Mod of the Week: Disaster and Emergency Situations Pack, for Democracy 3

Christopher Livingston at

Turn on the TV or radio, talk to a relative or co-worker, or listen to a random conversation in a restaurant or bar, and you’ll quickly realize one thing: everyone knows how to run the country better than the person currently running it. And, if cousin Zeke or Carl the bartender can run the country, running the country must be too darn easy, right? Here's how to make it a bit tougher.

The Disaster and Emergency Situations Pack mod for Democracy 3 will bring some new challenges to your presidency by adding a dozen new harrowing yet realistic situations and twice that many new events, such as natural disasters, disease outbreaks, and increasingly deadly acts of terrorism. You’ll also be given new policies, task forces, and agencies to deal with these emergencies, and you’ll face some tough choices while trying to contain and control these dangerous situations.

Remember, giving something a long, complicated name makes it not torture.

So, there I was, pleasantly ushering Great Britain into a new golden age. Crime was down. Employment was up. The poor weren't doing too badly and the wealthy weren't completely enraged that the poor weren't doing too badly. I was rockin' a healthy 70% approval rating and cruising through my second term. That's when the trouble began, because that's when the trouble is designed to begin in this mod: when you're sailing perhaps a little too smoothly.

The first terror attack is on an one of my government offices, with gunmen essentially just bursting into the building and shooting as many people as they can. Not long after, someone bombs a passenger train. These aren't just isolated acts of terror, either, they add up to a trend that starts impacting your country in a number of ways. I’ll let the modder, Elinor, explain how it works:

“The terrorism system essentially involves a series of different terrorism events which all cause the Fear of Terrorism situation, which generally makes people unhappy, hurts tourism and increases racial tensions. It takes two or three terrorist attacks to initially trigger the Fear of Terrorism situation, however. Each of the terrorism events can be made less likely by reducing racial tension, improving your international standing and increasing your security through law and order policies, as well as keeping your domestic terrorist numbers under control.”

My major exports are tobacco, tea, and terrified citizens fleeing the country.

I decided to do something that politicians often do when terrible things happen: absolutely nothing. Mainly, I wanted to see how bad the terrorism problem got, and wow, it got pretty darn bad, moving from small but deadly bombings to a massive gas attack on my capitol that killed at least a thousand people.

I was given the option to attempt the assassination of the terrorist leader, which I had to take, because (as Crusader Kings 2 taught me) I simply can't not click on a button that offers to assassinate someone. It failed, unfortunately, making me look like a putz, drawing the disapproval of the international community, making both the bleeding-heart liberals and flag-draped patriots hate me, and not doing a damn thing to prevent terrorism. Needless to say, terrorism became the biggest issue of my entire presidency.

I did mostly get it under control, finally, by using one of the new agencies at my disposal, the Civil Emergency Resilience and Response Task Force, and taking a few other steps that didn't involve failed assassination or thinly-disguised torture.

As far as the civil disasters go, I had a flooding problem after some storms, though in the game I played it didn't turn into a major crisis. There's another new agency, the Ecological and Natural Disaster Resilience Agency, which can reduce the damage of natural disasters. There's also an agency for fighting organized crime, and one for aiding with outbreaks of diseases.

A bit later, an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in a country I import cattle from gave me a fresh dilemma. While the risk of the disease spreading among my own livestock was slim, my farmers wanted me to ban the import of all cattle from that country. Or I could reject the ban, which would put less of a strain on the agricultural industry, though still run the risk of the disease spreading in my own country.

When you prevent flooding, the real victims are boat salesmen.

There’s plenty more events, situations, and disasters both natural and man-made that come with the mod. Even playing through a few different games, I haven't seen most of them yet, and don't want to spoil the additional ones I have seen: some of them are surprising and quite creative, yet they're all completely believable and appropriate. If you're looking to add more crises, more disasters, and more difficult choices to your presidency, this mod is a great way to do it.

Damned if you moo, damned if you don't.

Installation: Subscribe on Steam, or use the auto-installer found on the Positech site. The choice is yours! (And whichever choice you make, you know half the country will criticize you.)