BOUNDARY, n. In political geography, an imaginary line between two nations, separating the imaginary rights of one from the imaginary rights of the other."
There are five ways to view the map, each with a different use. The buttons activating each of these views are on the bottom left of the main task window, beside the minimap.
This is the first map mode. It is the default form you see when loading the game. This map will show you the kind of topography of the province mountains, hills, grassland, forests, etc. It also shows where the major rivers are. These factors are important to keep in mind when conducting a war, as terrain acts as a combat modifier. The types of terrain are described in the fold out sheet packaged with the game.
The Political map is perhaps the most frequently used mode. This shows you clearly the borders between all countries, as well as the demarcation of provinces. It also shows the location of capitals by placing a city icon in the province where the capital is located.
The economic mode shows what resource is produced by each province. This resource is represented by the icon in the center of the province. Each province produces only one kind of resource, but certain in-game events can change the type of resource produced in the province.
The infrastructure map shows the layout of the railroads and factories of a country. Railroads appear as dark, straight lines connecting provinces with one another, whereas factories are represented as small factory icons. Provinces where railroads may be built are shown in green. Fully developed provinces (for the current technology level) are shown in white. Although the icons appear in a particular province, factories are organized not by province but by the state (see below).
This mode shows in red those provinces that are in danger of revolting. No red means no revolts and the greener the better. This map also shows, through the placement of small icons, the various types of crime in each province. Provinces can only have one form of crime at a time.
The map is organized into three levels.
The highest level is that of the nation. These are clearly shown in their own color on the political map. Each nation is sovereign over its own territory and (unless it is a satellite or a dominion) has control over its international relations. Taxes and tariffs and literacy are examples of factors determined at the national level.
The lowest level is that of the province. These are also clearly illustrated on the map they are the smaller territorial demarcations within a country. Battles, railroads, resources, crime, revolts, and POP management are all handled by the province. Provinces also have an individual life rating which shows how hospitable the province is to human habitation. The better the life rating, the more people will want to move there, the higher the growth rate and the lower the penalties suffered by invading armies.
Between the province and the nation is the state. States are visible as the highlighted region on the terrain map after only one click, or as the slightly darkened region on the political map after only one click (clicking again selects a specific province).
The state is merely a collection of provinces, geographically related. It is at the state level that factories are managed. The factories are spread across the entire state, even though the icon appears in a specific province. POPs in any province in the state can be assigned to work in a factory within that state. Factories can only be built in states that have been granted statehood in your country. Statehood can be granted only when the majority population of at least one of the provinces in the state is your national culture. Keep in mind that all territory conquered or purchased from civilized countries, regardless of its population, is a state.
States are unique in Victoria in that they are the only demarcation of land that transcends national boundaries. Land allocation in treaties is done by the province, not by the state, meaning that states can be split up among two or more nations. Examples of this at the outset of the 1836 scenario include the state of Azerbaijan, which is divided between Russia and Persia, and the state of Maine, which is divided between the United States and Great Britain.
States divided between nations can still have factories built in them, but only those POPs inside your country can be assigned to work in them. When an entire state is conquered, all factories in that state are transferred as well, but keep in mind that as long as even one of the provinces in a state remains in the hands of the other country, all the factories will remain in that other country.