I have long wanted to code a particular system for Democracy 3, and finally got around to adding it, just before I (recently) put in mod support. I’m calling the system in general ‘overrides’. Essentially, what it is, is a way for someone to create a text file that specifies a connection between two game objects and define them with a new equation, or negate them, or add a totally new link. This is best served by an example…
“AND ON THE EIGHTH DAY HE CREATED GAMBLING”
There is a relationship, coded into the game (data-driven of course) between gambling policy and the happiness of religious voters. By default, as you legalize and liberalize gambling, religious voters become more upset, with a degree governed by an equation, such as -0.2*(x^3), where x is the intensity of gambling (degree to which it is legal).
This equation is picked by me, as being my best guess of the general effects of gambling on religious people. However… In the USA, I get the impression gambling has a more negative connotation. You guys banned online poker, for example. Maybe religious people should be more annoyed? maybe -0.4*(x^3) or maybe the curve should be 0-(0.45*x), or whatever else you like… Overrides allow this to happen, because each country has a folder full of overrides which get automatically applied when that country is played, enabling me to tailor each country a bit.
It gets better…
In theory, adding the capability for a folder of player-designed overrides is trivial, meaning players who decided that in their view, gun ownership reduced, not exacerbated crime, could save out an override to that effect, and never be offended by cliffs liberal gun-hating ways again! :D
Also… it’s a modders paradise, because not only can you add new simulation values, policies etc… now you can zero-out existing effects. So if the game has object A affects object B, and you want to mod it so in fact A affects C and then C affects B, to add some subtlety and complexity and extra feature… then you could do that without *ever* having to alter the original game files at all. This should make experimenting with player-made mods much much easier, and less risky than normal.
I hope people get stuck in and use them :D