The Escapists provides players the opportunity of experiencing a light-hearted insight into everyday prison life with the main objective being that of escaping!
User reviews: Very Positive (1,082 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 20, 2014

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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:

Why Early Access?

“Early Access is the perfect fit for The Escapists! We’ve got all the lovely ingredients in there to mould it into a wonderful game and with continued commitment and listening to welcomed community feedback we know we’ll produce something special.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“By their very nature Early Access games don’t have a set release date. The Escapists is already in a very playable state and plans are in place to add even more cool features. If you pressed me I’d say absolutely everything would be wrapped up by mid to end 2015.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

The Early Access version of The Escapists includes an exclusive prison map - Fhurst Peak Correctional. The Early Access version and final release will be very different indeed. There’ll be a ton more content, more escape routes, more crazy items, just more more and more! Oh, and a whole load more polish to boot.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“The current version is shaping up just nicely… We’re pretty much at a point where we need players and feedback. Early access will allow us to sit and listen making future builds even better!”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“Yes, we're offering The Escapists at a special Early Access price as a thank you to all the inmates who start planning their route to freedom early.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“Greatly… We’re entirely open to any and all ideas. As far as The Escapists is concerned – it’s all good. We’ll be after all manner of ideas regarding the game as a whole and look forward to hearing from players. We'd like to encourage the community to be vocal - ideas matter and will help shape The Escapists into the best game we know it can be.”
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Recommended By Curators

"A fun Early Access Prison Escape game, while still being developed and not done you can still find enough fun in it to make it worth the cost right now."

Recent updates View all (17)

November 18

3000 Cons Escape Prison in a Week, New Prison Built With Enhanced Escape Countermeasures

Prison authorities held a press conference today in reaction to calls for improved prison buildings after more than 3000 dangerous cons escaped confinement last week.

Reacting to the criticism, Prison Warden Chris D said to the press:

"Based on evidence taken from a variety of prisons over the past week, we've seen that cons are largely using a single method of escaping their jail time currently. With this information, we've constructed a new prison designed specifically to counter that method of escape."

Asked if he had a message for the escaped cons, Chris stated:

"They'll come back. They always do. It's a compulsion. But this time, they're going to have to be more innovative."

Meanwhile, in other news, mailing services worldwide have been forced to shutdown operations after an influx of large cakes destroyed mail sorting machines.


22 comments Read more

November 13


Congratulations on reaching 1000 escapees this week. We have enabled Cake Day. Everybody gets one. Download the latest update to find out more!

Next stop - 2000 escapees. Reach that and we'll unlock a new crafting item. Keep going, cons.


27 comments Read more
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“The Escapists models the life of a prisoner fantastically, and provides the tools to live out your prison escape fantasy in a way that I haven’t seen in a video game, ever. I highly recommend picking it up”
Indie Love

“As far as originality and fun factor go, The Escapists does a lot of things right, and things can only improve from hereon.”
Hardcore Gamer

“The pixel art and excellent soundtrack do a great job in setting the atmosphere, and the game has a great base concept that encourages exploration and improvisation.”
Strategy Informer

About This Game

The Escapists provides players the opportunity of experiencing a light-hearted insight into everyday prison life with the main objective being that of escaping! Players will have to keep in line and juggle their time sensibly as they form their personal plan of escape; working out potential routes to use as well as being incredibly smart and clever in using what seem like harmless items to craft and create various weaponry and escape tools which help aid the player in their ultimate goal of escaping.

Players are tasked with advancing their character's statistics through various means such as exercising regularly and ensuring to boost their intellect as well… Whilst remembering to attend roll call, hold down their job and keep the inmates on side if you're to be successful in trading with them and ultimately… Don't forget to escape!

  • 5 Fully operational prisons complete with routines to give you a flavour of how it *really* is inside!
  • 10 Separate job opportunities for you to sink your teeth into… If you have the knowledge to earn and hold down these employment paths of course!
  • 100 + Unique Items for you to seek out and perhaps even craft useful items with. (Team17 fully endorse the use of various weapons such as ‘shivs’, ‘nunchucks’ and ‘maces’ – within a fictional setting of course!).
  • Various Favour types for you to tackle offered up by inmates – You wouldn’t want to go upsetting them now, would you?
  • Highly opinionated and incredibly funny inmates and guards to keep you on your toes as well as providing entertainment!
  • Multiple escape routes for you to work out and achieve the title of ‘The Escapist’!
  • Multiple save slots so you can have more than one escape attempt on the go!
  • Steam Leaderboards – Once you have escaped see how you fared against other successfully escaped players!

  • Prison Editor – Create from scratch your very own confinement masterpiece and share it with the community!
  • Differently laid out and themed prisons for you to attempt escaping from – including the P.O.W camp!
  • New items for you to track down and new craft-able items to work out!
  • More routes for you to figure out as you plot your escape!
  • More job roles to be provided for you to take up!
  • More customisation elements for your player avatar!

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: Dual Core CPU 2.4 gHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4000, Nvidia GeForce 8000, ATI Radeon HD 4800 Series
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Sound Card: Windows Compatible Card
    • Additional Notes: In some instances, systems may require model specific drivers. If your system manufacturers no longer support hardware under this category, it may not be possible to run this title. Should this be the case, we are unable to assist you and recommend that you pursue support from your respective system manufacturer. This issue is most common in laptops and is prevalent with select products from most leading manufacturers.
Helpful customer reviews
74 of 79 people (94%) found this review helpful
29.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
Early Access Review
The Escapists throws you in the deep end of a 16-bit prison with one task. Escape. Easy huh? No. Not even close to easy. I have had so far 13 hours of gameplay and have not yet come even close to having the beggings of an escape plan.... And I'm on the very "easy" map. Though extreemly chalenging it is a extreemly fun and addicting game, you have to follow the daily prison routine. 1. Morning rollcall. 2. Breakfast. 3. Morning free time. 4. Work. 5. Workout. 6. Showers. 7. Lunch. 8. Evening free time. 9. Evening rollcall. 10. Lights out. While sticking to this routine you must find the time to gather recorses, Make friends, make tools, defend yourself from guards and other prisoners and put together and make your escape. You can do little jobs for your fellow inmates doing things from finding a pack of mints to shanking a guard. To escape you can climb through vents. Dig under your cell, Even mine through your cell wall with a plastic fork! All in all it is a great game. Though it is early acsess with only 3 or 4 maps trust me.... You will only have just completed the first by the time this game is completed. Best £7 I have ever spent. 10/10 game and I would honestly suggest to anyone. For all you PC gamers check it out on steam. Watch the videos and look at pics. If your up for it buy it! You will really enjoy the game.
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44 of 51 people (86%) found this review helpful
19.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 7
Early Access Review
The Escapists is a Light-hearted Prison life simulator. Of course now with 100% less gang ♥♥♥♥. Although sometimes it feels as if "John" in the shower block is getting a bit too close. Pros will be listed with a + and cons with a -

+ Regular updates. By far Team17 are one of the best development studios when it come to an Early Access Game. They update it very regularly and huge updates are never far away.

+ Deph. The in game deph is well. Deep. From making nunchucks to cutting down an electric fence unsucessfuly with a plastic knife it has well. All you'd expect from this and twice more!

+ The Graphics are actually rather nice. I personally love a good pixelated indie game, and well this is one!

- No achievement as of yet. However considering the constant updates I'm hoping this won't stay the case.

- Store page out-dated. As much as the game is updated regularly I'm not seeing any change with things such as screenshots, or videos. For a person to know it's updated regularly they have to delve deeper than one might wish

To conclude, this game is a must have... Now get it. You Must
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30 of 39 people (77%) found this review helpful
15.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
Early Access Review
it is an awesome game and i have found multiple ways to escape...but what i think would be cool is if it had a "cop mode"
where you were a cop trying to catch prisonors instead...just a thought but it would be cool
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16 of 19 people (84%) found this review helpful
15.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
Early Access Review
First off you DO NOT NEED A PROCCESSOR EQUIVLANT TO THE RECOMMENDED. I have a dual core cpu that runs at 1.65 Ghz no where near the recomended 2.4 Ghz and it runs flawless for me. This game could probably be ran on a a single core processor.

If you like building prisons in the amazing Prison Architecht you will love this game! It might look like a childish/retro 8-bit game, but think again. In this game you are forced to use your brain to the brink of it's processing power. Along with escaping you have to make it to roll call's 3 times a day, eat 3 times a day, exercise 1 time a day, shower 2 times a day, and work once a day if you have a job. If you do not manage your time wisely and are able to keep with the schedule you will not escape.

There are more ways to escape then I can count. You can dig, use the vents and roof, cut through fences, break through walls, steal keys and more. You usually have to use multiple different things out of those to be able to espcape. There are tons of items also that you can craft to help you escape. Along with these items you can only craft them if you have a high enough intellect and in order to get and keep it up you have to work out your mind each day.

You have to be super sneaky or the guards will catch you off guard and throw you into solitary. If you get thrown into solitary they will search all your stuff and take any contraband and you will have to start over which at times comletely screws you up and can be esier to start over.

This game is full of stuff to do and has hours upon hours of gameplay and it's only in early access! I just barely escaped for the first time! It took me 15 hours! This game is complex and amazingly hard which gives it that super fun experience and the amazing feeling of accomplishment when you finaly escape!

I reccomend this game to anyone and say it is 100% worth the price! To all of you reading this, BUY THIS GAME!!!
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15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
8.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
Early Access Review
The best Prison Escape game.
Kinda the opposite of Prison Architect
A lot of fun for just 10 dollars!
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
Early Access Review
Incredible game. Very light-hearted humor, but it is extremely fun. The necessity to follow your routine to maintain your cover is great, and really adds to the drama of trying to escape. Hiding your tools, using fake walls, looting other prisoners when they get beat up - it's dog eat dog, and I love it.

The art style was a good choice, in my opinion. It's pixel art, which works great for this setting. Even with the limited tile size, the game manages to look good, I've never wondered "What is that supposed to be?"

The music is very catchy, though the only drawback I have is the transition between 'periods' feels disjointed. Going from, say, free time to lunch, for example, it's very noticeable that it's loading a new background song, as the first one just ends, and the other begins.

The gameplay is good. The controls are very tight, and the UI is intuitive. The cursor does a good job of telling you what it's currently doing, in terms of combat, using items, or interaction.

Difficulty wise, it's got a bit of a learning curve. But once you kind of learn your routine, you can start picking your times to work on your escape. It's challenging to find the right tools, or enough tools, so you do tend to have to stockpile before you can really get to work.

Overall, I'd give this game a 8/10.
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15 of 25 people (60%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
Early Access Review
>Day 5
>Almost everyone is my friend
>Suddenly finds stuff that i didin't put into my desk
>All of them are contrabrand
>Tries to flushes them
>Toilet breaks down
>Suddenly Guard bursts in, as i rek him with my whip.
>A sniper 1 shots me.
>Wakes up at Infrantry
>Lost all stuff
>Quits game while saying "GG."

It's okay
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8 of 12 people (67%) found this review helpful
83.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
Early Access Review
I would deffinetely recommend this game. It is very worth the $10.00. Even as it does have a few bugs (that are constantly being fixed), I believe this game is worth the trouble of dealing with a new and incomplete game. It does have many craftable items and fun ways to escape. You can become friends (or enemies, muhahah) with other inmates who can help you in your escape. This game is extremely fun, please do not hesitate to get this addicting game! :)
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8 of 12 people (67%) found this review helpful
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review
Prison Simulator in old-style. In one word: awesome.
The game is playable in early access, even though has *some* game-breaking glitches (going through walls and getting stuck), but when you start playing it, you get pulled in.

Day after day, you do your daily jail routine, help your mates, steal, work, beat up people, collecting materials for your ultimate goal: The Escape. It isn't easy, and you've got little time, but when (and IF) you manage to escape, the feeling is awesome. The game allows you to finish it as fast as 1 in-game day, or play for a long time and become the master of your prison, going anywhere you want and doing anything you'd ever think about. The only things, that I feel, like the game lacks now, is multiplayer and steam workshop, for maps/characters.

TL;DR - Awesome game even in early access.
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11 of 18 people (61%) found this review helpful
10.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
Early Access Review
Loved it, just remember dirt on the ground is you digging a hole dirt in a desk is nothing.
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12 of 20 people (60%) found this review helpful
13.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 29
Early Access Review
Amazing even for Pre-Alpha. This is a great game in the making.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
19.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
Early Access Review
I love this game!! But I think it would be even better if you added multi - player mode. So you make a server then use an Ip
to join. Then you can play the Escapists togther with you friends. Other than that Amazing game!!!!!!! :)
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
5.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
Early Access Review
Most fun I've had playing an indie game in a long time. Amazing game, really enjoy it so far. Definitely worth $10, especially because it is early access. One of the few games where early access is good, because I already feel this game is worth buying. The additional features to come are just icing on the cake. Definitely worth the money, and it is on sale for less and you don't buy it you should probably just quit life.
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
7.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 10
Early Access Review
This is a very entertaining game. Would definitely recommend!

Update: The developers are adding new content and fixing problems regularly. The additions of new prisons to escape from as well as the tweaking of game mechanics are a welcome sight. I hope this continues so that the game will get even better with time.
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6 of 9 people (67%) found this review helpful
3.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 21
Early Access Review
It's not a bad game. is it worth what they charge? No, not really. I had fun with the game when I played it but the only issue is what most early access games have. Not enough content to justify the purchase. When I played the game I encontored hardly any bugs and the content which was in the game was polished which is very nice but I found myself feeling like there was a bit too much repitition involed and the game wasn't really changing in difficulty or bringing in any new ideas. To be honest this game feels like it may be better as a free flash game.

Note: It is never smart to buy a game off of a promise to add more in the future. Not only is it better the company is paid ONLY when the game is finished so they are forced to make it good to make a profit but "being along for the ride" in my opinion ruins the experience when the full version is released.

My truthfull opinion is that this is a good game which you will enjoy playing even if it's only for half hour but is not worth your money.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
8.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Early Access Review
a wonderful game but not with out flaws. the ai is rather stupid examples being if you do something illegal and escape the guards they wont attempt to track you after words they just forget about it. however the game is still great runing around scrounging for items crafting and planing the ultimate escape. there are many things i think they could ad in updates to make the game a little funner one thing being more dynamic story telling and having the other prisoners more interactive and be more diverse, iw ould also love love love love to see a sort of multiplayer were you and you friends coulf play together and escape, over all id give the game a strong 7/10
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
44.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
Early Access Review
Well, the 999th review. This game is pretty dank. It's a lot of fun, provides constant updates from the great developers, and is definitly worth the money. With every alpha game, there are bugs, but it is rare to find any game breaking bugs. Some bugs are quite funny: in the jungle compound, randomly, everyone gets KO'd and you can run around and loot them all :3 the only bug so far that has genuinily annoyed me is a bug with the leaderboards, in which it will not update your days taken to escape if you get a faster escape on that prison. I escaped in 8 days from the jungle compound, and then later on escaped with 4, but it only updated my score and not my days taken :( Anyway, I would recommend this game greatly!
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5 of 8 people (63%) found this review helpful
18.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
Early Access Review
Its a cool game, but everytime i try to see a crafting note i crash, if you can fix it, i need more recipes to get out from prison
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 16
Early Access Review
this game is so cool and will be even better in the future this game will blow your mind when you get it and if you follow it form the begging then you will love it form when you have first played it!!!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
8.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Early Access Review
Amazing, Very retro and fopr most gamers who like oldscool games, runs smooth on windows XP with more to come
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