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Guards are the main type of security staff member available to hire. They have the largest workload out of all the staff available in game and they hold the most responsibility when it comes to keeping prisoners in check and keeping the peace in your prison.

They are undeniably the most important security staff members in Prison Architect.

Unlike most other staff, guards are up-gradable through security via the bureaucracy menu. The Chief is the administrator responsible for the researching of guard tactics, effective policing and security equipment.

The available research is detailed below.

Deployment Edit

Researching deployment unlocks its corresponding tab in the main toolbar. It allows the player to manually assign guards to all the sectors of your prison. If micromanagement has been researched by the Warden, the deployment view can also be used to schedule when guards patrol/are stationed in those sectors.

  • The cost of the research is $1000.

Patrols Edit

Researching patrols allows the player to manually draw out specific routes around crucial areas of your facility. For example, having a guard patrol around the perimeters of your walls could deter prisoners from picking up contraband thrown over the prison walls.

  • The cost of the research is $1000.

Taser Rollout Edit

Researching the taser rollout program extends the use of the tasers to normal guards instead of just the Armed Guards. This program teaches standard guards how to use the tasers. The Chief will run these programs in a classroom. After a successful lesson, the guard will become certified and acquire a taser from the armoury to use.

  • The cost of the research is $5000.
  • Each taser costs $400.
  • Each taser, after being deployed, takes a game-hour for it to recharge.
  • Every new guard you hire will have to go through the same learning process in order to acquire a taser. They will not spawn with them after hire.

Body Armour Edit

Researching body armour allows all your security staff members, excluding snipers, to obtain a protective stab vest from the armoury. This provides every security staff member with a 50% toughness increase, but a 30% movement penalty.

  • The cost of this research is $1000.
  • Each vest costs $100.

Combat Edit

  • Ill Sven Ashnod
    All guards come armed with steel batons which give them a slight advantage over unarmed prisoners.
  • Guards will always use their tasers before wielding a baton.
  • Guards have a 60% accuracy rate when using a taser against a prisoner.
  • If a guard is disarmed, they will visit an armoury to reacquire a lost weapon.
  • Guards that are disarmed but still in active combat will use their fists.
  • Guards do not fight to the death. They will desist their assault when the prisoner is knocked unconscious or surrenders willingly.
  • Guards may kill prisoners with a 'cop killer' reputation. The guards must manually be 'pulled off' of the prisoner in question by the player.

Guard Duties Edit

  • They operate CCTV monitors.
  • They operate Door Control Systems.
  • They operate Phone Taps.
  • They patrol marked patrol routes..
  • They roam around rooms in which they are stationed in, in order to prevent misconduct.
  • They conduct thorough searches of your prisoners, cells, and areas where contraband can be hidden.
  • They subdue misbehaving prisoners.
  • They escort new prisoners to their cells.
  • They escort shackled prisoners from one point to another.
  • They escort confidential informants to security rooms.
  • They bring food to prisoners undergoing punishment that prevents their attendance to canteens.
  • They unload some objects from the trucks, if the workers/janitors are not available.
  • They can sort and deliver mail in the mail room if no prisoners are working there.
  • They go to the staff room when exhausted, like any other staff.
  • If patrolling the outer wall, they can prevent a prisoner from getting contraband, if the arranged place for picking up the contraband was close to the place where the guard is deployed.
  • They process prisoners guilty of misconduct, in accordance with prison policy, before moving them to their cells/solitary or the infirmary if they are injured.
  • They will rush seriously injured/unconscious or overdosed prisoners to the infirmary.

Tips & TricksEdit

  • Guard alarmed

    A guard who has spotted (a) misbehaving prisoner(s).

    Handcuffing takes precedence to escorting. So if you have just suppressed a riot and have a lot of prisoners to punish, guards won't escort prisoners to their punishment until all prisoners are handcuffed.
  • If you need a bunch of guards to rush to an area, you can left-click and drag your mouse to select a bunch, and then you can give them all a command at once, similar to how emergency services work.
  • While guards are a vital member of staff, you don't need to hire them until you have prisoners. So if you plan to close your prison for the first few days while you build it, you won't need to hire guards until you open for business. Otherwise they're just wandering around taking wages and making floors dirty.
  • Your ratio of guards depends on the type of prisoners you accept, any quirks they have and whether your guards have access to an armory or your troublemakers have weapons. One guard can usually subdue two minimum security prisoners (if they make trouble at all), or one normal prisoner. It often takes at least three guards to subdue a maximum security prisoner.

Optional ModsEdit

Please note that this section is for fan-created game modifications, or mods. This list of mods affect the guards, but are unofficial. Use at your own risk.

  • Most guard mods involve different weapons.
  • Weapons a guard can use via mod include, but are not limited to: shotguns, deagles, revolvers, sniper rifles, 'Mac 10s', knives and assault rifles. These replace the standard baton and will be used even with freefire emergency command off.
  • A comedic mod for guards and their weapons is the Fork Mod, used to replace the baton and has the same damage.
  • Some mods contain more than just skin variations and weapon overrides, one mod provides guards with a telescopic baton which does the same damage of the regular baton and changes their default names to "Correctional Officer" and such.
  • Some mods change the skin of the guards, making them have different uniforms, race or other effects. An example of a mod change of altered appearances of guards show changes from standard blue uniform to a white county uniform (presumed American). There are also tan or olive variations of such. There are also military uniforms they can wear.

Trivia Edit

  • Assigning a guard to a dog patrol or armed patrol will still let them patrol.
  • Although they do not suppress prisoners, nearby inmates will not cause trouble and will mostly fight or do something illegal out of the sight of guards.
  • The real-life counterparts of a prison guard are referred to as Correctional Officers. Some may take offence at being called a 'guard'.
  • If killed, in Escape Mode, guards will automatically respawn.