Initial Thoughts on Issues & Positions

Each issue will have two diametrically opposed stands that represent traditional Democratic and Republican positions on the issue.

Each Presidential Candidate has a position on the issue (a BNumber, -1 to 1).

And each Patchwork Community Type (each county is categorized as one of the twelve) also has a position on the issue (also a BNumber, -1 to 1).

The difference between the two positions will be used in poll and actual voter calculations.

I now need to come up with a list of issues.

I compiled an issues list from the four political simulation computer games I’ve got along with how you can set a candidate’s stance on each issue.

  • Political Machine 2008 – 49 issues – Sliding scale on each issue
    • Oppose Greatly (-50)
    • Oppose Moderately
    • Oppose Slightly
    • Have No Formal Stance
    • Favor Slightly
    • Favor Moderately
    • Favor Greatly (50)
  • President Forever 2008 – 18 issues – Distinct selections on each issue
    • Far Left
    • Left
    • Center Left
    • Center
    • Center Right
    • Right
    • Far Right

Each issue importance is also rated in the minds of the voter

Very High Profile
High Profile
Medium Profile
Low Profile

  • Election Day – 15 issues – Sliding scale on each issue
    • Strongly Conservative (0) to Strongly Liberal (100)

The fifteen issues are also categorized into five groups of three – Personal Freedom, Economy, Foreign Policy, Social Support, Government Investment

You can also choose the depth of focus on issue during the game

1. Distinguish candidates only by ideology
2. Candidates have positions on five broad issue areas
3. Candidates have positions on fifteen issues

If you choose #1, your only slider selection is SC| – – – – – | – – ^ – – |SL

If you choose #2, your only slider selection is on each of the five categories – Personal Freedom┬áSC| – – – – – | – – ^ – – |SL (you can select a category as a priority)

  • Doonsebury Election Game – 15 issues
    • Very Liberal
    • Liberal
    • Moderate
    • Conservative
    • Very Conservative

I’m favoring a smaller list of issues rather than a larger list to make things manageable by me and understandable by the player – say 10 to 15. I envision the player selecting from a list of candidates in the 2012 version of the game instead of creating a candidate from scratch (maybe that feature can be purchasable from within the game).

When creating candidates I do like the idea of categorizing issues into groups and letting the selection of individual issue positions be handled by a group selection.

Back in May I also thought about having an Issue Type to reflect the effect of a candidates position on a particular issue.

  • Global
  • National
  • Regional
  • State
  • Personal

Action Items

  1. List of issues – 10 to 15
  2. Democratic and Republican positions on issues
  3. Issue categories for future use – 3 to 5
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