes a real chore during the primaries to actually get endorsers, on the basis of only being able to receive one every couple of days. Being able to spend 3 rather than 1 per turn would help as well.

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I only very recently bought President Forever 2012, not having played the previous game for a long while, and I must say this is still the most awesome political strategy game there is. In recent years there have been some other political election games, but all focus on graphics and are no good simulation games. The level of detail that P4E has is great, and I love all the new additions to the game. I especially like that you can now court governors for their endorsement, and then actually use them as surrogates. So kudos to 270soft for a still-terrific game!

Still, there is room for improvement. Mostly in the interface, since the actual dynamics of the game are strong. Here are some things I thought of:

  • Most importantly: VP activity is not easily accessed. While you use candidate activities daily, VP activity is a submenu of the leader’s activity. You have to click two buttons before you get there, even though it’s one of the functions you use most, especially in the last stretch of the campaign when all else (endorsements, strategy setting, organization creation) has already been done. Maybe the VP could get his own button to the right of the leader’s activity button. If another button would have to go to make room, the Theme button could easily be put elsewhere: for example in the platform menu. It would make more sense. You use the theme menu only a handful of times in a game, while you use VP activity in every turn.
  • Sometimes I am unable to cancel VP activities
  • Is it possible to structure the surrogate activities panel in the same way as the candidate activities panel so that an orange X means cancelling an activity? I know the difference is that you can only check one activity for a surrogate, but making it the same as for the candidates would make more sense. Several times I wanted to switch the state where a surrogate would fundraise (because he/she would raise more), and clicking the fundraise button again cancels the activity instead of selecting a different fundraising location.
  • It would be great if you can ask for an endorsement in exchange for the VP candidacy.
  • Could the VP’s spouse be added as surrogate once the VP has been selected?
  • During my party’s convention I can still travel the country with my candidates. I should be forced to fly to the convention on the day of the candidate’s speech.
  • When selecting a state, the numbers are shown at the bottom right, but without the name of the state above. You see the flag, but no name. Moreover, right above the numbers it says “Candidate X is in state Y”, causing confusing. When looking for a state name with the numbers you only find the name of the state the candidate is in, but I think it should be clear in the blink of an eye which state you have selected. Maybe put the “Candidate X is in state Y” line at the top of the screen near his/her photo? It would make more sense.
  • When playing the 2012 scenario with primaries, Obama’s running mate was chosen randomly, and my ticket (Romney/Ryan) was suddenly facing Obama/Clinton instead of Obama/Biden. Could it be made possible to specify the opponents running mate when playing a game with primaries? Or could it be possible to set a default running mate for a primaries game?
  • Could interviews be linked to a weekday, so that the Sunday show interviews are only offered on saturday?
  • Can we get a switch for week-by-week play during the primaries?
  • After clinching your party’s nomination, your opponents are still able to actively fight you. Now I can understand that some candidates continue if they really don’t agree with you, but their ability to make news should be reduced dramatically. The media barely ever spend time on a sore loser, so all their campaign activity should have only a very minimum impact.
  • I was unable to cancel my spy. I could cancel spy creation, but not a working spy. What made this annoying is that a few turns after I found out I couldn't cancel, that spy got caught.
  • The recap screen would be more effective if notifications were grouped: first the result of activities of candidates, then organizational improvement, and so on.
  • Debate results are, in my opinion, way too detailed. I appreciate that more variables are put into debating, but if you play the republican primaries and have to click through 8 screens filled with numbers you don’t pay attention anymore. Maybe just show a screen with the total score per candidate, and then a button to click for more details.
  • In the ad screen, two buttons to select the political unit is confusing. Can they be merged, with the ones with ads currently being run or created at the top? Perhaps with brackets behind their names showing the number of ads.

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@Lahbas,

Thanks for the feedback - suggestion noted.

I would suggest that it be set so that Endorsers hold at 99 rather than at 95; because it the number of points a CP grants is based on their Command Organization level, it becomes a real chore during the primaries to actually get endorsers, on the basis of only being able to receive one every couple of days. Being able to spend 3 rather than 1 per turn would help as well.

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@HorckDude,

Thanks for the feedback. All noted. A few comments ...

1. VP button is a good point. The tricky part I can think of is that the Veep button is not used during large parts of the primaries.

2. Any specific situations where you are unable to cancel VP activities?

3. Endorsement in exchange for VP candidacy: do you mean endorsement from another candidate who is running?

4. Adding a feature to affect chances of Veep picks is on the list of things to possibly add - thanks for this.

I only very recently bought President Forever 2012, not having played the previous game for a long while, and I must say this is still the most awesome political strategy game there is. In recent years there have been some other political election games, but all focus on graphics and are no good simulation games. The level of detail that P4E has is great, and I love all the new additions to the game. I especially like that you can now court governors for their endorsement, and then actually use them as surrogates. So kudos to 270soft for a still-terrific game!

Still, there is room for improvement. Mostly in the interface, since the actual dynamics of the game are strong. Here are some things I thought of:

  • Most importantly: VP activity is not easily accessed. While you use candidate activities daily, VP activity is a submenu of the leader’s activity. You have to click two buttons before you get there, even though it’s one of the functions you use most, especially in the last stretch of the campaign when all else (endorsements, strategy setting, organization creation) has already been done. Maybe the VP could get his own button to the right of the leader’s activity button. If another button would have to go to make room, the Theme button could easily be put elsewhere: for example in the platform menu. It would make more sense. You use the theme menu only a handful of times in a game, while you use VP activity in every turn.
  • Sometimes I am unable to cancel VP activities
  • Is it possible to structure the surrogate activities panel in the same way as the candidate activities panel so that an orange X means cancelling an activity? I know the difference is that you can only check one activity for a surrogate, but making it the same as for the candidates would make more sense. Several times I wanted to switch the state where a surrogate would fundraise (because he/she would raise more), and clicking the fundraise button again cancels the activity instead of selecting a different fundraising location.
  • It would be great if you can ask for an endorsement in exchange for the VP candidacy.
  • Could the VP’s spouse be added as surrogate once the VP has been selected?
  • During my party’s convention I can still travel the country with my candidates. I should be forced to fly to the convention on the day of the candidate’s speech.
  • When selecting a state, the numbers are shown at the bottom right, but without the name of the state above. You see the flag, but no name. Moreover, right above the numbers it says “Candidate X is in state Y”, causing confusing. When looking for a state name with the numbers you only find the name of the state the candidate is in, but I think it should be clear in the blink of an eye which state you have selected. Maybe put the “Candidate X is in state Y” line at the top of the screen near his/her photo? It would make more sense.
  • When playing the 2012 scenario with primaries, Obama’s running mate was chosen randomly, and my ticket (Romney/Ryan) was suddenly facing Obama/Clinton instead of Obama/Biden. Could it be made possible to specify the opponents running mate when playing a game with primaries? Or could it be possible to set a default running mate for a primaries game?
  • Could interviews be linked to a weekday, so that the Sunday show interviews are only offered on saturday?
  • Can we get a switch for week-by-week play during the primaries?
  • After clinching your party’s nomination, your opponents are still able to actively fight you. Now I can understand that some candidates continue if they really don’t agree with you, but their ability to make news should be reduced dramatically. The media barely ever spend time on a sore loser, so all their campaign activity should have only a very minimum impact.
  • I was unable to cancel my spy. I could cancel spy creation, but not a working spy. What made this annoying is that a few turns after I found out I couldn't cancel, that spy got caught.
  • The recap screen would be more effective if notifications were grouped: first the result of activities of candidates, then organizational improvement, and so on.
  • Debate results are, in my opinion, way too detailed. I appreciate that more variables are put into debating, but if you play the republican primaries and have to click through 8 screens filled with numbers you don’t pay attention anymore. Maybe just show a screen with the total score per candidate, and then a button to click for more details.
  • In the ad screen, two buttons to select the political unit is confusing. Can they be merged, with the ones with ads currently being run or created at the top? Perhaps with brackets behind their names showing the number of ads.

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1. VP button is a good point. The tricky part I can think of is that the Veep button is not used during large parts of the primaries.

Well, I don't know how P4E is programmed, but couldn't you simply show/hide and move buttons in the interface? Put the VP button in third place once a VP has been selected, and move the other buttons slightly to the right. Wouldn't it work something like:

IF ( VP_selected=1 )

{

vp_button = on

position_button3 = +50 pixels

position_button4 = +50 pixels

etc.

}

Or does this sound stupid? ;)

2. Any specific situations where you are unable to cancel VP activities?

I just tried again, and found that it's limited to the activities issue knowledge and debate prep, but the problem occurs all the time. All other activities don't have a problem and can be cancelled.

3. Endorsement in exchange for VP candidacy: do you mean endorsement from another candidate who is running?

Sorry, I should've been much clearer. I meant to say offer another candidate the VP spot if they endorse you before you have enough delegates to actually offer it. At that point they probably won't become VP because you have not yet clinched the nomination, but they will become the VP once you do cinch the nomination.

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Yes, what I meant is that it becomes tricky in terms of the intuitiveness of the interface (the button would disappear or appear, or be useless for large parts of the game).

For Veep activities, got it - will check and fix this for the next version.

Well, I don't know how P4E is programmed, but couldn't you simply show/hide and move buttons in the interface? Put the VP button in third place once a VP has been selected, and move the other buttons slightly to the right. Wouldn't it work something like:

IF ( VP_selected=1 )

{

vp_button = on

position_button3 = +50 pixels

position_button4 = +50 pixels

etc.

}

Or does this sound stupid? ;)

I just tried again, and found that it's limited to the activities issue knowledge and debate prep, but the problem occurs all the time. All other activities don't have a problem and can be cancelled.

Sorry, I should've been much clearer. I meant to say offer another candidate the VP spot if they endorse you before you have enough delegates to actually offer it. At that point they probably won't become VP because you have not yet clinched the nomination, but they will become the VP once you do cinch the nomination.

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Thanks for the feedback - could make this optional in the XML, but I'd rather focus on adding a feature that allows for a human to spacebar a game with a player that is computer controlled. We'll see.

Good point, but if you're trying to spacebar through the game, that doesn't help very much. I was wondering if there was any line in the code that could be removed to eliminate that news item, or if it was hard-coded.

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