After thinking about it for all of five minutes, I decided that – as of yet – there hasn’t really been a brilliant game set inside a prison. I’m not talking about the sci-fi efforts of The Suffering or the brilliant Chronicles of Riddick. I mean a gritty take on the reality of being banged up and fearing for your safety in the communal showers every morning.
Imagine the possibilities? So that’s what I did and here, for your viewing pleasure, are a load of reasons why a prison environment for a game would be bloody brilliant…
Instead of trying to digitally create a billion square miles of map to fanny around in like Just Cause 2’s Panau or GTAIV’s Liberty City a game set in confined surroundings would theoretically allow for far more detail throughout. Incredible facial animations, bodies that remain decomposing until the guards find them and the structures could be intricately detailed right down to each piss-soaked sheet of the bunk-beds. The overall look should give off an air of what it’s really like to be trapped in your personal hell.
Also, an island setting like San Francisco's infamous Alcatraz would allow for an even more isolated feel to proceedings. Imagine trying to swim for it in a daring escape before being stalked and eaten alive by attack seals. Or something.
Imagine the scope for other things to do in choky apart from starting riots or having a 'bunk up' with a twink in a horrendous QTE fashion. Get a job in the kitchens perhaps...
Above: Getting a job in the kitchens could help to off a fellow inmate
Or further your intelligence in the prison library to show your keepers that you're a reformed person. Maybe these could take the form of the tests in Bully/Canis Canem Edit with you gaining better negotiation skills when conversing with others. You could even forge a career in the tool sheds (making weapons?) or down in the boiler room (illegal fighting ring?), the options are plentiful. Not to mention indulging in prison's rule football or getting buff in the gym.
How will you live out your prison life? Batter the snot out of your fellow inmates in a bid to become the 'daddy' of your wing? Grab a job and further your education to try and prove to the governors that you're good for an early release? Or become a prison snitch as you rat out your buddies in return for perks like TVs or early parole? The choice would be yours and would end in either infamy amongst your cell-mates, gaining bail, a daring swim to life on the lam or...
Above: *Pop* *Fizz* *Gurgle*... and roll credits
See page 2 for gang warfare, prison hits and more
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