Release: President Forever 2012 v. 1.1.6

President Forever 2012 Beta v. 1.1.6 has been released. Instead of adding a turn multiplier to speed up the game between primaries and general election, a ‘Fast Forward’ feature has been added instead. Let us know what you think – the obvious advantage is that it is simple, the disadvantage that you lose some control of what happens to the campaign in between. We’re still evaluating this feature.

What we’re working on next:

Offers, including Non-Aggression Pacts, Veep offers, Endorsements between players, and Withdrawals from the campaign (this is useful in particular for primaries). Once this is implemented, you’ll be able to get other candidates out of the election by negotiation, among other things.

Note: computer player AI is not complete. This results in computer players not focusing on the optimal states, and so on.

To update:

Version information:

43 thoughts on “Release: President Forever 2012 v. 1.1.6”

  1. I’ve noticed a bug with this version. If you don’t secure the nomination, and get to the general election and click yes to switch the nominee and the general, the processing turn box comes up and just goes through dates incessantly until I close the program through Task Manager. Haven’t tried it yet when I’ve won the nomination yet, so don’t know if that happens there as well. Otherwise, a very good game and I look forward to further improvements.

  2. Thanks for the update!

    I found one bug though. I get an error message when it is time for the General Election when I play as all 5 candidates.

    Also, the computer still projects the electoral winner way too early (always Romney, when more than half the country is left, and then Obama wins with 290ish)

  3. @Will,

    Thanks for the bug report – bug is now fixed in the latest internal version.


    Error is now on the to do list. Calling the election early also noted.

  4. Can we please address the largest unrealistic error in this game? It’s Gavin election results tick up like a clock instead of gradully updating every few seconds. It goes by way too fast and take away some of the anticipation or holdout for close race. I’m sure the code could take you a minute to come up with. Please fix this!

  5. I would love to see the little upward arrow bars for momentum back underneath the labels for each state. Visualizing the moment is much better than having to dig through the strategy section to read it.

  6. Also, ads are still horribly confusing. I think “halting” a national ad should not put it in a frozen, “halted” state. I think it should just switch off that ad in every region it’s running in. The national ads screen should be like a master override. There needs to be a master switch that stops the ads everywhere. I’m having a hard time finding that.

  7. The game it’s a little confusing and unfair. I’ve played as Romney in the Romney-Obama escenario. I won PA 61-39. FL 66-34, the same margins on Wisconsin, Virginia, North Carolina and very large margins of victory for Romney in other battlegrounds, but that’s not realistic.

    On the other side, sometimes the unfairness plays against me. When I play as Paul in the primaries, I invest alot of resources in many states, ads for me and against the front runners (Romney-Gingrich), in fact Romney and Gingrich support collapse heavily, but I don’t win any points. Undecideds can go to 40-50%, and the election day Santorum wins with 60% the state with no ads or effort. That’s not fair!! I invest alot in a state and in fact the front runners in the state loose, but I don’t win!!

  8. – I think the surrogate points should not exist. The candidates have little room for maneuver in order to win by themselves. (ex: Paul and Santorum) They need HELP in order to win, raise funds, hold rallies, momentum. Thereby I think the crusaders/surrogates should not use the points and should be ”unlimited”.
    -Momentum: After winning the first 10 states as Paul, I was still trailing by 30% in most of the remaining states. Shouldn’t winning the first 10 states allow bonuses of momentum or something? is reallistic too loose the nomination after winning the first 10 states with huge margins??
    – Energy points are not reallistic, they dissapear way too fast and recuperate to slow. They also go to -1000 or something like that.

  9. I think once the primary is locked up, we should be allowed to pick our vice president anytime after that instead of having to wait until the convention.

  10. How about if candidates earn the surrogates and they are unlimited as 2008player says? Make it sort of similar to endorsements so certain candidates are likely to win the surrogate. Maybe make any endorser (that is human and not a newspaper) to become a surrogate at a price.

    I do love this new update though.

  11. I like the beta but was wondering if yall could identify who the superpacs support as well as make them more realistic as they were in the actual primary elections. As well as improving the brokered convention events so you actually have to work to get the delegates needed as in offering spot in the cabinet and or vice president if you endorse me but that is just a thought

  12. I played as Romney and Gingrich and didn’t campaign or do anything with them, just to see if Santorum or Paul would win. Santorum and Paul never really increased. By the time of the convention the % was as follows:
    Romney 40% (he actually improved)
    Gingrich 33% (he decreased)
    Paul 14% (despite the top two candidates not campaigning)
    Santorum 5%

  13. Many people think that Santorum caught on after Perry, huntsman, and bauchman did not catch on and maybe if the other candidates were on the beta these numbers might be different but tried it myself and its almost exactly how it ended up seems strange its almost as if the game is set up for romney to start doing better as it progresses but I’m sure its not

  14. @Kevin,

    This is probably due to the leader effect – Gingrich starts off in first, so everyone trains their fire on him to begin with.

  15. @Jonathan,

    See the response to Kevin above. Also, this is probably due to the AI not being complete – once the computer players are optimized, we’ll look at whether various players can gain traction if the top players don’t do anything.

  16. @Kevin,

    Thanks for the feedback – I’ll look at how to make the SuperPAC support more obvious. Feedback about brokered conventions noted.

  17. @Jonathan re: surrogates,

    Yes, that’s where the game is heading – certain endorsers -> surrogates, and there are already a few like this in the 2012 scenario. (However, when a scenario starts there are certain people who are already surrogates, and so it makes sense to keep these as initial surrogates.) What’s left is to expand the number of possible endorsers who can then become surrogates.

  18. @2008player,

    1. Can you say more about the points -> unlimited idea with surrogates? How does the game limit or make it difficult for players to attract high-power surrogates? (The game *should* be difficult to win as Santorum or Paul, as it was in real life.)

    2. I’ll look at the momentum issue with winning early states – yes, winning 10 in a row should shift the national numbers significantly.

    3. -1000 bug noted. EPs are supposed to be a limited resource – knowing how and when to rest is part of a sound strategy. I find the balance is about right when I play, but EP regeneration might be revised upward as play testing progresses – thanks for the feedback on this.

  19. @PresidentForever,

    For the Romney-Obama margins, noted that the computer AI isn’t complete. So, those margins are probably at least in part due to the computer player not actively competing for those states.

    I’ll look into game play with Paul.

  20. @Hagrid re: momentum arrow bars on map,

    Thanks for this – this feature should be added soon.

  21. I dont know if anyone has noticed that if you win the primaries and during the general election and you try to increase debate skill an error message pops up you push ok and then it allows you to increase the debating skill

  22. Also on the surrogates in the primaries it seemed that Santorum’s and Romney’s children played a key roll in campaigning for their dads so are you going to include them as surrogates?

  23. @Anthony
    When do you expect to add the other candidates such as Perry, Bauchman, Cain and Huntsman???? As well as the other veeps????

  24. I agree with many of the things which have been said and have found similar bugs. One thing which I can not understand is the characteristics of the republican candidates, Romney at 4, Santorum at 3 and Gingrich at 2? Ive said this before but shouldn’t Romney and Gingrich be reversed? MR is stiffer than Kerry. Another characteristic which should change with time is the fundraising for the republican candidate, while Obama has an early lead we’ve seen Romney breaking previous GOP records (and raising more than BO) in the past two months. Maybe once the GOP primary is done the fundraising should increase to 4 or so?

    I think the game should be harder for Obama (this may have to do with the AI not being fully developed) but Obama can rack up huge margins during the primary.

    After the debates it is interesting to see a breakdown of how the various candidates did but cant it be done in the Turn Summary?

  25. While I agree with what Ruben says in the most part, I think Obama should have a huge margin of victory if the Republicans nomination isn’t narrowed down. There was talk at one point of the top 4 candidates preventing a majority. If that occurs, or it is dragged out longer than what actually happened, then I think Obama should have a huge margin. Also, I think it should be also dependent on who the Republicans pick as a VP. I think the VPs should have certain qualities that balance out a ticket, this way the VP one picks isn’t necessarily the best campaigner. You might need a female, hispanic, tea party person, or someone younger, depending on who is elected and what the current situation is and the margin of victory. Lastly, I think Obama should have the option of picking Hillary Clinton or Cuomo or whoever.

  26. I mentioned this before that the VP selection should have a larger impact on the game:

    “VP candidates should have issue profiles. Say Romney would probably need to pick someone more conservative, Bachmann and Santorum would need a more moderate vp candidate. Also it would be great if a VP candidate not only had an impact on his/her own state but neighboring states and states with similar characteristics. Susana Martinez would help with voters in Colorado and Arizona as well as NM. She could also help with Hispanic voters in Texas and Florida (same for Rubio, he would help with Hispanics in Texas, NM, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada).” A female candidate could help with female voters in swing states.
    The same could be said for a executive-legislative balance, many of the top contenders on Romney’s shortlist are senators or have DC experience (Portman, Thune or Rice who I consider a long-shot). In the 2008 version I noticed the AI seemed to choose VPs at random (Guiliani-Tancredo for example), the AI should balance the ticket, and choose the best VP option taking into account issue profiles, charisma and electoral outcome.

    Another bug, Ive tried the fast-forward option, the game crashes on me every time.

  27. Was just playing and as santorum in the primaries went to run an ad and it crashed this is the first time it has happened to me

  28. When I play as Ron Paul, I generally win the same states as any of the other Republicans. I think he might be different enough that he might not win the same states as another Republican. However, I don’t have any tangible date for this. Just a gut instinct.

  29. IDEAS:

    GENERAL ELECTION RESULTS: Al thought the idea of having the election results stop at certain point: 92% for Texas, 78% for Florida, 98% for California, each state has different % of precints reporting during election night. I think that at the end of the night, there should be a 100% final result and declaring the official winner in a certificate of the supreme court or someone else calling the election OFFICIALLY, this certificate should include the winner photo, including 100% of the precints results and the result of the electoral college too. I feel a little awkward having Florida stoping at 78% of the precints and having a 50,1% vs 49,9% result, It makes me wonder, who won it? Fix this please, we deserve to know 100% who really won the election.

  30. IDEAS:

    I know this constitutes a lot of work for the ADMS, but I will take the risk and propose the following:

    I think the game should include EXIT POLLS and DEMOGRAPHICS. In that order, as a candidate we can know why we are winning or loosing, and not simply having a fight for ads and momentum. For example, in real life, economy it’s very important, it will be awesome if we could know, WHO, Obama or Romney is winning in that issue, and so on in other issues( Environment, Gun Control, abortion) and Demographics (who is winning among latinos, whites, blacks, etc). This will make the game more realistic, and also having this new feature will help in what others are asking, Romney’s running mate will have an impact depending if he or she appeal women (Kelly Ayotte) or Hispanics and Tea Party(Rubio) etc.

  31. Just a note continuing on my argument that the VP selection should have a much bigger impact across several states, PPP released a poll showing that Obama leads Romney in Michigan and Pennsylvania by a wide margin (anything from 3-15%). However, with Rice on the ticket MR gets a huge bump making both states competitive, especially Pennsylvania.

  32. I think foreign trips (successes and fiascos) should have a slight impact as well. Romney apparently blundered overseas; however, I think it shouldn’t have a huge importance as I think we mainly select a president based off of domestic promises. I’d like an unemployment meter in the game as well. I know it is tied with the economy, but I think it also is something that should be emphasized. Also, things involving bailout and banks. I think religion should be a factor as well; I think some people don’t vote for Romney because he’s Mormon (not sure how many), but I think some of the other candidates might fare better in certain areas if they beat Romney for the nomination in the game.

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