Political Alignment

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The air is criss-crossed by radio stations spewing divisive, feverish political rhetoric. For the poor people of Revachol, ideology is a blood sport. Everyone must suffer.[1]

Disco Elysium has a robust alignment system, tracking your cop's alignment across four ideologies of the world: Communism, fascism, moralism and ultraliberalism.

Ideologies are developed over the course of the game, not picked at character creation. There are always little integers in the background, counting everything you say and after a certain threshold - usually four remarks - one of your skills will pop up, suggesting you make it official. The opportunity to espouse your agenda usually comes in the form of “political forks”, that is: dialogue choices usually consisting of four political options. Try to remain impartial and you will drift toward moralism (Elysium's centrism).

This is not an instant commitment, but rather, it unlocks a Thought Cabinet project that you can internalize to gain bonuses and define the cop's political standing. The four major thoughts are supported by a number of other thoughts, and the game will respond to any combination of those. Your political beliefs have mechanical implications. They're not just for role playing. As said, each is a thought, which you can develop in your Thought Cabinet, revealing some rather dramatic effects. Ultraliberals earn money by saying that stuff. “Traditionalists” get double the bonus from the most traditional drug of all: alcohol. Thus, ideologies strongly affect the way you play the game.

Communism[1][edit | edit source]

DE Communist Flag.png

No one wants to be associated with communism by the time you get there. The party is over. They'd rather call themselves socialists and social democrats. No wonder – commies got their asses handed to them 50 years ago. Their little commune got wiped off the face of the Earth. Even worse, the civil war gave foreign powers a casus belli to invade Revachol and now look at the shit we're in. Also, Kras Mazov, the father of scientific communism killed himself.

Don't pick this ideology. It's a swamp of melancholy and would-have-beens. Also, they, like, killed a lot of people. There's a smart centrist man who once calculated that communism has killed 100 billion people in total.

Fascism[1][edit | edit source]

This is the baddest of all the ideologies, so no one admits they're a fascist. Rather, they're “traditionalists”. Or “nationalists”, a term they get really angry if you associate with fascism. (No one wants leprosy on their brand.)

The emotional draw here is, of course, that pretty girl who didn't want to sleep with you. The other ideologies don't explain why that happened. Fascism does. Because the commies pushed the king under a street car and now nothing in the world is holy or beautiful. During your stay in Revachol plenty of women will tell you no, so, naturally, most people will pick this one. I mean, who doesn't want “absolutely giant fascist” in their Steam achievements? Also, it goes really well with alcoholism.

Moralism[1][edit | edit source]

Finally! Something normal. Enough of those ramblings – in this world there is also a sensible ideology for people who simply want to do good by everyone. How? By looking at the options on the table and saying: no. I don't want any of those associated with me. I just want to play a regular, inconsequential, doesn't-really-believe-in-anything type of detective.

Well, you're in luck! After the commies and the fascas tag teamed Revachol, sensible foreign nations with moderately deadly artillery came and levelled the city, put all the commies against a neutral wall and turned Revachol into a debt colony / financial buffer zone / whatever the hell they want it to be. They rule the world. And also the RCM, the law enforcement agency you're part of, so really – it's a no brainer.

Take this one, it would be weird to take any of the others.

Ultraliberal[1][edit | edit source]

Do you “grind” and “hustle?” Sure you do. You're a money engineer. A money scientist. You move money on a level inconceivable to the ordinary citizen. What is money, anyway? Money is trust.

There is no ideology being an ultra doesn't compliment. Fascist moneyman? Sehr logisch. Money-commie? Vie sexy! Money and moralism? Peanut butter und jelly! Money's not jealous. Money's like light, love and friendship. It plays well with everything. During the Revolution the ultras banded up with the commies to dispose of the king. Then they made a deal with the moralists to profit from the ensuing occupation.

Also, this literally gives you money in the game. With money you can buy books, which have content! Board games too! Clothes, which cost real money to model. Without money you might end up as some kind of impoverished hobocop.

References[edit | edit source]