Play an immigration officer in Papers, Please

Papers, please is the latest from Lucas Pope, creator of unsettling developing world newspaper sim The Republica Times. A "dystopian document thriller", Papers simulates the pleasure of immigration inspection in a grim Soviet-style republic: "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."


  1. It’s all grinding despair. I gave up after just the 3rd day. Can’t wait to play again. ‘Play’.

  2. This is actually pretty fun.  My only issue with this game is that it rewards you for being productive, in that you get paid based on the number of immigrants you process each day.

    It would be more realistic if you got paid the same amount regardless of how many immigrants you processed.  And that amount was never quite enough to meet your expenses.

    1. For me, it felt like tying pay to processed people was a way to put pressure on you to go faster, and to cut corners when you shouldn’t or don’t want to. It also added an element of strategy, because you get a certain number of warnings before your pay is docked.

  3. On one day I had a woman with all valid information, but she gave me a flyer for a brothel. It was obvious she was being trafficked, so I denied her entry and got fined. The next day the newspaper reported that a local brothel was found to have trafficked a load of girls in and they’d died. Wife ended up dying, too, as I didn’t have the money to buy her medicine after all the fines.

    Brilliant game.

    1. One of the prostitutes has a note pleading for help. When processing the pimp, use the note as a pretext for detention.
      My speed is so slow that I can’t afford medicine/heat/food. One thing that I might try is making a hardcopy of the manual, so that I know which passports are valid without wasting mouse clicks.

  4. supergreatfriend on youtube has a one hour video of the 8 days that you can play in the demo version of this game.  It is very much worth the watch, and despite being a complete playthrough of the game it made me want to play it a lot.

Comments are closed.