Papers, Please was a singular experience when it released in 2013: A subdued narrative game in which you check the papers of immigrants to a fictional eastern bloc country and determine whether or not to let them in, leading to hard decisions and heart wrenching consequences. The influential game has sold over five million copies in the last 10 years, and in celebration of that anniversary, developer Lucas Pope has released some cool stuff for fans and made a contribution to those suffering in real life.
If you haven’t played Papers, Please, it’s on sale as part of the 10th anniversary celebration until end of day August 11. You’ll face questions like whether to stamp the approval of a powerful Minister’s wife even if she doesn’t have the appropriate forms, whether to detain a citizen of a nearby country on spurious charges, and whether or not your own family starves because of your choices—to take a bribe or not, for example.
By putting the instruments of a totalitarian regime in the hands of the player, it makes them an extension of that regime. The decisions you make matter, and the experience of it will linger with you.
Alongside the sale, here’s everything Pope has arranged anniversary:
- Merchandise like mugs, shirts, and posters with art from the game
- A 3-track OST available on Spotify and Apple Music
- A very clever demake of the game in the style of old LCD handhelds (80s kids, who else spent way too much time on the Tiger Double Dragon LCD game?)
- A $100k donation made to the International Rescue Committee to “help those affected by conflict and disaster”
You can find links to all that on the official site.
If you’ve already spent some time checking papers at the Grestin Border Checkpoint, you might also enjoy Pope’s follow up, 2018’s Return of the Obra Dinn. Our reviewer called it “a stunningly clever thing and one of the best puzzle games on PC.”