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Brilliant and original
A complex and brilliant indie game, Papers, Please proves that fancy graphics and big budget action are not always needed to create a compelling experience. While the premise behind the game may not sound particularly enthralling, this really is something to be played by anyone who considers themselves a true gaming fan. Papers, Please is a sort of puzzle game that focuses on the oft forgotten or ignored immigration inspectors who work so hard to protect their nations from illegal immigrants. In this case, the player controls such an officer working in the fictional state of Arstotzka and must use all the tools available to them to prevent all sorts of undesirables from crossing the border. If you find someone you suspect of being a terrorist or smuggler, you can then interrogate them, demanding fingerprints or even subjecting the suspect to a full body scan. However, you may find yourself offered a bribe to let this one slide, so be prepared for some tough moral decisions. Papers, Please really is quite brilliant, both entertaining and thought provoking in equal measure and in a way that has rarely been equalled or even attempted. The sense of immersion and emotional reaction to the situations you are presented with is absolute, with some wonderfully realised characters to interact with and some truly testing decisions to be made. While some may find the basic gameplay slightly tedious, the narrative is never less than compelling and always draws you on, eager to find out the effects of your choices. Although perhaps not for mass audiences, Papers, Please, is a bold, grim, exciting and stimulating game that deserves to be played.