So while Prison Architect is definitely one of my favorite games, there are some issues that have been piling up and I wanted to report them in hopes they can be made aware of if they weren't already. Apologies in advance if they were, but searching around the forums hasn't turned up anything for me.
1: Death Row Jam
In my prisons I find death row cells with doors facing south can't complete the process because the warden gets stuck in the door. The chief or priest are in the way and can't move because the warden hasn't left yet so they just stand there. The sequence can be cancelled, but trying again from that same cell results in the same bottleneck.
2: Staff Needs Balance
I'm willing to admit maybe I just don't understand how I'm supposed to handle this feature properly, but my experiences with staff needs haven't gone well so I usually leave it off out of frustration. I don't understand why my guards seem to need very long breaks to the point where I need double or even triple the guard to keep the prison properly covered (and my prison can barely afford the one set of guards as it is) or how I am expected to have any outdoor patrols when a bit of heat, cold, or rain will also upset them to the point of being useless. And how are snipers even supposed to work with weather because of that? I don't know how few guards I'm supposed to actually have, but it seems unacceptably low for me. Even with staff needs turned off, dogs I feel take very long breaks because, again, to keep patrol points properly covered I need twice as many dogs as I have postings because they spend so much time napping and that is very expensive.
And yes I do use the scheduler to decide when and where I need coverage to reduce the number of guards I need. This was to bring costs down in the first place, not raise them back up because my staff forever wants to be on break while also being angry about salary cuts.
3: Dorm Searching
The automatic cell search policy doesn't work with dorms. I would rather they did no matter how many redundant searches this causes. I'm also a bit confused how, when they find contraband in a dorm they automatically know which prisoner it belongs to as if by magic, but I can't get them to do an automatic shakedown of the dorm when going the other way.
4: Parent Head Count
It would be nice to have a separate counter of how many mothers there are in the prison. It's a bit troublesome to have to hunt them down every intake and then check every night to see how many cells are occupied. I would imagine this would be even more bothersome on larger prisons.
5: The Charity Stand
I am all for the charity and I think the in-game representation of it is rather cool, but I feel its implementation in game might not have been thought entirely through. Is it really necessary to have 3-4 of my prisoners standing next to the stand forever with their needs piling up? Are they going to starve to death doing that? I mean, I thought it was really symbolic when I first saw it since it was a representative of each gang looking like they were coming together in the name of peace, but they're also gang members with unmet needs rising. Also I'd rather not pay the fine for dead prisoners because of something like this. That seems unfair.
I noticed prisoners are very prone to taking longer paths instead of shorter ones. Instead of going to a nearby toilet when they have to use the bathroom, they go across the entire prison to use a toilet there. Same with phone booths.
Also I once had side exits in my prison to help my staff, but protected security prisoners kept trying to exit out through them instead of going through the front door after getting their paroles, even though the front door to the map border was a shorter path. Since the route they chose instead took them through max security work areas, it resulted in fatalities, so I had to seal all of those off. Civilians also kept using those exits instead of following the blue lines or staying out of staff only areas. Could they at least be treated like staff and follow the blue lines instead?
7: Caught Escapees Leave Anyway
I've caught many would-be escapees...only for them to leave the very next day anyway because they had like a 2 percent re-offending rate that stayed that way even though they were caught trying to escape the night before their parole. I would like it if some kind of additional punishment could be applied to escapees: like automatically failing their next parole or getting time added to their sentence like with murder.
8: Unnecessary Cell Transfers
Even though I have cell quality turned off and all my cells are the same quality across the entire security level, I have guards moving prisoners around for no reason anyway. I would prefer they stopped doing this and just leave the prisoner where I put them.
9: Policy Rewards
This isn't a problem, so much as a suggestion, but I thought it'd be kinda nice if privileges could be applied via policy to encourage and reward good behavior. Like x amount of time without incident, get work/visitation privileges, or even bumped over to a lesser security level. On the flip side, it would be nice if a trouble maker could be punished by having their privileges revoked.
I hope this proved informative. I apologize if any of it is redundant.
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