Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

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thekillergreece
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Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby thekillergreece » Sat Jan 31, 2015 9:06 am

According to youtube video "reaching towards to the end game" and the facebook post that this game will be released this year, what are your thoughts?

Mine are currently mixed, Prison Architect has a lot of unfinished, not added yet features such as multi floor, gangs, watch towers, skills for guards, and a lot more IRL prisons have. Not to mention to the simple behavior of guard A.I still. I dont think they can finish all them in 3 or 4 months.

Your thoughts?
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby CJH » Sat Jan 31, 2015 9:48 am

thekillergreece wrote:According to youtube video "reaching towards to the end game" and the facebook post that this game will be released this year, what are your thoughts?

Mine are currently mixed, Prison Architect has a lot of unfinished, not added yet features such as multi floor, gangs, watch towers, skills for guards, and a lot more IRL prisons have. Not to mention to the simple behavior of guard A.I still. I dont think they can finish all them in 3 or 4 months.

Your thoughts?


I totally agree, and they are taking a break next month from PA development too. I can't see how they can make it in time. I really hope they won't leave out very important prison contents like gangs, towers, etc etc.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby neale1993 » Sat Jan 31, 2015 12:41 pm

I think what they are referring to is the end of the alpha... not the complete finished/polished game.

Besides, they have never stated a full road map for the game. Whilst towers are already present in the form of a mod... I don't see multi floor happening in PA. Gangs is a possibility and AI behaviour would need a bit of an update In order to accompany this.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby blipadouzi » Sat Jan 31, 2015 1:50 pm

thekillergreece wrote:According to youtube video "reaching towards to the end game" and the facebook post that this game will be released this year, what are your thoughts?


I think the game is very well rounded, with a few bugs that need to be fixed and a few features to be added, it's a fairly finished game. More so than many mainstream games that don't go through the Early Access process.

Mine are currently mixed, Prison Architect has a lot of unfinished, not added yet features such as multi floor,


IV has made it quite clear that they will NEVER add multi floors. It would require a complete rewrite of the game engine, and would serve no real purpose.

gangs


A lot of the code for gangs is already in the game, it just hasn't been activated/finalized.

watch towers, skills for guards


Along with gangs, though these would be great features, there has never been any guarantee nor promise of these things being added.

and a lot more IRL prisons have.


I don't know about you, but I play game to get away from reallife situations. Sure, it's a simulator and needs to have some reallif-ism to it, but not hardcode perfect.. gotta have some fun, goofiness, slapstick. I especially expect some good old fashioned spoofing parody from a UK developer.

Not to mention to the simple behavior of guard A.I still.


I agree, some of the AI could be improved upon... but I won't cry if it doesn't change.

I dont think they can finish all them in 3 or 4 months.


I don't know about where you live... but there are still 11 months left to 2015, not 3 or 4. Also, if you had annotations turned on, you would have seen the footnote stating that releasing the game did not mean they were going to be abandoning the game entirely. Once released, they were going to continue on with regular (hopefully monthly) updates.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby Inge Jones » Sat Jan 31, 2015 3:25 pm

blipadouzi wrote:I don't know about you, but I play game to get away from reallife situations


Quite - but you're missing something. Most of us probably don't have a real life situation of being a prison governor, or a racing driver, or a farmer or builder, or an air traffic controller. That's why simulation games are valued when they attempt to model real life closely, to give the rest of us a chance to experience the considerations that are important to those people for whom it is their real life!
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby blipadouzi » Sat Jan 31, 2015 3:33 pm

Inge Jones wrote:
blipadouzi wrote:I don't know about you, but I play game to get away from reallife situations


Quite - but you're missing something. Most of us probably don't have a real life situation of being a prison governor, or a racing driver, or a farmer or builder, or an air traffic controller. That's why simulation games are valued when they attempt to model real life closely, to give the rest of us a chance to experience the considerations that are important to those people for whom it is their real life!


True, but the simulation here is as the Architect and Designer of the prison before all else. All the rest is just filler.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby Tristano » Sat Jan 31, 2015 5:21 pm

The Alpha 29 video does specify that the final release will not end the monthly updates. So we are looking at a final stable release which will be still updated.

Possibly, many features are already being worked on even though they don't make their way into the alpha releases, so I wouldn't be surprised if we'll see suddenly a lot of of new features pop up at once.

What I can foresee is that much hopes will come from the modding contributions. I'm quite confident that the final release of PA will be much more modders-friendly and will open up a whole lot of possibilities to implement new features which might be the wish of many--but not all--users. Some things are best left to mods, so that those who do want them can have them and those who don't want them can be spared them.

I think that an important issue pertaining the final release has to do with story and goals. So far, PA is what you'd call an "emergence" game, rather than a "progression" game. There are surely progression elements in it, and they are provided by beaurocracy-unlocks and grants. The beauty of the game emerges as the custom prison builds up. So every player can enjoy his own style of prison construction and management. But there are some goals, and there are some failure conditions.

My question is wether the final version will receive a major revision in it's progression-aspects. Will there be some more defined directions toward specific goals (for example, like building the execution chamber, as it seems at present as being the "epithome" of a full-fledged prison). Are prisons meant to run-forever in the final version? or are there some physical constrains that would suggest that after so-much growth a prison should be sold and a new one rebuild from it's sales provents?

I've noticed that in the sprite sheets there are some interesting images: tv-crews, some mysterious spy-looking characters, and other images that don't seem to be implemented in the game right now. Are those going to be employed in some not-yet-ready game-missions?

Progression is an important aspect of PA in my view. Unlocking bureacracy and grants is what helped me learned how to play PA by setting some goals that would broaden the "game tools" available to me. In gaming terms this corresponds to "probability space" expansion through unlocks, which is what motivates the player to unlock grants/beaurocracies: new tools mean more game-space emergence. This is a very delicate equilibrium to reach in any game of this type, and I am really glad that Introversion managed to build such a good equilibrium so far.

It's my guess that having had PA out in Alpha, with all the community support, and the developers paying attention to users' feedback is the secret of this equilibrium in game (in terms of gameplay appreciation). So the topic is rather a hot one, and now that a time-lock has been set it surely is going to bring into question how far elements of progression are going to integrate into the final version's of PA.

So far I've enjoyed playing it while learning it. Not having yet mastered every aspect of PA, it would be difficoult for me to imagine how to judge the overall game---meaning, if I was a hard-core expert at playing PA, I would be in a position to speak of the game in terms of final-objectives in prisons building. What it the final aim? Is there a perfect prison? And if there was one, how long could it run for... So far, I'm still struggling with mastering the different tools, learning the new features, so I am more distracted by the details than the overall picture--stuck on the trees, I don't see the forest. The pleasure of playing games like this one has much to do with the enjoyment of expertise-growth, or the ability to master all the "trees" so that the "forest" can be appreciated. Like chess, there are many ways to look at the board, and many levels of expertise from which to give it meaning.

Mods aside, finalizing the game means putting a seal on these issues. While "missing" features might always be implement by mods, the emergence/progression balance would be hardly impacted by mods once the game is final, I guess.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby Tristano » Sat Jan 31, 2015 5:44 pm

Moreover,

this discussion brough to my mind the game "Democracy". Democracy has seen three realeses, which are independent games in a way--meaning that v1, 2, and 3 are bought separately even though each new version is a better remake of the base game.

I think that PA could easily take a similar path, seen the success it had so far. I am not particularly crazy about Democracy, but I realize it's a great game in it's kind, and it has a huge community of fans, which is why I think PA might follow a similar road.

I bought Democracy 2, which includes version 1 with it. It's a highly (and easily) moddable game, so mods keep the gaming experience alive and there is a good number of them available from fans-sites. Each new version improves the previous edition, expanding the game-play and introducing the much-asked features that were left out in the previous one--along with GUI and graphics improvements.

At the end of the day, a videogame has to come to it's final release, no matter how many feature-requests are still unmet. Second and third editions can be the solution to this: after a year of final release, seeing the trends in mods and users-request could provide a solid base for evaluating a reamke of the game--improving its engine, graphics, portability, ecc.

If it worked for Democracy (which has many common elements with PA, in respect to genre) it could work for Prison Architect.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby turningCircle » Sat Jan 31, 2015 5:48 pm

neale1993 wrote:I think what they are referring to is the end of the alpha... not the complete finished/polished game.

Besides, they have never stated a full road map for the game. Whilst towers are already present in the form of a mod... I don't see multi floor happening in PA. Gangs is a possibility and AI behaviour would need a bit of an update In order to accompany this.


I don't think so. I'm fairly sure they are referring to the end of the primary game development efforts.
Totally agree that multi-floor would be detrimental and difficult to manage.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby lugaru » Sat Jan 31, 2015 5:57 pm

Honestly I think they can release it at any point AFTER they spend a few months squashing bugs.

That said like everyone on the forum I have a list of things I would like to see, but they can come 'after' the 1.0 release.

The only things I think they should implement before releasing are:

Status effect increase: finally have injuries, diseases, attitudes, friendships, etc.
Equipment/contraband re-write: to make items more fluid and exchangeable.
Executions: I don't give a crap about this but every day a newbie posts that he wants it, so obviously it is expected to be part of the game.
"Prisoner Memory": for gangs, but also for friendships, favors, rivalries and revenge.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby lugaru » Sat Jan 31, 2015 6:04 pm

turningCircle wrote:
neale1993 wrote:I think what they are referring to is the end of the alpha... not the complete finished/polished game.

Besides, they have never stated a full road map for the game. Whilst towers are already present in the form of a mod... I don't see multi floor happening in PA. Gangs is a possibility and AI behaviour would need a bit of an update In order to accompany this.


I don't think so. I'm fairly sure they are referring to the end of the primary game development efforts.
Totally agree that multi-floor would be detrimental and difficult to manage.


I do think you are right, they never said anything like 'enter beta'.

Something could be written about games going from Alpha to 1.0 without a middle step these days. PA is already better and more stable (!) than a lot of those games, but still.
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Re: Prison Architect will be released this year. Thoughts?

Postby Pegasus2 » Sun Feb 01, 2015 3:37 am

I think at the rate at which it's progressing, the game still has a long way to go in terms of features. I think release in 2015, even towards the end is a bit premature.

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