The Jackbox Party Pack 3 Review

Publisher:  Jackbox Games

Developer:  Jackbox Games

MSRP: $19.99

Rated:  T

Release Date:  October 18th, 2016

Platforms: Playstation 4, Xbox One, PC

Rating: ★★★★☆

Get ready to call your friends over for a night full of laughter.  Jackbox is at it again with their third party pack containing four brand new games and one sequel for plenty of new content.  A collection is only as good as the sum of its parts, so how do the new games fair?  We’ve broken down each game to give you a little taste of what’s in store.

Quiplash 2 (3-8 Players)

Imagine playing Cards Against Humanity.  Whoever’s turn it is reads a black card and awaits everyone else’s white card for some hopefully hilarious answers.  At its essence, Quiplash is fairly similar to that, but the catch is you essentially have blank white cards.  That means you have to come up with the cleverest, most funny response you can on the fly to the prompts your given.  Whoever’s turn it is votes on the best responses to divy out the points.  It’s a simple concept, but you might be surprised the types of crazy answers your friends can come up with quickly.  Of course it can be a little difficult to think of something right away, but that actually can lead to bizarre answers that are even better than those you could have otherwise created with more time.  Being the sequel, Quiplash 2 brings with it all new prompts to the table for some more great fun.  Easily the best game on the pack, Quiplash 2 certainly will be your go to game for get together for some amazing times.

Trivia Murder Party (1-8 Players)

I love trivia games.  Trivial Pursuit, Buzz!, Smarty Pants, and of course Jackbox’s own You Don’t Know Jack, as a few examples.  You Don’t Know Jack was probably the most bizarre trivia game I had ever played.  Well, Trivia Murder Party takes bizarre and launches it into a whole new stratosphere.  The premise is you are playing a trivia game hosted by a mentally unbalanced serial killer.  If that doesn’t already sound out there, there’s more.  Each round consists of a question, many of which will put even normal trivia buffs to the test.  Get it right and you move to the next round, get it wrong and you move to the Killing Floor.  The Killing Floor has you play one of an assortment of mini games to try to stop from being murdered.  Some are fairly simple, such as answer at least 9 basic math questions correct within the given time, to remember a blood spatter pattern.  One has you pick one of four chalices to drink from, of which two contain poison and can kill you and end the game.  There is even one where you have to choose one of your fingers to cut off, meaning for future answers you won’t be able to press an answer corresponding to whichever finger you cut off.  They progressively get harder the higher round you are in for some intense moments.  In general, it is absolutely nuts, twisted, sadistic, and lots of fun.  Just be prepared that the game is trying to kill you, meaning there will be several “unfair” points where you’ll die and get upset, but still want to come back for more.

Guesspionage (2-8 Players)

Guesspionage ended up being the most surprising game of the collection, with just how much damn fun it was.  Jackbox previously polled people online for various categories.  When you play, players will take turns in the hot seat answering questions based on percentages of those polled.  You will be given a question, such as ‘How many people have eaten frog legs?’.  The active player will have to choose what percentage of people they think have tried frog legs.  The closer they are to the percentage, the more points they get.  At that point, everyone else playing must predict if the person who chose the percentage was to high or to low, to receive points as well.  The questions were ones that only Jackbox could think of, for a great time.  Its more low-key than the other games, but you will still find yourself laughing when you actually find out the percentages.  Especially for a more family friendly game, this is an easy go for plenty of fun.

Fakin’ It (3-6 Players)

Of all of the games on the pack, Fakin’ It was probably what we were looking forward to trying out the most.  In it, everyone receives the same prompt, albeit one person.  For instance, you may be asked to raise your hand if you have ever farted.  The one person who does not receive this prompt is the faker.  They are told to choose to raise their hand or not raise their hand.  At that point they must lie, cheat, or do whatever they decide to make sure everyone else doesn’t find out they’re the faker.  You’ll get two chances to figure out who the faker before the next round.  While entertaining, it certainly was the most disappointing game in the pack.  It just didn’t have the excitement or humor the other games had.  While we are all for forcing someone to have to lie to those around them, when its restricted to more faking holding up a number of fingers or your arm, it just loses interest quickly.  It definitely is a game where the more people you have playing the better, more so than some of the others in the pack.  Otherwise it is not to hard to figure out who is faking, taking with it what makes the game interesting.

Tee K.O. (3-8 Players)

The last game of the pack certainly is certainly the most stylized.    In Tee K.O. players will draw pictures for t-shirts and separately write as many slogans for shirts as they can in a completely anime style battle setup.  Given the pictures and a selection of the slogans, players choose what they think are the best combinations for some killer shirts.  The shirts than battle one on one, determined by player voting, to see which shirt, and eventual player, is the winner.  The production value of the game nearly put the other games to shame, with its striking visuals.  With that sad, it was the least engaging of all the titles.  You’ll still enjoy finding some great shirt combinations from everyone’s slogans, but unless you’re playing with some true artists the pictures on your shirts are most likely going to look pretty bad.  We enjoyed a few play throughs, we just were ready to jump back to other games on the pack fairly quick.

Taken as a whole, the pack is great addition for your next party.  Even so it has a couple of weak links in the chain.  Fakin’ It just doesn’t use lying to your friends as well as Fibbage previously did.  Tee K.O. has a problem with style over substance.  You’ll still have fun trying them out before moving to the other three heavy hitters.  Quiplash 2 is a blast with more prompts than the first to keep your parties stocked for quite some time.  Trivia Murder Party and Guesspionage are unique, hidden gems that you’ll be amazed to find yourself not wanting to stop.  All of the games would be fun to put on by themselves, but especially as a pack, it’s a great collection you don’t want to be without.

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