Victoria 3 will lean more towards aspects of management than its grand strategy peers in Paradox's rosters. On the one hand, you'll have to be more actively aware of the shifts happening in your society, but the recently published dev diary 5 reveals that building upgrades aren also not a straightforward, fire-and-forget thing.
Where other management games opt for linear building upgrades, in Victoria 3, "there are no actions without reactions, and novel innovations don't just make buildings better with no side effects," according to the developer.
"Improving industrial processes over time is to be expected, but in some cases those improvements might require goods as input that the country has scant access to, while others permit the output of a new type of end product at the expense of the old one. As a result, buildings in Victoria 3 require more flexible upgrade paths than what's afforded by permanent, linear, 'no-brainer' improvements."
When interacting with Victoria 3's buildings, you'll usually have to deal with between 2 and 5 Production Methods, most of which fall into the following categories:
- Base: governs the general "tech level" and efficiency of the building, produces goods typical for the building type
- Refining: reduces output of typical goods in favor of output of specialized or luxury goods, sometimes adding a special input
- Automation: adds industrial goods as input to reduce the building's unskilled workforce requirement
- Ownership: determines who owns shares in the building; typically governed by Laws
The Base Production Method of an iron mine determines how minerals are extracted. You could rely on manual labor, which involves bringing miners using picks and shovels, or opt for engine-driven pumping mechanisms. The latter come in several types, requiring different types of fuel.
"The more advanced the pumping mechanism the more deposits can be accessed and the faster Iron can be mined, but the more Coal or Oil is used in the process. With higher tech pumps comes a requirement for more Engineers and Machinists to be on-site to control and oversee its operation. This creates more demand for qualified workers and also opens up a number of better paid positions to those Pops who meet the qualifications," the developer explains.
Once it's invented, Nitroglycerin can be used instead. This method yields more minerals, but requires your Chemical Industry to produce Explosives, and also involves more workplace accidents than some of its other counterparts. Research can then unlock less volatile Dynamite, which further increases the mineral yield, reduces the number of workers going back home without limbs, but requires even more Explosives to be produced.
At the start of a game of Victoria 3, Merchant Guilds own and operate mines. They're represented by Shopkeepers who, as the mines start to industrialize, get replaced by Capitalists.
"In most cases, these Capitalists will come from Shopkeepers promoted to these newly created positions, but some might come from other Pops in the state, even other Capitalists in buildings not quite as lucrative as these new mines. There are fewer Capitalists than Shopkeepers but they draw a higher wage, and more importantly they will reinvest some of their earnings into the country's expanding industry depending on how much profit their workplace is generating for them," reads dev diary 5.
The different Production Methods employed in Victoria 3's buildings don't just translate into goods, either. Bureaucrats and Clerks working in Government Administrations use Paper to produce Bureaucracy, extending the number of people you can govern and the reach of your state services. By consuming Engines and a type of fuel, Railways produce both Transportation and Infrastructure, "the former which is sold on the market and the latter which allows the state to support more buildings without loss of Market Access."
Paradox admits that this can sound rather overwhelming but reassures fans that it has developed tools to make navigating the UI easy, even when you're dealing with lots of buildings in a fairly large state. You can read more about them, as well as how Victoria 3's buildings and Production Methods have a "tremendous capacity for modding" in the full dev diary 5, linked above.
Victoria 3 is headed to PC and does not currently have a release date.
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