As far as Early Access games go, Prison Architect [official site] is one which did it right. Over three and a bit years, developers Introversion Software have added, tweaked, and tuned, and now it looks and plays now so very different. It may have left Early Access and formally launched in October, but Introversion are still fiddling away and yesterday released the first post-release update to add even more. Naturally, they have another long video developer diary explaining what's new too:
If you don't have a full half-hour to spare, I'd still recommend watching the first ten minutes if you can, they're really insightful and caught me a little by surprise. While the rest of the video speaks directly to the update itself, the opening segment explores Prison Architect's launch on a very personal level as producer Mark Morris and director Chris Delay talk of how hectic launch was, their own tendencies towards depression, how that's not an uncommon by-product among fellow developers who've just released a game, and how they hope to get back into the cycle of developer videos.
"It's a funny feeling, we had this mad launch, this huge launch, when all we did from about June was focus on the launch," says Morris. "Yeah, it was non-stop for about six months, basically," agrees Delay. Morris continues: "Yeah, every minute was just full on. My life was like a John Woo film without the bullets."
In the typical comedic style that made the alpha diaries so endearing, it's nice to know Morris and Delay will be picking these back up even after Prison Architect's full release. Speaking to the update itself, highlights include: Shared rooms - now, prisoners can share dorms of three of above, and can fight for the top bunk; tweaks to prisoner intake - new settings 'Closed', 'Full Capacity', 'Total Prisoners', 'Num Per Day' or 'All' govern your intake of felons; a range improvements to Escape Mode to increase difficulty and balance; and a list of minor bug fixes. Full details can be found here.