False advertising

For example you could advertise that your gas mileage is better than it actually is. So you could get away with it but as different consumer agencies evolve you could get massive fines when buyers complain.

In general I suggest that as owner you can deceive and cheat AI to a certain degree.

One of my other favorite PC games is Wall Street Raider. In the game, if you had a controlling interest in a company you would receive random memos that contained certain, ethical, choices. So it was up to you to decide whether you wanted to do something shady for short term profit - and risk ruining your reputation. Or take the moral high road, possibly destroy the company, but at least be able to sleep at night. :mrgreen:

I’d love to see something like this included in Automation. It doesn’t have to be limited to just false advertising, though. There are a ton of possible scenarios surrounding choices like this. I think it could be an option to check with gameplay start parameters, or something mandatory on higher difficulty levels.

I can see it now… you just received a memo from your marketing department. It reads something like:

[code]Field testing of our pre-production [insert vehicle here] has revealed fuel economy figures at least 2-3 mpg less than what we were expecting. All promotional material, ads, commercials etc. are quoting the slightly exaggerated figures. Engineering says we’re too far into the development process to make any changes for this particular model year, but that by next year they should have all the bugs worked out. Do we:

A. Delay production to give engineering more time (+engineering time/costs) to improve the economy for this model year.
B. Release the vehicle as is and hope no one notices. (if found out, -brand reputation, -model reputation, -false advertising settlement; if not, no effect)
C. Tell marketing to release a statement saying the fuel economy figures are incorrect, and revise all future promotional items (-model reputation, +brand reputation, +marketing costs)[/code]

I like this. You could become the next Ford of the 70s with the Pinto and its lack of protection over the axle bolts or the GM of today with their ignition switch not able to handle more than the key.

I like that idea! Perhaps have some of the AI doing much the same, too, adding to the difficulty of making that ethical decision. The whole, “Everyone else is adding 5 miles per gallon to their efficiency claims, so I’m going to do it too” factor, while taking the risk that the EPA will crack down on the whole quoted efficiency business and fine everyone found to be falsely raising their efficiency. (Apologies for using the American Environmental Protection Agency, but it’s the only one I know.)

Or possibly have it be more sinister, like finding a design fault in your car (yes, I’m looking at you, Pinto) and having to decide between several different options. Or potentially to find out one of your competitors has a serious design flaw and to make a whole smear campaign based on it, making their sales go down even more dramatically, but harming your brand reputation in the process because you didn’t do things all that nicely. Or to have your competitors perhaps make the same kind of campaign against you, harming your sales unless you can show proof that you did, in fact, fix the problem they heard of.

I don’t like this idea because it relates more to a lawyer simulator than a car designer game. I want the business aspect of this game to be about making the best compromise for a specific circumstance, rather than lying about the car better than the competition. Governing agencies should be limited to arbitrary restrictions in the mechanics of what technologies can be used and what can be manufactured, and not complex entities to cheat and bribe like in real life.

i wonder if this could work the other way?

like advertise it to consume more, than it actually does, reverse psychology and stuff :smiley:

But “marketing” is part of a good business model, regardless of how responsibly it is used.

Love this idea!

It needn’t be limited to ethical decisions. You could have random events which were either positive or negative, eg

"Our (model) has been selling in small but consistent numbers over the past few years and has developed a cult following. Your marketing and communications director has discovered an annual car meet devoted to (model).

  1. “We are glad to see (model) has a loyal following” (+brand reputation, +model reputation)
  2. “This is an event worth sponsoring. Fund the event to raise brand awareness!” (-$1000 funds, ++brand reputation for that year, ++model reputation, +5% sales volume for that year)
  3. “This an event worth owning. Incorporate this event into the company culture and brand” (-$10000 funds, -$1000 per year, +++brand reputation, ++++model reputation, +7% sales volume that year, +5% sales volume for model that year, +brand loyalty, +model repeat customer)

"An airbag manufacturing fault has been discovered by one of our suppliers. (model) is affected from years 2011-2013.

  1. “Offer replacement vehicles for affected customers” (-$26,000,000 funds, +brand reputation)
  2. “Organise a model recall” (-$1,600,000 funds, -brand reputation, -model reputation, 10% chance of causing fatality)
  3. “We are too pressed to spare any funds for a recall” (—brand reputation, --model reputation, 50% chance of causing fatality)

If the player selects 2 or 3, then it rolls a dice. If a fatality is caused:

“Faulty airbags in (model) have been found to be the cause of several fatalities. A class action lawsuit has been brought against your company!”

  1. Your company has been fined. (-$160,000,000 funds, -----brand reputation, -----model reputation, --brand loyalty, model has no repeat customers, -40% sales volume for model that year, -25% sales volume for brand for next 5 years)

“The CEO has been disgraced in a scandal. The entire executive board has been thrown into chaos”

  1. “Let the board fight amongst themselves. When both sides have been weakened, step in as the founder and assert authority” (+brand reputation [everyone loves when the original founder returns!])
  2. “As founder, lend your support the existing CEO” (-brand reputation, +4% stock price)
  3. “Leave the board to sort it out” (-brand reputation, +2% sales volume [because it has been featured in the news])

“Your director of corporate strategy believes entering the South American market will be critical to maintaining sales growth over the next 10 years. You are tasked with entering the South American auto market. If you make sufficient market share, your total sales will increase!”
(on success):

  1. Your massive sales volumes have made you a household name around the world (+brand awareness worldwide, +brand loyalty worldwide)
  2. Build a factory subsidised by the Brazilian government (-$2,600,000, -15% manufacturing costs in South America, ++brand loyalty in South America, +brand awareness worldwide, +brand loyalty worldwide)

“An team of engineers in (factory) has gained a reputation for tuning vehicles for performance.”

  1. “We have no need for a tuning division” (+brand reputation, +model reputation)
  2. "Excellent! Collaborate with the engineers to produce even better cars! (+model reputation, +model loyalty)
  3. “Let the engineers have their own division so they can do their own work unhindered!” (-$650,000,000, ++brand reputation, +++model reputation, ++model loyalty, +1 tech point for engine fuel systems, -2% production cost for sports cars)

“(model) has just won the (touring car series).”

  1. Sales of (model) have rocketed! (+25% sales for that model that year)

Something like the random events in Civilization

Those are some really neat ideas, utopian201! I like!

[quote=“xABSOLUTIONx”]i wonder if this could work the other way?

like advertise it to consume more, than it actually does, reverse psychology and stuff :smiley:[/quote]

This is Porsche marketing. If they give any performance figure (most notoriously, 0-100 times) there’s a very good chance that the car is actually capable of bettering it by a significant margin.

Sir, our cars explode when rear ended, nah jimmy that fine we made our money…change brand name. Would like to see all types of these options to just spice up the game.