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Prison Architect's Alpha 23 update adds remote access systems, AKA 'fun with doors'

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Prison Architect's latest update (opens in new tab) is a particularly important one, adding remote access systems to Introversion's prison management sim. As we know from movies and TV, no prison worth its salt would be complete without a big security room switch that opens all the cell doors at once. That's finally a possibility in Alpha 23, which will now allow players to connect doors to remote switches, or to set it so that they'll only open at a specific time of day, say 14:37. You probably have your own favourite time of day. CCTV has also been reworked a bit to fit in with the new system.

In the new update, guards can now operate doors while sitting on their backsides in a security room, and there's even a new breed of metal door resistant to the guards' 'jail key' weapons. Remote access doors must be wired together using the new Connect tool, while the same thing now applies to the CCTV system, which requires cameras to be connected to monitors. Advanced Logic Circuits have also been added in the update as an "experiment". These won't be necessary for normal prison operation, but should result in some fun player creations.

And now we come to my favourite part of the patch-notes-news-post process: taking changes and bug fixes from developer update posts (opens in new tab) and presenting them entirely out of context. Here are some gems from Alpha 23:

"Intoxication is now a type of Misconduct, and is 'detected' when a Guard searches a prisoner. He will notice they are high/drunk."

"Fences are no longer free (YOU try getting hundreds of metres of fences for free)."

"Kitchen Sinks now require a water pipe connection."

Here's a video of Introversion showing off the game's new features:

Tom loves exploring in games, whether it’s going the wrong way in a platformer or burgling an apartment in Deus Ex. His favourite game worlds—Stalker, Dark Souls, Thief—have an atmosphere you could wallop with a blackjack. He enjoys horror, adventure, puzzle games and RPGs, and played the Japanese version of Final Fantasy VIII with a translated script he printed off from the internet. Tom has been writing about free games for PC Gamer since 2012. If he were packing for a desert island, he’d take his giant Columbo boxset and a laptop stuffed with PuzzleScript games.