Just about everybody on the planet has some sort of internet connected device these days. whether it’s a phone, iPod, tablet, laptop, or a Wii U GamePad. That’s also all it takes for people who are interested in playing the Jackbox Party Pack. These bundle of trivia games will also leave everyone in the room laughing for hours. The Switch just received the third set of this series, Jackbox Party Pack 3. While it’s a hefty price $25 for what amounts to five different trivia games it’s well worth the asking price.
One player will start the game on the Switch and then each person, up to eight, simply needs to grab their internet connected device. You enter a unique code that gives you access to the game and the best part is that you don’t necessarily need to be together in the room to play. As long as anyone has the code they can join in the game. That means if you’re on Skype with friends in another state they could be playing with you. Pick a game and have fun. Each of the games is a lot of fun, and while most are some variant on trivia they all play differently enough from each other to really be a lot of fun. Every player will have their favorite and since the games are pretty short in length it’s really easy to rotate through them pretty often.
Let me just briefly go over what these games are. The first is called Quiplash 2. Think of this as a game like Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity. Those are the closest things I can think of to compare it to. Each player is given a set of questions (and each question is only given to two different players) to answer. Sometimes the answers can be serious, most of the time you’re going to want to go as crazy as you can think of. Once all the questions have been answered everyone else then votes on the two answers that are given. The person with the most votes gets the most points. At the end of two rounds everyone is then given the same question, but points are still based on total votes. The person with the most points at the end of the three rounds is declared the winner. Quiplash was easily the favorite amongst our family. Every answer had people laughing.
Trivia Murder Party was next in line for us in terms of favorite game. In this one each player is trying to survive to escape a room alive. Answer questions correctly and you get to live. Get an answer wrong and you have to fight for your life. Once all the players, except one have been eliminated you go to the escape phase. The person who survived has the advantage at first as they’re closer to the exit, but every player has a chance to win. Each question in the exit phase has up to three potential right answers and the more correct answers you give the faster you reach the door. If you catch up to the survivor you take over their body and they have to then catch you to get it back. The person who gets to the door the fastest escapes and wins. All the other players are consumed by shadow and die.
Guesspionage has you trying to guess what percentage of people who were asked a question answerd in a specific way, such as, “What percentage of people have ever lied about their weight on their driver’s license?”. The person who is asked the question enters their percentage guess and then everyone else can guess whether they think the answer is higher or lower. The person who is asked the question gets points based on how close they were to the correct percentage. Everyone else gets 1,000 points if they correctly guess if the answer is higher or lower. After the first round if you think the guess is off by more than 15% you can double down on your guess of higher or lower and get double or nothing on your points. The third round has you guessing the top three answers to a question and gives you the chance to really rack up some points. At the end of three rounds the player with the most points is declared the winner.
Fakin’ It has you competing against the other players to determine who amongst you is lying. You’re given a question like, “point at the person you would like to spend your life on a desert island with.” Only one person is given a different question than everyone else. That person is the faker. The other players have three chances to figure out which person is faking it. There are variations on this like holding up a number of fingers in response to a question, making funny faces at the other players and such. This game is based purely on how well you can read the body language of other players. it’s completely non-verbal, but is really fun if you have someone who’s good at fooling the other players.
At the time of this review one game hadn’t really been tried out much and that was Tee K.O. A game where players draw things that they might see on a shirt. They’re then asked to come up with t-shirt logos. Those are then mixed and matched amongst the players and you vote on which t-shirt design is the best.
For parents that are worried about how family friendly the game is, have no fear. There is a family friendly filter and you can even censor other players if you feel that their answers aren’t suitable for the people in the room with you. I forgot to turn the filter on before we started and the very first question was rather racy. Since our four and five year olds were in the room at the time we went in and turned the filter on after that and never had another issue throughout our time with the game. They even really enjoyed Trivia Murder Party, or as they call it the Spooky Game. The music is sort of creepy, but there’s nothing to worry about in this game, despite the name.
If I had any complaint about the game it’s that it can be tedious to get into a new game everytime you back out. Rather than simply logging into a lobby you have to log into each game separately. That means having to enter a new code every time you want to play a new game. It’s a small gripe, and one I hope that gets fixed in new editions of the game. That’s really the only flaw I see in the game. There were some occasional times where someone would have to wait for their device to load the game or a question, but it didn’t happen often enough to be a problem. It was also isolated to one person so I think that had more to do with the device than the game itself.
When we first downloaded the game, we expected to maybe check out one or two of the games and be done, but we ended up playing for more than two hours and everyone, from our 13 year old on up had a great time. The next night my parents were over and we played with them as well and they had a blast. We expect that this game will be a favorite for a long time to come and will join family game times alongside games like Mario Kart or Game & Wario. It’s easily one of the best party setting games I’ve played in a very long time.
Review copy of the game provided by the publisher
Played through all the games, with the exception of Tee K.O.
Total Play Time: 5 hours with many, many, many more to come.