This is the President is actually a heist movie in disguise as a political sim. It’s more akin to a choose your own adventure visual novel with very light political sim mechanics in place.
The game starts off with you as the President Elect giving a speech to the people after winning the general election. The game baits you into thinking that you’re actually a decent person and then it pulls the rug out from under you by revealing that you’re actually a pretty scummy guy who only ran for president to abuse the powers of office to get yourself a get out of jail free card.
The game then sets up the premise for the heist. You’re main goal in the game is to raise seven million dollars to hire a specialist to get you into contact with key members of congress for your plan to pass an amendment (your get out of jail free card), get the majority of congress on your side, replace a supreme court justice with one of your own lackeys, and then get a historic ninety percent approval rating to make sure your plans goes smoothly.
It also introduces a small cast of characters, much like a heist movie. You have a hot shot lawyer, a loyal body guard, a genius hacker, and a master at manipulating public sentiment. Your goal is to use your small team to pass the amendment all the while fighting against the current President as well as a previous partner you screwed over who is now out for revenge.
The game is pretty light on mechanics. There’s a lot of written dialogue to read through and sometimes you are able to pick a response. Some replies do affect your approval rating but the writing is obvious most of the time as to which replies would lower or raise your ratings if you have watched any sort of political drama.
The game also has some light mechanics on managing your team but they are mostly superficial and the focus is entirely on the narrative. The narrative was pretty great for me. It felt like a high octane heist movie and kept me interested thoroughly. There is very little freedom in how much you can swing the narrative however so it’s mostly on rails which may or may not be a downside for some people. It all boils down to whether or not people enjoy the main narrative so your perception of the game will come down to personal preference in the narrative content.
Overall, This is the President is basically visual novel with a narrative very similar to a heist movie. It’s light on the politcal sim side but heavy on the narrative so the game may be a hit or miss depending on what you’re looking for. For me, the story was interesting enough to keep my attention.