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Example of a "picture does not match usual character" discrepancy.

A discrepancy is lack of compatibility or similarity between two or more in-game facts. For example, the name of the entrant might be spelled incorrectly on two different documents or a photo of the entrant might not match their actual appearance. If identified in the inspection mode, other options are enabled (depending on the discrepancy, sometimes), such as interrogation.


Once a discrepancy is found, the inspector may decide whether to interrogate the entrant for more information or to simply deny them. After asking for information, the entrants either provide a missing document or respond in some way after which detention, fingerprint, or a body scan option becomes available.

Until day 18, the inspector is authorized to stamp the passport with denial as soon as they are aware of a discrepancy, without using inspection mode. Since day 18, a reason stamp is required for denial, so the inspector must inspect and interrogate first in order to enable the reason stamp, if they wish to carry out immigration protocol and avoid a citation.

Protocol is checked based on whether there are any discrepancies at the moment the entrant leaves the inspection booth, regardless of whether further checks might correct those discrepancies. As a result, any discrepancy that brings up an option for a fingerprint check or body scan can immediately be used as a reason for denial without causing a citation even if the entrant should rightfully be permitted entry. However, if you do decide to perform those checks, the new information must be considered correctly in order to avoid a citation.

Also, the interrogation regarding forged documents will bring up an option for detention. Detaining the entrant will never lead to a citation unless you fail to confiscate passports of persons belonging to the Altan district or Arstotzka as required before detaining the entrant, and approving them will always lead to a citation. Certain scripted events also enable you to detain the entrant, but failing to detain the entrant could result in no citation depending on the scripted event.

Types of discrepancies[]

There are two types of discrepancies in the game. During the game development, it was realized that having more errors per entrant actually makes the game easier, not harder[1] (because there would be more discrepancies to spot while finding just one is enough to detain or deny the entrant). Each procedurally generated entrant can only have up to one error in each category below:

  1. Minor discrepancy: Incorrect spoken statements or missing documents, but these issues can be resolved through Interrogation. An entrant may be missing a document (except for a diplomatic authorization [2]) but they may present it if asked to. Or, they can initially state a duration of stay or reason for travel that conflicts with their documents, but amend it later with a valid duration of stay or reason for travel.
  2. Major discrepancy (conflicting information in the documents or name on the wanted list). See the section below for a complete list. Note that some of these are severe enough to warrant detention. Finally, there are classifications of major discrepancy based on which information is conflicting: see "document features" for more information.

It is a protocol violation to ignore a discrepancy simply because the entrant makes an excuse for it or claims it is not a discrepancy, unless the only source of the discrepancy was a spoken statement that has already been amended.


In addition to completely different names on two documents, the game may generate misspelled names of issuing cities and Arstotzkan districts. These are not generated completely randomly. The English version has six groups of characters where the game may arbitrarily change one character in the group to another in the same group, e.g. the district of Gennistora may become Gannistora but not Gynnistora. The groups are:[3]

  • a e i o u
  • i u y
  • p g q
  • l j
  • c k
  • b h

List of discrepancies by document[]

See also: Category:Document features for a comparison of which documents can conflict with each other.

Passport discrepancies:

Identity card discrepancies:

  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Invalid date of birth
  • Non-matching photo
  • Invalid district
  • Invalid height
  • Invalid weight

Entry permit, access permit and identity supplement discrepancies:

  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Invalid passport number
  • Invalid expiration date (all documents)
  • Forged or missing seal (entry permit and access permit)
  • Invalid nationality (Access permit)
  • Invalid weight (Access permit and ID supplement) - note that this frequently means contraband.
  • Invalid description (Access permit and ID supplement)
  • Mismatching thumbprint (ID supplement only) This can be checked and counts as a discrepancy only if there is another reason requiring you to check the entrant's fingerprints. You can safely ignore the thumbprint if there is no other reason to check the entrant's fingerprints.

Work pass discrepancies:

  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Forged or missing seal
  • Invalid work end date

Entry ticket discrepancy:

  • Invalid date

Grant of asylum discrepancies:

  • Forged seal or missing seal
  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Invalid country
  • Invalid passport number
  • Invalid date of birth
  • Invalid height
  • Invalid weight
  • Non-matching photo
  • Non-matching fingerprints
  • Invalid expiration date

ID Record (Fingerprint) discrepancies:

  • An inconsistent name is not listed as an alias
  • Fingerprints do not match

Diplomatic Authorization discrepancies:

  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Forged or missing seal
  • No access to Arstotzka
  • Inconsistent/different issuing country
  • Invalid passport number

Certificate of Vaccination discrepancies:

  • Invalid name (against other documents)
  • Invalid passport number
  • Invalid expiration date (i.e. issued more than three years before the current in-game date)
  • Missing vaccine (i.e. polio not listed)

Other discrepancies:

  • Missing documents: if they cannot be pointed to, compare the document's rule with the counter.
  • Obsolete documents: e.g. from day 27, using entry permit and ID supplement instead of access permit.
  • Names listed on written notes or the newspaper (Dari Ludum, Vince Lestrade); certain types of passport (e.g. non-Arstotzkan on day 1); and criminals in the wanted list; can all be used in inspection mode, and count as "discrepancies"
  • Nathan Cykelek's Kolechian passport – compare with his Arstotzkan passport
  • International Press Identification is effectively the same as an obsolete document.


  1. dev log post on May 15, 2013
  2. The error exists in the game files but has been disabled. A diplomat with this discrepancy would only carry a passport and upon interrogation would make the inspector ask for a diplomatic authorization even though the inspector has no (in-universe) way of knowing that the entrant is a diplomat and not, for example, a tourist missing all other documents but a passport.
  3. Papers, Please Localizer (requires Chrome)

See also[]