The Impact of Cultural and Economic Technologies on Politics in Victoria: Revolutions

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The Impact of Cultural and Economic Technologies on Politics in Victoria: Revolutions

As it was in Victoria, so it is with Revolutions: cultural technologies are a strange lot. Unlike technologies like Machine Guns, Oil Driven Ships, and Interchangeable Parts, cultural technologies are not universally good. In some cases, they can be downright dangerous to research, especially if you get Nostalgic Romanticism when half your colonial population is reactionary and at a militancy of ten. This can be quite bizarre for players who have played games like Age of Mythology where technology upgrades are always a good thing.

It has become even more bizarre with Revolutions because, as the name implies, revolutions have a greater role to play. This is appropriate, considering that the expansion of the game period to include 1920-1936 sees a period where fascism became the ruling force in three major European countries, while communists took power in one of the largest and most populated countries on the entire planet. Political stability is less of a given than it was in Victoria, especially with the changes to the political system. The fact that there is a sixth level of cultural technologies means that there are further choices to be made and greater risks to making the wrong ones.

In this light, the purpose of this guide is to arm you, the player, with the information you need to be at least aware of the consequences of your decisions when it comes to cultural technologies.

Before you read this guide, however, you should have a firm grasp of the basics of playing Victoria: Revolutions. You should become very familiar with the A Guide for Victoria:Revolutions. You should have a working knowledge of The Big Three chapter of Memnon’s manual. You should understand how governments work in Victoria: Revolutions by having read Government Forms, Political Parties, and Political Reforms in Victoria: Revolutions. Finally, you should have already read oxmonsta’s excellent State and Government (and Other Politically Important Techs) Explained guide. I have based my guide on this one, and I am only updating its contents for Revolutions.

Cultural Technologies

There are now six political technologies to research in Victoria: Revolutions. They are Enlightenment Thought (4301), Ideological Thought (4302), State and Government (4303), Nationalism and Imperialism (4304), Revolution and Counterrevolution (4305), and Mass Politics (4306). Of these, Mass Politics is the new kid on the block. There are also other new cultural technologies, such as Social Alienation and Behaviorism, that have significant political impact. I will start with the political technologies and then examine the other cultural technologies.

Ideological Thought

Ideological Thought functions exactly the same as it did in Victoria. The addition of a new ideology, Fascism, does not change this. There are no Ideological Thought inventions based on Fascism, a fact that is useful to keep in mind once fascist parties become an option after 1905. For example, if you do not want the Ideological Thought inventions for socialism to fire for your dictatorship, but you need a state capitalist party in power, appoint a fascist party (most of them are state capitalist). You get your state capitalist party, along with Pro Military or Jingoism, without having to worry about 25 points in plurality increases.

State and Government

State and Government is mostly the same as in Victoria. However, there are two important things to keep in mind. The first thing is that there are a number of new economic technologies and inventions available after 1919 that can dramatically increase the chance of stock market crashes. Second, ruling parties with state capitalism or planned economy cannot promote capitalists. What this means is that the choice between Meritocracy and Aristocracy has a new dimension to it. It is quite possible that you will spend the majority of the game with a ruling party that does not let you promote capitalists; thus, if you choose aristocracy you may avoid stock market crashes completely while not having to worry about the -50% to the capitalist production bonus. When you also consider that all socialist and communist parties, along with most fascist and reactionary parties, are either state capitalist or planned economy, it opens up the possibility that aristocracy may meet your needs better than Meritocracy.

Nationalism and Imperialism

The biggest change to Nationalism and Imperialism is the increase to colonial life ratings. Just getting this technology is good for a ten point change in the colonial life ratings you are allowed to colonize. The fact that you cannot get this technology without getting Ideological Thought and State and Government means that any serious colonial power has little choice but to research it as soon as it becomes available. It is also worth mentioning that Mission to Civilize now only grants a 10% increase to the prestige gained from claiming colonies rather than 100%.

Revolution and Counterrevolution

There is only one change here.

Vanguard Party

  • Rebel Respawn Rate of Communist POPs increased by 100%

Vanguard Party functions exactly like Dogma of Mass Action. The only reason it will be a problem is if you already have communist POPs who have high militancy. Unlike Dogma of Mass Action, Vanguard Party will not fire until 1910, giving you some breathing room with angry communist POPs if you research this technology too early. The combined effect of these two inventions is a tripling of the respawn rate of your rebelling communist POPs. The practical effect of this in game terms is that if you have researched Revolution and Counterrevolution, and it is 1910 or later, communist rebellions will be much harder to put down and will result in more damage to your POPs.

On a different note, governments who are relying on capitalists to build factories should bear in mind that Anti-Egalitarianism causes Citizen Guard crime buildings to appear. Citizen Guards double the chance of the Battle for the Streets random event. This event, in addition to other nasty effects, wipes out the cash reserves for all POPs in the state. Thus, you should really stay on top of crime once Anti-Egalitarianism fires, otherwise your capitalists will not be able to build up reserves.

Mass Politics

And so we come to the political technologies of Revolutions at last. Mass Politics, like many new technologies in Revolutions, is only available in 1919. That means there is almost a forty year gap between when Revolution and Counterrevolution becomes available (1880) and when Mass Politics becomes available. Mass Politics itself has no immediate effects, but it does trigger three inventions and a set of random events.

Mass Politics allows four random events to fire, one associated with each extreme ideology (reactionary, communist, fascist, and anarcho-liberal). While the amusing text for each differs slightly, they all have the same effects. Each time they fire, plurality drops by 2.5 points and 2.5% of your POPs embraces whatever the ruling ideology is. This can be very helpful if you are an autocratic government with an extremist ideology in power. It can be annoying if you are a attempting to maintain a democracy with extremists in power.

The Doctrine of Fascism

  • Rebel Respawn Rate of Fascist POPs increased by 100%

Paramilitary Groups

  • Rebel Respawn Rate of Fascist POPs increased by 100%

These two inventions function in the same way as their communist counterparts, Dogma of Mass Action and Vanguard Party. In this case, they will make any rebelling fascists much more difficult to deal with. It is worth pointing out that you can have fascist POPs with low militancy; these POPs will not suddenly revolt just because these two inventions have fired. As such, if you keep militancy and war exhaustion down, there should be no problem from these inventions.

The Police State

Must have voting rights set to None.

  • No immediate effect

This is a sort of “stealth” cultural invention. As indicated, it has no immediate effects. It does, however, allow four random events to fire. These random events function exactly like the plurality dropping events for Mass Politics itself, providing -2.5 to plurality and converting 2.5% of your POPs to the ruling ideology if your ruling party is fascist, communist, reactionary, or anarcho-liberal.

Behaviorism

This cultural technology is the sixth tier of the psychology branch. It is a very busy cultural technology in terms of its potential effects on your country. In addition to the standard revolt risk decrease and prestige modification of all other psychology technologies, it has a couple of important inventions that fire based on it.

Mass Advertising

  • +5 Plurality
  • -2 Militancy for Liberal POPs

Mass Advertising is a mixed bag, depending on your current and future political set up. Its immediate effects are obvious: increase of plurality and a reduction of militancy for liberals; however, Mass Advertising also allows for a group of random events to fire that are exactly like those of Mass politics: -2.5 to plurality and a conversion of 2.5% of your POPs to the ruling ideology if your ruling party is fascist, reactionary, communist, or anarcho-liberal.

National Radio Networks

  • Activate Factory Type: Radio Factory (Currently, the text is bugged for Radio Factory and it says “Unknown String Wanted.”)
  • -1 Militancy for Liberal, Socialist, and Conservative POPs

This is a fairly cool cultural invention. It is the only cultural invention that allows for the construction of new factory, making it doubly useful. The reduction to militancy is handy, but once again, it is the hidden effects that make this invention interesting. Just like Mass Politics, this invention allows for four random events that function exactly as the plurality reducing random events for Mass Politics: -2.5 to plurality and 2.5% of your POPs converted to the ruling ideology if the ruling party is fascist, communist, reactionary, or anarcho-liberal. It also allows a second set of random events to fire if your voting rights are suffrage and your press rights are free press. These three random events randomly turn 2.5% of your POPs either conservative, liberal, or socialist.

The Talkies

  • Prestige (based on how many others have discovered this)

The prestige for this invention can be helpful if you get it first. Once again, this invention has the same hidden effect as Mass Politics in the form of the four random events that can fire giving you -2.5 to plurality and converting 2.5% of your POPs to the ruling ideology if your ruling party is fascist, communist, reactionary, or anarcho-liberal.

Social Alienation

  • 10% of POPs converted to socialist.

Social Alienation gives us a cultural technology that is very mixed in its combined effects. This technology’s immediate effect is easy enough to understand. If you are facing an election soon, it might change the course of your country’s politics in the short term. For autocratic governments who are desperately trying to keep their POPs happy, this might make life difficult in the short term; however, your POPs’ ideology will change over time anyway, so there is no long term effect from researching this technology itself. Its inventions, however, have more impact.

The Decline of the West and the Lost Generation

  • -10 Plurality
  • 2.5% of your POPs converted to fascist
  • 2.5% of your POPs converted to communist

The reduction in plurality by itself makes this invention worth getting ahead of all others if you have an autocratic government. The converting of your POPs to communist and fascist does not really help any autocratic government, since you get both communist and fascist POPs regardless of your ruling party’s ideology. On the flip side, democracies should be wary of this invention. If your democracy is facing militancy problems, it may be best to avoid this entire cultural technology and its inventions because if this fires while your militancy is high, your democracy will face serious problems that nothing is likely to help in the near future.

The Revolt of the Masses

  • +5 Plurality
  • 5% of POPs converted to liberal

This invention almost counteracts The Decline of the West and the Lost Generation. The increase to plurality will be universally bad for autocratic governments, but the cumulative effect on plurality in this cultural technology and its inventions is negative. Democracies will want this invention to fire after its cousin The Decline of the West and the Lost Generation, since you will very likely be at 100% plurality by the time you get around to researching this technology. Still, it is random when and how these two inventions fire, so your best bet is to research it ASAP for autocratic governments and wait until your militancy is low if you are a democracy.

Economic Technologies

Cultural Technologies are not the only technologies that can significantly affect the politics of your country. There are a few economic technologies and inventions that can have some far reaching consequences.

Collectivist Theory

The politics of your country can be dramatically affected by random events based off of the Collectivist Theory. Collectivist Theory and its effects are not new to Revolutions, but it bears mentioning in the context of these new inventions. Collectivist Theory and the economist inventions that fire from it have no direct effect on your politics; it is the random events based off each economist that are important.

Urban Worker Organization (Pierre Joseph Proudhorn)

  • +1 Consciousness for Laborers
  • +1 Plurality

Landless Peasant Organization (Pierre Joseph Proudhorn)

  • +1 Consciousness for Farmers
  • +1 Plurality

Both of these random events have little effect on your politics unless you are an autocratic government with a lot of rural POPs. In that case, once Pierre Joseph Proudhorn fires, it will be harder to keep the consciousness of your rural POPs down. The increase to plurality is negligible unless you are really lucky (or unlucky, if you have an autocratic government) and it fires ten times.

The Incumbent Self-Destruction of Capitalism (Karl Marx)

  • +2 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +2 Militancy for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +20 Plurality

This is the big one. Whether you are a democracy, constitutional monarchy, or some sort of autocratic government, you will love to hate Karl Marx. For democracies, the plurality and consciousness increase are nice, but the +2 militancy can be very inconvenient since it will affect all lower class POPs. For autocratic governments, the +20 to plurality makes it worthwhile to hold off on researching Collectivist Theory for as long as possible. Even worse, like all of these events, it is random. So, you might get it once, or you might get it three times. For you communists with proletarian dictatorships, you get no exemption from this random event, so be warned that your own plurality will jump up just as surely as a monarchy’s will.

Dogmatic Worker Self-Appraisal (Friedrich Engels)

  • +2 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +2 Militancy for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +10 Plurality

This is almost the same as its brother, The Incumbent Self-Destruction of Capitalism. The only difference is the +10 increase to plurality instead of +20. Deal with it just as you would The Incumbent Self-Destruction of Capitalism.

Pragmatic Socialist Economics (Eduard Bernstein)

  • +1 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +5 Plurality

Governmental Management (Sidney Webb)

  • +1 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +2 Plurality

Popularization of Socialist Economics (Karl Kautsky)

  • +1 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +5 Plurality

Alternative Socialist Economics (Jean Jaures)

  • +1 Consciousness for all craftsmen, soldiers, farmers, and laborers
  • +2 Plurality

All of these random events are generally good for democracies, but are harmful to autocratic governments. Just like The Incumbent Self-Destruction of Capitalism, these events do not care what kind of ruling party or government type you have. Once again, you communists out there with proletarian dictatorships will still feel the pinch of these events just as surely as any monarchy.

Hyperinflation

  • 5% of your POPs converted to fascist
  • 5% of your POPs converted to communist

This economic invention is based off of the Market Determined Exchange Rates technology new to Revolutions. While its effects are not dire, they are not beneficial either. When this fires, you will see your POPs’ ideologies fragment further. If this fires within a short period of some of the other inventions, such as The Decline of the West and the Lost Generation, you could be faced with a significant number of POPs with incompatible political views. If militancy is a problem, be prepared for it to get worse when this fires. On the other hand, just as with any ideology change, it is not permanent and given some time its effects will go away, especially if your economy is prosperous.

Final Thoughts

Plurality in Revolutions, unlike Victoria, no longer increases consistently after the conservative string of inventions for Ideological Thought have fired. Depending on what your political settings are and what you have managed to research, it is possible to turn back the clock on plurality once you get past 1919 and the final cultural technologies become available. Still, it is only for the last sixteen years of the game that the various plurality reducing random events become available, assuming you can even research all of the required technologies and have the required inventions fire. This means that anyone planning a long term game as any of the autocratic governments would do well to keep plurality and consciousness down from day one.

For democracies, life after 1919 becomes strange. No matter how well run is your democracy, some of the cultural events will cause POPs to become communist and fascist. This will skew your voting patterns and make life difficult if militancy is a problem. On the other hand, if you are playing a democracy, militancy should not be a problem that late in the game and the few inventions that lower plurality will not have that much impact. The worst thing that will happen is that one of the cultural inventions that converts the ideology of POPs will fire right before an election, causing an unexpected party to win. If that happens, just hold another election and let the country straighten itself out.

In the final analysis, if you have some sort of autocratic government, you should make Mass Politics, Social Alienation, and Behaviorism your research priority as soon as they become available. If you are a democracy, you can safely skip Social Alienation altogether and research the others at your leisure or as your need for prestige from cultural inventions dictates.