When I got started in the NFT game, I hoped I would end up making a bunch of money and live in a big house.  ADA Inmates, however, have taken that in a different direction; they have all been sentenced to time in The Big House.

On February 9, 2023, ADA Inmates will release 5000 inmates, which will be minted on Cardano, and immediately sent to the clink.  Each minted inmate will cost 130 ADA.
The community will be set up as 4 competing gangs, each separated into classifications based on their crime.  There will be every classification from arsonists to money launderers, and murderers to politicians (the worst).

I’d like to discuss ADA inmates by assessing 6 categories that I hope will help you make the decision on whether or not to pick up an inmate on February 9th.  Those categories are Originality, Artwork, The Team, The Lore/Backstory, Social Influence, and Utility. We’ll start with  Originality.


The idea behind a project built around incarcerated individuals is unique. There are other collections on other chains that use the terms inmates or prison, but my review of the ones I found had no real comparison to ADA inmates. With the art, the story, and their blueprint, this is a novel concept.

The Artwork

ADA Inmates

To me, the sneak peeks the team has released so far show a reasonable diversity of traits. The diversity of the face appears to be one of the less diverse traits I saw, but even those show a reasonable amount of diversity.  It’s always impossible to tell how these sneak peeks translate into the actual collection, so I do take this into consideration.

The ADA InmatesTeam

The first thing I noticed about the team was that they are doxxed directly on the website. They could have taken the round of undoxxing, or used a service for doxxing. These methods would still their identity secret. The ADA Inmates team went in a different direction.
The guys list no previous projects, and I was not able to find any, and a few are relatively new to crypto and NFTs.

The Lore/Backstory

Prison Journal Entry 1
Prison Journal Entry 1

A unique idea for an NFT project requires an original backstory. The backstory is laid out in a series of prison journals written by inmate #02092022.  As of this article, there were journals that lay out the first 22 days of the prisoner’s sentence. Many days have multiple entries.  In the journals, he discusses a lot of everyday happenings.

According to the team, there are hints in these journals give hints about the project’s future, and they feel like you can’t understand the entire project without reading them.  They are well-written, and there appear to be more to come.

In my opinion, an open and evolving story is great.  The team can make changes as things come up, and it gives the holder a possible chance to help shape the story at some point.  Of course, that doesn’t mean it will happen, but I like that it could be an option.

Social Influence

With over 5k followers on their Twitter account and over 8,000 discord members, they have solid numbers for a new project. Twitter stats show that they get over 1,000 views on a vast majority of posts.  I also see that their interaction is wonderful. I see tons of posts that have more than 400 comments and retweets.  That shows their community is very engaged.

Building a community will continue to depend on social interaction, and ADA Inmates have got that part down.

ADA Inmates Utility

The ecosystem will center around the $Smokes token.  That’s a great name for a prison-related token.  $Smokes tokens will be used in the commissary within the game and they can be used to purchase IRL merch.

According to the Parole Letter, there will be a total of 70,000,000 $Smokes tokens, 700,000 of which will be sent to holders in a series of airdrops that reward those who hold for certain amounts of time.
You’ll be able to stake for $Smokes by building posters for your cell wall.  Here are more uses for the token:

  • Auctions/Raffles
  • Upgrade your cell
  • Trade for favors from the Warden
  • Work To Earn

Another Utility is the Death Row Pass, a recently minted token that gives holders a whitelist for the main drop. The DRP is also an OG pass, which will continue to provide utility as long as the holder owns the Death Row Pass.

Racial Diversity With ADA Inmates

Parole Letter
Parole Letter

One interesting aspect of the project is the 4 gangs is their separation by race.  There will be 100% equal diversity within the collection.  Each race has the same number and classification of inmates.  The team’s justification for this decision is that they want to mimic the real-world prison setup.  This is a novel approach, and I get what they’re doing.

The documentation has hinted at film adaptations of the story.  This setup would be in-line with much of what we see in prison movies and TV shows.  I don’t think this will be an issue, but that doesn’t mean everyone will see it the same way.

My Final Thoughts On ADA Inmates

Overall, this project is checking all the major boxes it needs to.  They’ve come up with an original idea, they’ve got better-than-average artwork (based on what I’ve seen), and they’re building a path to tell a great story with their project.

This is a well-thought-out project that seems to know the direction they want to take, and how to get to their goals.

Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide if you want to buy an ADA Inmate on February 9, 2023. This article should only be a small part of your overall DYOR regimen.

ADA Inmates On Twitter –@ADAInmates | ADA Inmates On The Web – ADAInmates.io


Clinton Brown or CNFT Magazine did not receive any compensation in any form from ADA Inmates for this article.


  • JMWoz, February 6, 2023 @ 11:22 pm Reply

    Great breakdown of the project. This will mature into a blue hip in Cardano.

  • Neal Roye, February 7, 2023 @ 5:45 am Reply

    Like your summary of this strong and promising CNFT project. The lore is a total page turner. With exciting future plans including airdrops, cells, staking, female prisoners and a Cornicopias supermax prison metaverse to come.

    You are right about the engagement too. The founders of ADA Inmates are 100% passionate, always planning ahead, transparent and online vibing in the Discord chat within the community daily. A project for a long-term hold and that takes responsibilty for being part of Cardano and Web 3 and pushing the whole space forward.

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