Power Politics is a simulation of the 1992 United States Presidential election. It was developed by Randy Chase, who went on to create the Doonesbury Election Campaign several years later, which was essentially the same type of game, only starring the characters from the Doonesbury comic strip. Power Politics was published by Will Vinton’s Cineplay Interactive Incorporated, and was released the same year as the election. It was programmed specifically to the DOS format.
Power Politics is an interest simulation of the election campaign.
It is all about campaigning. After the results of the election have been simulated, the user does not have the opportunity to attempt to run the country as the newly elected President of the United States.
The game features a very realistic political engine, so realistic; in fact, that the Associated Press actually printed it simulated results predicting a decisive victory by Bill Clinton in the elections. Its realistic simulation of the American political climate places it on the border between education and entertainment. While it is a worthwhile and challenging simulation for gamers, Power Politics also found its way into classrooms as a tool for teaching students about the campaign environment.
The user has a choice of either creating his political candidate with user-specified strengths and
weaknesses, or the user can campaign for one of thirty previous presidential elects in an attempt to rewrite history. The user defines how liberal or conservative the candidate will be; chooses his position on the important issues; sets the schedule; determines what type of advertising campaign will be run and how much to spend on it; everything dealing with the running mate; as well as what type of candidate he will be it honest and forthright, or somewhat dirty and devious. The most interesting part of the game is the ability to run “what-if” scenarios by pitting former candidates from different eras against one another, just to see how the candidates would have done against different opponents or in eras of differing political climates than that which he really lived.
In short, Power Politics is a game that can easily be placed into the edutainment category because of its accurate political engine. It is a fun simulation, with some added features that make it more interesting than average and entirely repayable. Given the upcoming election year, it this would be an excellent download for students of political science, or possibly aspiring politicians. Give it a try and gain a new appreciation for the simulation genre.