The Clique system is a lot like the faction system, but it doesn't directly tie into the end game, like the faction system does. It does, however, directly affect the faction numbers. It is built on what amounts to the same architecture as the faction system, and is a parallel system. Most likely, if there are regular faction rolls, there will be regular clique rolls right after. The cliques, storywise, are essentially groups organized around music appreciation, and specific genres. The three genres are: House, DownTempo, and Trance.
Each person in the BLTP belongs to one of the 3 cliques. Clique membership is determined by a 'slider' style variable, which is an individualized variable. For the sake of simplicity, I'm going to omit a secondary variable. So no 'extremism' variable for cliques. The slider is very much like the Faction slider, except that this slider doesn't necessarily relate to faction, at least at the beginning of the game. I'll discuss that in more detail, later. Clique membership is fluid, and can change. The only modifier, however, is party success.
Parties occur every weekend, and are an entire mechanic in themselves, that I'll have to really plan out later. A successful party will push the entire BLTP towards that clique, but the specific amount is different for each BLTP citizen. A citizen who went to the party, will be most affected by the party's success, and depending on the player's actions, they may be pushed towards Eugene, and have their Extremism boosted, due to the drug use at the party.
Party attendance is determined by clique membership, and drug use. A drug user will have a + modifier for their attendance roll, and a clique member will have a + modifier, as well. Party attendance will be calculated when the party happens. Most likely, faction and other global effects of the party will be calculated immediately when the party happens. These party rolls will probably be a part of the weekly rolls.
The party and clique mechanic might be an odd one, and a difficult one to balance. First off, since the clique membership is a slider, from House, to DownTempo, to Trance, there might end up being an odd tendency for everyone to end up in the middle, and most likely, it would be easiest to focus on the middle. This, however, could be coded as being of limited use.
The 'Eugene Drug' system, which I haven't discussed yet, is essentially a system that requires you to keep good relations to Eugene, in order to get drugs, to sell in Billings, or give away at the parties. I think these drugs should be straightforward pills, probably from Medea Circe in the LRI. You'll get the first pack for free, but after that you might have to actually buy them.
There are 3 types of drugs, for each Clique. The Trance clique has MDMA, the DownTempo clique has BHO, and the House clique has LSD. These might end up being changed to synthetic 'designer drugs' instead, but for now, let's stick with these. You'll notice, though, that one of these is different. MDMA and LSD are both extremely dependant on chemistry, but BHO is just butane run through some herb. That makes it substantially less 'special', which means that I can, without too much reaching, make its political effect much lower. This encourages the player to try to push the citizens to either the House or Trance clique.
These drugs, however, will initially be banned at the parties, or at least, they won't be particularly accepted by the initial (Chicago) crowd. Each clique will, at the beginning of the game, have a 'Leader' and a 'Rebel'. These will probably be hardcoded values.
The clique Leader is determined by a global value, called, 'Clique Leadership'. Each clique will have a separate slider for this. The leadership slider goes from -100 to 100, and is affected, basically, by a simple mission track. You go to the rebel, and encourage them to start throwing parties. You can give them sets to play, and drugs to serve, and each successful party that they throw changes the Clique Leadership slider in their favor. This is another thing that has to be designed in detail later. It's definitely mission based, though. If you, the player, do nothing, the cliques will remain the same, and the rebel won't start doing her own parties. Without the drugs and sets, though, the leader will throw objectively better parties.
This might, if I do it right, create a more strategic element, where the player can push the BLTP towards, say, DownTempo for a while, as a way to get them away from the other extremes, which might be more difficult to get drugs and sets for. It's something that, again, will have to be worked out later.
So that's the Clique system, or the beginnings of it, at least. I wanted to make a complex 'bitch simulator', and this is definitely becoming one. The planning, though, really is the most difficult part, I think. Once all this stuff is worked out, the implementation isn't too complex. But it really has to be worked out, entirely, before I can start implementing anything. If I don't do it that way, it'll be buggy as fuck, and totally unplayable.