Explanation of Population Management
There’s no direct pop management. Instead, everything is done via laws, decisions, and economic intervention.
When you colonize, and as your colony is expanding, there is upheaval and the natives will get mad and eventually retaliate. Of course, your army is going to be better because you’re a more powerful and more technologically advanced nation, but there is a war. This ends, however, once all of the decentralized nations (i.e. Free Real Estate) are gone.
Pops retain their cultures even when the migrate. Migration and assimilation is based on your country’s laws. The Migration Control law won’t allow migration by cultures that you don’t like. There are also some laws will restrict the rights of cultures that aren’t the main ones of the country. On the other hand, No Migration Controls will allow anyone to migrate, and the Multiculturalism law gives all rights to anyone no matter their culture.
Now, before you go thinking that this is too easy, you have to remember that laws will only pass if they have enough political backing. You can’t just enact any laws you want, instead you have to work with the make up of your pops.
For example, you might want to work towards Multiculturalism, but all of the political power rests in the hands of the landowners and armed forces who are conservative. The solution is to figure out how to raise the clout of the Industrialsts, who are going to want as many people working in their factories as possible, while minimizing the power of those who would be against the law. And again, this isn’t a simple button press but instead requires engineering a shift in your country’s economic base which eventually results in a shift if your country’s political structure.
Honestly, I like the system. It takes a lot of getting used to because it’s so indirect but that’s just how the game works. You have to look at the economic and political powers you do have and try and figure out how to use them to affect your population to help achieve your goals.