I have been playing for awhile and have yet to figure out how to determine the leader of a faction to offer a bribe. ... Any and all helpful advice ...
First, to use the Edict you must have a Bank building with at least one Banker employee. More Bankers is better because one must come to work and enter the building to get the order to find the bribed and deliver the bribe. The process from when you designate who is to get the bribe to delivery of the bribe may take quite a long time. It's not too unlike the real world if you decide to make the Bank Building your political headquarters.
It should not be a problem to identify the leaders of the six factions. The factions each have a page under the 'Politics' section of the manual. There are listed the total number of supporters (remember one person may support more than one faction), the faction leader with a clickable Icon\Avatar, and a narrative of the current 'attitude' of the faction. That 'attitude' consists mostly of the "feelings"
of the leader. Also in Almanac, there are lists for each faction which show icons for the entire population in rank order of support; the strongest supporter (upper left) is almost always the leader. When there are pop-up warnings about faction complaints, the leader is always mentioned. You may link these individuals to hot-keys to make it easier to monitor them.When and Why to Bribe?
This is highly dependent on the player's goals and style of play. However, there are a few generalities. It is far easier and probably cheaper to improve the faction leaders' outlook with a relatively simple bribe that to try to micromanage all of his personal happiness factors. Also, it is far easier and certainly cheaper to manipulate the faction leader than to meet all of the faction's demands; the demands of some factions conflict with the demands of other factions (e.g. capitalists vs communists). You do have to have a consistant flow of cash to continue the bribes every two and a half years - approximately. The idea is to make relations with some factions really good, and just keep the lid on relations with the rest.Specifically
factions differ as to the circumstances when a bribe is strongly indicated.Militarists
. It too quickly became the established style of gameplay that to avoid Coups, it is necessary to focus exclusively on coddling the Army employees -- based on the assumption that they were the source of the dissatisfied leadership who instigated the coup. The assumption was a transference of personal impressions from the real world to the game world. It's a bad impression of any army as a closed society in the real world and a bad transference since the game is any case is not an exact simulation. This supposedly well grounded gameplay ignored the Faction Leader who is often not an Army employee. Although not established by reading the code, it is entirely logical that the Faction Leader is also the Coup Leader who "triggers" the Coups. So if you have an Army of any size at all, it would be far cheaper in both money and micromanagement time to spend more money on bribing the Faction Leader regularly and less money on premium pay, luxury housing, and high class entertainment. However, if those 'army' employees are not supporters of the Militarist Faction, they will not be easy to retain in those important jobs.Capitalists
. This has a strong link (along with the Communists) to foreign relations. If you desire to have excellent relations with the U.S., drop frequent bribes on the Capitalist Faction Leader. Depending on the time you wish to spend, other ways to coddle her\him also help. Otherwise, an occasional, timely bribe may help in a specific situation.Communists
. This has a strong link (along with the Capitalists) to foreign relations. If you desire to have excellent relations with the U.S.S.R., drop frequent bribes on the Communist Faction Leader. Depending on the time you wish to spend, other ways to coddle her\him also help. Otherwise, an occasional, timely bribe may help in a specific situation.Intellectuals
. Don't worry, no one in the game world is bribe-proof. Coddle this leader with frequent bribes and other goodies to help retain those hard to recruit and retain college graduates (e.g. Doctors).Religious
. Don't worry, no one in the game world is bribe-proof. Coddle this leader with frequent bribes and other goodies to help retain those hard to recruit and retain Priests and a few Bishops. If those 'church' employees are not supporters of the Religious Faction, they will not be easy to retain in those important jobs.Environmentalists
. It's hard to understand this small faction. I suspect they have strong links with a successful 'Tourist Industry' because they wish to preserve what your potential tourists want to see. This Leader is probably the least frequent target of bribes because the warnings are the most important if you are using the tourist industry. Watch for Protesters from this faction.Bribes to Others
. There are the necessary times to assassinate or Imprison minor trouble makers (e.g. Protesters, 'Chickens', etc.); however, the costs in money and hits to respect among the public and their families is far more than a bribe if you have the system in place. Be smooth
, manipulate -- the people like it more.