Stamp forms, don't let anyone blow up, take tea breaks
By Alice Lynton on August 10, 2013 at 12:10 pm
Everyone’s talking about Papers, Please this weekend, and with good reason. The indie sim has players as the lucky winners of a labour lottery, reporting to the Ministry of Admission at Grestin Border Checkpoint. It’s a job with a future – and a means to provide for your family in a struggling, war-torn state.
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.
In practice, you’ll be carefully checking papers, which sounds dull but it actually pretty challenging, and provides interesting commentary on border and airport security, a subject of much controversy – especially in the US, where post-9/11 measures are frequently called into question.