The day has finally come — BitLife is now two years old, and the game is still extremely popular and relevant among iOS and Android gamers alike. Candywriter has done a phenomenal job in helping keep the game relevant, and one key reason behind this is the introduction of limited-time challenges earlier this year. These require you to live your Bitizen, or virtual character’s life in a certain way that a list of requirements is met, and these typically roll out over the weekend, thus making for a great stopgap in between the title’s many, many updates.
Much like a few other challenges Candywriter has released in the past, the Shawshank Challenge is obviously a nod to pop culture — in specific, it honors what many consider to be one of the greatest films of the last 30 years or so, if not of all-time. It does, however, happen to be one of the tougher challenges we’ve had to complete, and a lot of the difficulty has something to do with the things you need to do while incarcerated, as well as the fact that you need to escape from a maximum security prison.
So with that said, we suggest reading through this BitLife mini-strategy guide, as we show you how to complete the Shawshank Challenge in as little time as possible.
The First Steps – Avoid The Death Penalty By Pleading Guilty
When creating a new character for BitLife’s Shawshank Challenge, there are no specific statistical requirements. Even if The Shawshank Redemption’s lead character, Andy Dufresne, is male, you don’t necessary need to create a male Bitizen — there aren’t any gender requirements either. You can live your life as normal from infancy to young adulthood, but once you come of age, that’s when you can start getting in trouble with the law in order to serve that long sentence in jail so you can break out later on in your virtual life.
Most of the time, you won’t be arrested right away for your first murder. In order to increase your chances of getting caught, you can target a loved one, a coworker, or any other named NPC, as killing the random individuals that appear in the drop-down box under Murder would usually go unnoticed, thus allowing you to literally get away with murder. In order to ensure you get caught, it’s advisable to commit a second crime that’s sure to get you arrested — bank robbery is usually a good choice, though you can also try stealing an expensive car, as these are rather difficult to steal without someone catching you in the act.
Now don’t panic just because you will be informed in court that you are facing the death penalty. Even if you don’t have enough money to afford the cheaper law firm, you can opt for a public defender and still have the option to plead guilty in order to get a lighter sentence. That lighter sentence would usually be 45 years in prison — that’s more than enough for you to complete one of the other requirements, which is to stay in jail for at least three decades before escaping! However, you need to make those 30 years “worth it,” which leads us to the next requirement in the list, and the next tip in this guide.
Getting Beaten Up By Gangs – Pick On The Inmates At The Yard
At first, we found it hard to fulfill the requirement where you need to get beaten up by at least five gangs. Doing this by joining gangs you don’t qualify for then getting rejected — an action that could result in a beating — is just too dangerous. This is a large-scale beatdown that could reduce your Health from close to 100 percent to zero in an instant, and the next time you get into a scrap, no matter how small it is, there’s a chance it would be your last.
What you’ll need to do here is to check the inmates in the Prison Yard menu and look for someone who’s a member of a gang — you don’t need to be part of a gang in order to do this. You can Insult, Mess with them, or Attack them — the first two options are usually the ones that result in a beating from that inmate’s gang.
However, you’ll also need to be careful — acting aggressively toward other inmates increases your Respect, and if your Respect is too high, other inmates, even those in a gang, wouldn’t want to mess with you. If that happens, you can deliberately join gangs you don’t qualify for (Brain Brothas, for instance, if your Smarts are low, or Cash Money Wreckers if you have little money — or none at all — in your bank account) in order to reduce your Respect.
You can also choose the Cry option — if you get caught shedding tears, that too could result in less Respect. Additionally, make sure you visit the gym and meditate under the Mind and Body menu as often as you could — you’ll need to build up your health for the next gang beatdown!
After getting beaten down five times by members of different gangs — you might need to be a bit patient with this — you’ll just need to wait till you’ve spent 30 years behind bars before escaping. This is an easy requirement as long as you make sure your Health isn’t too low and avoid depression and anxiety (try meditating or going to the library after a gang turns you down), but it won’t be quite as easy to fulfill the next requirement.
The Final Two Steps – Escaping From Jail And Migrating To Mexico
The fourth requirement in the Shawshank Challenge is to break out of jail, and unlike in the movie, there are no tunnels involved when it comes to your escape. Of course, you’re going to need to play the escape mini game that has been in place for quite some time in BitLife, and since being found guilty of murder means having to stay in a maximum security prison, it’s not going to be an easy task to get out of there without being caught.
Most maximum security prisons in the game have 8 x 8 setups that you need to navigate if you’re trying to escape, and taking the simplest route out is not going to cut it — the prison guards are too smart for that, and they’ll catch you after just a few moves if you aren’t careful!
Instead of trying to wing it and trying to keep the movement restrictions in mind, it would be better to complete this part of the challenge while watching a YouTube tutorial for how to escape. Make sure you follow every move to the letter, and keep in mind that some setups as seen in the videos may be mirror images of the setup you’re trying to escape from. It’s also worth pointing out that new prison maps have been uploaded since the time many of the escape tutorials went online, so you can quit the game, restart it, and try escaping again if you can’t find a tutorial video for the prison layout you’re trying to escape from.
Once you’ve escaped after 30 long years in prison, you will likely be at a point where you’re several thousand dollars in the red — this may depend on whether or not you had kids or had an outstanding loan before getting locked up. That’s okay, though — when choosing the Emigrate option under Activities, chances are you’ll be told that you cannot emigrate legally to Mexico.
In that case, choose the Emigrate Illegally option, and you’re set. You don’t need to have a positive cash balance or a job — you will, more likely than not, be successful in your shady attempt to evade the law by moving to Mexico, and that will complete the Shawshank Challenge. The prize, as is the norm for BitLife’s challenges, remains the same — a new hat or pair of eyeglasses after you pick one out of the four prize chests.