The Jackbox Party Pack series was created in 2014, and since then, Jackbox Games has released a new set of games in these packs each year. We all love an irreverent party game that brings us together with our friends or family, only to later have us argue to death. Now, we can get our hands on the 10th installment. What kind of party tricks have they brought this year?
- Developer: Jackbox Games
- Platforms: PC, Xbox, Nintendo, PlayStation
- Price: $34.99 USD
- Release Date: October 19th, 2023
The Jacbox Party 10 Lineup
Jackbox Party Pack 10 comes with four new games and a new rendition of an old one. These include:
- Tee K.O. 2: a sequel to the popular Tee K.O. game in which you can customize and create T-shirts with personalized drawings and slogans.
- FixyText: a game of Finish My Sentence, but in texting format.
- Hypnotorious: a chance to become any person or object and deceive others about your identity.
- Time Jinx: a pop-culture trivia game with an emphasis on dates.
- Dodo Re Mi: a rhythm game, but you’re birds.
I bet those game descriptions had you yawning. It’s not like you haven’t played drawing, rhythm, and deception games before. Thanks to the pandemic, there was a rise in the popularity of online and browser-based party games. Estranged friends and remote teachers all clung to games like Jackbox Party Pack 10 like there was no tomorrow. This is, of course, a double-edged sword. While we can be grateful for the years 2020 to 2022 for spawning so many browser-based party games, they definitely pose a threat to Jackbox Party games regarding innovation. After all, is there anything that hasn’t already been created yet?
Jackbox Party Pack 10 crashes into your place, blasting funky tunes from a shoulder speaker, and roars through a dragon-themed megaphone, “Ya bet we can.”
No single game in Jackbox Party Pack 10 doesn’t bring something new to the table, couch, or wherever you’re playing. Let’s review each game this party pack delivers and uncover what they are about.
Timejinx: The Trivia That Wants You To Lose
In Timejinx, you must travel through time answering trivia questions and try not to destroy humanity’s timeline. No pressure. It’s a game for 1-8 players and lasts for about 15-20 minutes.
I know what you’re thinking. Do we really need another trivia game out there? Well, Timejinx is not like other trivia games. She’s special.
As you start the game, you get a simple TL;DR: it’s about answering questions about time. Then, you’re left to your own devices for the first trivia question. You get a time-traveling prompt to jump to (the year the Rickroll was invented), a time frame (2005 – 2020), and a cute, safe box to punch in the numbers for the correct year. The clock’s ticking, so punch in your best guess before time runs out.
But here’s the twist: Your score is about how close (or far) you are to the correct answer. The lower your score, the better. That means you lose if you end the game with the highest score.
This rule might throw you for a loop at first, but that’s the secret sauce that makes the game stand out. We’re all used to cheering as our points climb higher on the leaderboard, right? But Timejinx flips the script – you’ll scratch your head in puzzling disbelief when you find yourself sitting at the bottom of the heap despite having the top score.
Timejinx goes on for three rounds, but not uninterrupted. To make sure the game doesn’t drag for too long, it pops in cute little interludes called Time Hox, Time Fix, and Time Loop. These three provide a much-needed break from the regular timeline format by asking players to blend in with people from a particular past era or by looping the same question twice to see how much they doubt themselves the second time. If you do well on these, you get some points shaved off your score, which, remember, is a good thing in Timejinx!
Timejinx is probably the game my party was least excited about. Still, we were quickly won over by the game’s irreverent humor and snappy pace.
Dodo Re Mi: Finally, a Rhythm Game for Big parties
In Dodo Re Mi, you and your friends use your phones as musical instruments to jam together like a birdy band while also trying not to become plant food. It offers a variety of challenges, music styles, and instruments to cater to players of all skill levels, so everyone can have a blast.
Related: The 10 best rhythm games
Dodo Re Mi is the game I was most excited to play, mainly because we don’t often get rhythm games for big parties. The concept is simple, but getting the timing right from the get-go, especially when playing with 9 people, is nearly impossible. It’s a 15 to 25-minute game, but you’ll probably spend an additional 10 getting these 9 clowns to pick an instrument and get started with the birdy music.
And while that doesn’t say anything in favor of my party management skills, it does say something positive about Brooke Breit’s direction in Dodo Re Mi. There is a vast variety of instruments to pick from, all of which are original and funny. From kazoos, to marimbas, to Grandma’s pianos.
There’s pressure to get the melodies right because otherwise, a carnivore plant might eat all the birdies alive. The entire band could end up being dinner. After you’re done playing for your life, you are treated to a replay of the monstrosity – because let’s face it, 99% of the time, it sounds awful – of a ringtone you’ve just created. At the same time, the looming threat of being eaten alive looks at you with a fork, knife, and napkin.
Dodo Re Mi is an impossibly fun game and easily the one with the most replayability factor, thanks to its massive repertoire of bird songs and instrument variety.
Hypnotorious: A Tough Sell with an Addictive Aftertaste
Hypnotorious is a 4-8 player game that usually takes from 15-25 minutes to play and an additional 10 minutes to convince your party to actually sit down and play it.
Of all the games in Jackbox Party 10, Hypnotorious is probably the most original one, which makes it unfamiliar to the party. It’s also the one with the most unappealing art style for Gen Z, according to the kids in my party.
However, if I had to compare Hyptonorious to one game, it would be the (in)famous Among Us. This usually gets the kids on board. Though you won’t be kicking an imposter off a ship, the element of delusion is there.
Hyptonorious assigns you and every other party member a secret identity within a theme. This can be people, say, Superheroes, or objects, say, pieces of clothing. The twist? There is one imposter: a person whose identity doesn’t match the category.
Now, get ready to whip up lines of dialogue to fit a given prompt, like, “Gently break up with someone.” This is a hoot with superheroes, but it’s an absolute riot with clothing items like “plaid T-shirts” and “corsets.” These responses are the breadcrumbs that will eventually expose the imposter. Using these answers, other players must find the one who doesn’t belong in the group.
It’s a wild, quirky game that can be a tough sell to a crowd more inclined toward the snappy Timejinx or the comforting rhythm of Dodo Re Mi. Hypnotorious won’t let you slap your creations on a cool T-shirt or hoodie, and its concept isn’t as straightforward as Fizzytext’s “just complete each other’s sentences in texting format.”
Learning to master Hypnotorious takes a little time, and nailing the creative finesse takes some effort. But when the mood is right, Hypnotorious transforms rooms into echo chambers of laughter, snickers, and the occasional knee-slapper.
Tee K.O. 2: Clothing Against Humanity
In Tee K.O. 2, you must combine a drawing with a slogan to make the perfect T-shirt, hoodie, or tank top. It’s a collaborative effort of 3-8 players who, in 20 minutes, will put together a piece of clothing and then competitively pit the best two against each other until one performs a “Shirtality.”
While the options are given blindly in the first round, there’s a second round in which you can choose whether to recycle slogans and drawings or draw something new. This formula lets you be clever in ways the original Tee K.O. wouldn’t allow.
Related: Best PC party games for the holidays
There’s something about the drawing game formula that just works. Half of the time, people will laugh at how awful your drawing skills are. The other half, the fun, comes from how surprisingly well a random slogan can suit a stick figure drawing.
This second edition of Tee K.O., directed by Tim Sniffen, comes with a bunch of new avatars to choose from, which all have a really cool-looking style and give each player a sense of personality. It’s more Tee K.O. If you liked the first one, chances are you’ll be happy to see a familiar face in Jackbox Party Pack 10.
FixyText: Group Texting Madness, the Game
FixyText drags its 3-8 players through 15 to 20 minutes of pure, unadulterated chaos.
Though I’ve described FixyText as a game about finishing other people’s sentences in texting format, that oversimplifies the game’s premise. Finishing other people’s sentences implies somebody gets a turn to begin the sentence, and another person gets a turn to finish it. FixyText does away with turns altogether and casually does away with the “DELETE” button, which unleashes utter chaos and several doses of anxiety in the room.
You receive a text message, and the entire group must reply simultaneously. Typos? You can’t delete ’em. Your friend just typed something you completely disagree with? Gotta roll with it.
Director Alina Constantin must have had their fair share of lousy phone autocorrect mishaps, decided to crank the madness to 100%, and created FixyText. This game is extremely fun, but I’d say it’s thoroughly enjoyed when played with a group of adults.
The beauty of Jackbox Party games lies in their universal appeal. The creators have cleverly incorporated settings to ensure that it’s a party for everyone.
The games allow the players to take things where their group wants to take them. There is a “family-friendly” filter you can toggle, which makes the game especially lovely to play with the family. Just make sure you don’t miss it, or you’ll have Timejinx asking you in which year Tumblr added its no-nudity policy in front of your kid. Or so my friend told me.
Their prowess in game localization goes way beyond the surface. As the directors highlighted, it’s not just about translating audio and U.I.; it’s about understanding cultural nuances. The game devs actively collaborate with the localization team to ensure references make sense in various cultures. I played the game in LATAM Spanish and noticed that references to U.S. presidents were often replaced with questions about Colombian leaders.
Jackbox Party Pack 10 caters to every party scene, from family gatherings to friend hangouts and small classrooms. This bundle of 5 games has the potential to spread joy across diverse cultures worldwide.
9.5 / 10
|+ Four brand-new original games|
|+ Versatile enough to play with a party of all age groups|
|+ Humor hits that sweet spot between irreverent and fun|
|– Game concepts and instructions can be a bit convoluted, which discourages players.|
Gamepur team received a review unit code for the purpose of this review.