Paradox’s unbelievably grand 4X game, Stellaris is just getting better. The recent dev diary released details the addition of Alliances and Federations. Alliances work similar to member-nation style congresses in the modern day. Resolutions such as war declarations must be approved by the members of an alliance in order to be carried out-so carry out wars that your allies want as well for the most success.
In stark contrast to those votey Alliances, Federations are governed by a single president who can “act with impunity”, the sizeable downside being that everyone in a Federation gets a turn at being president. That sounds like a recipe for disaster/hilarity right there. You also can’t win a game on your own if you remain part of a Federation: victory is shared between members.
“Another interesting feature of Federations,” says Paradox, “is that they have a special joint space navy in addition to the forces of the separate member empires. The Federation president gets to design these ship templates using all the best technologies of all the member empires. The president also gets to control these fleets, of course. As a rule of thumb, several fairly equally matched empires might want to form a Federation, especially in the face of aggressive, significantly larger neighbors, but it might not be the best idea for empires who are dominant in their own right. Of course, there is also an element of role-playing to the choice…”