Congratulations. The October labor lottery is complete. Your name was pulled. For immediate placement, report to the Ministry of Admission at Grestin Border Checkpoint. An apartment will be provided for you and your family in East Grestin. Expect a Class-8 dwelling.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (12,155 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 8, 2013

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Buy Papers, Please


Recommended By Curators

"I don't like this game, but I respect it. It made manning a passport station gripping and challenging, though it's certainly a grim tale."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (1)

March 19

Papers, Please - Gamers Edition

Welcome to your new position at Grestin Border Checkpoint. This is your inspector's kit. Study the rulebook, inspect the sample documents and use the stamps liberally. Wear the pin to signify your new status and hang the poster proudly.

In the box:
  • Papers, Please Steam key
  • Labor Lottery keyring
  • Arstotzkan passport & paperwork set
  • Set of Arstotzkan stamps
  • Glory to Arstotzka poster
  • Department of Labor suitcase
  • Approved stamp, Denied stamp & Ink pad
  • Inspector’s pin badge
  • Arstotzkan Immigration Rule Book

This is a one-off compilation that will never be offered again, so grab one while you can.

Only fabbed if funded! Please take a look and spread the word. Thank you!

83 comments Read more


“Buy, study, and share this game as an example of video games as true art.”
BUY – Ars Technica

“ is absorbing, brilliantly written and causes you to question your every instinct and reaction - both in the game and in real life.”
9/10 – Eurogamer

“Papers Please is a fantastic idea, beautifully executed.”
8.7/10 – IGN

About This Game

The October labor lottery is complete. Your name was pulled.
For immediate placement, report to the Ministry of Admission at Grestin Border Checkpoint.
An apartment will be provided for you and your family in East Grestin. Expect a Class-8 dwelling.
Glory to Arstotzka

The communist state of Arstotzka has just ended a 6-year war with neighboring Kolechia and reclaimed its rightful half of the border town, Grestin.

Your job as immigration inspector is to control the flow of people entering the Arstotzkan side of Grestin from Kolechia. Among the throngs of immigrants and visitors looking for work are hidden smugglers, spies, and terrorists.

Using only the documents provided by travelers and the Ministry of Admission's primitive inspect, search, and fingerprint systems you must decide who can enter Arstotzka and who will be turned away or arrested.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP or later
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz Core2Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 1.4 or better
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum 1280x720 screen resolution
    • OS: OSX Mountain Lion (10.8)
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz Core2Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 1.4 or better
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum 1280x720 screen resolution
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz Core2Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum 1280x720 screen resolution
Helpful customer reviews
408 of 421 people (97%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
30.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 24
East Grestin, 1982

Here comes that weird guy again. The one in the red sweater and with the crooked smile always plastered on his face. It's the third time already, this month.
I look at him through the glass as he waves at me in an oddly familiar way that makes me feel a little bit awkward.
«Old friend, hello! I am back again! This time everything set!». His voice is loud and cheerful, and I just can't help but wonder what the heck is wrong with him. There's nothing to be so happy about in this rotten place, you old geezer.
«Papers, please» I simply say, ignoring his greetings.
He grins while handing me his brand new passport. I chuckle. Definitely better than the last one, at least this one is not pre-approved.
«So this time you're from Obristan, I see, Mr... Jorji Costava? Is this even your real name?».
His grin grows even wider and he starts laughing again.
«You a funny guy. I didn't like Cobrastan that much anymore. Obristan sure is a better country». He speaks with a tick foreign accent that makes me wonder where he is really from.
«Cobrastan isn't even a real country, in the first place» I point out matter-of-factly. «Where's your entry ticket?».
His smile fades a little.
«Arstotzka so great, we don't need an entry ticket!».
«This is the same thing you said last time about passports. I'm sorry, an entry ticket is required». I hand his passport back.
«Wow, you run very strict border here». He puts his paper back in the pocket of his trousers, shrugging. «That is good. Do job right. I look for entry thing and come back».
Before leaving the booth, he stares intensely at me.
«You a good guy, but I have business in Arstotzka. I see you soon». He waves me goodbye and then disappears in the crowd, with that big careless smile on his face.


I keep staring at the ceiling of my bedroom. Afterall, it seems I can't really sleep at all tonight.
I can hear my wife coughing weakly beside me. The doctor said it's just a cold, but she's getting worse day after day. I'm slightly worried.
Our son is sleeping in the next room, the only one lit by the sun in the morning. He is turning 7 next week. I'd really want to buy him a special present for his birthday.
We are currently living in a small apartment provided by the Ministry of Admission, here in East Grestin. The rooms are small and the heather doesn't work half the time. On top of that, our neighbours are awfully nosy. Living here is not that great, but there's really nothing I can do about it.


A week has passed since Jorji Costava last showed up. Maybe he is having a hard time finding a fake entry permit. Maybe he just gave up. Quite unlikely.
The siren's ringing, another day of work is starting.
A tall figure silently enters the booth. He's wearing a green hood and his face is hidden behind a grey mask. I'm about to call the security, but he gently slides a paper note under the window and stares at me.
«There's no much time, be quick please». His voice sounds young- he's probably younger than me- and unusually relaxed.
My hands are shaking and I don't even know why.
There's an odd symbol drawn on top of the card, a star-shaped one. I slowly open the note and start reading. I can feel the masked guy's staring gaze on me.





I'm in a cold sweat.
I look up at the masked guy, I'm at a loss for words.
«Our agents are ready», he helds out his hand, eyeing the card. «Starting tomorrow. Let them pass».

In Papers, Please you play as an immigration inspector working for the Ministry of Admission of Arstotzka in East Grestin. Your job is to check on people trying to enter Arstotzka and decide who can pass through the border and who has to be denied or even arrested.
Most of the time, your decisions will lead to a different ending (not always a good one!).
Choose wisely, the destiny of Arstotzka, your family and many other people is in your hands.

-Well written dystopian setting
-20 different endings
-Lovely retro graphics
-Jorji Costava
-Great plot and sub-plots
-Shooting terrorists from your inspection booth since 1982
-Did I already mention Jorji Costava?

-Maybe old school graphics are not everyone's cup of tea (I personally love it though)
-Stamping visas and check out papers will probably sound boring to someone
-There's no "Escape to Obristan with your newfound best friend Jorji" ending

Papers, Please is hands-down one of my favorite games. Be sure to give it a try, you definitely won't regret it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
128 of 134 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
28.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 22
Woman: What is this Drawing on the Wall?
Woman: My Dog Can Do Better
Inspector: It is from my Son
Woman: Oh
Woman: Maybe He Should Try Sports
Inspector: You Have made a mistake coming here
Woman: Please Let Me through.
*Gets Detained*
Woman: What are you doing?
Woman: Is this Because i make fun of drawing?
Woman: I Take it Back!
Woman: Picture Should Be in Museum!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
73 of 77 people (95%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
23.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 10
Papers, Please is a puzzle, simulation game focused on the emotional task of working as an immigration officers, deciding who you let in and who you deny entry of. The game is based in a fictional country called Arstotzka.

The game play focuses around the work life of an immigration inspect at a boarder checkpoint. Players will inspect documents and using a selection of different tools to work out whether the papers meet all of the criteria to warrant access to crossing the boarder. When you do find a problem with the paper work presented to you, there is also the option to interrogate the applicant, which may result in the need for further information such as a full body scan or finger printers. Once you have worked out all of the paper work and questions being asked, you have to make a choice whether to Accept or deny entry, and then call the next person in line. Only then are you told any mistakes that you have made in the form of a warning slip.

On top of wading your way through all the paper work, you also have a time limit for the day in which you have to process as many applicants as possible. At the end of each working shift, you will earn money based on how many people have been processed, bribes collected, as well as deductions for any penalties you accrued. Then you must decided how to spend this money with your families budget, spending it on rent, food, heat and other necessities such as medicine or upgrades to your working environment.

Paper, Please has a very prominent sound track, which starts as a slow marching rhythm made by bass to represent flow of entrants in the line of applicants and how tired and depressed they are. Although the technical side of the music is basic, it is probably one of the most memorable soundtracks you will hear from a game.

The game is only as difficult as you make it; if you pay attention to every little detail, you shouldn't fail. Only if you missing key bits of information or just not paying attention in general will your warnings pile up, and you will start to get less and less money, which results in your bills not being paid, which then results in having to start all over.

The game took me a little over twenty hours to complete one run, there is just a huge amount of content to go through, although some of the applicants are scripted such as terrorists or smugglers, along with plot characters, a lot of the others are randomly generated which means no run should ever be the same.

Technically, I had no issues what so ever. It's a very technically simple game which can be played in Windows mode without problems either.

Papers, Please will certainly not be for everybody, but if you want to try something different from the regular shooting and spell casting games we are drowning in today, pick this up. I got over twenty hours of game play out of this awesome £6,99 title.

Glory to Arstotzka!

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29 of 30 people (97%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
15.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 14
Congratulations! You've won the lottery and earned the 'right' to become a nameless, faceless little bureaucrat who is responsible from the border station of a fictional socialist country in 1980s, alongside countless entrants and their tons of paperwork!

Before describing any kind of gameplay, I'd like to warn you: Papers, Please is a highly political satire that parodies Stalin's Russia. The humour of the game is comedy noir: cold, immediate and careless with an appropriate dose of existentialism, presenting some genuine examples of your good old-fashioned political dystopia. If you like your sarcasm served cold, and patient enough to go through a simulation of routine banality to observe a comment on the dynamics of government, keep reading. The game manages to set the mood for it perfectly.

Papers, Please doesn't even closely resemble any game that I've played so far. It is a basic simulation that lets you try and decide whomever is eligible to enter the country, and whomever is not. And guess what? The rules change daily, always getting more and more complicated until the point you cannot possibly 'not' hate the government. Endless political conflicts between the government, the neighboring countries and terrorist groups that are ever present doesn't make things easier or even safer. You live, work and try to earn enough to feed your family, but life is impossible for the honest as always. So things get interesting both financialy and politicaly for our bureaucrat as the scenario progresses.

The game has 20 or so ending, which presents huge replayability and contains some hidden achievements to hunt for. As a plus, the game takes each save file for each day separetely, so it is real easy to load a specific day and replay for the achievement or ending needed.

As the last call: I really liked the game, and probably gonna try to achievement hunt for a while. I advice the game for the curious, the bitter and the know-it-all. The graphic lovers won't find anything satisfactory though.
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32 of 36 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 8
Great game! Runnable on all pretty much all pc's. Great fun but diffacult if needed. The communist theme and fantasy world this game introduced was fantastic! The team did great work with this one and i highly recommend buying it. Its also pretty funny at times :)

~Glory to Arstotzka
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