First Day Out: The Abyss of Freedom

First Day Out: The Abyss of Freedom
  • Sun Oct 13, 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
  • Rick Dean
  • First Day Out
  • Adult Themes
  • Prison, Confinement, PTSD
  • X-card, Open Door policy
  • 592 (41)
  • 2
  • 1 of 4
  • Created at the table


First Day Out is a short, meditative story game about sensing and interacting with the real world in new, bewildering ways. It explores this through the eyes of a released prisoner on their first day out of prison. Designed with input and feedback from several released prisoners who have lived this experience, this game aims to highlight the unique challenges of this transition in a realistic way while still leaving room for hope and levity.

Players take turns embodying a single character known as “The Unbound” visiting various everyday locations chosen by the players (a park, a museum, a convenience store, a church, etc.) on their first day out of prison. Players also take turns presenting situations for The Unbound to encounter and respond to at these locations. Card prompts guide the types of situations The Unbound will encounter and help highlight the unique challenges of reentering the free world after years of incarceration.

This game has some heavy overtones but also has the potential for humorous, hopeful, and heartfelt moments. It is greatly indebted to Jackson Tegu’s Morning in that the game is played out in brief, unconnected glimpses and impressions throughout The Unbound’s first day out. Sprawling narrative and fantastical occurrences are absent, replaced by brief flashes of emotion, sensation, and thought.

Actual gameplay will be less than 1 hour, leaving plenty of time for warm up and debrief.

Tags: Collaborative, Drama, Melancholy, Modern, Potentially triggering*, Rotating authority

2 comments to First Day Out: The Abyss of Freedom

  • Lily PK

    Hey, just a quick question – I have a baby (3 months at the time of BBC) who is super chill. I’ve taken her to Pacificon, and played several RPGs with her, and she basically just sleeps or stares at the lights unless she wants to eat or needs to be changed (both of which are fairly non-intrusive activities). Would you be open to me playing with her? If not, I understand, no worries.

    • Rick Dean

      Hi Lily! Thank you for asking. Your baby would be most welcome at this game and has full permission to be not chill at all if she needs to be. Hope to see you and her soon!

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