That office is rather old and musty however, which means the newly announced Democracy 3 is being built "95% from scratch". Improvements are to be "equal parts graphical and simulation based".
Harris was also critical of his previous Democracy games for skewing players into a "specific political direction", as the private sector was mostly 'ignored' in favour of state funding.
"Firstly, democracy is a game I am very proud of. I think it’s my most original and innovative design, in terms of both mechanics and GUI. I don’t think any other game I’ve made has been so ‘out of the blue’ as Democracy. I also find it very interesting (although incredibly difficult) to work on," Positech one-man-band Cliff 'cliffski' Harris.
"The original, and D2 are good solid games, but they are long in the tooth now, and are starting to seriously show their age, despite D2 selling scarily well still, and also now on steam."
He highlights some good reasons for return to the Democracy series:
• The game is technically old. It runs at a fixed 1024×768 resolution. Clearly that sucks. There are also numerous other GUI areas that need more flexibility and polish.
• The game’s modding support could be much improved, as could it’s tutorial
• The game had no good system within its simulation to reflect the private sector with regards to social services such as health care, schools and pensions, and tended to require state provision in those areas. This is a shortfall which skews the game more than I would like into a specific political direction
• The game has been left behind slightly by political events. Climate change is a bigger deal now, fears of gangsta rap less so… plus the whole ‘finance your government debt through money printing or the bond market’ and credit ratings could all be reflected in a modern version of the game.
So drastic are his new plans that most of the old formula was junked, although visually it won't be too alien: "I’m coding Democracy 3 95% from scratch, although the basic GUI layout be very very similar (although much polished). The game is up and running already (I’ve worked on it on and off for a while now), but there is nothing exciting to see yet."
There's no release date yet for Democracy 3 but it will be sometime in 2013. "...it’s done when it’s done etc."
It will be interesting to see what politic issues and events Harris will include. "We have had a global credit crunch and financial crisis, the occupy movement, the Arab spring, and mobile phones have got slightly smaller, then larger again." Another smouldering potato is of course gun control policies in the United States.
Visit theto learn more about Democracy from Positech Games.