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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

“Prison Architect is currently in Alpha, which means we haven't finished it yet - it's full of bugs and glitches and you're not going to get a polished experience if you buy it at the moment. What you will get is early access to a bullfrog-style Prison Management Sim that over 250,000 gamers have already thought is worth a look at.



When you buy early access we also guarantee to give you a free copy of the full game once we've finished and you'll also get monthly updates which include new features and bug fixes. But that's not all, you can also pre-order a copy of the PA art book and Soundtrack (like the game, these aren't ready yet, but you'll be the first to get access when they are launched), or buy a pack that includes the whole Introversion back catalogue (we've made some seriously awesome games). Finally, you can immortalise yourself into the game, by naming a prisoner and writing his bio. Everyone that plays PA will see your bio and know that YOU helped to make Prison Architect a reality.



But that's not all, we also want to get your feedback and comments on the game and want you to help us to direct the development process. Tell us what you like and what you don't like and what you want us to work on. We've got a great community of Prison Architect early adopters and we'd love for you to join in - just head over to http://www.introversion.co.uk/prisonarchitect/developer/register.html once you've bought the alpha.”
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Buy Prison Architect Standard

Includes immediate access to the alpha and finished version when ready.

Buy Prison Architect Aficionado

Includes the Standard Edition, PLUS access to the Soundtrack and Artbook when they're finished.

Buy Prison Architect Introversioner

Includes the Standard & Aficionado Editions, PLUS Uplink, Darwinia, DEFCON and Multiwinia. Already own one of those titles? Give the Extra Copy to a friend!

Buy Prison Architect Name in Game

Includes the Standard, Aficionado, and Introversioner, PLUS the ability to name a prisoner and write his bio.

Buy Prison Architect Name in Game Upgrade DLC

Upgrade from any other version to gain the ability to name a prisoner and write his bio. Includes the Aficionado, and Introversioner content.

 

Recommended By Curators

"A great building game in which you construct a prison, early access but the developers can be trusted and the game is fun as it is."

Recent updates View all (27)

April 30

Alpha 32 released

A couple of months ago we announced that we are going to finish Prison Architect in 2015. We've been working hard to fulfil that promise and as a result of April's bug bash we're happy to pin that down further and confirm that Prison Architect will be released in quarter four (Oct / Nov / Dec) 2015!

The team have smashed the previous bug fix record and submitted over 130 fixes and whilst that means that we don't have a content update for you this month, we hope you appreciate the stability, speed and simulation quality of the new build. Normal service will resume next month and please continue to log any issues that you may discover.

In other news we are trying to build our facebook engagement so if you have a moment, please head over and like our page.

Here is our video demonstrating the new features:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYUJo-hyISw

Death Row continued:
- A new item in the TODO list shows you the current status of your Death Row prisoners (chance of clemency)
- New game over event : Criminal Miscarriage of Justice. Occurs if you execute an inmate who is later exonerated of the crime (Nb. Will not happen if you have reduced his chance of clemency below the legal threshold)

- The lawyer can now provide a last line of legal defense.
If you are on warning (Eg too many deaths in one day), and you fear you will not be able to meet the requirements to avoid being fired, you can use your Lawyer to avert the Game Over event.
Nb. Can only be used once.


= BUG FIXES

The full list of bug fixes can be found here:
http://forums.introversion.co.uk/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=52923&p=588619

32 comments Read more

March 27

Alpha 31 released

Alpha 31 has been released! Here is our video demonstrating the new features:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S7im85MDoxA


New staff : The Lawyer
Unlocked in the usual way through Bureaucracy, and requires his own office.
The lawyer grants access to a variety of legal loopholes and new facilities for your prison.

- Minimum cell size removal
Prison Cells can be built to any size - they are no longer to obey the legal minimum
of 3x2 metres. Note they must still contain a bed and a toilet.

- Indeterminate sentences
Prisoners can now be assigned lockup or solitary confinement that remains in place
until you say otherwise. This is a massive breach of their human rights, but the Lawyer
will allow you to skirt the issue and do it anyway.

- Death Row
Opens up the opportunity and responsibility of executing prisoners sentenced to death.


Death row
To receive Death Row prisoners, you must:
- Unlock Death Row through the lawyer
- Build an execution facility - a room with an Electric chair, and chairs for the witnesses
- Build cells nearby and flag then as "Death Row Only" in the security deployment screen

Death Row prisoners will then begin show in your Intake screen - although they are quite rare.
They must stay in a Death Row designated cell, and they do not follow the regime.

- They are effectively locked down 24 hours a day, with two exceptions:
1. They can receive family visitors in Visitation
2. They can attend their Appeals process to try to have their sentences commuted.

- New program : Death row appeals process
Every Death Row prisoner has a chance to try to clear his name, or have his sentence commuted.
He will attend the appeals process, and each time has a chance to be released, or downgraded to max-sec.

- All Death Row prisoners have an estimated chance of clemency, visible in their Rap Sheet.
This represents your staff's best estimate at his chances at clemency.
Each time he fails the appeals process, his estimated chance of clemency is HALVED.
The more appeals you allow for a prisoner, the more certain you can be of his guilt.


Executions
Once you are satisfied a Prisoner has had sufficient chance to appeal, you may schedule an Execution.
This can be done from his Rap Sheet, and once begun it will take over your view until over.

A process must be followed for each execution:
- Prison lockdown : All prisoners return to their cells
- The chair is electrically tested, putting your prison under high electrical load.
In addition, the prisoner must be able to walk to the facility.
- Witnesses are escorted to the facility and will sit in seats provided, if available
- The Warden, the Chief, and the prisoners chosen Spiritual Leader will gather in the condemned man's Cell
- The prisoner will be escorted to the execution room, along with the Warden/Chief/Priest
- Execution
- The staff and witnesses are dismissed and may leave

Once completed, you will be given a report on the success or failure of your execution.
If justice was done, you will receive a $10,000 bonus for your work.

- WARNING: If you push ahead with an execution before sufficient appeals have occurred,
you will be held personally responsible if evidence comes to light which later exonerates the prisoner.
You will be fined $50,000 instantly.
The intake queue of Death Row prisoners will immediately empty.
In addition, any Death Row inmates within your facility will be immediately transfered away by bus.
If this happens 3 times, you will be fired.

NOTE: The state sanctioned "safe level" for chance of clemency is 5%.
In other words, if you wait until a prisoners clemency chance is below 5%, you will not be held liable
for any miscariages of justice that may later come to light.
Your Lawyer can raise this threshold to 10% if you instruct him to do so.


New room : Reception
An optional room, that gives Prisoners a dedicated arrival point (replacing Deliveries)
Once built, all new prisoner arrivals will go through this room.

- Prisoners must be escorted into the Reception room, then strip-searched. Any contraband will be found.
- They are then given fresh uniforms.
- Guards then escort them (still shackled) to their destination - either a cell or a holding cell.
- The process requires lots of available guards, but is much more secure than arrivals through Deliveries.

NOTE: The Laundry Logistics system will assign one of your laundries to handle the clean uniform requirements.


- Using the Bangup emergency option will no longer rapidly raise the 'temperature' of your prison.
However, having lots of prisoners shackled (in their cells or in solitary) will contribute to the 'temperature'.


Bug Fixes
- Fixed: The 'criminal negligence' failure case had become broken in alpha 30 - your avatar was not spawned correctly
- 0007974: [AI & Behaviour] Crash loading game with PhoneBooth redefined to be non-wired by a mod
- 0007967: [AI & Behaviour] Crash with prisoners unloading from prisoner bus
- 0007932: [AI & Behaviour] Guards not taking prisoners to (available) solitary cells


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85 comments Read more
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Reviews

“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

Steam Workshop

About This Game

Build and Manage A Maximum Security Prison.

Prison Architect is the world's latest Prison Management Sim. Starting with an empty plot of land you must construct a holding cell with basic water and electricity to house your first batch of prisoners, to buy you enough time to create a proper cell block. You'll need to hire some guards, get some showers built and unless the kitchen is up and running with chefs working away you're going to end up with a riot on your hands. From there you take your prison in which-ever direction you like. A monsterous super-max or comfortable center for rehabilitation, the choice is up to you.


Prison Architect is currently in Alpha which means that the game is playable, but still in development. Not all features are implemented yet and there are many bugs that may affect gameplay. We are currently releasing monthly updated builds which include new features and bug fixes. By buying the alpha you will automatically be gifted a free copy of the full game when it's finished.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • 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:100 MB HD space
    Minimum:
    • Processor:2009 era Macbook Pro, Core2 Duo processor
    • Memory:4 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:100 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: 100 MB HD space
Helpful customer reviews
2,179 of 2,522 people (86%) found this review helpful
30 people found this review funny
66.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 20, 2014
Early Access Review
I raided a Prisoner's cell and found thirty spoons, he wasn't even tunneling, just had a collection going.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
924 of 1,066 people (87%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
22.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 5, 2014
Early Access Review
16 hours sank in three days. Not much for some, but when you have multiple assignments due, it's a pretty big deal.

That's how good this game is. Better than my Masters Degree.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
973 of 1,153 people (84%) found this review helpful
14 people found this review funny
22.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2014
Early Access Review
I found a spoon in an inmates cell and I called the swat team in and they killed half the prison.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
140 of 151 people (93%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
17.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 8, 2014
Early Access Review
I absolutely love sandbox building games that aren't a cosmetic tea party. This game has done nothing but amuse me as I've tried and failed to manage a prison properly probably a half dozen times now, but that's really the beauty of it. I could probably read a guide and get a lot of "I win" information, but games like these are just big ant farms slash chemisty sets where I like to be forced to evaluate my choices and try to balance a ton of factors into the plan. The best thing about this game is that everything is staged and nothing is instant. Your plan has to work from A to B and it's up to decide what you build or research next, but once you do you've sacrificed something and opened a hole somewhere. Eventually you have moments of stability where things seem to be going ok, but another wrench is thrown and the whole thing can spiral into chaos quickly.

If you glanced at this and thought it would be a cheap imitation of something that should be labeled "Tycoon" and thrown in a bargin bin, then you are sorely mistaken. This is an OCD stress test of micromanagement, choice making and logistics. It feels like everything matters and sometimes it feels like everything you do is 5 steps behind the thing you should have already been doing 10 steps ago. Of course you can pace the game at your choices and even play in full "free" mode where you have lots of money, but even still...you aren't inviting kittens into your Barbie Dream House that you are filling up full of cheap furniture. You are inviting murderers and thieves into a house full of other murderers and thieves and it's up to get a TON of variables to play nice with each other. They are not stupid. They will revolt. They will try to escape. They will steal from the kitchen and try to stab people, etc etc.

The scope to which this game has expanded is more than impressive and for a game that started off mentioning Dwarf Fortress as it's inspiration, it's created something even more unique that casts it's own shadow. Of course there have been other prison games, but this one has nailed so many concepts perfectly and given the track record for upgrades and patches, there will be more. I have found some bugs and the foundation system took me a while to really get my head around. I have to say the "Planning Mode" is something that every single builder type game needs to embrace right the eff now as well.

This is a solid recommendation from me even in Early Access state. If you don't like to support that kind of thing, completely understandable. The devs are active and the game has had over 20 patches full of content and fixes just since I've bought it. I actually turned it on just to see how it was progressing and I'm sucked into it and hopeless trying to figure out how last more than 30 minutes without someone dying. (I know I could read a guide or something but who the heck plays games like that?)
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
558 of 725 people (77%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
10.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 9, 2014
Early Access Review
Like the Sims but you HAVE to lock the people in the house
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
93 of 98 people (95%) found this review helpful
13 people found this review funny
63.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 4
Early Access Review
-Built a beautiful prison
-Received a freakin legendary prisonner
-Built a mini prison only for him
-Hired 3 armed guards, 3 guards, and 3 dog handlers to watch over him day and night
-He stole a lighter which was brought to him by someone who threw it over the perimeter wall 3KM far from his cell
-Burnt his cell down
-Stole a shotgun and killed each of my guards
-Paused the game and made 10 normal guards spawn in front of him
-He shot his way through them
-Received 15 times 24H of lockdown for his crimes when I finally managed to handcuff him
-Starved to death because I had no way to remove his sentence

10/10 The developpers made Chuck Norris starve
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
645 of 875 people (74%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
26.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 3, 2014
Early Access Review
You get to build your future home. - 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
108 of 123 people (88%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
16.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 23, 2014
Early Access Review
Imagine Sims, if you had to house dozens at first, or eventually hundreds of people in only one house.
Then, having lots of babysitters to watch everybody... And if you didn't fullfill all their needs, they would start acting up, wrecking your house and attacking eachother and the babysitters.
That is basically Prison Architect. :D
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
75 of 83 people (90%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 20, 2014
Early Access Review
It's like SimCity, but your Sims stab each other.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
89 of 104 people (86%) found this review helpful
132.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 29, 2014
Early Access Review
TL:DR? See Conclusion

NOTE:
As an Early Access Review, this will be subjected to change and editing as newer updates are released.

INTRODUCTION:
Prison Architect is a 2D top down prison building and management simulation game made by Introversion Software being financed by crowd-funding, pre-orders and Steam Early Access. Since it's initial release on 2012, the game has undergone several major updates (an average of 4 weeks per update) and has raised nearly $10 Million in revenue.

The player takes on the role of a Prison owner, architect and governor who's objective is to create a prison from an expandable open world map. The player may choose the purpose of their prison either focused on reforming criminals, severe draconian punishment, or a mix of the two. Build the prison from scratch, hire guards and officers, staff and maintenance crew to keep it functioning, dog patrols to keep watch and many more. There is no end to the game, the player just needs to keep building and keep expanding until they decide to sell their prison and build a new one, or, have it burned to the ground because of a riot and find yourself in prison (seriously, your character can go to jail if you're grossly negligent in its management, ironically, in the same prison you built).

PROS:
+ Great 2D Art Style
+ Good Tutorial: Comprehensive and easy to understand
+ Vast variety of Characters (Staff, Officers, Prisoners, Guards etc)
+ Expanding World Map: (Buy the adjacent lot to expand)
+ Detailed Micromanagement System (Prisoner Regime, Guard/Dog Patrols, lock downs etc.)
+ Detailed Construction System (Buildings, water systems, electrical wiring, computer controls etc.)
+ Easy to install and uninstall MODS (Steam Workshop)
+ Monthly major updates (YouTube Channel for Introversion Software provided at the comment section below)
+ Old Computer friendly
+ High Replayability

CONS:
- Early Access (I will only remove this after full release)
- Severe Performance Drop when the prison becomes very large (in size, prisoner and staff)
- Lacking in Soundtracks
- Occasional path-finding problems
- No main menu (minor annoyance and not a deal breaker)
- No Steam Cloud Support
- Prisoners are released Naked sometimes

CONCLUSION:
GREAT EARLY ACCESS GAME. Prison Architect is what all Early Access games should try to be; it has constant updates, great art style, solid core gameplay, stable & playable and most importantly, easy on the pocket even at full price.

MUST TRY, whether the game is at full price or sale, it's worth every penny and I fully RECOMMEND it specially if your a City Building / Simulation fan. To be honest, the game is technically finished in my opinion (just need a bit more bug fixing and performance improvements) and has more features than some of the other fully released games I've seen.

---------------------------------------------------------
Like my Reviews? Follow my Curator's Page:

http://store.steampowered.com/curator/6861651-Miyumi%27s-Review-Corner/
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
144 of 186 people (77%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
15.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2014
Early Access Review
Basically the best game this year
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
51 of 52 people (98%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
14.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 14
Early Access Review
Built a prison, had prisoner named Maxwell. Maxwell was in prison for stealing a guitar, Maxwell got defensive when others ridiculed him. I am the warden of this prison, time to save maxwell. Relocate him near our armory, let him roam around freely for a few days to collect items. Send him back to his old cell, metal detectors are set off, call guards off tell them this is neccesary. Send Maxwell and everyone who ridiculed him to the shower, locked the doors. Maxwell was the only one to come out.

10/10 Would play again
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
57 of 63 people (90%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
15.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 30, 2014
Early Access Review
61 year old convict, Arnold McFluffybottom, punched the toilet in his cell, whereupon he was immediately jumped by 7 guards and beaten unconscious.

10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
112 of 150 people (75%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2014
Early Access Review
The game you can deploy SWATs after finding a spoon in a prisoners cell.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
40 of 40 people (100%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
65.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 4
Early Access Review
One day you're trying to figure out why you want to keep prisoners from collecting spoons and the next day the army is trying to forcibly retake your blood soaked prison from prisoners hiding in your armory. And as you watch your dying employees beg for a god or devil to save this from the horror you created, as you watch your life's work crumble before the sounds of gunfire and the screams of these lost souls. Maybe you'll realise, if all too late, you should have taken those spoons.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
44 of 47 people (94%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
19.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 1
Early Access Review
One of my prisoners Tried to Escape through The Water Pipes, Destroyed the ends of the pipes and trapped Him

He died In those Pipes,I Think he learned his Leason

9.5/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
44 of 53 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
33.7 hrs on record
Posted: December 19, 2014
Early Access Review
Prison Architect is a mind-broadening experience, a game about building a prison, planning out cell blocks, balancing budgets, arranging schedules, maintaining peace, quelling unrest and thwarting escape attempts. It’s a not finished gaol-management sim that, despite still being under development, is currently available to purchase and play on Steam...and you should.Here’s how Prison Architect plays: you’re given a plot of land and a metric wodge of cash with which to build a prison. About a dozen men found guilty by a jury of their peers turn up once a day expecting the bare minimum of care afforded to them by the state. You can click on them to see their criminal records, but you have no direct control over their movements. Instead you plot out the foundations of buildings, which a team of workmen then construct, before designating functions to the rooms you’ve made. Hastily cobbled together holding cells will accommodate a few prisoners while you construct dozens of smaller individual cells. Showers must be hooked up to plumbing, cooks must be hired to work in kitchens, cafeterias must feed prisoners, guards must open and close locked doors in order to escort inmates, staff and visiting families to and from their destinations.A 24 hour clock ticks along, turning the day to night, with your prisoners adhering to a configurable schedule of sleeping, eating, yard time, work time and free time. The idea is to construct things in such as a way as to keep the largest number of inmates moving efficiently between their cells, showers, laundry rooms, workshops, yards and back to bed, all while keeping the system secure enough to detect smuggled contraband and deter escapees.Accountants and psychologists and security chiefs can all be hired and supplied with furnished offices to unlock new menu screens and information about your prison population. You can take on government grants, which offer you a cash advance in exchange for meeting certain criteria.Besides these grants, Prison Architect is a sandbox balancing act in which happy prisoners require costly amenities and unhappy prisoners will eventually riot, using contraband weapons such as screwdrivers stolen from workshops to stab up their fellow incarcerated. It’s a virtual delinquency ant farm in which you tread the line between your prisoners’ happiness and the prison’s efficiency and safety.et up metal detectors and order extensive searches of every cell and tensions will rise, but neglect to de-shiv your inmates in favour of a feel-good prison atmosphere and those happy prisoners will end up all stabbed to bits in a bodybag.Introversion are not shy about advertising Prison Architect’s in-progress state and their promise to you is that you are directly funding the ongoing development of the game with your purchase, in exchange for monthly updates and, eventually, a copy of the finished game.Prison Architect is a good game in its current state and pretty much the only early access game that hasn't disappointed so far.
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26 of 26 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
10.9 hrs on record
Posted: December 1, 2014
Early Access Review
Build prison walls?: CHECK
Build cells, canteens/kitchens, and the warden's office?: CHECK
Is the power ON and do we have guards?: CHECK
Inmates arriving at prison. Do they enter the prison?: ...................no.....
Did they ran away?: No. They just hung around the prison's entrance....

...oh well, good enough! Thumbs up!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
28 of 30 people (93%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
62.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 18
Early Access Review
How do you fit a drill in your anal cavity?
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
29 of 32 people (91%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
84.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 7, 2014
Early Access Review
Build a prison. Get prisoners. Forget to get guards. Get guards only for them to die. Have fun watching them die. Go to jail.
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