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Here is our video demonstrating the new features:
After a long playthrough of the game, we concluded that the Finance system was most in need of some development love this month. It has become common practice to cheat your way to $1,000,000 in the bank because there is simply no other way to raise that kind of capital, and the game becomes boring when you have to wait for it to roll in. There are many mods that filled the gap by adding more grants to the game. Furthermore, if you use all the official grants up (all four of them) and still have a negative cashflow, you have literally no way to recover other than cheating, because your bank balance will be decreasing every day and you won’t be able to afford to build new facilities. It was clear that Finance needed looking at. Urgently.
We’ve added a ton of new official grants, and added new requirements to them as well. You can now only have two grants running at once, although your accountant to expand that to three - so be careful which ones you choose. Grants can have “Pre-requisites” before they become available to you - eg you must have completed a previous grant, or have a certain number of prisoners on site. Some grants are hidden and will only reveal themselves when the conditions are right. There is a new special “Government Bailout” grant that acts as a second life - if you run out of money and have a negative cashflow, the government will put together a rescue package and bail you out of trouble. But only once.
You can now borrow money from the bank, and repay interest every hour. Every successful repayment increases your credit rating, and allows you to borrow more.
Once you have a high value prison, you can sell shares in the facility - effectively selling a share of your prison to investors in exchange for money. They will pay you 10% of the total prison value, in exchange for 10% ownership of the prison. This can be an excellent way to raise money, but those investors are not acting out of the goodness of their hearts - they expect a profitable return, and will take their share of the prison sale price when you do come to sell up.
All prison establishments are now expected to pay Corporation Taxes, at 30% of all profit. We advise you keep declared profits as low as possible in the early stages - by re-investing your profits into wages and expanding your prison. Once you start making big profits you can ask your accountant to work on reducing your tax burden.
We have updated the industry system so that your produced goods are exported properly now. (Previously they were magically sold at midnight, vanishing out of existence). There is now a new Exports zone which should be placed near the road, and all your trade goods will be hauled there to be loaded up onto delivery trucks and taken away for sale. This is far more realistic, but also has the added benefit that you will receive income throughout the day as your goods are sold, rather than in a lump sum at midnight. We’ve extended this hourly model to all areas of the cashflow as well - your daily income is now paid in 24 hourly payments, spreading out the income over the day. It was felt that waiting for midnight every day was deeply unsatisfying.
On top of that there are tons of balance changes and bug fixes, many related to finance. The whole game should be significantly more playable now without resorting to grants mods or cheats. We hope you have fun playing alpha 19, and we will see you again for alpha 20 in one month.
Full change list
Code: Select all
= Financial system improvements
- Cashflow is now visible from the very start, without needing an Accountant to unlock it
- Cashflow is now paid hourly, instead of at midnight as before
- The starting bank balance has been increased from $10,000 to $30,000
- The daily federal grant has been increased from $1,500 to $2,000
- You now receive more daily money for the max security prisoners
= Cash Bonus : Days without Incident
You now receive a bonus to your cashflow based on the number of days without incident.
The bonus accumulates at a rate of $1,000 per day without incident
So after 1 day you get a $1,000 bonus, but after 2 days you get a $2,000 bonus
The maximum daily bonus is $10,000 for 10 days straight without incident
The amount received resets immediately to zero after a death, serious injury, or escape
= Corporation Taxes
You must now pay tax - 30% of all profits, directly out of your daily cashflow.
Once you have a profitable prison you can use your accountant to reduce this to 15%
You can also unlock an offshore tax haven for a whopping $50,000, that reduces your Corporation Taxes to 1%.
(This is only recommended for prisons with massive daily profits)
= Bank Loans
You can now borrow lump sums of money from the bank, and pay interest on the amount borrowed.
Interest payments are made hourly, and each successful payment increases your credit rating.
As your credit rating increases, so does the amount you can borrow, up to a max of $100,000
= Prison Share Scheme
You can choose to sell shares in your prison to private investors and venture capitalists.
They will pay you 10% of the current prison value, in exchange for 10% ownership of your prison.
You can sell up to 50% of your prison this way, and you can buy back at any time (although the price may have gone up)
However if you've sold 30% of your prison to investors, you will only receive 70% of the price when you come to sell the entire prison
= Game rebalancing
- The prison 'temperature' now increases quite a bit slower, taking much longer to reach dangerous levels
- The temperature falls much quicker once the causes of frustration have been resolved
- A prisoner's "time served" now counts up much more slowly, meaning they will spend longer in your jail before release
Previously one year sentence = 36 game hours (1.5 days)
Now one year sentence = 120 game hours (5 days)
- The Workshop Safety Induction can now be taught to 10 prisoners at once (up from 5 previously),
and prisoners can use a workshop saw OR a workshop press whilst learning
- New room/zone : Exports
Finished items are taken from the workshop to the new exports zone. Workmen will do the hauling.
If the exports zone is 'secure' then your prisoners will also do the hauling.
Items in the Exports zone will be loaded onto passing delivery trucks and taken away.
You will be paid as they leave the prison site
NOTE: Logs will be auto-sold if there are no workshop Saws on site
NOTE: Wood will be auto-sold if there are no carpenters tables, or no qualified carpenters on site
- SDL 2.0
The game is now using SDL 2.0 for windowing, mouse/keyboard input, and sound. (Previously SDL 1.2)
This should help with hardware compatibility and reliability
Also provides better support for high dpi displays, joypads, tablets etc
- High DPI mode is now supported on certain displays - eg the Macbook Pro Retina display.
Enable it from the Graphics menu. This will make the game look significantly sharper on high DPI displays.
(Eg Retina Mac previously ran the game at 1280x800 - now runs at 2560x1600 on a 13" screen!)
- Greatly improved the display of Jobs in the deployment screen
- You must now keep your Administrators employed if you wish to continue using the facilities they have unlocked
- Prisoners with 'Qualifications' gained from reform programs will now strongly prefer to work in jobs that use those qualifications
This fixes a problem where all your qualified workshop prisoners went off to do the cleaning
- Tazers are no longer flagged as 'Metal', so wont set off metal detectors
- Trees will no longer leave a stump if they are felled indoors, eg after building new foundations over forest
- The Emergency Services toolbar now shows tooltips for each service type, including the cost of callout
- The Rooms toolbar now highlights rooms you are likely to want to build, due to grants/objectives
- The Bureaucracy screen has been laid out in a new arrangement to make room for all the new unlocks
- The Lawyer has been removed from the game, as he currently serves no purpose. He may return at a later date.
- New graphics for the Teacher
- Fixed : The reform program 'Scheduler' now ensures there will be a teacher available when picking a time slot.
This fixes a bug with the foreman being expected to teach multiple workshop induction classes at once.
NOTE: You may need to manually click "Reschedule" if your prison has this problem after loading
- Fixed : Prisoners working as janitors would stand around in the cleaning cupboard doing nothing,
unless you had at least one janitor hired (or if you had very few janitors in a large jail)
- Fixed : Cutting down a tree near a wall square will no longer demolish that wall square
- Fixed : Experience will no longer tick up on dead prisoners
- Fixed : You can no longer place rooms over lakes
- Fixed : Stolen contraband would still be counted if the prisoner responsible had left the jail.
This counted towards the overall 'Supply' level, but could never be found by searching.
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