Several versions ago I tried to make Plutocracy a simultaneous action selection game. It was supposed to speed up the game and keep players engaged. What it actually did was cause 5 minutes of sorting out tie breakers each turn.
Simultaneous action selection is tough when those actions interact. The order things resolve in can be very important, so you need a way to sort out any ties or conflicts. Preferably quickly.
In my seemingly endless quest to both streamline Plutocracy and give it deep thematic game play, I think I’ve come around to the simultaneous selection idea again. The fun part of designing Plutocracy has been using old ideas that didn’t work in new versions now that so much has changed. It gives the process a feeling of running around in circles. Though hopefully to a final goal, so more of a spiral.
The new system idea has players vote on which faction will take a predetermined action (probably from a deck of action cards). Players use their influence to vote, but won’t actually lose the influence, usually. This gets the thematic tie in of using influence. And having more influence matters for controlling a faction. So everyone votes with some number of influence from the faction of their choice and everyone reveals. Which ever faction has the most influence revealed wins and takes the action. The player that revealed the most of that faction makes any decisions for the action.
This brings us back to the issue of ties. If multiple factions tie, the action doesn’t happen. Maybe with some sort of penalty to prevent endless strings of ties. If multiple players tie for the most in the winning faction, that faction doesn’t win due to internal conflicts and the next highest faction wins. Again, with possible penalties for ties.
I’m also thinking of putting back the multiple actions, having a deck of action cards that are all just “move” doesn’t seem very interesting. So recruit, harvest, exchange, and build might be back.
I guess testing will see how this goes, assuming I can finish designing the rules for it.