The Victoria 2 Historical Project Mod (HPM) is a one man mod, an attempt to improve the game Victoria 2: A Heart of Darkness without changing the base game experience too much. Built using carefully inspected parts of the mods NNM and PDM as a base, the main aim is to correct the 1836 start date in regard to both countries and pops and to add more historical flavor to the game, while taking into account the plausible historical outcomes and the mod performance. All in all, make the game as realistic as I can.The first release includes a vastly improved 1836 stat date country composition and a complete rework of the global slave population. Most countries now have slavery and slaves and the historical number of slaves, as well as their pop composition and religion, was used when available. Vanilla bugs were fixed and old assets integrated. Construction of all canals, the Eiffel Tower and the Reconstruction of the Palace of Westminster were made so they take time. Future releases plans are to include a serf pop type and reforms to represent it, other meaningful reforms for the time era, dynamic soundtrack for countries/governments/regions and a 1815 start date, as well as missing flavor and historical events.
Right now, the main features are:
-Serf pop: These guys work as laborers and farmers, they are generally more conservative and have an abysmal literacy. They also don't promote and poor pops will demote to Serfdom, so they will eventually eat up millions of potential craftsmen.
-More icons for rebels, CBs, interface, anything that can help and give more flavor.
-New Reforms to try and simulate important questions of the era, improved the old ones: No longer allowing slavery as a communist country, not being able to have the best healthcare system of the planet without even have researched medicine.
-Slavery Growth: In vanilla, slave pops don't grow. Now they grow a random amount per 6 years, and they can even shrink - pop demographics are not a fixed growth per year. And the best part is that the AI clicks the event for you, so you are not interrupted every 6 years just to click an event.
-Optional Elections: Ever got annoyed about having to click the election events? Now you can choose to not get them - but it's an election, so the issues still move, and you are letting go your control over it.
-Improving the AI without forcing it: the AI will use their NFs more intelligently, pick event choices and techs better - but without forcing them always picking the same choices (either in tech or events, especially for techs).
-More events and decisions - Historical events, decisions and plausible alternatives: Ezo Republic, 36" or Fight for the CSA, the Texan Claims, Ottoman flavor, Neuchatel Crisis, among many others.
-Improved 1836 start date: Fixed pop numbers, literacy, slave numbers, claims, cores, borders, generals, all with historical sources. Gypsys, Australians and other pop cultures!
-Improved map (ongoing): Fixed borders, shapes and graphical glitches. Fixed numerous islands being connected to the mainland and shapes not matching historical ambitions. Repurposed useless provinces in the arctic circle to colonies and more.
-Overall improvement of mechanics and restoration of vanilla work: Trust crime, fixed non accepted pops becoming fascist over the country they are not accepted having revanchism, communist countries accepting capitalists and capitalists promoting in communist countries, fixed bugs with plurality checking for ideology and literacy check for issue, among many other fixes for NNM and vanilla, muslims/shinto pops don't have the same ideological inclinations as western pops, choice if you want crisis early on or not etc.
Note: This mod contains historical events, flags, mechanics and names that might be considered controversial by some people. If you are easily offended by history, historical events, historical images of figures or 19th century vocabulary then this mod is not for you and you shouldn't install it. I'm not responsible for your hurt feelings and I will ignore any comments regarding those issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q:Is this mod ever adding new RGOs?
Q:Why is China all split up?
A:The split is based on how the provinces were ruled. Every place that had an Amban is a substate, with the exceptions of Mongolia and Tibet, where the Ambans had less power and the locals enjoyed a lot of self rule. Yunnan is a special case. It is a province of China Proper and didn't have an Amban, but the locals enjoyed a lot of self rule thanks to the Tusi system.
Q :Will this mod feature any new pop types?
A:Besides serfs? No.
Q:Why did you remove the Straits of Dover?
A:Half of the time it ends with the UK occupied by France, the strait doesn't make any sense and the UK should have their island advantage even if they become less active in European affairs.
Q:Are there any tags that were removed?
A:A number of tags/countries were removed or are candidates for removal. While I try to account for alternate historical scenarios, there are situations when the scenarios would simply not be possible. Right now, the removed tags are: Iberia (IBR). Babylon. Hindustan (HDU). Maratha (MRT) and Jan Mayen.
Q:What game version does this mod require?
A:A Heart of Darkness patched up to version 3.03.
Q: Can I use X part of HPM in my mod?
A: I don't have anything against people using content from my mod and crediting me. The modding community is based on collaborative work - I will never restrict my work, it's part of that collaboration. It has parts of other mods, and adds on them, so you are free to use it, no need to ask me for it, just remember to credit the author of what you are taking (so you need to credit Naselus and Rylock and everyone who worked on NNM/PDM for the stuff that you take that actually come from these mods, even if they are part of HPM, because I didn't do that, and you should credit me for the parts I did, etc). In short: as long as you are not using the mod for any commercial use or in a product that you are selling and as long as you are crediting everyone, it's all good. Remember: No parts can ever be used for or in commercial products or for someone seeking to gain money and I will never give permission for anyone to do that.
Credits and Thanks:
Naselus and everyone who contributed to the PDM team. The terrain system is taken from that mod, and fixed and adapted for some provinces. Rylock for his excellent NNM. A lot of events and decisions were taken, adapted and localized. Both mods make the base of this mod, and the first release is just that, the skeleton of the mod.
Also thanks for Faulty's for the icons and Thoughtful Punk for his flags, as well as all anons who helped with events. decisions and suggestions.
Thanks for Semper Victor for his Portrait mods, that I'm slowly integrating.
Thanks for AFPG for his masterfully designed flags, as well as all the other anonymous contributions to Persia, Siberia and America.
And thanks to everyone who helped giving opinions and suggestions.
Sorry for not writing here assiduously, I was never good at it and I frankly prefer to mod. Nevertheless it's kinda necessary so that's what I will do.
Last few months the focus has been on the economy. The way I see it, there are four main problems with the game economy: Early game underproduction, late game overproduction, AI negligence towards a few goods and wrong focus.
Early Game Underproduction
It's more of a problem with one country, China (or rather, Qing). They don't produce enough basic goods like Grain, Fish, Cattle and Fruits and since they are the biggest unciv, they get on front of everyone else. Their higher rank allows them to buy all these goods first and since the world market supply isn't enough to fill them, they consume all basic goods. Countries like Imperial Japan, that don't have access to basic goods or even those that have but not enough starve because of that. That's a problem also how the world market works. If it was left to me, I'd rather have China starve as it was commonly the case in the era.
To fix this, I made Qing consume less of these basic goods through a series of changes and a outright flat reduction for them. The modifier lasts until the Taiping Rebellion and it's overall a shoddy way of fixing it, but that will have to do for now. Another change is making serfs buy less of these goods. The overall result is that Qing stops being a black hole of basic goods, they trickle down to more uncvis. Not for everyone, mind you, but I don't mind a few uncivs starving here and there. I'd prefer if I could represent subsistence farming though. Previous changes were also made to try and fix this (slaves being more productive than free workers until modifiers like tractors come around).
Late Game Overproduction
This ties in with the previous topic. Late game, the aforementioned basic goods are being overproduced, which usually leads to massive unemployment in a few areas which in turn commonly leads to massive communist rebellions. This problem was made worse in patch 3.04 with the technology spread modifiers (tractors, electricity, local distribution channels), which previously spread per state and rarely spread to colonies and became a flat bonus in the patch, even for colonies. That was dealt with in a previous patch, at least.
While I don't mind unemployment in the field, which admittedly was a pretty common occurence in the Victorian era, colonies are a big problem. Colonial pops can't just go to the city to work in factories (in game, change to craftsmen) and they can barely move outside the colony. The end result are massive rebellions which in turn end up with the AI losing a big part of Africa or Asia. I deal with this in this version through a series of decisions in a few colonial areas that change their production to historical commodities production (coffee, tea and tobacco). That and a few changes to demand that hopefully make pops have more money.
AI Neglecting Industrial Goods
This is somewhat more delicate. As far as I can gather, and I can be wrong mind you, the AI decides what factories to build based on the "value" value in production_types.txt combined with the Good "common" profitability (that is, profitability if all necessary goods have the starting value) defined in the same file. Since the AI doesn't try to be more dynamic (as in building stuff according to supply and demand, though I noticed the capitalists AI usually tries to build stuff your country lacks) it commonly overproduces a few goods while relegating others to the player. So for example, it usually builds enough clothing and furniture factories but it doesn't build liquor distilleries, leaving the player with a always-build-this scenario. So I fixed this and made the AI more likely to go for the factories it usually neglected. There's really nothing big to add here, I just observed the AI and changed the values accordingly so it can try to compete with the player more.
I mean the economy has a "wrong focus". Historically the main drive of industrialization (goods wise, not socioeconomic or shit like that) was heavy industry. Coal, iron, steel, metals and foundries - that made the industrial revolution and gave small countries such as Belgium an advantage. Goods in Victoria 2 are also an abstraction. Instead of having a good for gold, one for silver and one for diamonds there's a single good - precious metal - that represents all these things (as evidenced in the "Diamonds in $PROVINCE$" events). Iron too represents more than just iron, it covers other metals that were important int he industrial revolution, such as copper. I debated with the idea of renaming a few goods to represent this better but I digress.
The factors that drove these strategic goods to be so prominent during the industrial revolution are largely missing from the game. Railroads don't require any maintenance. The civil construction sector doesn't exist. Furniture is all made of wood and utensils, tools and other stuff that was commonly used and made of processed iron or steel are missing. Pickaxes, hoes, tractors and tractor parts, wrought iron for gates, balconies, windows (and the glass it use), they are missing from the game. So to represent these goods, the maintenance of buildings and the use of cheap steel and rising use of metals in everyday life these goods were introduced to pops. Poor pops try to buy small quantities of cement and steel for housing and goods (luxury needs, usually) though for everyday housing needs they just buy lumber. Farmers and Labourers will try to buy machine parts for their tractors and steam engines, pops try to buy glass for their windows and glassware.
Demand in Victoria 2 is drove through consumer goods. What poor pops consume is usually a profitable industry. While that's overall true, the game doesn't represent the growing needs for metals and other goods and consequentially heavy industry takes a backseat to industrialization. This will still change as I want to redo factories maintenance, construction goods and employee numbers but right now steel and coal are already one of the main drivers of industrialization in HPM. To do this stuff I also took a look at Victoria Revolutions needs and goods (coal, for example, increased with pop strata in Ricky while in V2 it stays largely the same).
Right now, I hope this holds true:
At that time, a country’s power was measured by its coal and steel production, so the economic and political power of the steelmakers was considerable. They produced girders for large factories and grand stores and opulent buildings such as those on the Boulevard Haussmann in Paris. Their steels were essential for the manufacture not only of cannons, ships, rails and locomotives but also of all the equipment that was transported throughout the colonial empire.
Steel was in such demand that the producers had control over how much and to whom they sold.
One of the main complaints of everyone playing the US is the event spam. I mean flavor is good but when you get the a barrage of events every week telling you the same thing, well, we have a problem. This happens with the US because these events setup the American Civil War (ACW). Paradox set it up in a way that there are certain conditions for the ACW and when the date gets nearer, the events start happening frequently to guarantee the civil war will happen soon.
While I can understand why they did that, it certainly leads to frustrating gameplay. To deal with that, I made all ACW events country-wide events that have a random chance of affecting other states. All events also give modifiers to stop the event from repeating if all states have the modifiers of if there's a country-wide version of the modifier. Province events that were kept (like Bleeding $STATE$) happen only once. The ONLY exception to this is the event that spreads CSA cores and that's the only event that can possibly spam now, but it has some reasonable limits so that isn't a problem.
I also made extensive testing to guarantee the I didn't fuck up the ACW and I'm satisfied with the results. I can't test like dozens to people can and stuff can slip past me but anyway, it was tested.
I'm also trying to fix low quality images that Vanilla had for some strange reason.
These two things are the main things I did. I also tried to make the Irish move out of Ireland more, according to the historical trend, and the Great Famine plays an important role in this. Russia also should end with a population closer to what they historically had. There's also a few more flavor events and decisions, as is customary, and a great deal of those went to Persia.
There's one more important change though: border policy.
A nation can choose between 3 border policies, though for most nations only 2 ever apply. In "Closed Borders" you actively try to stop people leaving from your country. The effectiveness is largely dependent on your crime fighting, so keep that administrative spending up. Going full North Korea on your population isn't something that gets you many friends inside and outside your country though, so that's the main problem of that policy.
Quota immigrants and open borders apply largely to new world countries, but it also influences if your country lets people emigrate. While Quota Immigration has the same effect as Open Borders for emigration, it affects who gets in. In this system, only pops with more than 60% literacy can enter your country. It is mainly for role-playing purposes, though I guess if you want to slow down immigration it also helps you. It also stops Canada from always becoming a GP as it starts with this policy and helps immigrants spread more instead of being limited to a USA-Canada Axis. Open Borders works as vanilla - no restrictions for people to get in or out.
Pops don't actively demand to close or open borders, mainly to avoid a performance impact for something that wasn't that important. Changes in the policy is made through decision and the AI only uses in special cases (when it's totalitarian, for example) while jacobins and becoming democratic open borders. You can't close borders as democratic governments and becoming democratic automatically opens it. At some point I want to do nativist sentiments and immigration tensions to get the player to interact more with these issues, but it will probably be through events. Right now the only countries that start with closed borders are Russia and the Ottoman Empire. The rest start with open borders, with the exception of Canada, New Zealand and Australia, that have quotas. Eventually Russia and the OT open borders while at some point in the future I will make the US have the possibility of implementing quota immigration late game.
Still on the terrain changes, I added the Karakum desert to Turkmenistan. There's still more changes to central asia and more deserts to go in though. A few provinces reshapes were made, a few more are pending and a few useless atolls that don't have potable water (Wake and Line) were merged with other provinces.
There's more stuff that I didn't add that were changed, from flavor to fixes. If fixed a vanilla bug in bureaucrats and artisans promotion that stopped them from promoting as fast as they should and I fixed pops not demanding good minimum wage (which in turn meant that the AI never gave Good Minimum Wage).
Well that's just the start of the economy balance. I tried my best to balance it but nothing guarantees it will work as intended, so I will be keeping an eye out to try and improve it whoever I can. Hopefully, the changes I made can bring a bit more realism in the game.
Two months. I know it has been a while, but writing an update here is quite a lot of work. So they are more few and far between. Rest assured that the...
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