Build and Manage A Maximum Security Prison.
User reviews: Very Positive (18,012 reviews) - 94% of the 18,012 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 6, 2015

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Recent updates View all (35)

January 27

Update 3 released

Prison Architect Update 3 has been released! Here is our video demonstrating the new features:

This month we start with a special demo of the console build of the game, showing off the completely redesigned interface.

Our new features:

Guard Towers + Snipers
You can now build guard towers around your prison for an extra level of security, intimidation, and force.

- New entity type : Snipers
Hired from the staff menu.
These guys will equip themselves with a scoped sniper rifle from the armoury, if you have one.
They will then take turns manning the guard towers you have built.

- Snipers will project 'Suppression' to all prisoners within their line of sight.

- Rules of engagement
When snipers see trouble occuring, they will fire warning shots.
If three warning shots are ignored, they will shoot to kill.
If you have enabled "Freefire" they will always shoot to kill, without warning.
They will also shoot to kill if they see an escaping prisoner already outside the prison secure zone.

Secure Visitation Booths
You can now build secure visitation booths in your visitation room if you choose, instead of the usual tables.
A secure visitation booth has a glass panel that seperates the inmate from the family member, and they use a phone to talk.

- No contraband can be imported through a totally secure visitation room
- However the inmates family needs will not be satisfied nearly as well
- Nb. There must be a complete seperation of visitors and inmates for a room to be considered secure.

Female Names-in-the-game
If you are a Name in the Game customer, you can now update your bio and create a female prisoner if you wish.
Go to to do this.

Mod API updates
Scripted interface buttons now correctly pass click callbacks to the script that created them.
This allows scripts to add interactions to other objects in the game world.

- Dormitories of 40 or more squares will now get their own sector for the purposes of guard deployment and security zoning

New Translations

Bug Fixes
- Fixed: 2x3 Dormitories with a bunkbed will now correctly accept 2 prisoners

- 0010359: [AI & Behaviour] Doctors not treating during Virus Outbreak Event
- 0010445: [AI & Behaviour] Overdosed prisoners put in solitary instead of infirmary
- 0010477: [Gameplay] Intake System brings in wrong amounts of certain levels of prisoners
- 0010333: [Gameplay] Fill to capacity improvement
- 0010438: [Control & User Interface] CI window shows two % signs rather than one
- 0010352: [AI & Behaviour] Nasty change in the priority of the job assignment
- 0010461: [Gameplay] Contraband scan cooldown causing problems
- 0010459: [Control & User Interface] Suspicion percentage is displayed twice
- 0006604: [Control & User Interface] Double billing of reform programs
- 0010437: [AI & Behaviour] Multiple mailrooms do not work
- 0010480: [Gameplay] Intake not calculated properly
- 0008937: [Control & User Interface] Carpentry Apprenticeship
- 0010452: [Gameplay] Dormitories and adjacent rooms counts as one room
- 0010322: [Gameplay] Prisoners not being taken to Dormitories
- 0010298: [Gameplay] 2x3 dorms dont get extra prisoner space
- 0010472: [AI & Behaviour] Opened mail thrown throughout Holding Cell
- 0010453: [AI & Behaviour] Laundry taken from Dormitorys
- 0006883: [Mod System] Allow mods to augment the selected object popup
- 0010367: [AI & Behaviour] Prisoners get ReadBook status and freeze in place
- 0010417: [Control & User Interface] Policy screen in female prisons says "HIM"
- 0010471: [AI & Behaviour] Laundry Room uniforms in odd piles
- 0010095: [Performance] One specific prison that has updated across mutiple alphas is experincing 1sec freezing every 10sec
- 0010468: [AI & Behaviour] Shower Drainage Behaviour Issues
- 0010370: [Performance] Extreme low FPS with many idle prisoners.
- 0010348: [Other] Open mails spawning from my inmates

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69 comments Read more

December 18, 2015

Update 2 released

Prison Architect Update 2 has been released. Here is our video demonstrating the new features:

Women's Prisons
You can now choose the gender of your prisoners in the "New Prison" screen.
Female prisoners have different needs and behave differently than male prisoners.

- Children : Some female prisoners are mothers of young babies (less than two years old)
and are entitled to look after their baby during their stay in your prison.
This requires some new facilities - often called "MBUs (Mother and Baby Units)"

- Family Cell : A new type of cell for mothers with babies only.
Similar to a normal cell, but also requires a Cot and an integrated Shower.
Nb these cells will never be assigned to female prisoners without babies.

- Nursery : A shared room for all mothers to live in, typically isolated from the rest of the prison.
Mothers will spend much of their time in this room with their babies.
Requires cots and play mats for the babies.

- Mothers will eat their meals in this room, so it also requires a serving table, benches etc.
Your kitchens will be assigned to cook meals for the nurseries as if they were canteens.

Modding API (continued)
- Added world and world cell data variables to the scripting API.
This includes getting the size of the world, time index, etc.
Setting these variables, however, is currently unsupported.

- A new interface scripting API has been included as well.
Mods can now add, remove, and change buttons in the BiographyWindow (shown when you select a non-prisoner object in the world), with callbacks to it's script.

- Modding in escape mode has also been improved by allowing player interaction on scripted objects.
A callback to the script is given when the player is close to an object and interacts with it.

- General performance enhancements, especially to laundry system.

New Translations
Danish, Dutch, Hungarian, Thai

Bug Fixes
- Needs.txt not loaded in correct order when using mods
- 0010162: [Gameplay] Surrendering in escape mode causes insane amounts of rep points / surrendering doesn't work
- 0010309: [Control & User Interface] [Prison Architect] Crash when opening confidential informant window

92 comments Read more


“Prison Architect chills me to the bone. If played haphazardly it can be a wonderful farce rich with hilarious anecdotes, but played patiently and carefully it’s a horror game, a top-down voyage into the heart of darkness, an eternal raging fire I forever try but can only fail to douse.” RPS

"Prison Architect, to be sure, is an excellent game, worthy of comparison to its canonical inspirations, Dwarf Fortress and Bullfrog Productions’ 1990 construct-and-manage simulations. Few games can hope to match Prison Architect’s emergent storytelling, and fewer still can balance brutality and poignancy like it does." KILLSCREEN

About This Game

Build and Manage A Maximum Security Prison.

Build and manage a Maximum Security Prison. As the sun casts it’s early morning rays on a beautiful patch of countryside the clock starts ticking. You’ve got to crack on and build a holding cell to detain the job­ lot of maximum security prisoners that are trundling to your future prison on their yellow bus. As your workmen lay the last brick you don’t have a moment to let them rest as they need to get started on the first proper cell block so you can make room for the next prisoner intake. Once they’ve all got a place to lay their weary heads the fun can really start.

You’ll need a canteen, infirmary and a guard room, oh, and don’t forget to plumb in a toilet, or things will get messy, but what about a workout area? Or solitary confinement cells? Or an execution chamber?

Inspired by Dungeon Keeper, Dwarf Fortress and Theme Hospital and with over 1 million players having spent time inside, Prison Architect is the world’s best lock-­em-­up.

Story Mode

Prison Architect opens with the story of Edward, a man facing the electric chair for committing a crime of passion. This is followed by four additional chapters focusing on different characters and aspects of prison life. From Mafia Dons to power-crazed senators, Prison Architect has them all! To bring these characters to life, Introversion teamed up with award winning professional writer Chris Hastings, producing an enthralling tale of corruption and human misery set against the background of the modern prison industrial complex.

Escape Mode

Finished your supermax? Got guard dogs roving every corridor and prisoners eating out of your hand? Now you can live the horror by firing up escape mode and play as a prisoner hell-bent on getting the hell out of dodge.

Dig a tunnel, go for the armoury or start a riot and slip out in the chaos, it’s entirely up to you! Figure out how to escape from your own creation, or hit the random button and load one of the 12,000 prisons created by the steam co

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS:XP
    • Processor:Intel Core2 Duo 2.4Ghz or Higher / AMD 3Ghz or Higher
    • Memory:4 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Nvidia 8600 / Radeon equivalent (2009 era)
    • Hard Drive:300 MB HD space
    • Processor:2009 era Macbook Pro, Core2 Duo processor
    • Memory:4 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:300 MB HD space
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core2 Duo 2.4Ghz or Higher / AMD 3Ghz or Higher
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia 8600 / Radeon equivalent (2009 era)
    • Hard Drive: 300 MB HD space
Helpful customer reviews
3,165 of 3,448 people (92%) found this review helpful
3,675 people found this review funny
9.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 6, 2015
I received a low-threat prisoner, so I didn't pay much attention to him.
How wrong I was..

It was a normal, average day. The prisoners were eating their lunch.. then it happened.

He attacked from the shadows.
Prisoner "Leeroy jenkins" viciously started stabbing my guards with his plastic fork. It was 5 against one.
He'll never win, I thought.
He'll never escape, I thought.
He'll never survive, I thought.

I thought wrong.

He managed to start a full-scale riot, him and his army of offenders. They broke all 7 of my steel doors with their bare fists, escaping into the yard. They were almost out. I quickly hired God-knows-how-many dog handlers, in a valiant effort to hold them back until the authorities get here. I managed to keep the tsunami of prisoners back, put the prison on lockdown and finally the armed police got here.

I did it, I stopped the riot.

But then I saw that one particular cell was empty. Then I realized..


54/11 would plastic fork again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
651 of 678 people (96%) found this review helpful
544 people found this review funny
64.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2015
My first prison,a small relaxed prison with minimal security prisoners. I had 50 minimal security prisoners all living happily inside a single cell block,I had very little problems with these guys,i had them do the laundry for the prison,they were happy,they were nice and they didn't cause any trouble. I built a med security cell block holding 25 prisoners. I gave them a common room,large shower,a workshop and a job in the cleaning cupboard. Day after day in game passed,I grew more relaxed with the prison and less strict with the prisoners. Until one day when a tunnel emerged on the other side of my perimeter fence and 10 med security and 3 minimal security ran to freedom. They had constructed a large tunnel from 13 diffrent cells,each linking together. I hadn't had dogs patrolling in the cells because I didn't see a reason,they were all well behaved up to that point.
I grew angry,I punished the remaining prisoners by removing their free time and common rooms,i patrolled dogs around the cell blocks 24/7. A tunnelling escape would not occur again. That was when a riot occurred,the nice and friendly prisoners were no longer there,one had gotten hold of a lighter and set the prison ablaze,lighting half of the prison on fire and spreading to the administrator section. I sent guard after guard into the prison,but they would not go into the area of the riot,(I was losing the prison) I called riot guards and fire fighters to the area,the riot guards rushed in and were beat down by the med security prisoners,I hadn't called paramedics and the rest of my doctors were dead. The fire fighters tried to extinguish the fire but could not go into the zones,prisoners were rushing out of the burning building and attacking the fire fighters,killing them. They rushed into the administrative section and killed my warden and then ran into a hole in the fence that the fire burned open, All of them escaped. All my staff had died and my prison was worthless now. The game read game over. I sat with my head in my hands,I admitted defeat. I felt a burning of anger hotter than the flames from within my prison. I will rebuild,I will over come. I started a new prison and swore to myself that I will not let it happen again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
756 of 816 people (93%) found this review helpful
914 people found this review funny
57.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2015
>Keep prisoners locked up most of the day
>Most of them Max security
>♥♥♥♥♥♥ living conditions
>They all want freedom
>Place twenty armed guards on patrol at the entrance
>Remove doors to make the entrance a wide open exit
>During breakfast they all make a break for the door
>Armed guards mow down more than 60 prisoners before the rest of them surrender
>Next day all of them are happy
>None want freedom
>Communism strikes again!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
504 of 546 people (92%) found this review helpful
599 people found this review funny
47.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 11, 2015
my greatest prisoner ever

He comes one day with the other 4 prisoners i ordered, all max sec

I look at his stats and see hes a gang member with strong, quick, and very deadly attributes on him.

At this point I had just finished my new cell block and say hey he should go there since i have lots of guards there.

At this point hes just chilling normally when he breaks into sudden outburst killing a snitch with his bare hands in one hit

Guards on on him, they have tazers and guns and batons, he stands no chance. He punches one in the face killing the guard and he goes on rampage now with a baton killing everyone in sight. All the guards that fought died. He is murdering the prisoners.

He escapes to the death row room where i have built several protective walls. He breaks down 6 solitary doors to where he can get inside the 10/10 room with tv and such. He is in there and i send 3 armed guards to get him and put him down

he kills them and he tried to run out and gets tazed. I built a Fenced off area for people like him, The MAx Sec no way hes escaping no way he can even kill here.

He is put there for his stay of now 400 years from all that murder. After while all the people who have killed more than 3 guards are put here with him.

The Ape goes crazy and kills all 7 of his kind and is sent to solitary where he breaks out and kills 15 guards.

He is unstoppable i think as he barrgaes to the prisons end to escape when out of no where BAM a single shot is put into his as he goes down

The Ape is dead with now 1000+ years of murder


911/420 would have pshyco prisoners again
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295 of 306 people (96%) found this review helpful
187 people found this review funny
35.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 4, 2015
Early Access Review
I first played Prison Architect during one of its earliest alpha stages. The game was buggy, limited and filled with core problems but the base idea was still really interesting and I saw a lot of potential. Over the years the game has been polished little by little and I'd say, at this point, the game feels incredibly solid. It's refreshing to see indie developers who legitimately care about making a good game and aren't just focused on appealing to a huge audience and making money.

You play as a warden, build a prison from the ground up, and get regular paychecks to keep inmates locked away. You need to make sure the prisoners have basic needs met like food and entertainment, otherwise they'll get rowdy and start trouble (like murdering each other, or breaking things). The concept is very straight-forward. As someone who enjoys games like Sim City and Dwarf Fortress (as well as prison movies) this was very up my alley.

You can min-max the perfect prison, or you can just have fun with it and design a chaotic madhouse that's destined to fail. My favorite prison design, my own invention of course, is to have every single part of the prison connect to one center room. That center room is the "warden's office + shower" combo. Watch as the warden lives a constant life of fear while the 50+ maximum security prisoners cram their way into the showers meant for no more than 10 people at a time. The warden is sitting there with lamenated paperwork, crying, trying to get something done while all these ruthless thugs wash up. The previous warden is floating, face down in the shower water, right next to the new warden's desk. Yep. Good times.

Rating: A
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