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[PlayStation Vita] Papers, Please Review

[PlayStation Vita] Papers, Please Review

Review Overview

Interesting boarder officer sim


Papers, Please is an interesting release brought to PS Vita by 3909 in which you play as an immigration officer. Is the port worth your time and money? Find out in our Papers, Please review!


The game places you in the shoes of an immigration officer on the border between Kolechia and Arstotzka, and your job is to review the paperwork of all the people who want to enter Arstotzka. If people don’t have the correct paperwork, you can refuse their entry, and if they have the correct paperwork and it’s in order, you can allow them entry. Simple, right? The problem is that with every passing day regulations change, so you’ll need to review more documents to spot any inconsistencies between what a person is declaring and what their documents state.

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Half of your PS Vita’s screen is half covered with your desk and stamps, with the top half of the screen showing a window through which you review people and their documents. You’ll need to make the most of the rule books and maps at your disposal so that you can make sure the right people cross the border – make too many mistakes, and you’ll be punished.

At the end of each work day, you are greeted with a screen that details of your wages – how much you have earned, bribes taken, how much your rent is, how much you were penalized by allowing the wrong applicants through, and your expenses for food, utilities, and medication, if needed. You’re often left with either very little or absolutely nothing since your wage is peanuts and your rent is forever increasing at an alarming rate. You also have a family to look after, and if you fail on successive days your family members could die!

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The game might rub some people the wrong way because of its theme and the fact that gameplay can feel a bit repetitive at times. But if you give this one a chance it will grow on you. You’ll see that the NPC you deal with have a life and a story to share, and they, like you, also have many problems to solve. Do you start to let through people who have the wrong documentation but who have a real need to enter Arstotzka? Do you take bribes to be able to feed your family and keep a roof over their heads?

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And later in the game, as you gain new tools to inspect individuals, scanning their fingerprints and searching them, you probably won’t have the time to get through as many people as you did the day before, and since you’re paid for each person that is properly processed, your pocket will probably feel the hurt.

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Overall, my feelings about the game are pretty mixed. I like the art style and the message the game is sending, but the PS Vita’s screen does feel pretty cluttered with everything that is going on. But I do have to mention that the touchscreen controls work flawlessly, and do make it easier to process each person who tries to go through your border. There are several endings to reach and an interesting list of trophies that will require that you do things in a particular way, which greatly increase the replay value. If you’ve been looking forward to playing Papers, Please on a console, then this is definitely a great port of the game – but you do need to be ready for what might feel like a bit of a repetition after a couple of hours in.

This Papers, Please review is based on a PlayStation Vita copy provided by 3909.