The popular prison building management sim, Prison Architect, is finally due for release this October 6th. Thats next week people.
So far the game has been in development and in Early Access on Steam for 3 years. Thats ridiculous right? But it worked perfectly for the game and gamers alike. The indie dev studio and all those wanting to play a great indie title benefited from this drawn out dev period. Normally this sort of slow release would annoy gamers, however, this game is certainly the exception to the rule. Prison Architect currently has an approval rating of 94%.
Indie devs and indeed indie websites, like GD, need support from the community at all stages of development. That support often takes the form of strong user feedback and patience, while a devoted dev team work their socks off to bring their audience exactly what they want.
Introversion kept their graphics pretty straight forward, not wasting time on state of the art looks. Instead they focused on adding layer upon layer of gameplay year after year. It has sold millions of copies already, so doing what the people buying their game wanted is obviously the way to go. And thats a great thing to hear for any development studio or gamer.
The Prison Architect full launch will introduce a new game mode "Escape", which turns the tables. Instead of acting as the warden doing your very best to avoid spoon-theft related riots, Shawshank-esque escapes or legendary prisoners killing half your staff with a murder weapon they pulled out of a bodily orifice it shouldn't fit in, you take the place of one of the prisoners. Getting the same abilities prisoners otherwise have. So make your life in prison as easy as you want, becoming the leader of a gang, smuggling contraband or just shamelessly, as the title commands, escape the prison.
Ironically, Introversion set about trying to create a game around 5 years ago, Subversion, that focused on bank security, bank heists all in procedurally generated cities. They canned it because the complexity of a procedurally generated escape simulation was too tough to develop and turn into a fun game. And now, years later, almost as a well earned smug sign off, they release the Prison Architect with the mode "Escape".
To top it off the game will also feature 4 new story chapters to play through, in various settings. Not only should these provide a lot of instant fun, they can also serve as tutorials to the main sandbox mode of the game as it takes you through all the various options prisoners have to make your life as a warden as miserable as possible.