Do you have what it takes to be president? Play as more than 20 candidates including Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich or create your own candidate from scratch. Players take to the campaign trail against a computer controlled opponent or a human challenger over the Internet.
User reviews: Mixed (259 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 31, 2012

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Recommended By Curators

"im gonna beat obama"

About This Game

Do you have what it takes to be president?

Play as more than 20 candidates including Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich or create your own candidate from scratch.

Players take to the campaign trail against a computer controlled opponent or a human challenger over the Internet. The goal: win the hearts and minds of America’s voters to achieve victory in the 2012 presidential election.

The Political Machine 2012 features updated political topics from across the United States. Issues such as Afghanistan, the economy, Obamacare, income inequality, gay marriage, and the national debt have been integrated into the game’s election database. Regional issues require the candidate to walk a tight rope between appealing to the widest range of voters and appearing to “flip flop.”

Key Features:

  • Make your run for the White House as a famous politician or create your own.
  • Take a stance on the issues, stretch the truth, or smear your opponents!
  • Travel around the United States in your bid to win electoral votes.
  • Outwit interviewers and win the favor of voters.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows 8 / 7 SP1 / Vista SP2
    • Processor:1 GHz Processor
    • Memory:1 GBRAM
    • Graphics:64 MB DirectX 9.0c 3D Video Card with Pixel Shader 2.0 Support
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:1 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c Compatible Sound Card
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection, also to activate this game you must create a Stardock account while launching the game on Steam.
    • Additional:Minimum resolution of 1024x768
    Recommended:
    • Processor:2 GHz Processor
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:128 MB DirectX 9.0c 3D Video Card with Pixel Shader 2.0 Support
    • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
    • Additional:Minimum resolution of 1024x768
Helpful customer reviews
11 of 14 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 30, 2014
When The Political Machine was released, it was a pretty fun game. So, I sort of expected that The Political Machine 2012 would be as fun, with improvements and additional features to make it even better.

Unfortunately, I was pretty disappointed. It was effectively the same game as before, with a bit of polish on the issues, updated candidates (although they lost the old Presidents) and... That's it? Seriously.

It's still an OK game. I love creating my own candidates and running a Presidential campaign on either political extreme and still, somehow, scraping over the line. It has an almost arcade-y feel that really makes it engaging.

Overall, as I said, I expected a new game, not a minor update to the previous one. Steam says that I played it for around 7 hours before I got tired of it. 4/10.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2014
I do enjoy this game but I would NOT recommend it. I wouldn't pay more than 1$ for it.

- Finishing the game takes 30minutes
- A lot of the content is basically meaningless (e.g. characteristics of the candidate don't have a high enough effect on the game play or building upgrades can be completly ignored)
- Very simple graphics (it's mainly only a map)
+/- It's replayable, but you don't feel bothered because of it's simplicty
+ You can make your own candidate
+ Steam achievements
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 5
To be honest, I'm mixed about this one, whilst It's really good at capturing the concept of a presidential race, what with negative commercials about your opponent, endorsement from political groups such as the NRA, the game is really well put together, and actually is rather fun and at times, challenging.

That being said, it's rather short, what do I mean by that? Well, I've only played 4.5 hours and I think I've seen every aspect of it so far, yeah, it's not really that long a title, but I'm not going to talk ♥♥♥♥ about it because of its length, I'm just a bit aspiring that a future installation of this will consist of more content.

So, that being said, I'll start explaining what the game is.

You play as a Political candidate from either the Republican or Democratic US parties, the issue here is that there are only two Political parties; limiting the amount of candidates they can have, there are a lot of independent candidates that they could've included into a third party in this game, but they didn't.

Anyway, you can play as anyone from Joe Biden to Thomas Jefferson for the 2012 presidential election, with issues ranging from Obamacare to ICBM defense shields.

You can even create your own candidate, and they do it rather freely and well, for example, if any other company produced this game, they wouldn't let you Create a Candidate named Josef Stalin or Adolf Hitler, but here you can create Adolf Hitler as a Republican candidate and win the race with Running Mate Donald Trump

The game includes everything from media publicity to defaming advertisements, you can advertise how much Obama is against Obamacare, for example.

You can get yourself a little more dough and start fundraising, with States like California and Texas having the highest population and thus the highest amount of people willing to give you their cash so you can create TV ads denouncing Mitt Romney's opinion of Gay Marriage.

Travel to each state to increase your rating there, make ads and give speeches to increase your chance of winning and to increase your foe's chance of losing.

Choose your own running mate, wanna play as Joe Biden and have Obama be your Running mate? Sure pal, do your own thing.

However, the game is rather short, I've won the game on the hardest difficulty numerous times against the stock Candidates, it's rather simple, for its price it's worth it to some regard, but after you beat everything there's nothing left to do besides create Characters with stupid Last names, terrible appeal stats, and watch them go against a legitimate candidate and somehow lose every state including their own.

Do I recommend this game? Sure, but if you're surprised a majority of your time playing this game is spent making Josef Stalin take over the US rather than a legitimate situation, don't be surprised.
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 7, 2014
Fun game and rather unique. It has some intresting challenges and the abbility to make custom characters is a very fun aspect. Being a Southern Gentlemen as I am, I created Jefferson Davis and ran him against Abraham Lincoln. Lets just say, Lincoln wasn't to pleased when I said he favor's Obamacare.

9/10
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
5.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 16
With its cartoon art style and hilarious writing, Political Machine allows you to play out your very own US presidential election. Either with an existing politician or a completely made up character, raise funds, hire activists, make speeches, run adds, slander opponents, and win big. Entertaining for laymen, but can become incredibly challenging when battling it out with friends. From a 35 minute rapid fire election to a week long political slug fest, the customization allows players to create the experience they want. A pleasant balance between political simulation and parody.
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4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 7
I was Sarah Palin. I was beaten by obama, 49 states to 1. My 1 state: Alaska. Due to a magical misclick of spending 8 million on slander ads. Directed towards myself. Soon after feminists had fallen, and Obama unleashed a new type of super soldier.... The Chris Brown-Inator. (Paten Pending).

Unfortunately, They had defeated us. The secret world order known as Palins' Soulsisters had fallen thanks to the Barracktastics. Murika' is now a urban reality tv show. R.I.P, Murika'

on another note.

10/10 I lost due to Feminism -IGN
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
8.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 20
Fun little game for sure.

RATE: 7/10

WORTH: $4.99

I wouldn't pay much more than $5 for this game, but still its a good game.
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 5
Right I love Bubble heads i Love the colour red and blue and i love old men & Pollitics!! This game is amazing as i love playing pollitic games and how that is possible i dont know because im only 15!!! Thesegames are so underated what is there not too like about it!!! who does not want to be a bubble head and fighting over the control over the puny americans (british point of veiw) after playing for 1 hour i still did not get the hang of the game but that just adds to the dramaticness of the game! this game is amazing and would get if i were you!
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40 of 47 people (85%) found this review helpful
25.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 4, 2014
This is only good for people who are iterested in American politics. If you don't care about politics, do not buy this game. If you are, you can get a couple of good sessions out of it here and there.
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35 of 44 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2013
out of all the politically-charged satires featuring bobbleheads this one by far features the most bobbleheads
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26 of 31 people (84%) found this review helpful
164.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 5, 2014
If you have an interest in politics, american politics, campaigns or election then at £2.79 you'll get your money's worth in no time. If you love any of those things previously mentioned, you'll get your money's worth tenfold, and then some. I have seriously enjoyed this game and even though I've played with nearly every candidate and turned every states party loyalty upside down, I don't think I'm anywhere near done yet.

Best played with a good few hours set aside and go for the 121 weeks campaign. You can smash it, even on a high difficulty you can turn California red, or Texas blue and it's great fun going for the 50-state victory!

Constructive feedback: What I'd really like to see from the game is for it to contain more Real-time Strategy. Give my candidate a press crisis mid-game, give me more options to work the media, voters, PACs, etc. Nevertheless, I am really looking forward to 2016, for numerous reasons! Stardock will always contain a special place in my heart because of PM 2012 <3
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13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 23, 2014
The Political Machine 2012 is a board game styled, abstracted simulation of the whirlwind campaigning that takes place in the heat of the race for the White House. You select your candidate from a who's who list of presidential hopefuls and big name politicians from both parties (or create a fictional candidate of your own), pick your opponent from the other party, and then set out to win the election.The game is played on a map of the US with bobble-headed caricatures of the candidates serving as playing tokens. Each candidate has a certain amount of "stamina" which translates into the number of actions that he or she can take in a single turn.The Political Machine 2012 really is like a board game in that there aren't a lot of rules to the game but those few rules make room for a surprising number of different strategies. And those who equate simple with easy will probably be surprised at the tough fight put up by their political opponent at the game's higher difficulty settings.That being said, after a number of games a feeling of repetition does begin to set in. Although the novelty can be extended by randomizing things like state populations and hot button issues, this is still a game that probably won't stay a part of your regular game rotation.The game suffers from a few bugs, from the occasional random crash to a slowdown issue that has the game slowing to a crawl after you've played a couple of rounds. It's a lot of work to get into politics, but it's also a lot to try and turn it into a simulation for us to play at home. I would never say this game is a perfect simulation of anything, but it does a great job of being a simple, accessible simulation game even for people who aren't really into that type of game. Overall 6/10.
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19 of 28 people (68%) found this review helpful
14.6 hrs on record
Posted: December 30, 2013
A great game if you get the hang of it
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16 of 23 people (70%) found this review helpful
11.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2013
6/10 if you're into that sorta thing.
A light-hearted take on U.S. politics with some surprising depths. Having taken Obama to beat Romney in 49 states on Election night I discovered many hours of fun left to be had. For Example do you want to see Kennedy challenging Lincoln on his attitude to funding Big Bird? Would Washington or Jefferson go down better on Lary King?
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13 of 19 people (68%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 9, 2014
Couldn't ban Dihydrogen Monoxide, 0/10.

On a serious note, the game is pretty fun to play, but you can only be Democrat/Republican.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
26.1 hrs on record
Posted: January 24, 2014
This game was terrific. Creates a fun way to control a presidential campaign and win. It is very entertaining and simple to understand, you can't go wrong!
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 15, 2014
i'd be a terrible president, but thats why i made the other guy look even worse.

really fun game, pick it up if there is even a slight interest in it ;)
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10 of 14 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 25, 2014
Good Gameplay, fun costumization, I introduced this to my history teacher and we played it. 8/10
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16 of 26 people (62%) found this review helpful
29.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2013
Very Realistic! I love the fun cartoon theme, the large number of debating subjects to choose from, and the characters! I CAN'T WAIT until hopefully they make a 2016 version. I'm especially excited about that because they will then hopefully have Ted Cruz and Rand Paul!!!
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9 of 13 people (69%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 9, 2014
You can make emperor palpatine 10/10
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