I’ve accidentally started a new game that I have a lot of high hopes for. It’s called Blackraven and is set in a prison in modern times. Your character has been sent there for 25 years for a to-be-determined crime. You will play through every day of your incarceration and have to deal with other prisoners, your partner and parents, the guards and prison warden as well as your ever decreasing morale. There will be mini-games included and problems to solve. You will have the option to escape from the prison in one of several ways, or you can just live through the prison life. The game will be dynamic too, depending on your mood you will either have a happy outlook or a depressed, dark mood, reflected through your daily observations.
You can play the game as male or female and can choose the sex of your partner too.
I’m also thinking about 2 game modes for young players (safe mode)and adult players (realistic mode).

What do you think guys?


This sounds like it’s going to be an awesome story.

Playing the spy for other fractions. As in you are a member of Roots and you are told to join Rockers to spy on them. Which could, of course, be branched out into whether you betray your original fractions or not.
Alternatively snitching for the guards.
You could also be a middle man between the fractions.

Another idea is playing witness. A friend/enemy kills someone and you are a witness (this could be true or you could be lying about seeing it). Your testimony could either have them killed or keep them alive.

If you have like an archnemesis you can screw around with his work and get him into trouble.

Aww you named a game after me! So sweet you shouldnt have. Jk (obviously) but i like the idea in this game. I want to be Red from the Shawshank Redemption (:

I will definitely take ideas from Shawshank, as well as Escape from Alcatraz, the Great Escape, and any other prison movie/book I can think of.

I’m also planning some Collector cards (like the old cigarette cards for those old enough to remember them) that players can collect and trade with inmates.

Integrated prison or Broadside style switch?

Broadside style for the most part with added ‘differences’ depending on gender. It’s either a men’s prison or a women’s prison so all characters are either male or female accordingly (broadside style switching of pronouns) but some of the tasks within the game will only be possible depending on your gender.

Modern day, I can’t think of any particular difference between male/female prisons, so I don’t know what you mean by different actions being possible. Heck, even guards have to all be the right gender in modern prisons, at least here in the US. (Well, theoretically, the actuality is much different.)

Also, considering the last thing you said, I get the feeling that someones needs to start playing the Jaws theme music in here… >.>

Standard prison life will be the same regardless of gender. If you are male, all guards and inmates will be male. If you are female, then everyone will be female. The only choosable exception will be your partner who could be either male or female.

What will change depending on gender are some of the tasks. Some of the inmates will make requests and give you tasks to do. These could vary depending on gender. For example, helping the pregnant inmate decide between having a baby or not would only be a female storyline.

On the whole, the gender differences won’t affect the play through or your final outcome.

What I do need from the CoG forumers is ideas for prisoner issued challenges. I need a LOT of missions and tasks for you to complete so be as imaginative as you can. A basic example would be requests to smuggle items into the prison or someone having a grudge against another inmate they want you to sort out. I’ll use the better ideas in the game.

Are you going to have different factions within the prison?

Some ideas for missions could be;

  1. You are asked to plant some drugs in another prisoners cell or maybe even a guards room.

  2. You are asked to elimate a prisoner/guard

  3. You are asked by one of the guards to find information about someone trying to break out of the prison.=

I’m going to rip off Porridge here.

How about helping an older inmate establish a good reputation. What you do is that you start trouble and the inmate will come to settle it, thereby getting cookies.

And you can have a number of ways of achieving this. Or… Don’t.

Good ideas so far, and yes - there will initially be 3 rival factions, any of which you can join (or not if you choose). This will become just two factions later after… A major incident (way too soon for spoilers!)

Any other suggestions? I need lots!

Something involving a secret gambling den and you can participate, keep a lookout, or sell them out for some cookies.

You can watch some Porridge for inspiration. I’m imagining the challenges are more light-hearted in nature, and Porridge is a sitcom so…

Gangs are a major source of tension in modern prisons. The PC joining one can make it easy to hook them into any number of story lines. (Can’t think of a reason for the PC to get involved? 'Cause someone in their gang asked them to.)

Here’s one idea about gangs: Dropping out. What do you do when someone comes to you asking you to help him 'cause he’s a dropout and if he doesn’t have someone watching his back he’s going to die? (While modern prisons do separate gangs so that they can’t fight, and try to keep unaffiliated prisons away from gangs, it’s not a fool proof system, and dropout have often times been kept in solitary ‘for their own safety’.) Now, as a gang member, what happens when one of your friends decided to dropout and you learn that he’s going to be killed for it?

A good source of conflict in general is factions. They’re also a good way to force PCs into action. (You’re either for us, or you’re against us!) Old gang vs new gang, Gangs vs Guards, Mafia vs Gang, Mexican Mafia vs Italian Mafia, Italian Mafia vs Mexican Gang vs Yakuza vs Guards vs Janitors vs Aliens. You get the idea.

Note: My only familiarity with modern prisons is in California (and therefor if I talk about ‘modern prisons’ that’s only referring to a handful of prisons in California) and that’s only in passing at best… for some reason tagging the ‘best’ familiarity with a prison as being knowledgeable about it from every angle, meaning inside it too, feels kinda wrong.

Hm… another specific idea…

The whole ‘your bunk mate told you he killed someone’ line. You bunk mate, however, has friends and enemies. You tell someone and his enemies become your friend and his friends your enemies.


His friends that you’ll be betraying are the whichever faction you join.

His friends are powerful (Guards).

It’s actually a guard that ends up saying he’s killed someone and it’s your word against his, unless you can get evidence (through your social ties).

Your bunk mate is actually the good guy, offed someone horrible and is turning to you for guidance. However, betraying him will get you something you really want (his enemies are after your blood, but doing turning on him will get them off you). Or perhaps it’ll get you something you need (it’s the only ‘in’ you have with an enemy of his, and that guy that you’ll have an ‘in’ with has information that will vindicate someone else who’s innocent of a crime.

(If I’m not making sense, sorry, I’m a little out of it.)

I like the faction idea I think it would be interesting

But wat will the factions be about

@Reaperoa For one reason or another you will have your own cell and no cell mate, but that plot line would work just as well with a friend.

Perhaps I should be clearer about the setting. Think more Shawshank for the lifestyle. Not 21st Century modern (although over the 25 years there will be changes if you stay that long). Prisoners will follow a strict daily routine and you will have a job. Locations for events to take place are kitchen, yard (where most discussions will take place), shower room, mess hall (twice a day), workroom (details of this tbc), and laundry room. Cells themselves are mostly locked down apart from an hour or two in the evenings.

@Blackheart, I don’t have specifics for the 3 factions yet. All I have is the long term fate of each. There will be several faction-faction collisions which Will happen whatever faction you are part of (so 4 very different storylines depending on which faction you enter (or not)).

Does anyone want to suggest ideas for the different factions?

Any other ideas for quests?

This is all good discussion so far. Keep it coming!

Sorry for the triple post…

@ScarletGeisha I like the ‘look out’ idea. There’s so much I can do with that and it could be used as an early gang task.

Hmm, I have never seen the Shawshank Redemption.