Every year, Jackbox Games unleashes a new collection of a handful of party games. This time around, we have a fresh batch of games (with the exception of a sequel) so let's see what's included.
As with all Jackbox games, you play by logging in to the official website using almost any internet-enabled device then enter a code to join a game. It's easy to set up and allows you to play with many pals without the need for additional controllers and accessories. Some extra options allow you to implement a family-friendly filter and have audience members join and interact with the games. The setup manages to be both comprehensive and intuitive which makes diving in to the games a streamlined yet customizable endeavor.
Quiplash 2 (3 to 8 players)
I've already reviewed Quiplash and its XL version in The Jackbox Party Pack 2. This sequel is basically the exact same game where you and all of your friends answer prompts as humorously as you can then everyone votes on their favourite. It's a nifty way to see who the funniest person in your group is. What's different this time around is that you can make your own prompts and put them together into custom episodes. It's a cool addition that adds tons of replay value yet the core gameplay remains unchanged.
Trivia Murder Party (1 to 8 players)
Even though this pack doesn't contain a new You Don't Know Jack, Trivia Murder Party is definitely a worthy substitute. In fact, many fans might even consider it superior. It's basically a survival horror quiz show where you answer questions and take part in mini-games. If you do poorly then the host will kill you so trying to stay alive until the end is a challenge. Even then, your ghost plays in the final round and you could end up winning even after you die. The mini-games are great fun as you try to form words in a Boggle-like setup, memorize pictures as best you can, and cut off your own fingers. The mix of trivia, mini-games, and dark humour make Trivia Murder Party a fantastic addition to the Jackbox universe. Also, it's a great game to play on Halloween.
Guesspionage (2 to 8 players)
Guesspionage involves guessing the percent of people who responded a certain way to a question. You basically enter a percent then are awarded points according to how close you were. Meanwhile, every other contestant guesses whether you were higher or lower in your estimate. It's a very simple game that brilliantly incorporates statistics to create a fun multiplayer formula. However, the statistics frequently just don't seem right. As far as I know, the results were calculated from surveys done by Jackbox Games themselves so it makes you wonder how accurate they are. Confusing stats aside, it's still an enjoyable game.
Fakin' It (3 to 6 players)
I must admit, I don't understand how Fakin' It could be fun. At the start, it's very confusing and takes a while for everyone to grasp just what to do. Once you get in the groove, the payoff simply isn't worth it. Basically, everyone is given a prompt except for one player. These could be "Point at someone who you'd like to learn more about" or "Raise your hand if you've ever shoplifted". Then, everyone acts out the prompt at the exact same time. Finally, you and your friends briefly chat after the prompt is revealed and try to unanimously decide who the faker is (the player who didn't get the prompt). I guess it's a decent way to get to know people and perhaps an office could use it as a tool when new work teams are assigned, but as a game; it's just not fun.
Tee K.O. (3 to 8 players)
Tee K.O. is another one of those popularity contest games (like Quiplash) although I found there to be a lot more creativity involved. Basically, everyone draws whatever pictures they want then they write as many slogans that they can think of. Next, each player skims through the pictures and slogans in order to combine one of each to create the best T-shirt they can. Finally, players vote on which designs they like best and points are awarded to the creative minds behind that shirt. I didn't think much of it at the start but it's actually a pretty fun game that rewards players for a few different facets of creativity.
The Jackbox Party Pack 3 is bursting with fantastic multiplayer games and it's a big step up from last year's offering. Just make sure you can play with at least three people before picking up a copy or else the party won't be worth attending.
- + Trivia Murder Party perfectly combines quizzes, mini-games, and a dark sense of humour
- + Guesspionage uses statistics in a cool way
- + Tee K.O. is fun for creative types
- - Fakin' It is confusing and lacks fun even after you figure out how to play it
- - Many Guesspionage stats don't seem right
- - At least 3 players are needed for most games