He is the advisor and second-in-command of El Presidente, yet barely knows anything except undying loyalty to his leader and is also a coward, especially when it comes to camels, mimes, and (according to Sunny Flowers) heights. He and Sunny Flowers are the two main radio hosts and he is shown to have a crush on his co-host. Despite this, he is an obvious detractor of the Environmentalists, especially when it comes to anything "organic." This can be seen when a Bio Farm is constructed, as Penultimo will express fear of Sunny trying to feeding him organic fruit salad.
He claims to have graduated from the "University of Atlantis" with a major in "Being Penultimo," both of which get him publicly mocked.
|Spoiler alert: The following section contains plot-specific details.(Skip Section)|
Penultimo introduces himself as the presidente's advisor in the Rise to Power mission. He's quick to notice the squalor of St. Clara, especially its lack of farms. Eventually, he catches a sickness that's going around and asks for the island's healthcare to be improved. When he hears that the island is being slandered in foreign papers for the number of shacks, he suggests building housing and later reminds the presidente that food and entertainment are key to keeping citizens happy.
On the next island, he largely stays in the background as the presidente and Keith Preston work on mining operations. When an earthquake collapses one of the mines and traps the miners underground, he suggests that the presidente make a speech to help Tropicans through the national tragedy. He suggests making another speech after a "crappy cheap Chinese drill" fails to free the miners and simply causes a second earthquake. Once the drill has been perfected by Tropican scientists, he suggests postponing freeing the miners for a bit in order to get more foreign aid money.
He comments that Cara Libro is much prettier than the other two islands and points out that it would make a perfect
tourist trap resort. Once accommodations for visitors are set up, he remarks that there are different kinds of tourist and that the island should focus on attracting one of eco, spring break, or wealthy tourists. Finally, he'll point out that fame is measured in twits followers and suggests attracting a million of them. To this end, he comes up with a marketting scheme similar to the one for Dos Equis, points out that a clean environment will attract more tourists (mostly in an attempt to impress Sunny Flowers), and urges the presidente to keep crime in check for the safety of visitors. He suggests using the presidente's connections to earn more fame, such as by inviting powerful political figures - Generalissimo Santana, US senator Nick Richards, and rebel leader Marco Moreno - to a meeting and publicizing the event. As a final idea, he suggests sending spam to every person in the world for $50,000.
While the presidente is creating a trading outpost in the IMPORTant Business mission, Penultimo suggests building another dock to unload large quantities of imports. He also hears rumors of a nearby "pirate convention" and says that selling rum would be very profitable while it's going on.
Once Tropico becomes a prominent power in Tropico Above All, he mentions to the presidente that the UN leaderboard of the "coolness" of countries ranks the nation too low to be included and compiles a list of things to do to boost Tropico's rating. When these tasks upset Brunhilde Van Hoof, he urges the presidente to ignore her and continue, even when she uses her connections to raise construction costs on the island. When she sends a letter antagonizing the presidente, Penultimo notes that the publicity has brought the world's attention to Tropico's record breaking attempts and suggests breaking 5 or 7 more. He later suggests furthering the publicity by hiring journalists on the island to cover the attempts.
In Bickering Factions, Penultimo welcomes the presidente to Santa Teresa and explains how the island's factions are particularly passionate. He gives the presidente the option to base the economy either on capitalism or communism. Later, he gets exasperated when Miss Pineapple insults General Rodriguez and asks the presidente to choose between them. Finally, he presents the plans of the nationalists and the loyalists, to whom he expresses an obvious bias towards. If the presidente sides with the loyalists, Penultimo will ask that the presidente build their mausoleum. At some point in the mission, Penultimo guesses that Marco Moreno is not acting alone and suggests hiring 3 secret agents to investigate the island's factions.
In Crisis, Penultimo mistakes the defense readiness condition for an American doomsday device and warns that the world will end if it falls to 1. Early in the mission, he'll bring news that Tropico has lost the island of Santa Clara to a coup, possibly backed by the USSR. Once Tropico begins preparing for a war by building an armory, Penultimo says the island will need 3 guard stations as well and an army of 20 soldiers. Although help from the US or USSR can be sought out for these, Penultimo suggests avoiding the influence of the superpowers to make Tropico a strong, independent superpower. Once the US and USSR are locked in a race to develop missiles, Penultimo will say that the presidente can permit one superpower once every 6 months to test a missile in Tropico for $10,000. After Brunhilde tasks the presidente with hosting Pan-Caribbean Summits, Penultimo and the other loyalists will help with organizing the events. Once Tropico has its army, Penultimo will say that both superpowers want to develop Tropico's nuclear program by helping to build a nuclear power plant. Once Tropico becomes a nuclear power, Penultimo will deliver the news that the US president has been killed by an unknown assassin, making Nick Richards the new president. The assassin is later caught and claims to be Juanito, a Tropican citizen sent by the presidente to kill the US president in order to start a war and make money off of weapon sales. When the UN sends agents to capture the presidente, Penultimo suggests building 10 docks to confuse them and allow the presidente to escape unharmed.
With Penultimo's help, the presidente manages to escape to the lawless island of Isla Oscura in Survival. Penultimo explains that the island is a haven for criminals and asks that a police station and a prison be built so that the presidente can start arresting them. Unfortunately, after a couple arrests are carried out, Penultimo reports that the police station was bombed in what Penultimo believes was an inside job. When it becomes apparent that arresting street criminals isn't solving the problem, Penultimo suggests hiring secret agents to uncover the island's crime bosses. Every time the agents discover a Don, Penultimo will report it and suggest dealing with them immediately. Unfortunately, after the presidente does so, Penultimo will report mysterious happenings, such as all three agents "disappearing" and a series of fires breaking out. Throughout the mission, Penultimo also suggests sending letters to the presidente's old contacts - Nick Richards, Keith Preston, and Generalissimo Santana - to try convincing them that Tropico didn't order the assassination of the US president. The letter to Nick Richards is never replied to, making Penultimo wonder if its beneath his notice or being purposefully ignored.
Penultimo initially praises the presidente's plan for opening the island of Nueva Esperanza to all-comers in No One Left Behind but quickly begins to doubt the idea as the first group to seek refuge is a troupe of mimes that promise to make 1 person "disappear" from the island every year they don't have a cabaret to perform in. He warns that the next group - 8 cold-hearted lawyers - will drive 1 citizen each year to rebel, but comes up with a plan to make the lawyers docile by exposing them to children and enrolling them in knitting courses. The third group - "all 30" of Canada's telephone hygienists - he considers the "most worthless people on the planet" and warns that they'll set a bad example for the island's workers until the hygienists are given better jobs in shopping malls. When starving artists flock to the island, he warns that their perceived laziness will drop relations with the Militarists until a Museum of Modern Art is built to convince military-supporters that art has its uses. He warns that the next group - 40 pirates who were fired for incompetence - will convince citizens to turn to crime until a luxury liner is bought to help adapt the crew to island life. The final group are 40 people so deformed that even circuses rejected them, a trait that Penultimo warns will halve Tropico's tourism prospects until a team of 10 doctors are hired to perform cosmetic surgery on them. Once all the people are settled, he says that Tropican now needs to use the motley collection of the world's unwanted people to earn $1,000,000. Penultimo reports several opportunities to help raise money, such as falsely labelling Tropican-made products as "made in China" to boost sales, publicly insulting European cheeses and declaring that Tropican cheese is superior, building a zoo and airport to help the mimes rehearse for a play and go to Broadway with it, getting 1000 units of lumber to build a ship to allow the pirates to search for buried treasure, having 15 professors on the island to research a cure for a disease transmitted by dirty telephones, and - as a last resort - having the lawyers sue the EU, China, or the Middle East.
In Independence Day, Penultimo briefs the presidente on the insignificance of next island and the presidente's plan to trick Europe into legitimizing the presidente's leadership. He later reports that the island's builders are unable to build most advanced buildings because no one will sell the island the necessary blueprints or parts and that mariner's have a 400 year old tradition of not docking at the island, requiring the presidente to pay $1,000 every year to "compensate" freighters that visit the island. Though Penultimo organizes a few diplomatic parties once a ministry is built, only other Tropicans attend. To get Europe's attention, he suggests staging a financial crisis by deliberately going into debt. He also presents the option of inflating the island's currency to upset the US and encourage the EU to send emergency funds. Once the ruse works and Tropico becomes a colony, Penultimo reports that the ship captains will no longer ask for their annual "compensation." Despite the benefits, Penultimo soon gets the presidente in contact with Agent Sasha in order to help make Tropico independent again. Once Tropico has the necessary proletariat workforce Sasha asked for, Penultimo comes up with the plan of producing 300 megawatts of electricity to further development. Once the USSR condemns the US and EU as imperialists for exploiting the island, Penultimo will task the presidente with deminishing the influence of the EU-supporting monarchists by getting people to become independence-minded revolutionaries. Once Tropico has enough revolutionaries, Penultimo will attempt to fake an uprising, only for it to get out of hand and become real.
When the presidente wants to buy 51% of Fruitas LTD in Fruity Business, Penultimo first says they should turn Tropico into the company's main competitor. Once the market is flooded with cheap Tropican fruit, Penultimo will say that the time has come to start buying the company, buy only 1% at a time to keep Keith Preston from finding out. He'll also report that Fruitas Ltd. is planning on selling a big shipment of papaya and suggests beating them to it to foil them. Despite the discretion, Keith Preston soon notices the effort and warns the presidente to stop, saying that he's used his connections to get people to stop buying goods made on the island. Undaunted, Penultimo suggests building factories to keep the economy strong while buying more company shares, even when Keith uses his vast funds to get some of them back. When Keith sends some agents to establish a 'workers syndicate' to turn the island's workforce against the presidente, Penultimo says the problem can be solved either by sending police officers to ambush the syndicate or building a movie theater to distract workers from the propaganda. Once the presidente owns half the company, Penultimo reports that getting the last 1% may be difficult because Keith has locked the remaining stocks in a heavily-guarded fortress in Tibet. When the presidente suggests using ninjas to get the stocks, Penultimo says getting in contact with ninjas will require having 3 secret agents to serve as negotiators. Unfortunately, the price for genuine ninjas is too high to afford, so Penultimo suggests hiring "Chinese ninjas" instead. To get in contact with them without rousing suspicion, Penultimo suggests sending the negotiators to the ninjas under the guise of a USSR trade mission. Once in contact, Penultimo says that the "ninjas" will agree to get the final shares for $100,000.
In The Olympic Heist, Penultimo explains that Keith Preston has invested his every asset into the Olympics to recoup his losses after being fired from Fruitas LTD. To keep him from succeeding by getting Tropico chosen instead, Penultimo suggests building infrastructure to produce electricity. Once the island is fully set up, Penultimo will say that it needs to reach 1st place in the bid for the Olympics. He'll report several events that boost Tropico's rank, such as discovering Jorge and announcing when he wins contests. Unfortunately, he reports negative events too, such as the athlete going missing, losing a leg, or getting drunk right before competitions. In all cases, he says that he can fix the situation - expensively, of course - so that the event won't impact Tropico's standing. Finally, frustrated by Jorge's unreliable nature, he suggests building an Academy of Science and cloning him to always have a Jorge around when they need one.
If the presidente refuses to injure himself on a rollercoaster to satisfy Generalissimo Santana in To Bait Fish Withal, Penultimo will congratulate them for their decision. Later, while the presidente is being blackmailed by Santana - who claims to be holding a twin sibling of the presidente's captive - Penultimo suggests investigating the presidente's family by building a childhood museum and either an Academy of Science or a botanical garden to do genetic research. When the research proves that the presidente has no twin, he sends the proof to Santana and advises him to shoot the "twin." Later on, he comes up with a plan of convincing the US ambassador that Santana has been holding the presidente in captivity and that the "twin" was the one who ordered the assassination. To further convince them that the Tropican intelligence report is correct, he suggests building radar dishes to impress the US officials. As a final bit of proof, he asks that Tropico ally with the US to make the US stop supporting Santana. With the ongoing rebellion and the loss of US support, Penultimo suggests building a golden statue to inspire the people of Puerto Gato to put you back in power.
After Generalissimo Santana is deposed and the presidente takes over Puerto Gato in Best Served Cold, Penultimo explains that he has fled into the jungle to begin a resistance movement among the population. Because of this, Penultimo refuses to permit elections, fearing they would simply put Santana back in power. When Santana destroys the island's power plant, Penultimo suggests promptly building another one to prove the presidente intends to rule the island better than Santana. After the island hires teams of journalists who quickly begin demanding elections, Penultimo suggests that permitting and winning an election would help further legitimize the presidente's rule. Once the election is won, he'll next suggest building condominiums to gain more support among the tenement-dwelling islanders. When Santana is discovered and defeated at last, Penultimo will focus on the remaining members of the resistance movement, saying they can be bribed, arrested, or killed to be dealt with. At one point, Penultimo will discover that the island's Museum of Modern Art actually houses Santana's private collection of stolen artwork and suggests demolishing the building and selling the collection off.
When the presidente takes control of the heavily corrupt Costa Laplata in Operation Endgame, Penultimo reacts with astonishment when he finds out that the UN Inspectors that run the island are stealing from the treasury, being unfamiliar with any kind of corruption besides the presidente's. After some time, frustrated with the UN Inspectors interference, Penultimo formulates plans to get them to leave, such as printing negative articles on the Economy Inspector, having a big police force to prove the Interior Inspector redundant (or simply bribing him into leaving), and having a large number of college-educated citizens to satisfy the Education Inspector. Once all the inspectors have left, Penultimo will explain that the presidente still needs to get the island's citizens to enjoy themselves in order to satisfy the UN.
In Forgiveness, Penultimo congratulates the presidente on their return to power and says that they must revitalize Tropico by raising it's population and economy. Unfortunately, suspicious events begin to occur, such as Penultimo's second cousin - the presidente's personal food taster - dying of poison, a construction site collapsing just before the presidente was about to visit it, and a cigar the presidente gave to a guest exploding. Penultimo concludes that someone is behind the "accidents" and asks the presidente to monitor the island's phone lines to find out who.
After the presidente learns that Nick Richards was plotting against him the whole time and begins bargaining with the USSR on evidence against him in The Clandestine War, Penultimo explains that the Soviets want Tropico's help in dealing with a few American spies. Part of this involves turning the island into a luxury resort and attracting a crowd of wealthy tourists. Penultimo suggests that, since the island is swarming with the rich and famous, hiring a few journalists to document and gossip about their lives might be a good idea for making some money on the side. Once spies start arriving on the island, Penultimo compiles lists of possible suspects and, considering there's so many of them, suggests using the island's police and military forces to run checks on and observe the listed people to help make the lists more accurate.
When Nick Richards begins harassing Tropico in Perestroika, Penultimo is the one who devises ways to thwart him. This includes cleaning up the island to avoid Richard's anti-pollution fine, throwing an even bigger party than Richards to improve Tropico's relations, and building enough wind turbines to act as fans to push the island out of the way of a nuclear missile. After the USSR finds the tape with evidence of Richard's conspiracy on it, Penultimo says that it can be safely brought to Tropico by having a big enough military to protect it and disguising the transportation as a trade mission. Once the tape is secure, he suggests broadcasting it to the entire world at once to give Richards no time to react or place to go. At first, Penultimo thinks this will simply require a few radio stations. When the signal turns out to be too weak, he suggests building a Cosmic Pin to amplify it.
When the presidente begins creating the perfect society in Tropican Utopia, Penultimo says the plan will require a lot of people and money to make work. Once the island has both, he suggests making the minimum wage on the island $20 to make the island seem more first world. With the island starting to resemble presidente's utopia more and more, Penultimo starts to wonder what good a paradise is if only a few people get to experience it and suggests raising the island's population dramatically. Once this is done, he suggests building hospitals and cathedrals to see to the people's welfare and dropping the island's food rationing, giving people shelter for free, and giving the island's students and retirees social security. Finally, he suggests erects three monuments that represent the virtues of Tropico; a statue of Christ the Savior for faith, a Nuclear Program for independence, and a Golden Statue for the greatest virtue of all; el presidente.
|End of Spoilers|
Modern Times CampaignEdit
|Spoiler alert: The following section contains plot-specific details.(Skip Section)|
In the State of Emergency mission, Penultimo has been left in charge while the presidente was on vacation. When rebels appeared during this time, Penultimo burned down all the island's farms to starve them to death, not realizing this would cause everyone else to starve too. He's relieved at the presidente's return and quick to insist on building 6 new farms to make up for the ones he burnt. Once this is done, he learns that there are other people in the world more hungry than Tropicans and suggests exporting 2,000 units of food. When foreign press speculates that the world will end, he suggests building a TV station to disperse the rumors. After it is proved the world will not end, he announces a global economic crisis and reports Antonio Lopez's suggestion of building 2 factories to ride the crisis out.
In the The Hiccups, Penultimo will insist on raising the population of the island to 100 to establish a workforce. Once this is done, he announces the outbreak of a disease that causes uncontrollable hiccuping and suggests that the virus might actually be artificially engineered. He notes that, if 100 people on the island get infected, the UN will quarantine the island off. To slow the progress of the disease, he suggests better medical facilities like hospitals and sanatoriums. When Dr. Steinschneider arrives to develop a cure, Penultimo expresses more interest in finding the origins of the virus and suggests having 3 secret agents investigate the issue, but the investigation turns up nothing. It's possible for the presidente to catch the disease themselves during the mission, after which Penultimo makes it his duty to cure the presidente. Throughout the rest of the mission, he attempts to scare the presidente with false disaster reports, which are likely to be seen as real by unsuspecting players the first time around.
At the start of The Truth is Out There, the presidente comments that Penultimo has been acting rather competently and intelligently lately, devising a plan to uncover the cause of Tropico's outbreak that involves raising lots of llamas. Unfortunately, all the llamas escape before he can set his plan in motion, devastating the island's agriculture. His back-up plan is to print money with "we know who you are and what you did" written on it in the hopes of spooking the virus's creator into revealing themselves. Eventually, he sends a grammatically perfect love letter to Miss Pineapple, worrying her from the sudden odd behavior. A check-up at a hospital shows a change in Penultimo's physiology and Dr. Steinschneider confirms that Penultimo has been kidnapped and replaced with a clone. Once the real Penultimo is found and freed, he claims that he overheard a phone conversation between his clone and USSR officals, who ordered both the virus attack on Tropico and his own abduction. After offering a plan on fixing the llama situation (namely by having the SWAT team kill them all), he asks that 500 units of arsenic-laced rum be shipped to the USSR government. When this nearly causes a Soviet invasion, Penultimo remembers that he saw a letter with the initials "CIA" on it while captive and suggests building radar dishes to spy on CIA transmissions, this time upsetting the US. Before he can cause another incident, a new virus breaks out over the island, causing people to transform into clones of him, along with his characteristic incompetence. When Dr. Steinschneider's cure for the disease gets stolen, the island's secret agents discover that the Penultimo that was rescued is another clone. This clone is captured and the cure is administered to the island's water supply. Despite his behavior, Sunny Flowers is against physically torturing the captured clone of her "dear Penultimo" and suggests using Penultimo's fear of heights by putting the clone in a balloon ride and issuing a Balloon Fair. He eventually cracks and gives General Rodriguez the location of the real Penultimo, who has been held in a maximum-security military compound all this time. A military force of 30 units lead by General Rodriguez manages to break into the compound to free the real Penultimo.
After investigations into Penultimo's abductions lead to Piedra Island in The Shakes, Penultimo is quick to notice the dangers present on the island. He'll get in touch with European developers who will pay the cost of building a second construction office. When worldwide student protests happen, he suggests riding them out by building two colleges on the island and billing it as an "education reform."
After Dr. Steinschneider finishes building a mind control device to counteract one he unwittingly built for the Conclave in Keep Calm And Carry On, Penultimo reports that the stress of the devices working against each other has caused them to explode, killing the doctor. On a more positive note, he also reports that the newly freed American high command have announced that they'll help the presidente fight the Conclave.
When the world is swept up in a wave of terrorist attacks in War on Terror, Penultimo reports that Tropico's ministry has been bombed. Believing the terrorists have struck Tropico for the last time, Penultimo sets the island's alert level to green. Once the ministry is rebuilt, Penultimo urges the presidente to take a more serious action against the terrorists. Unfortunately, all the presidente can do in response to this is declare a war on terror. If the presidente chooses to combat terrorism by garnering civil support, Penultimo urges them to schedule an early election to prove that Tropicans support the government, to build media buildings to allow journalists to conduct independent investigations into terrorist activities, and approve the building of private businesses on the island so that citizens will have just as much to lose in a terrorist attack as the presidente would. Whether or not his preferred strategy is chosen, Penultimo will report the discovery of any clues into the identity of the bomber and create a list of possible suspects based on the clues. When this list is eventually narrowed down to just El Diablo, the nationalist representative angrily points out that all of Penultimo's "clues" come from articles in Donald Pynch's newspapers.
|End of Spoilers|
Penultimo's name comes from the word penultimate, which means second to last. This is a reference to him being Tropico's second-in-command.
Penultimo appears in every single official mission except for The New Sparta.
A character named Penultimo also makes an appearance in Tropico 3's tutorial, instructing the Presidente on the basics of the game. At the end of the tutorial, he asks the Presidente if they know of a place he could obtain poison, implying he intends to assassinate them and take their place.
In the Second Teaser of Tropico 5, Penultimo has a cameo in the appearance of a hand puppet