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Papers, Please Image
Metascore
85

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 933 Ratings

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  • Summary: The communist state of Arstotzka has just ended a 6-year war with neighboring Kolechia and reclaimed its rightful half of the border town, Grestin. Your job as immigration inspector is to control the flow of people entering the Arstotzkan side of Grestin from Kolechia. 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. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 39 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Aug 12, 2013
    100
    A true game, with a base gameplay that gets more and more complex as we play, with subtle touches and ruleset changes. But it's so much more as well : a deep dive in a terrifying dystopia, brilliantly crafted, that will put your life into perspective and awaken your political consciousness with both violence and humor.
  2. Aug 14, 2013
    90
    Evil is performed by men in suits, golden pens in their chest pockets, and stamps in their hands. With a single move with their wrists, they sign death warrants, never seeing the consequences of their actions, maybe not even caring about them.
  3. Aug 31, 2013
    90
    Papers, Please manages to make the apparently boring profession of border guard incredibly engaging and thrilling. Music, graphics and writing all contribute to an oppressive atmosphere that pulls the player in and holds them captured.
  4. Sep 9, 2013
    85
    Well-paced, straight-forward game play combines with vivid storytelling to make into a fantastic game. More than a tale of bureaucratic spot the difference, Papers, Please is a game of intrigue and excitement balanced by fear for your family.
  5. Oct 3, 2013
    80
    It's a tribute to the Cold War. An addictive game that's full of sarcasm and social commentary. A game that you should definitely try.
  6. Sep 18, 2013
    80
    Papers, Please is anything but a standard adventure, but beneath the seemingly unappealing premise of bureaucratic drudgery and human misery lies a fascinating game of choices, surprises, and intrigue.
  7. 60
    A novel, stylish game taking advantage of its minimal design more than you would believe, and it succeeds in arousing your emotions, which is the thing other game titles could dream of. [Issue#233]

See all 40 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 14 out of 207
  1. Aug 8, 2013
    10
    This is an AMAZING game. I didn't expect to like it as much as I did, I thought it'd get boring after a while, turns out, it doesn't. So many things are added that keep it fun and exciting, and some of the smaller things are great too. This game really brings me to think about morals, when do you break the guidelines? What do you risk, letting someone with a weapon through, and being able to feed your family from a bribe, or do you be a good guy by the book and detain him? This is an amazing game, and I hope everyone else enjoys it as much as I do. Expand
  2. Sep 4, 2013
    10
    It took two sentences about the concept and about 5 seconds to sink in before I said, "TAKE MY MONEY". It has completely lived up to my expectations. It manages to set a wonderful atmosphere with surprisingly little. It's elegantly designed, plays well, and makes me want to keep coming back for more. It has a story mode with 20 endings and an "endless" mode. I've found that doing the right thing in the story mode doesn't always get you a good outcome, and it's left me laughing more than once. I've also found myself moving too fast and swearing when I get written up for missing one of the many details that can be wrong, but if you don't move fast enough, you won't make enough money to take care of your family. It's a great combination of both the need for speed and the need for accuracy that makes it work. It's my favorite game of the year so far and I've even been to PAX and seen all sorts of new games! Expand
  3. Aug 10, 2013
    10
    I was surprised at how interested I would be in this game, I was skeptical at first because playing an immigration inspector sounds incredibly boring, I only expected to get 30 min out of it. (For only 10 dollars it was worth a try.) But once I started playing, the ability to decide who passed through, deciding the fate of not only other people but yourself. As you progressed more was added to keep you playing, and if you lost, you didn't have to start all over again. It has excellent replay value as one can try to unlock all the different endings.

    Glory To Arstotzka!
    Expand
  4. Aug 12, 2013
    9
    You wouldn't think that a game with such a simple idea could be so good and so deep. Once you start playing though it actually has a way of pulling you in to the story and the consequences for you decisions. The game starts off easy enough, don't let this fool you though, as the game progresses there is a lot to take into consideration before letting someone though. You are paid on a per person basis and this forces you to try and balance getting the people through as fast as you can while trying to not let anything bad slip though. The game is semi-forgiving and you are allowed two mess ups a day, this sounds like plenty but you'd be surprised how many things will slip right past you. Right now you can get it on Steam for only $9.99 and for all the fun that the game provides that is a very low price. Expand
  5. Jan 2, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. There's something so amazing about this game that is so hard to explain. Papers, Please is an interesting game, unlike everything you have saw before. This game has you dealing with choices which can affect someone's life to either become better or worse, example, there's a guy escaping from his country with his wife, his passport has no problems, however his wife's passport has, so now you have to choose either if you will to let her pass or not. The game is pretty difficult, requiring full attetion of the player into the game. The game starts simple and gets harder, but not into unfair hard, but fair hard, because if you do something wrong it is your fault not the game's fault. Overall this game gets a 9/10 to me, while the game is good, it is not something that everyone will like about it. Expand
  6. Oct 14, 2013
    8
    Papers, Please is a very peculiar game. I don't know what to say besides it finds a way to make tedious paperwork engaging and fun. The story and decisions are dark yet silly. For the price it is a very enjoyable game. Expand
  7. Apr 12, 2014
    0
    I have a hard time understanding why gamers want stuff like this? I grew up using an IBM 486, and the graphics then were better than this, that was in the 80's. Honestly, pattern recognition and some basic choices of whether to be a traitor or not, and that sums it all up. 85/100 for this? It's time for me to find a new hobby I think. Expand

See all 207 User Reviews