Jump to content
270soft Forum

2003: The Era of Megastates


Recommended Posts

I've put together a couple of scenarios based on the same alternate universe/history and thought I'd share the background and the beta versions here.

The Era of Megastates

The basic premise here is that the D-Day invasion of 1944 failed, with the result that the A-bomb was eventually used against Germany rather than Japan and the Soviet Red Army advanced further into Europe, taking over all of the real-life Warsaw Pact countries plus the rest of Germany as well as Yugoslavia, Austria, and Greece. So the Allies still win WWII, but with the Western Allies in a considerably weaker position than where things ended up in real life. All the Soviet satellite states in Europe were amalgamated into the European Socialist Federation, while France, Italy, the Benelux countries, and the Nordic countries were allowed to remain independent, but only on the condition that they maintained relatively slight military capabilities and pledged not to allow the Western Allies to set up permanent military bases on their soil.

In response to the stronger Soviet/communist bloc and their own limited influence over the European mainland, the UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand set up a tighter foreign policy and trading alliance that evolves into the "United Commonwealth Confederation" (UCC for short), while the decolonization of the rest of the British Empire proceeds as it did in real life. The UCC along with the U.S., Spain, Portugal, Japan, and South Korea form the Oceanic League as an anti-communist/pro-capitalist alliance. The five Nordic nations (Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Denmark) periodically consider forming a neutral confederation to strengthen their economies and coordinate foreign policy, but this is "vetoed" by the Soviets every time it comes up, until 1991 when perestroika is under way and Gorbachev decides to allow it as a gesture of good will. Here is what the strategic map looks like as of 2003:

image.thumb.png.96d8f1208e5e8fe745be9cf752dbf756.png

Basically, in all the yellow- and orange-colored countries, the governments have largely avoided taking any foreign policy actions that were seen as having the potential to provoke the Soviets, somewhat similarly to what Finland in fact did IRL.

The two biggest foreign policy events leading up to the 2003 elections in both the UCC and the Nordic Union are: (1) bombing attacks by Islamic extremists that simultaneously hit Montreal, Brisbane, London, and Auckland in 1998, which helped lead to the victory of a Conservative UCC government in 1999; (2) in late 1999, a carbon emission reductions treaty was signed in Lyon, with the U.S. under a President Al Gore leading the way and all the heavy hitters joining except for the UCC under Conservative First Minister John Howard.

Here's the map for the Nordic Union scenario, which elects MPs on a proportional representation formula of 1 seat per every 50,000 votes, rounded to to the nearest integer. Note that it runs with the "popular vote" feature turned on and that you will need to enter the total number of votes for each party into an Excel sheet, included in the main folder, that will tell you how many seats each party wins and which coalitions are possible, either as majorities or as minorities with confidence & supply. (Don't be fooled by all the red - while the Social Democrats start out as the largest single party, it is very possible for a right-of-centre coalition to form.) Also, keep in mind that the regions and individual "ridings" are *not* all the same population size, so you may want to invest in ridings where your party is pretty far behind if their populations are large.

Nordic Union - 2003.zip

image.png.d1943061ad7d4a5222eee64296600a87.png

The political parties are:

Social Democratic (mainstream centre-left)
Conservative (mainstream centre-right)
Centre (agrarian and slightly right-leaning)
Liberal (mostly centre-right, united by being pro-free market)
Christian Democratic (socially conservative centre-right)
Green (green, naturally)
Socialist Left (parties to the left of the Social Democrats, but non-communist and pro-democracy)
Sovereignty Alliance (right-wing populist)
Independence Alliance (in favor of independence for Greenland, Faroe Islands, and Aland)
Swedish People's Party (advocates for Finland's Swedish-speaking minority)

By and large, their strength in each area reflects the strength of their "affiliate" parties in each of the countries and their respective regions around the turn of the century, albeit with everyone on the ballot in most regions except for the IA and SPP. So in, for example, Finland, which did not have a significant "Liberal Party" IRL at the time, the Liberals start out with only 1-2% of the vote in most areas.

And here's the map for the United Commonwealth Confederation scenario, which operates on the RL Australian alternative vote system (and does not require any Excel trickery):

United Commonwealth Confederation - 2003.zip

image.png.50e7afdf0afbc70f0ebdacaf0c93399f.png

The political parties are:

Conservative (mainstream centre-right)
Labour (mainstream centre-left to left-wing)
Liberal (centre to centre-left, Labour's coalition partner)
New Centre (pro-privatisation free marketeers, mixed/moderate on social issues, the Conservatives' coalition partner)
Alliance (left-leaning, pro-minority rights coalition)
Greens (green)
People's Party (populist, right-leaning)
Independents

Again, the parties' areas of strength are about what you'd expect from their RL equivalents, so the Liberals are stronger in Canada and to a lesser extent the UK than in Australia or New Zealand, Labour's vote tends to line up with the RL Labour/NDP vote, the Conservative vote does likewise with the RL Conservative/National vote, and the Alliance run strongest in Quebec, the "Celtic nations" of the UK, and the seat reserved for the Maori in New Zealand.

Anyway, I've done my share of research for these scenarios and, if the interest is there, might expand to include scenarios like the 2004 U.S. presidential election, an election in one or more of the Western neutrals, or perhaps the first democratic election in the European Socialist Federation. At the same time, I had to do a fair amount of guesswork on details like issue positions and party leaders, so if I'm off the mark with something, please do let me know.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, RI Democrat said:

I've put together a couple of scenarios based on the same alternate universe/history and thought I'd share the background and the beta versions here.

The Era of Megastates

The basic premise here is that the D-Day invasion of 1944 failed, with the result that the A-bomb was eventually used against Germany rather than Japan and the Soviet Red Army advanced further into Europe, taking over all of the real-life Warsaw Pact countries plus the rest of Germany as well as Yugoslavia, Austria, and Greece. So the Allies still win WWII, but with the Western Allies in a considerably weaker position than where things ended up in real life. All the Soviet satellite states in Europe were amalgamated into the European Socialist Federation, while France, Italy, the Benelux countries, and the Nordic countries were allowed to remain independent, but only on the condition that they maintained relatively slight military capabilities and pledged not to allow the Western Allies to set up permanent military bases on their soil.

In response to the stronger Soviet/communist bloc and their own limited influence over the European mainland, the UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand set up a tighter foreign policy and trading alliance that evolves into the "United Commonwealth Confederation" (UCC for short), while the decolonization of the rest of the British Empire proceeds as it did in real life. The UCC along with the U.S., Spain, Portugal, Japan, and South Korea form the Oceanic League as an anti-communist/pro-capitalist alliance. The five Nordic nations (Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Denmark) periodically consider forming a neutral confederation to strengthen their economies and coordinate foreign policy, but this is "vetoed" by the Soviets every time it comes up, until 1991 when perestroika is under way and Gorbachev decides to allow it as a gesture of good will. Here is what the strategic map looks like as of 2003:

image.thumb.png.96d8f1208e5e8fe745be9cf752dbf756.png

Basically, in all the yellow- and orange-colored countries, the governments have largely avoided taking any foreign policy actions that were seen as having the potential to provoke the Soviets, somewhat similarly to what Finland in fact did IRL.

The two biggest foreign policy events leading up to the 2003 elections in both the UCC and the Nordic Union are: (1) bombing attacks by Islamic extremists that simultaneously hit Montreal, Brisbane, London, and Auckland in 1998, which helped lead to the victory of a Conservative UCC government in 1999; (2) in late 1999, a carbon emission reductions treaty was signed in Lyon, with the U.S. under a President Al Gore leading the way and all the heavy hitters joining except for the UCC under Conservative First Minister John Howard.

Here's the map for the Nordic Union scenario, which elects MPs on a proportional representation formula of 1 seat per every 50,000 votes, rounded to to the nearest integer. Note that it runs with the "popular vote" feature turned on and that you will need to enter the total number of votes for each party into an Excel sheet, included in the main folder, that will tell you how many seats each party wins and which coalitions are possible, either as majorities or as minorities with confidence & supply. (Don't be fooled by all the red - while the Social Democrats start out as the largest single party, it is very possible for a right-of-centre coalition to form.) Also, keep in mind that the regions and individual "ridings" are *not* all the same population size, so you may want to invest in ridings where your party is pretty far behind if their populations are large.

Nordic Union - 2003.zip 1.89 MB · 0 downloads

image.png.d1943061ad7d4a5222eee64296600a87.png

The political parties are:

Social Democratic (mainstream centre-left)
Conservative (mainstream centre-right)
Centre (agrarian and slightly right-leaning)
Liberal (mostly centre-right, united by being pro-free market)
Christian Democratic (socially conservative centre-right)
Green (green, naturally)
Socialist Left (parties to the left of the Social Democrats, but non-communist and pro-democracy)
Sovereignty Alliance (right-wing populist)
Independence Alliance (in favor of independence for Greenland, Faroe Islands, and Aland)
Swedish People's Party (advocates for Finland's Swedish-speaking minority)

By and large, their strength in each area reflects the strength of their "affiliate" parties in each of the countries and their respective regions around the turn of the century, albeit with everyone on the ballot in most regions except for the IA and SPP. So in, for example, Finland, which did not have a significant "Liberal Party" IRL at the time, the Liberals start out with only 1-2% of the vote in most areas.

And here's the map for the United Commonwealth Confederation scenario, which operates on the RL Australian alternative vote system (and does not require any Excel trickery):

United Commonwealth Confederation - 2003.zip 952.24 kB · 1 download

image.png.50e7afdf0afbc70f0ebdacaf0c93399f.png

The political parties are:

Conservative (mainstream centre-right)
Labour (mainstream centre-left to left-wing)
Liberal (centre to centre-left, Labour's coalition partner)
New Centre (pro-privatisation free marketeers, mixed/moderate on social issues, the Conservatives' coalition partner)
Alliance (left-leaning, pro-minority rights coalition)
Greens (green)
People's Party (populist, right-leaning)
Independents

Again, the parties' areas of strength are about what you'd expect from their RL equivalents, so the Liberals are stronger in Canada and to a lesser extent the UK than in Australia or New Zealand, Labour's vote tends to line up with the RL Labour/NDP vote, the Conservative vote does likewise with the RL Conservative/National vote, and the Alliance run strongest in Quebec, the "Celtic nations" of the UK, and the seat reserved for the Maori in New Zealand.

Anyway, I've done my share of research for these scenarios and, if the interest is there, might expand to include scenarios like the 2004 U.S. presidential election, an election in one or more of the Western neutrals, or perhaps the first democratic election in the European Socialist Federation. At the same time, I had to do a fair amount of guesswork on details like issue positions and party leaders, so if I'm off the mark with something, please do let me know.

Montreal is not very Conservative in the British-Red Tory Canadian way at all, you know. Legault's Conservativism is a very different brand, which includes a large dose of Quebec Nationalism, Unilingualism, and insularism, and different views on finance. Also, Western Canadian Conservativism is not really British-Red Tory Canadian Conservatism since the early 1990's either - it's more based on Regionalism, natural resource-control, and much more heavily-based on Republican ideals (to a degree, but a notable degree). These regions of Canada are far more likely to pump up the percentages, and even be stronghold regions, of this People's Party you have at the bottom with pitiful polling, that strongly (with deep blue map colour) support a UCC Conservative Party.

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, Patine said:

Montreal is not very Conservative in the British-Red Tory Canadian way at all, you know. Legault's Conservativism is a very different brand, which includes a large dose of Quebec Nationalism, Unilingualism, and insularism, and different views on finance. Also, Western Canadian Conservativism is not really British-Red Tory Canadian Conservatism since the early 1990's either - it's more based on Regionalism, natural resource-control, and much more heavily-based on Republican ideals (to a degree, but a notable degree). These regions of Canada are far more likely to pump up the percentages, and even be stronghold regions, of this People's Party you have at the bottom with pitiful polling, that strongly (with deep blue map colour) support a UCC Conservative Party.

Montreal isn't Conservative in this map - it's primarily a battle between the Liberals and the Alliance, as is the rest of Quebec. The Liberals are yellow and the Alliance are dark-green.

Regarding Western Canada, the Conservative Party in this scenario is not uniformly Red Tory by any means. Thatcher was their leader and First Minister of the Commonwealth in the 1980s just like she was in RL Britain, and I guess I see John Howard - who is the default leader for the Conservative Party - as someone who would appeal to the brand of conservatism that you describe, especially in oil-rich areas after he refuses to sign the Treaty of Lyon. But maybe I should have the People's Party taking a larger share of the primary vote in Western Canada, even if their preferences would still mostly flow to the Conservatives.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Has anyone else given either scenario a try? I'm planning to post them to the main campaigns site soon so any feedback is welcome. At @Patine's suggestion I have given the People's Party a small boost in some of the Western Canadian ridings, mostly by shaving off a few points from the Conservatives. However, they're still not likely to win any seats as things stand.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, RI Democrat said:

Has anyone else given either scenario a try? I'm planning to post them to the main campaigns site soon so any feedback is welcome. At @Patine's suggestion I have given the People's Party a small boost in some of the Western Canadian ridings, mostly by shaving off a few points from the Conservatives. However, they're still not likely to win any seats as things stand.

It's been a busy weekend. I'll see what if I can have a decent look at things in the next couple of days.

Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, TheLiberalKitten said:

Very good scenarios! They are really fun to play! Both leaders of the Independence Alliance in the Nordic Union have the same leader portrait. Other than that good job!

Thanks - I'll be sure to fix that.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 weeks later...
1 minute ago, RI Democrat said:

Cool! Did you get the Alliance to pledge confidence and supply?

I was not able to. I was hoping Labour would put more effort into it, but they didn't. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Hestia11 said:

I was not able to. I was hoping Labour would put more effort into it, but they didn't. 

Yeah, it often seems like not much happens between the computer-controlled parties in the negotiation phase, in this or any other scenario. I can remember *maybe* one time that two computer-controlled parties reached some sort of agreement. Otherwise it seems like either the player-controlled party negotiates an agreement or there's just no deal.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/20/2020 at 5:00 PM, Hestia11 said:

@RI Democrat I played as the Liberals in the megastate version, and it was really fun :) Managed to barely beat the Conservative machine with Labour

image.png.563a4e4b4e6bb0b4349afb632219ff1a.png

Inspired me to have a go, definitely recommend spamming regional (plus a few national) billboards in this scenario. Enough money that you won't have a problem supporting them (I did have to cancel a lot of mine towards the end because I accidentally ran a national TV ad for a bit, otherwise like to think I might have been able to beat the Tories to 2nd).

855168318_LiberalCampaign.PNG.5f297c0cd47023b7e35e72d451c7ef01.PNG

Link to post
Share on other sites

I tried this out as the Greens but it did not go so well so I did a run with the People's Party. Managed to get Hanson into parliament. Overall this is a fun scenario.

 

image.png.27b6a574f5996458695c6f100b759445.png

image.png

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Gave an Alliance game a shot. Did manage to turn Scotland green (although only took 3 of the 8 seats), Montreal was very annoying (under FPTP I would have gained 1 from the Liberals, but I ultimately lost one to them). Was quite a fun challenge, would love to see more scenarios along these lines. 😀

18 seats

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I played through the UCC scenario (as the Liberals under Charles Kennedy) and had a good time! Through extreme spamming of ads I was able not only to secure a majority for the Lab-Lib coalition but to take over from Labour as the largest coalition party. One tiny thing I noticed is that one of the debates appears to be set to take place in 2019, 16 years afther the election finishes... also, I just loaded up a game as the Greens, and am I missing something or is Caroline Lucas party leader but not actually a candidate anywhere? But excellent, excellent work! Will have to try out the Nordic scenario next, and look forward to seeing more elections in this universe if that's something you feel like working on!

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Anonyman said:

I played through the UCC scenario (as the Liberals under Charles Kennedy) and had a good time! Through extreme spamming of ads I was able not only to secure a majority for the Lab-Lib coalition but to take over from Labour as the largest coalition party. One tiny thing I noticed is that one of the debates appears to be set to take place in 2019, 16 years afther the election finishes... also, I just loaded up a game as the Greens, and am I missing something or is Caroline Lucas party leader but not actually a candidate anywhere? But excellent, excellent work! Will have to try out the Nordic scenario next, and look forward to seeing more elections in this universe if that's something you feel like working on!

Thanks - I'll be sure to fix that so that there's at least one debate during the campaign.

I thought I had made Lucas the Greens candidate somewhere in Southern England since she has a seat in Brighton IRL, but I see now that I must have neglected to do so. I also have Bob Brown and Jim Harris as alternative Greens leaders in the most recent version. It is extremely difficult for the Greens to actually win a seat - they're basically playing the role that they did in Australia pre-2010, i.e. they exercise influence through preference deals and through the weaker upper chamber rather than having much of a shot at winning seats in the Constituent Assembly.

I'm not sure if I'll end up creating more scenarios in this universe. I have a vague idea for the first democratic election of the European Socialist Federation, but figuring out exactly who would lead the various factions in that scenario would be tricky, unless I were to have it happen all the way back in the early '90s and could draw from what actually happened IRL. At the very least there would have to be an anti-reform traditional communist party, a moderate left faction, a more economically liberal party, and a nationalist faction.

  • Upvote 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, RI Democrat said:

Thanks - I'll be sure to fix that so that there's at least one debate during the campaign.

I thought I had made Lucas the Greens candidate somewhere in Southern England since she has a seat in Brighton IRL, but I see now that I must have neglected to do so. I also have Bob Brown and Jim Harris as alternative Greens leaders in the most recent version. It is extremely difficult for the Greens to actually win a seat - they're basically playing the role that they did in Australia pre-2010, i.e. they exercise influence through preference deals and through the weaker upper chamber rather than having much of a shot at winning seats in the Constituent Assembly.

I'm not sure if I'll end up creating more scenarios in this universe. I have a vague idea for the first democratic election of the European Socialist Federation, but figuring out exactly who would lead the various factions in that scenario would be tricky, unless I were to have it happen all the way back in the early '90s and could draw from what actually happened IRL. At the very least there would have to be an anti-reform traditional communist party, a moderate left faction, a more economically liberal party, and a nationalist faction.

Throwing it out there, I’d love to see some more UCC games either further back or forward in the timeline!

Out of interest what happened to Tony Blair in this scenario?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Screenshot_48.png.b5a0fac51bacf26a6626452ce2e8b57f.png

 

image.thumb.png.907b9a22b5cfa4cec511f1da9d72894d.png

Played as Labour and managed to form government with support from the Alliance. Labour is pretty hard, so this might be the only way to go about a Labour government.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Cenzonico said:

Screenshot_48.png.b5a0fac51bacf26a6626452ce2e8b57f.png

 

image.thumb.png.907b9a22b5cfa4cec511f1da9d72894d.png

Played as Labour and managed to form government with support from the Alliance. Labour is pretty hard, so this might be the only way to go about a Labour government.

How much effort did you put into attacking the Tories in central and southern England? I think upping the coalition support in those 3/4 regions would be key to getting the majority because of the sheer number of seats there. Attacking the Alliance in Quebec could get the Liberals up enough to make it much closer to the majority too.

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mark_W said:

How much effort did you put into attacking the Tories in central and southern England? I think upping the coalition support in those 3/4 regions would be key to getting the majority because of the sheer number of seats there. Attacking the Alliance in Quebec could get the Liberals up enough to make it much closer to the majority too.

 I did invest in both areas, but since there is only 38 days and few ways of getting momentum I didn't go big. Quebec is something I would only let the Liberals handle since there are other more valuable regions you need more support in. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Mark_W said:

Throwing it out there, I’d love to see some more UCC games either further back or forward in the timeline!

Out of interest what happened to Tony Blair in this scenario?

I believe I left both him and Gordon Brown out, on the assumption that they stayed active at the UK national level rather than making the jump to confederal politics. One or both of them still end up serving as PM at some point. In the (very broadly sketched) history that I worked out, Jack Straw was John Howard's predecessor as First Minister of the Commonwealth and led a somewhat New Labour-ish administration with Paul Keating as Treasurer, but the terrorist bombings in late 1998 turned the public against them and thus the Conservatives won in 1999. However, Howard's government then introduced an unpopular confederation-wide industrial relations law, and that - along with their refusal to sign the Treaty of Lyon - helped make the 2003 election a toss-up.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah cool. Cheers.

Had a go with Labour on hard. Maybe the finances could be dropped a bit? Very easy to spam billboard attack ads at the moment which maybe made it a bit easy. That said on top of the ads everything that could go right did, won the debate comfortably and momentum took me to all 4 endorsers. Almost got the Liberals above the Tories on seats which would have been nice. Definitely benefited from the voting system, under FPTP the coalition majority would have just been one seat

253668640_LabourOverview.PNG.249302a131252376f0d0992da23a3455.PNG

Howard.PNG.96fca1dbc9ab6347ec66b311fc4addef.PNG

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/22/2020 at 7:58 PM, Mark_W said:

Inspired me to have a go, definitely recommend spamming regional (plus a few national) billboards in this scenario. Enough money that you won't have a problem supporting them (I did have to cancel a lot of mine towards the end because I accidentally ran a national TV ad for a bit, otherwise like to think I might have been able to beat the Tories to 2nd).

855168318_LiberalCampaign.PNG.5f297c0cd47023b7e35e72d451c7ef01.PNG

Gave the Liberals another go, worried a lot less about helping Labour this time, and actively targeted a lot of seats where they started off with a lead or in 2nd across Britain. Didn't particularly focus on Canada but got much better results there this time.

1775445793_LiberalUCCLead.PNG.e3a6d5c949b4a04e96a182b98509f3cb.PNG
 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...