Democracy 3 out now, political arguments with friends and family to follow

Perry Vandell at

Democracy’s a tricky business. You have voters to appease, special interest groups to tranquilize, and promises to either uphold or bury in the backyard—all while deciding which of your signatures looks the most patriotic. The world of political subterfuge isn’t for everyone, but that’s why we have Democracy 3.

In case you aren’t familiar with the series, Democracy is a political strategy game that somewhat resembles the crushing monotony of reality. Your policies influence voters, all of whom belong to various demographics. Raising taxes will probably piss off conservatives, while gutting the education fund could lead to angry teachers and union workers marching on your doorstep. It’s a balancing act that tests your ideologies on how government should work.

Democracy 3 is available through the developer’s site, GOG, and Steam for $25, and can be played on either Windows, Mac, or Linux. Basically, if your computer’s halfway decent and isn’t still running Windows ME, Democracy should boot up just fine.

Of course, if quelling rebellions, silencing opposition and ruling your impoverished, war-torn nation with an iron fist is more your style, there’s always Tropico 4.