Originally Posted by FugitiveUnknown
Yeah, this game is all about money.
UN aid, campaign promises and flagrant bribes will get you through your first election or two. Just get your economy going and then you can worry about housing.
The golden rule of this game is GOLD. Money. Moola. With it you can fix anything. Run into permanent debt, and you lose.
Mines are nearly a must in tropico 3 - they are the only resource building that generates good money and can be built quickly. Farms take about a year after they are built to do anything, and logging camps are just bad. The most efficent cash source is probably Mine to Sugar to Rum with Booze baron.
In Tropico 4, you can basically cheat by building a factory right by your docks, and then importing raw materials. Build multiple docks and factories and create an industrial district. This is really the only way to go - it makes your economy a hell of a lot more efficient in the long run, since you don't clog the roads with delivery trucks or have tons of low paying uneducated workers doing resource gathering jobs in the middle of nowhere.
Once the money is coming in, you can run a dictatorship, capitalist dream, or a socialist paradise. Up to you.
^not entirely true and very biased you industrial pig dog! xD
Industry is just ONE way of making money, however with proper planning, and of course excellent entertainment, tourism can land you big bucks and flood your existing buildings with extra cash!
Mining is handy, but unless you develope industry to revolve around it, it can be a dead end.
Farms are an excellent (and cheap) source of income, the best part being they create a lot of jobs for uneducated citizens.
Lumber yards are TERRIBLE sources of income by themselves, but they are part of a big chain that can yeild a lot of money. Investment wise it has a big bang for the buck, especially if you get a lumber mill, furniture manufacturer, shopping mall, and cap it off with a horticultural center to boost tree growth.
Don't be forsighted on the low hanging fruits. They are easiest to get sure, but the rippest are at the top xD
Experiment with each industry to learn what works, what doesn't, and what can combine to make a money mill. (I.E. furniture manufacturer + jewlery manufacturer + canned goods + Toursits + Shopping mall = HUGE cash!!)