Victoria 2 Craftsmen: How To Get More & Why They’re Important

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Craftsmen in Victoria 2 represent the low-level workers in your factories during the early Industrial Revolution. They’re the cornerstone of your economy, outside of Resource Gathering Operations, or RGOs.

The number of Craftsmen in factories correlates to your Industrial Power, and without them, you will struggle to reach or maintain the status of a Great Power.

The best way increase your Craftsmen in Victoria 2 is to use your national focuses to Encourage Craftsmen, but there are a few very important conditions you should look into which are basically necessary to get more of these POPs:

  • Encourage Craftsmen by manually using National Focus points
  • Increase Literacy by promoting Clergymen to 2-4% across your country
  • Outlaw Slavery in your Politics tab under Reforms
  • Improve your Immigration Attraction using Social Reforms

Encourage Craftsmen in States with Factories

To Encourage Craftsmen in your country, you have to go to the Production tab (the leftmost tab on the menu at the top of your game).

Arrow towards the Production tab / Victoria 2
Arrow towards the Production tab

From there, you have National Focuses (determined by your level of accepted POPs and technology) which allow you to interact with your states in some way – such as:

  • Promoting internal immigration between states
  • What party POPs vote for
  • Or encouraging jobs like Craftsmen
The Promotion ‘Encourage Craftsmen’ / Victoria 2
The Promotion ‘Encourage Craftsmen’

Sort by Factories in the Factories tab, and select Encourage Craftsmen.

This will significantly encourage the likelihood that lower-class POPs will promote into a craftsman.

If this does not work, this means that the requirements for lower-class promotions are not met, such as literacy or demand, which is found below.


Increase Literacy

Showing the literacy rate / Victoria 2
Showing the literacy rate

Lower-class POPs, like Soldiers, Farmers, and Laborers have to be literate to be able to be promoted to Craftsmen.

To improve your literacy, you should have 2% – 4% of your country be Clergymen.

Showing the percent of population you should have for Clergymen / Victoria 2
Showing the percent of population you should have for Clergymen

The game says that 2% of your population is optimal, but 4% is ideal and where the bonuses for improving literacy end.

To industrialize in the early game, or get more Craftsmen sooner, you should definitely make your first goal be to encourage Clergymen.

You’d Encourage Clergymen the same way you’d Encourage Craftsmen in your most densely populated states for the best effect.


Outlaw Slavery

Enslaved POPs cannot work in factories.

So outlawing slavery is a good way to improve the number of POPs that would be available for promotion into Craftsmen.

The way you outlaw slavery in Victoria 2 is to have a majority of Liberals in your Upper House. You can do this through encouraging POPs to vote Liberal, getting random events, or through letting Jacobin (Liberal) rebels take over your capital.

(Click for full-size)
The arrow points to the Reforms button. The box on the left shows that the majority of the Upper House is Liberal, which allows the outlawing of slavery on the box to the right.

Improve Immigration Attraction

(Click for full-size)
Highlighted is the button to view the Migrations map mode, showcasing that a green country brings in more POPs.

POPs will migrate to your country if your Immigrant Attraction percentage is higher than most other countries, and if your economy is doing well.

Immigrant attraction can be improved by:

  • Outlawing slavery
  • Increasing minimum wage
  • Having factories that need Craftsmen and Clerks
  • High level of safety regulations, public school systems, pensions, max hours of work hours in a day, unemployment subsidies, and healthcare
  • Press rights
  • Political and cultural rights
  • Universal Voting Franchise
  • Women’s Suffrage

The most common type of POP to migrate to your country is Craftsmen. And so if you are a New World country, or in North or South America, it is in your best interest to be as Liberal as possible.


Reasons Why Craftsmen Are Important In Victoria 2

There’s 3 big reasons why these POPs are so important:

  1. To industrialize and become a Great Power
  2. To get Capitalists for higher tax income & more factories
  3. To grow a powerful military

Craftsmen are required to industrialize your country, which adds to your Industrial Power. This mechanic in the game determines your level of industrialization and how many goods you produce, as well as their worth in the world market.

To be a Great Power, you must become industrialized.

Craftsmen are also one of the only POPs in the middle-class that can be upgraded to Capitalists, or Clerks, which are higher-level industrial pops.

Capitalists, when taxed, bring in the most money for your country. And they’re required for factories to be opened without the player’s direct hand.

For a democracy like the USA, this chain of upgrading is one of the key factors in your industrialization.

And finally, Craftsmen are absolutely necessary in the late game.

When the Great Wars activate around 1900, you’ll be required eventually to mobilize your country’s population.

To become a military power that could rival the Great Powers, especially ones with high populations, like Russia or Germany, you’ll need to have a high number of middle-class POPs ready to be mobilized to even consider taking them in a fight.

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