Go back to Home

Prison Control

The simlogical prison theme is a set of hacked objects that work together to control your sims as if they were inmates of a prison... Read more.  Download the manual for illustrated guidance on setting up a prison, plus some detailed reference tables.

You will require the Prison Controller, the Prisoner Token, and your choice of Cell Door style.  Other items are useful but optional.


See my own prison

Click on pictures to download:

Illustrated Getting Started tutorial with reference section.  To ensure you can view the manual as intended, please read the readme_first.txt file inside the zip.

Prison Controller.  Provides a way of centrally controlling the doors.  You can set times, or you can perform any lock/unlock actions manually whenever you want.  Also controls in-cell association policy and shutdown mode.  Readme file included.  This object stops the car pool coming for officers (law enforcement path)  Read about car portal effect here.

Only use ONE of this controller on one lot.

Last updated 27th March 2004 to give prisoners temporary passes through locked inter-wing doors when they are being locked out of cells (needs updated inter-wing doors)

    Prisoner Token.  This token (with its familiar shape) forms the hub of control for the individual prisoner. You can teleport in any neighbour to be a prisoner, and he or she is put on the Life of Crime career when they arrive.  This object stops the car pool coming for criminals.  Read about car portal effect here.

This object interacts with the ones below to conveniently allocate all the cell objects and the door to the owner/s of the bed or beds.  To move a prisoner to a new cell, simply move the token and all the cell items listed below will automatically respond to the move.   No setup hassle!

Updated 27th March 2004 to give prisoners temporary passes through locked inter-wing doors when they are being locked into cells (needs updated inter-wing doors)

Updated 8th April to fix bug in way contraband is counted.

Cell door.  This door cleverly works out which people should use it, based on the owners of the tokens it detects in the cell.  Cell doors may be controlled by the Prison Controller, or may opt out of central control.  *The door must be placed with the flap opening outwards away from the cell*
    Cell door.  With discreet spyhole.  More suitable for a modern prison or YOI.  Based on UK examples - including the colour!   Perhaps they feel it encourages the inmates.  *The door must be placed with the flap opening outwards away from the cell*

Last updated 5th Feb 2004

Adapted from the timed door, this one is prison-optimised and works with the controller's emergency unlock facility.  It has the 3-hour interval system to make it more useful with event control objects that you might be using in prison workshops.   You can choose between warders-only or anyone-but-prisoners to have access when the door is locked, rather than individual passes.

Intended for dividing up communal areas.  You could use it on a cell you want locked at different times from others, but this door will not summon the prisoners into the cell when it locks like the special cell doors do.

Last updated 27th March 2004 to allow prisoners through with a temporary pass (needs updated controllers/chairs)

    As above, but for modern prisons.  Based on UK examples

Last updated 27th March 2004 to allow prisoners through with a temporary pass (needs updated controllers/chairs)

    Prison Class Controller.  Place one in each classroom together with as many of the chairs below as you need.

Teaches Anger Management, Enhanced Thinking, Life Skills and Group Therapy.

    Prison Classroom Chair.  Place as many of these as you need in each classroom together with one Prison Class Controller.

Last updated 27th March 2004 to give prisoners temporary passes through locked inter-wing doors when they are being called to class (needs updated inter-wing doors)

    Prison Officer recruiter.  Bring your member-of-staff-to-be to the lot using something like the teleplant, and when he arrives, put him on the Law Enforcement career path using this object.

Last updated 3rd April to exclude children from recruitment list!

    Prison visit controller.  This object facilitates "open" visits, which are where a prisoner and his visitors may socialise in a normal way instead of in those screened booths.  More information and instructions at bottom of page.

New object on 8th April 2004


In-cell Objects

All the in-cell items below are automatically reserved for use by the owners of whichever Tokens they detect in the cell.   Prisoners won't use the objects in empty cells as long as you keep the unallocated tokens in there ready for your next prisoner.

They are usable by all if there is no token at all in the same room, and are therefore also suitable for communal items if you want the styles to match.

    In-cell bed.

In-cell toilet.  Has some altered privacy checking.  There's no shooing, but shy prisoners will still wait some time to see if they can get some privacy later.

Last updated 27th March 2004 to stop staff using.

    In-cell shower cloned from original object by Wilf Jones, as per his general cloning policy.  Privacy checking along same lines as for toilet.  May be cloned if you read and follow Wilf's cloning policy.

Last updated 27th March 2004 to stop staff using.

    Look - I got rid of the pedestal!  I'm getting good at this graphics stuff - LOL!

Last updated 27th March 2004 to stop staff using.

    With the same timing facility as the large servery, these can go on floor or surface to serve individual prisoners.  Yet-to-be-tracked-down bug means you may need move_objects cheat to delete or move after first use.  Ask me if you want to clone this.
    Adapted from original at as per their general cloning policy.  Stands on any surface or on floor.

Owner/s only may turn on, but others may watch or change channel if they happen to be in the cell during in-cell association.  Owner or warder may turn off.  May be cloned if you follow the cloning policy at Another *&$&$& Sims Site or however you spell it :D

    Locker contains snacks, books, and you can put the TV on it.
    This looks quite good with the blue doors
    Single-tile table fills whole tile.
    Plywood and tubular metal chair.  UK style.
    Yucky institutional green padded PVC chair coloured by Mhari of
    Yucky institutional green melamine table coloured by Mhari of




More about prison control objects

The simlogical prison theme is a set of hacked objects that work together to control your sims as if they were inmates of a prison.

The core of the set comprises the Prison Controller (a "smoke-alarm" clone with a bars graphic on it), Prisoner Tokens (the same clone with a thief's mask graphic) and a choice of two styles of cell door. There is a barred door for old fashioned jails, and a plain door with a peephole for more modern prisons and Young Offender Institutions. Also available are staff-only doors and timed doors for communal areas.

The helper objects include specially hacked in-cell furnishings and equipment that understands the Prisoner Tokens and can automatically allocate exclusive ownership to the prisoners whose tokens are in the same room.

Getting started
Build your prison, with cells that may hold any number of prisoners each that you prefer. Leave enough room for the in-cell sanitation if required. In each cell, place as many Prisoner Tokens as you want occupants in that cell. 1-3 is normal in the UK in real life, but some prisons do have larger dormitories.

Select the style of cell door you want, and place one as an entrance to each cell *with the flaps opening out of the cell*. There are reasons for this in real life too: prisoners cannot deliberately pile up furniture behind the door to stop the warders getting in, and they cannot obstruct the door opening if they fall down ill inside the cell. Also the warders cannot be ambushed by a prisoner hiding behind the open door flap, and the hinges are not on the inside where a prisoner can spend an entire night secretly sabotaging them.

Furnish the cells with the required number of special prison beds each, and an in-cell toilet, washbasin, and even a shower if you want real luxury! If you want the cell furniture and equipment to work properly with the tokens, in order to automatically allocate ownership, they must be *in the same room* as their owner/s prisoner token/s. Do not put a completely enclosed wash area in the cell. If the in-cell objects are not in the same physical room as a token, they revert to being free for use by all. Ok, so if the door's locked the others cannot get in, but you will still see some awkward unnatural behaviour as the excluded sims try to reach them. The idea of allocation is the other sims "know" that they are not allowed to use them, like they would in real life.

Place the Prison Controller - just ONE per lot - in a communal area that all the prisoners can get to when they are let out of their cells. This will act as an assembly point when you wish to lock them out of their cells.

Select or create a family to move onto the lot, that should contain at least one adult on the Law Enforcement career path, who is willing to act as a your representative (a sim you can control to operate the controls!). Even better have two, and keep one on night shift using the assignable shift beds on simlogical.com. I would not recommend an actual family with kids etc as it will become a nuisance seeing to their needs and relationships as well as running the prison. The car pool will not come for staff on a prison lot.

The Prison Controller
The Prison Controller's main task is to automate the central locking and unlocking of the cell doors. Controller's menu, you will see options to pre-set two timed lock-ins (when the prisoners cannot get out of their cells) and two pre-set let-ins (when they can get out of their cells if they want to). There is also a pre-set timed lock-out (when the prisoners are locked out of their cells, and a pre-set let-in when they can go back into the cell if they want to. You do not need to use all the available pre-sets. There are also options to perform these lockings any time manually.

Info: when you lock in the prisoners, their Tokens call them into the cells; when you lock them out, the Prison Controller calls them to assemble, thus bringing them out of their cells. That's why it's important for the Controller to be where the prisoners can get to.

This might be a good time to mention that any cell door may "opt out" of central control, if for instance a prisoner has special privileges and can stay out of his cell for more flexible hours.

Under Misc on the Prison Controller menu are:

Enable and Disable in-cell association:- In-cell association means prisoners may visit each others' cells when they are not locked up.

UNLOCK ALL:- Which also unlocks the prison communal area (non-cell) timer doors, and can be useful in an emergency like a fire.

Shutdown mode and Startup mode:- Use Shutdown mode when you want to quit the game. It will freeze all your prisoners, and stop any non-resident prisoner Sims from disappearing. Use Startup mode to let them move again when you restart the game.  It is not important to use this feature if you don't mind your non-resident prisoners being refreshed when you re-enter the lot.

The Cell Doors
These work together with the Prison Controller and the Prisoner Tokens to get the prisoners in the right place at the right time. Each side of the door has a different job to do, a different program to run, and that's why it is so important to place them the right way round, with their flaps opening out of the cell.

You can lock in, lock out, let in, let out, the inmates of any individual cell manually, and you can opt the door out of central control altogether. However the door cannot have pre-set openings.

Any sim who does not belong in the cell may walk *out* of the door at any time, and officers or NPCs may also use any door both ways at any time.

The Prisoner Tokens
To assign a Token in the first place, click on it and choose from the menu of available Sims, which will include residents and neighbours. Children are not available, and neither are teenagers which were teenified using SimTeen (simlifecycle.com). Once a Sim is assigned to a token, he will be changed to the Life of Crime career path, and teleported to stand by his Token if he is not already on the lot. The car pool does not come for prisoners.

The room where an assigned token is located is regarded as the prisoner's cell. Whichever bed, toilet, or other prison-special object he finds in there may be used by him and anyone else whose assigned token is in the cell. If you want to move a prisoner to another cell during his sentence, simply move the token, and all the cell equipment in the new room will be available for his use. He will be able to leave his old cell as soon as his Token is no longer in there, even if the door is locked.

The Tokens work together with the Cell Doors and Prison Controller. When a lock-in is called, the Token calls its own assigned prisoner to come to the cell, and the locked door then keeps him in. In case a Sim is trapped somewhere or for some other reason cannot respond to the call, the token has a Cancel Order option. Otherwise the repeated but useless calls will stop the Sim being able to do anything else, and could slow down the game.

The Prisoner Tokens are also responsible for keeping "visitor" prisoners on the lot, and for controlling them while in shutdown mode.

Staff doors
Very simple - they only admit staff or NPCs in either direction. Sims on the Law Enforcement career path are assumed to be staff.

Timed Prison Doors
These each have their own pre-settable lock/unlock times on them. Each side of each door is settable separately, so you can have access in one direction at one time, and the other direction at another. They are intended for communal areas and corridors.

Prison officers or NPCs may pass through any of these doors at any time, and under Access When Locked... you can choose between staff only, or any non-prisoner (ie any sim who isn't on the Life of Crime path). Prisoners can only pass through the door during an unlocked period.

In-cell Objects
In-cell objects work with the Prisoner Tokens to find out who should be allowed to use them. Although a locked door can physically stop other prisoners using the objects inside a cell, this can result in some very unnatural behaviour, as the Sims do not learn that no matter how much they may march around the corridors, they will never be able to get to the object they have become obsessed with. The specially made in-cell objects will prevent an obsession gaining hold in the first place.

In all cases, the object becomes free for all to use when it is not in the same room as a Prisoner Token. If there are Token/s in the room but they are not allocated, then the in-cell object may not be used by anyone. In that way it is possible to keep some cells empty but ready for use.

Most of the objects work the way they normally would apart from the ownership hack, with the exception of the shower and toilet. I have altered the privacy checking so that no shooing takes place, yet the shyer sims will be more reluctant to use them in front of others and will wait as long as possible for an opportunity to use them in private.

Use of in-cell objects may be restricted, but in most cases cleaning and repairing may be carried out by anyone. Sims rarely become obsessed with the need to unclog a toilet!



Prison Visit Controller

This teleports your chosen members of a prisoner's family to the prison.   First use the menu to select which prisoner should receive a visit.  Once that is done, the menu will change to show the members of his family, and you may choose up to four to visit.   The prisoner will be summoned to walk to where the controller is, and the chosen visitors will materialise there.  When you use the controller to end the visit, the visitors will be dematerialised.

It doesn't matter if the prisoner cannot get to the controller, the visit can still go ahead.  Depending on what doors are unlocked they could meet up in a different room from where the controller is.  Whilst being called to the visit controller, the prisoner will have a wing-door "pass" to let him through any locked wing doors on his way.

One suggested way to conduct a visit is to use a room with a locked wing door.  The visitors do not need to use a door to arrive or leave, so just the one leading into the main body of the prison will do fine.  The prisoner will be able to get into the room through this due to his pass, and to get him out at the end of the visit you could call him to the cell with his token, which will also give him a pass.  Or you could leave the door unlocked leading out, and consider he's had enough visiting when he walks out!

Alternatively there is no reason you can't have an informal visit with the visitors and prisoner free to socialise in the main areas of the prison.

Each controller is "owned" by one prisoner for the duration of his visit, so you will need one on your lot for each simultaneous visit you would want to allow.