Democracy 4 is the latest edition in the ongoing series by Positech games.
New features include an updated user interface, higher-quality graphics, more complex simulations, 2020 Election Cycle-style political messaging components, and many new situations, events, and policies for players to consider.
What Is Democracy 4?
Democracy 4 puts the player at the helm of the country — they are elected president and must decide how they will respond to crises, movements, and opportunities for progress.
Players will have opportunities to explore democratic (and not-so-democratic) policies and responses through scenarios they are put through while playing the game.
For example — will they impose higher taxes on the rich, or increase the gap between the super-wealthy and the lower-class?
Will they dedicate themselves to philanthropy or making a profit for themselves?
Who will they take advice from? Capitalists? Socialists? Cabinet advisors? Spies?
How will they prioritize key issues, like national security, the climate crisis, minimum wage, affordable housing, social inequities, student debt? The issues featured in the game are the same ones that current global leaders (and their citizens) are grappling with in today’s sociopolitical environment.
Players will decide from whom they receive funding and how they spend it — of course, these choices will come with consequences. Leaders will also decide what kind of relationship to build with their citizens — one built on truth, integrity, and candor, or sensationalism, hyperbole, and propaganda.
At the end of it all, voters will decide whether to re-elect or reject the player/president at the end of their term…that is, if they make it to their term without getting assassinated!
How Can Teachers Use Democracy 4 In The Classroom?
Democracy 4 has obvious connections to social studies, but the game makes interdisciplinary connections to math, language arts, science, foreign language, art, communication, and many other subjects taught in schools.
Democracy 4 is a simulation — students get to immerse themselves in the game environment and feel like they are part of an alternate reality. Democracy 4, specifically, allows students to experience vicariously the multitudes of decisions that leaders of democratic nations face, the pressures that influence their choice-making, and the consequences of actions that don’t appeal to the public.
There are myriad topics within Democracy 4 for students to discuss within a class conversation or in small groups. Students can reflect on how specific choices led to future consequences, and what connections those relationships have to decisions made in the real world. Examples of conversation topics include:
- What are the pros and cons of capitalism? Socialism?
- What problems exist within the current American political system?
- What loopholes in democracy allow for corruption?
- How can democracy, as a concept, be improved?
- How has democracy evolved to become its current iteration?
- In what cases is democracy not the most ideal form of government for a particular nation?
- What is the opposite of a democracy and why?
- Without _______ a democracy cannot function — explain your reasoning.
- What parallels can be made between characters from Democracy 4 and real-world leaders and political figures?
- In a decade, what kind of situations will show up in Democracy 5?