The 2016 political campaign run by Trump and team was conspicuous to say the least. He allegedly used data collection to identify certain patterns and triggers of the people. The online behavior was studied and targeted ads were launched pro Trump and anti-Clinton to even further his advantage. This gave us the idea to create a game that via randomness (in data) and mathematical regression simulates the job of a campaign manager and all the unpredictable challenges he/she has to face during a presidential campaign.
What it does:
It's a PvP (Player vs. Player) turn-based, strategy game that has extremely fun dialogue and actions a player can take to either further his electoral advantage or sabotage and reduce the advantage the opponent has.
How we built it:
We have created a database in which the columns represent 3 distinct features (political, behavioral and psychological) and the rows represent some randomly generated respondents who would have a coefficient for each column. Then we distributed weights on each category, thus enabling us to generate a mathematical regression to have a solid ground from which to start the game. Basically this database represents the popularity of each political candidate. We then created all the content of the game (actions, candidates, icons etc.) and implemented them in-game via code.
Challenges we ran into:
One of the biggest challenges we've faced was implementing all the actions in correlation with the database, so that each action taken has a tangible effect on the weighting. Another challenge was the design part. We had not anticipated so much design work to be needed, which messed up our schedule a little and made us stutter in the process. Luckily, Florin joined and helps Alex with the design of the game.
Accomplishments that we're proud of:
We managed to create a database that pre-generates (via random number generation) voter patterns, including political features, behavioral traits and also a few psychological features. We then use these "respondents" to generate a popularity poll, which measures how popular each candidate is at any given point. Each attribute (political, behavioral etc.) has a certain weight which influences (aided by player decisions) to increase or decrease exponentially the likelihood of that specific candidate to be elected president. In layman's terms: you can either create a political utopia and just softly float towards victory or create a political shitstorm(pardon my French) which will haunt your nightmares.
What we learned
Aside from learning more about data generation, weighting, mathematical regression and a lot of useless information about Kanye West and Dwayne "the Rock" Johnson, we have also learned how to work in parallel, how to collaborate and how to communicate more efficiently.
What's next for Political Campaign Manager 2020
We've thought of introducing even more characters who would want to run for office. Some of our ideas include Lady Gaga, Christopher Walken, Justin Bieber, Ricky Gervais, Ricky Martin, Dan Brown and many, many more. We also thought about some cool features to add in the future, like candidate face-offs where you as a player would be in control of your candidate in a head-to-head race in a game of wits, jokes and trivia, to win a significant advantage compared to the loser.
General presentation of the product:
Political Campaign Manager '20 - a game in which you role play as the manager of a political campaign in the 2020 US elections - for either Kanye West or Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson's team. Craft your team out of multiple roles available, react to trends, scandals, twists, sabotage, manage your funds carefully and choose the proper action at the right time, with the possibility of unleashing devastating combos on the opposing side! This game combines elements of statistics, data visualization, political know-how and celebrity cameos with turn-based game-play in order to prove your mettle in the big business of politics. And most of all, be prepared for a lot of FUN!