What’s in the Box?

Jackbox Party Pack 3 keeps the party going with a new set of five multiplayer games: Quiplash 2, Trivia Murder Party, Guesspionage, Fakin’ It, and Tee K.O. While the selection is diverse, there are a few duds that won’t appeal to most groups and are unlikely to sustain a party’s attention. Each game requires players to use a phone or tablet to answer questions or draw pictures, and anyone with an internet-ready device can play along, whether a party guest or online stream viewer. Most games support up to eight players, and an audience of up to 10,000 people can join in too. The humor can get raunchy, but censoring options allows groups to cater to younger players.

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CARLOS!

Quiplash 2

Of the five games, Quiplash 2 is the only returning game and is the most consistently entertaining. Players respond to prompts with funny answers. During each round, two responses are pitted against each other, and each player votes on which one more hilariously completes the prompt. Quiplash 2 plays out like a tournament version of Cards Against Humanity. If you have a group with a good sense of humor, then you’ll enjoy cracking jokes with your buddies. This is nearly the same game as the original Quiplash, which is fine since it was already fun before. The only noteworthy addition is the ability to create your own prompts so you can tailor the game for your group. Otherwise, it’s not recommended to get this pack just for Quiplash 2.

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Do you know the answer?

Trivia Murder Party

There are other reasons to pick this pack up, but it will wholly depend on the kind of friends you have. Trivia Murder Party is a quiz game with a horror twist. The premise is simple: answer multiple-choice trivia questions to get through a haunted house. If you get an answer wrong, you play a penalty game. The minigames vary from memory challenges to math tests and even games of chance. You die if you lose. The final round places the lone survivor in a trivia race to the finish where he must decide which of three possible selections fit in a category. The goal is to get to the end as quickly as possible to avoid getting caught by the shadows. Meanwhile, other players that have lost may catch up to the survivor and snatch his body for a last-second victory, keeping everyone engaged. Although the horror-based tension is fun, the jump scares aren’t. Quite often, the game presents gruesome and disturbing images, usually without warning, in an effort to frighten you. Not only is this unnecessary, it can ruin the tone in parties of casual players. If your group can handle it, then Trivia Murder Party is a fun diversion.

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Anyone else notice the dog named Mustachio?

Guesspionage

In Guesspionage – one of the weaker selections – players make guesses on random statistics, such as what percentage of people have ever had a mullet. One player guesses a number on a pie chart, and other players decide if the true percentage is higher or lower. The final round engages players in a Family Feud-style game of guessing the top three answers to a prompt. All of these factoids are based on real world statistics, so some may lead to interesting discussions. However, it lacks Jackbox Games’ trademark humor. As such, there’s only so much you can do with this statistical guessing game before getting bored. You might try it out once at a party, but it’s unlikely to hold its own.

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It’s hard to show in pictures, but the real-life action is fun.

Fakin’ It

On the flip side, Fakin’ It is a party game in the truest sense. Instead of answering questions on a device, the game asks you to either raise your hand, hold up a certain number of fingers, point at someone else, or make a face. For instance, you may raise your hand if you’ve ever broken a bone or make a face as if you had brain freeze. The catch is that one person, the “faker,” doesn’t actually have the prompts and must try to blend in. It’s a basic test of how well you can bluff. After everyone has made their move, players vote on who the faker is, and a majority vote leads to a proper accusation. The faker has three chances to outwit the others. Whether or not he is caught, someone else becomes the new faker for the next round.

With the right group, Fakin’ It can get very funny, especially when the faker accidentally admits to something like farting in an elevator. From a gameplay standpoint, it can be outright unfair to the faker. For example, the prompt may ask players to hold up fingers to represent how many times they showered this week, but then just tells the faker to hold up a random number. If the number he gives is much lower than seven, then it’s immediately obvious that he’s the faker—or has poor hygiene. With only four types of games and a text-based final round, Fakin’ It gets old but is fun while it lasts. It’s best to play this game for laughs and humiliating your friends.

TeeKO
The artstyle is nice, at least.

Tee K.O.

The final game Tee K.O. may as well be considered an art experience. The aesthetics are impressive with energetic anime-styled creatures serving as the game’s mascots. However, that’s all for show because the game is actually about your art. Each player makes three drawings on their mobile device. You’re free to draw anything you want, using any combination of colors. There is no direction, but players can ask the game for suggestions. After drawing, you write down several slogans, like catchphrases or memes. Afterwards you receive an assortment of your friends’ drawings and slogans to work with. Your job is to mix and match options to make the best t-shirt design.

Finally, players vote on which t-shirts they like best, tournament style. Two shirts fight, one shirt wins. The winning shirt goes on to face the next challenger and so on, but there is no rhyme or reason to matchups. It feels pointless to play this game unless you have a group of people who love drawing. If that’s the case though, Jackbox Games’ Drawful is a better option. Overall, Tee K.O. is worth a try for those interested, but be warned that the game is so drawn out (no pun intended) that you could finish an entire game of Quiplash 2 within the time it takes to get to your first t-shirt tournament.

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I would totally wear a t-shirt of the Yoshi I drew.

Conclusion

Jackbox Party Pack 3 is a mixed bag of interesting party games and subpar experiences. At the very least, the pack looks and sounds good, with appropriate aesthetics matching each game’s tone. Each game’s announcer is consistently humorous, making light of each situation and reminding you to have fun. If at least a few of these diverse party games sound entertaining, then give this package a try. Otherwise, stick to some of Jackbox Games’ older offerings.

Score: 7/10

Note: A PS4 review copy was used for this article. This review was originally posted on DarkStation in November 2016.

What are your thoughts on Jackbox Party Pack 3? Have you played any of Jackbox Games’ other offerings? What are your favorite party games? Please share any thoughts you have in the comments section below! Thanks for reading!

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31 thoughts on “Jackbox Party Pack 3 (PS4) Review

  1. Great review! This party pack itself if alright. I would take Drawful 2 over all these games combined. My favorite of the bunch is Quiplash 2. It’s more entertaining than Apples to Apples but not quite as raunchy as Cards Against Humanity. Trivia Murder Party kinda gives me the creeps (not a fan of jump scares), though it makes a great Halloween party game. Guesspionage is a bit too random for my taste; and I question the accuracy of their silly statistics (how did they obtain that data anyway?). Fakin’ It works best in a large group setting with people who are good at bluffing (I, for one, have no poker face). Tee KO didn’t make sense to me. I like the idea of making a funny logo, but I think the battle system should be a bracket/tournament style rather than which one can last the longest; it’s not really fair.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks as always! Drawful 2 is indeed better, so I’m glad I have that too. But none of these games stand up well on its own. In fact, together, the package is just overall decent. Quiplash 2 is definitely my favorite, though it really depends on the group. Same with Fakin’ It. I’d enjoy Trivia Murder Party more if there weren’t unnecessary jump scares. We pretty much agree on these games, which is probably why we haven’t played this in a while… Thanks again! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hm hm hm! I was rather curious about this on the Switch, since I hadn’t heard of the original release at all. Party games have a huge advantage if you’ve got the right group but if not then they can be awkward or boring. I’m curious as to how this’ll work out on the Switch, though. Could be fun and I have family over right now so I might consider downloading it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Although I don’t have the game on Switch, I can tell you that it’s a port with the same content. It works the same way with the phone too. You still have to look at the screen to play, but the Switch has the added functionality of being a smaller screen you could use if the TV is taken. That said, I would also consider the original Jackbox Party Pack or at least my favorite of the Jackbox games, Drawful 2, before this one. But as far as Switch party games, this is a good one if you know who you’re playing with. And since it’s family, you might enjoy it with them. There’s a family-friendly option if you need it too. Definitely worth considering if you liked what you heard about the package! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s sort of like how well the art goes with the text on the shirt too, so it’s quite possible to win because the words were funny, haha. My art skills aren’t great either, but I think that’s what makes games like that and Drawful (a funny pictionary-like game by the same company) hilarious in good company.

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    1. Thanks! Overall, the Jackbox games are great ideas. Implementation of a website to allow viewers to play is genius. The games themselves are hit or miss. Tee K.O. can be good depending on the group, but the arbitrary tournament system, odd rules, and length of a single game killed it for my group.

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  3. I played the original bundle, and this bundle at a friends’ for New Years’ Eve. I found I really enjoyed them. They’re a lot of fun, and they’re palatable for people who don’t play video games too. About the only thing I didn’t like, was that you pretty much NEED to own either a tablet or a fancy cell phone to play them. Some of us have to roll with crummy burner Tracfone’s that don’t allow for apps to be installed. On the other hand almost everyone has some kind of tablet. So it really only cuts out the phone, and tablet dinosaurs like me.

    Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot! The Jackbox games are winners whenever I’m in get-togethers that include non-gamers. Everyone can enjoy games like Quiplash or Drawful. Yea, needing extra equipment to play can make it inaccessible. Though at least you can also use your computer to play. It’s more clunky since you’d need to use your mouse or trackpad, but I’ve played along on my browser before when we needed extra devices. It’s not ideal, but it’s definitely a valid way to play. Thanks for your great comments! 🙂

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    1. Awesome, glad you enjoy the Jackbox games! Trivia Murder Party is an interesting take on the original You Don’t Know Jack, and it does the horror part surprisingly well. I’m not a fan of jumpscares, so it didn’t sit well with me, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Really, having any of the older packs should do, so I hope you keep enjoying the party games!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I haven’t played that one yet, but based on the name alone, it sounds fun! My personal favorite is Drawful. It never fails to make people laugh at parties, particularly bad drawings and what people decide to name them.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That sounds really awesome. Does the game not work on a stream? I’ll have to go backwards and try some of those games out. I’m glad they willingly put their ideas out there in each pack. You never know which one will be a hit!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Ahh, good point. I know for the newer versions of games, they usually have a Twitch delay timer, increasing the time limit for viewers. I want to say that it’s even called Twitch delay in the options, haha.

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      4. There is, and it works well in things like Quiplash and Fibbage, but the fast paced nature of Bidiots means even that won’t help. It’s auction based so any delay longer than a couple of seconds means it’s near impossible to participate remotely.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Ohh that’s true. Hm, I’m surprised there’s an option for stream for that then. I think for Fakin’ It in this pack, it’s not at all possible to do online, just because of all the physicality involved.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Nice review! I feel like Mario Party could stand to borrow (steal) one or two ideas from this. Granted, the last time I played a Mario Party title Donkey Kong was hosting and Toad was a playable character, but still…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For sure! Quiplash is the only one that was a hit for our group. Fakin’ It came close, but it got old. I think the best games Jackbox has produced so far are Quiplash, Fibbage, and Drawful. Drawful in particular is awesome with the right group. What makes these games great is they follow a very standard formula of having to guess the right answer out of your friends’ ridiculous responses. The funny things people come up with make these games stand out!

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