Earlier this month we held an exclusive Q&A session on the Official Victoria Discord for our newsletter subscribers. We have now gathered some of our top questions and answers in this article, for your reading pleasure! Enjoy.
Winged: Will some cultures have areas they specialise in? For example Nepali could be better soldiers while Norwegians could be better fishermen
Michael “Ofaloaf” Kundak-Cowall: The main problem I have with that is the unfortunate implications of saying people are just innately better at one thing or another- a Norwegian who moves to central Iowa isn’t going to be a terribly good fisherman, and a Nepali who has never experienced war in his or her lifetime isn’t going to have much experience at combat.
General_WCJ: what is the most common degree held by team members working on v3, history, game development, game design, computer science or something else
Paul Depre: If I had to guess its most likely some form of computer science and or game development for those who were able to go to school for such. We also have quite a few individuals who have the non-standard degrees in various forms of sciences, history, language, and me – the token economist. Never done a survey among the studio though, might be an interesting thing to do. The results will not be in a pie chart, that I can assure you.
SenatorSnowBear: Will we see models of trains move around the railways on the map? Will they go ‘choo choo’ if we zoom in close enough? The latter question is very important to me.
Michael “Ofaloaf” Kundak-Cowall: The trains do indeed travel around on the map and go choo choo! In fact, the trains even go chugga chugga.
Gimokes: How does the government form affect how laws pass?
Does an Absolute Monarchy like Prussia have a easier way to pass unpopular laws by many interest groups than a Constitutional Monarchy like Great Britain?
Daniel Tolman: More authoritarian laws will help you pass laws faster; so an autocratic monarchy that suppresses opposition interest groups can pass laws quickly and with less resistance than a democracy with a strong opposition. Of course, that has its own downsides.
Dr. Njitram: Are there any mechanics youre not fully fleshing out, awaiting feedback from the larger player base/QA?
Paul Depre: There are plenty of things not solid – all to various levels. That’s part of the reason we do dev diaries and feedback sessions, hold UR tests, and let QA tinker on the regular. Some more structural mechanics are locked in, but we are always looking to and reacting to your feedback. If we do not act upon it right away its usually because doing such is risk based on the timeline and then we look for when we can address it in the future. In future dev diaries you may in fact see such changes detailed.
Kings: Can democracies influence what interest groups are in their governments?
Aron Nisbel: Yes! As a Democracy you will be able to Reform your Government by adding and removing Parties and Interest Groups. However, Government constellations will vary on how Legitimate they are.
KaiserPiplup: What is the feature you are most excited about personally and to see what players will do with?
Martin Anward: Definitely Diplomatic Plays! I want to see what kind of crazy upsets players manage to pull through clever diplomacy, and also what unintended consequences they end up with. Not to mention the multiplayer shenanigans…
EnzoF: What is the most interesting aspect/consequence of something you’ve already talked about that you were not able to place onto a dev diary?
Mikael Andersson: I don’t actually recall if we’ve discussed Urbanization in detail yet, but one aspect I find fascinating is how building up your industrial states automatically create a parallel service industry which booms if the Pops’ Wealth increases but fails if it doesn’t, so creating an exploitative, extractive industrial sector will decrease the price of the industrial output goods in the market but not benefit any sector of Pops in that state.
al-Khalidi: Will it be possible for Austria to unify Germany?
Daniel Tolman: yes, but only if they don’t become Austria-Hungary!
Katakras: Can interest groups be banned in authoritarian countries?
Paul Depre: More authoritarian countries have an easier time influencing their IGs to irrelevance. That being said its not as easy as simple to “ban” an IG – if they have the clout they will attempt to fight back instead of heading off meekly into irrelevance.
Softload3r: Will there be a tutorial like in CK3? Vic 3 will be the first game in the Vic Series I’m playing, so a tutorial like in CK3 would be a huge help and much appreciated!
Aron Nisbel: Yes! We’re working hard on the Tutorial and the format will have similarities to CK3, but we’re of course aiming to improve on it and have made many of our own changes to fit it more to our game and take it further. One change we’ve been aiming for is that you will be able to play the tutorial as any country, but we’re not going into any specific details on that yet! As a UX designer, the Tutorial is close to my UX heart since it is one of the most important features especially for a new player’s experience. Hopefully, our Tutorial will make the game very enjoyable even for anyone without an economics degree.
Grovar: Are we going to have game rules we can change before we start a new campaign like we have in other pdx titles?
Martin Anward: Yes, game rules are going to be in! For example, there will be a game rule to decide whether you want ‘silly’ nations like Byzantium and Jan Mayen to be able to appear or not.
Jboy2000000: How will the blimp reward from sighing up to the newsletter be implemented in game?
Mikael Andersson: Airships are one of the many things in the game that makes the map more alive. The one you get for signing up for the newsletter will be making an appearance in place of the standard model from time to time.
SolarCola: Is colourblindness considered in the design of the UI?
Paul Depre: Yes! I can say we have been working towards addressing some color-blindness issues with our game particularly because it is more numbers heavy than others. We’ve been working on a dynamic setting that should allow for us to expand its coverage and hopefully (don’t confirm quote me here) allow for modding as well to help cover all the various possibilities. Maybe we can do a dev diary on it in the future.
Simply John?: What are some of the biggest quality of life changes that are planned or that have been made?
Martin Anward: There’s a lot, but just to take one example we have implemented prediction functions when you change a production method or expand a building for how profitable the method/building will be. This in itself isn’t new, but what is new about it is that the prediction takes into account factors such as how prices are going to change not just from that particular building/method but also from every other building currently in your construction queue, pop goods substitution (so you can see if there is potential for a good to be consumed even if it’s not currently consumed) and so on. These predictions are actually also used by the AI to be able to far more accurately plan out its economic decisions than in our other games.
Goodluck: Will there be reasons to keep the upper class happy on the cost of the lower and middle class, even though the upper class is just a fraction of your nation’s population?
Daniel Tolman: Absolutely. Firstly, if you’re deliberately playing as an autocratic reactionary country, you of course want to favor the old guard power groups. But also, remember that wealth and certain laws boost the political power of pops – and if you try to pass laws that favor the poor, the rich will push back.
Golden: although events aren’t going to be railroaded, will we still see history play out roughly as we would expect? (As long as the player doesn’t interfere, that is 😉)
Mikael Andersson: That depends on your expectations! 😉 We are not taking the approach that there is one “Platonic” way that history played out and if you don’t poke at it, it will repeat itself. Rather, historical progression is the emergent consequence of millions of interacting events based on material conditions. What this means in practice is that while a lot of things will progress roughly as you might expect – countries are more likely to fight over shared Homelands, technologically advanced countries are more likely to do well financially, a country with a lot of colonies are likely to dominate the seas and vice versa – there will also be plenty of “butterfly effects” where e.g. a mass migration from China to Argentina will change the power dynamics in South America which might cause the US to reconsider their Interests there, etc. Our aim here is that some events should be recognizable while the remainder should be justifiable, and as few events as possible should feel inconceivable.
SL128: Which types of countries tend to be the most beginner friendly or hostile?
Daniel Tolman: Personally I think Japan is very beginner friendly. But to a great extent how “difficult” a country is largely depends on what your goals are.
An_Oxygen_Consumer: can we play as rebels in some events?
Martin Anward: Yes, there’s a variety of both events and mechanics where you can choose to be the rebels and fight against ‘your own’ country. To give one example, if the Sepoy Rebellion happens it’s possible to switch and fight for Indian freedom.
RatherHolistic: are there any alt-history formables?
Daniel Tolman: We certainly have some, and we’d like to add more before release. Scandinavia and Gran Colombia are some examples.
Happy Doggu: When do big nations like France, Prussia, and Austria actually get in on diplomatic plays? How does the game determine that?
Martin Anward: I’m assuming this is about when the AI decides to join a play rather than when it’s possible for them to do so. The gist of it is that to join a side, an AI has to either want strongly either to back a side, or be tempted with something that it wants enough (what it wants depends on which AI strategies is governing it at the moment) to overcome both their desire to support the opposing side and their desire to stay neutral. I’ll go more into this in AI dev diaries in the future.
Mr.Erik: how will taxes affect purchasing power and so standard of living? I want to know if i can build a small government for less militancy for less returns(money/soldiers)
Paul Depre: Without going into extravagant detail about the various disagreements among the economic schools of the relative effectiveness of taxes on consumption, etc. I’m on a character limit and I cannot digress.
In short any money taken by taxes will reduce the purchasing power of the pop and make where their consumption basket is relatively more expensive (out of their remaining income) thus they will have to reprioritize and might possibly consume less. More wealth in their pocket would mean a gradual want of the more quality goods, a nicer standard of living, even something extravagant.
But depending on how those taxes are spent – maybe by building industries that stimulate domestic production of the consumed goods you’ve been importing (thus keeping the relative wealth within your domestic economy) this loss in purchasing power from one strata of society can be overcome by subsidizing the welfare of another.
I said I wouldn’t go into extravagant detail and here I am with the answer of “it depends”
michael III: Will there be an observer mode(if you want to just watch the AI)?
Aron Nisbel: Yes!
Goodluck: Is it possible to stay competetive as an agricultural focused nation, or will you have to industralize if you want to keep up with the great powers?
Paul Depre: What determines staying competitive here may differ from player to player: you can stay as a primarily agricultural based economy and meet the relevant standard of livings for your pops. Of course to expand that past your domestic restrictions without industrializing would require finding markets for such goods, etc. Its a challenge to meet the needs of your pops if they start asking for goods you choose to not produce. Nothing in the economic situation and focus is inherently impossible, it just presents a different set of challenges to you to maintain.
Goodluck: Is there advantages to both tall and wide play; like will it be advantages to focus on one big city or building up many different Urban areas?
Paul Depre: In short: yes. Playing tall has its advantages and disadvantages as does wide – its more a question of which problems you want to confront. Playing tall can allow for the benefits and throughput of industrialization to be seen faster. Wider means more accessible resources domestically across your economy but multiple urban centres will require an infrastructure network to maintain a connection between them and the movement of goods but a single industrial capital might become dirty overtime and see an increase in mortality.
Aquos: What are you most excited for in terms of new modding capabilities?
Mikael Andersson: I’ve seen some absolutely next-level overhauls just focused on replacing buildings, production methods, and goods made by members of the team on their “free project” time, and I think this is where we will see the most amount of modding. Having said that we aim to make nearly everything we put in the game moddable, so undoubtedly we will see new laws, institutions, tech trees, diplomatic actions, subject types, military behaviors, and even AI mods. There’s also another major feature we use to support the event system which we’ll cover in a dev diary in January, that I am also positive will see some really amazing mods written for it.
Theo: Will we be able to zoom out fully and see the whole world?
Aron Nisbel: Yes, and we put a keyboard shortcut in for you to instantly zoom out and then you can click the map + release the shortcut to instantly zoom in there. ⌨️
Jagriel: Can we expect more pie charts and graphs in the release state of the game?
Mikael Andersson: We’ll have more charts and graphs than you can shake a stick at. We recently rewrote our trends backend system to be able to support a ridiculous amount of data sampling, just so we can give you more charts.
Cilantro: Will we be able to outfit arctic expeditions like the Franklin expedition to find the Northwest Passage?
Michael “Ofaloaf” Kundaw-Cowall: There are expeditions- hang tight and we’ll go into detail about them in the future!
Eze agha: will their be flavor events to spice up gameplay inbetween diplomatic plays?
Michael “Ofaloaf” Kundaw-Cowall: Yes! They even let me write some of them, somehow.
uzo70: Will the “Tooltips in Tooltips” system from CK3, make its way into Vicky 3?
Aron Nisbel: Yes!
And there we have it, a short roundup of the newsletter subscriber exclusive Discord Q&A. To to stay in the know on all things Victoria 3, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter and we’ll keep you updated!