SVF progress report: The Union political system
The following rules are based on a Union Poll Level ( UPL) ranging from 0 to 20, starting to 15 at the beginning of the GC.
Variations of the UPL are mostly provoked by the National Moral Level: under 100, there’s a chance of lose 1 level, above 100 to gain one level. This rule links the military successes and defeats to the political situation.
A few other events will simulate secondary concerns in the population ( economy, abolition of slavery, corruption, etc) and will change the UPL ( in a very small shift). These events are simulating the other aspect of political life during Civil War.
There are 2 polls for Union in the game: the 1862 mid terms and the 1864 presidential poll. If the UPL is under 5, you have lost the poll. Above 15, you have won the majority. Between 5 and 15, there’s a win/lose percentage, like 50/50 for level 110, 60/40 for level 12, etc…
During the 6 turns preceding an election, variation of the UPL by NM are automatically enforced: if your NM is under 100, you will lose one UPL level by turn; above 100 you will earn 1 by turn. This rule simulates the quick shifting in public opinion during war. Let’s say the capture of Atlanta may give you the +4 UPL needed to win the 1864 presidential poll.
Player will be able to buy 1 NM by option by spending 10 Engagement Points. Another option will simulate the outcome of political crisis, like the one that occurred in 1862 with Chase: the player will spend 20 EPs to Try to win 5 NM. In this latter case, the result will be randomized and will depend of the current NM level: a low NM will lower the probability to get a bonus in NM. If you fail you may even lose a few more NM.
Engagement points will they be easy to spend? No. For emancipation, you will ned to spend 200 ( yes 200) EPs. Creating colored units will cost too EPs, and other secondary but important decisions will cost EPs too.
So EPs should be scarce for political activity. Be warned, after the historical date, if you delay yet the Emancipation, you will lose NM because of the growing impatience of the abolitionist wing of the Republican Party.
Losing the elections in 1862 will rise the cost of emancipation. Conscription will be harder to introduce. Your income will be lowered a bit to represent the opposition of the Democrats, volunteers will need higher bounties, etc.
The system is simple, but forces the Union player to attack as soon as possible CSA to win NM, and creates an intricated relation between politics and military. Politics needs military successes, and military affairs will suffer from electoral defeats. In the same time, player will have to suffer from sudden political crisis or on the contrary use precious EPs to restore the situation. The tension will be especially high during the 3 months before election as any military event will provoke huge consequences. In the end, each turn should be both integrated in a long path toward victory and giving the feeling to be late on this one… The contrary of a boring game :-)