We’re all trying to connect with people we miss, and to have some semblance of social interaction. One fun way to do this is by playing multi-player games remotely.
We’ve been scheduling regular remote game nights with far-flung family members, and it’s something we all look forward to. We’re using Jackbox Games.
Jackbox Games are social, party games. The games are played on platforms like computers, Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch.
Each player follows the game by looking at that screen, but plays from their own mobile device.
Although the original idea was for players to be in the same room, looking at the same screen, it turns out that you can play with remote friends through videoconferencing services like Zoom and Google Hangouts, and this remote playing has picked up dramatically since we all started staying at home.
Read our getting started guide for Zoom and Google Hangouts. If you’ve never been invited to a Zoom or Google Hangouts session this will help you get started.
We’ll give you the basics of how to play Jackbox Games with remote friends on Zoom or Google Hangouts, but Jackbox Games has a useful blog post that gives much more detail, and covers other ways of screen sharing, like Discord and Steam.
One player needs to own the games. The games are sold in Party Packs, with each Party Pack includes several games, although you can buy some as standalone titles as well. Keep reading, because there’s a big sale on the games right now.
Playing Jackbox Games Remotely
To play Jackbox Games remotely, the person who owns the game starts a Zoom or Google Hangouts session, and invites the remote players to that session.
Then the host starts the game on his or her laptop, and then uses the screen sharing option of Zoom or Google Hangouts, so that the remote friends on the Zoom or Google Hangouts session can see the screen.
You’ll see each other as well. and be able to talk to each other, just like you would on any other Zoom or Google Hangouts session.
If you’re in the same room, you don’t have to each join the Zoom or Google Hangout session. Just one person per location needs to do that.
As the game starts, everyone will see a 4-letter “room code” on the screen. Go to Jackbox.tv on your phone or tablet and enter the room code, and your name, and you’ll have joined the game. From that point, use your phone or tablet to play the game.
If you have multiple people in the same physical room, and you want to see the game on your TV, instead of a laptop screen, you can connect your computer to your TV with an HDMI cable.
You can find much more detail about playing remotely, including using Steam or Discord to share screens, and playing the games on Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch, here.
Jackbox Games on Sale
Right now, many of the Party Packs are on sale, some for as low as half price. You can see all the games, and all the deals here, but here are some of the deals, which are available for a limited time.
The Jackbox Party Pack: $12.49 (normally $24.99)
- You Don’t Know Jack 2015: Comedy trivia game
- Fibbage XL: Bluffing game. Convince opponents that you know the answers to odd trivia questions
- Drawful: Challenges players to draw bizarre doodles on your phone or tablet
- Word Spud: Test your vocabulary chops in this fill-in-the-blank word game
- Lie Swatter: Play true or false, with a timer
The Jackbox Party Pack 2: $12.49 (normally $24.99)
- Fibbage 2: Bluffing game with over 500 new questions
- Earwax: Sound effects game
- Bidiots: Art auction game. Draw picture and outbid your opponents in an art auction
- Quiplash XL: The funniest quip wins
- Bomb Corp: Defuse random bombs in the office to keep your job
The Jackbox Party Pack 3: $16.24 (normally $24.99)
- Quiplash 2: The funniest quip wins
- Trivia Murder Party: Match wits with a trivia-obsessed killer
- Guesspionage: Data-mining guessing game
- Tee K.O.: Battle your custom t-shirts to the death
- Fakin’ It: Sneaky game for tricksters
The Jackbox Party Pack 4: $16.24 (normally $24.99)
- Fibbage 3: Includes Enough About You, where you guess weird facts about your friends
- Survive the Internet: Twist your friends’ “online” comments in hilarious ways
- Monster Seeking Monster: Spooky date-a-thon where you message and date fellow monsters
- Bracketeering: Derange ddebate match where you place smart bets on stupid arguments
- Civic Doodle: One-up art game where you compete to improve the town murals
The Jackbox Party Pack 5: $19.49 (normally $29.99
- You Don’t Know Jack: Pop-culture trivia mash-up
- Split The Room: A what-if game where you create strange and divisive hypothetical situations
- Mad Verse City: Channel your inner MC as rap battling robot
- Patently Stupid: Competitive drawing game where you create odd inventions to solve bizarre problems
- Zeeple Dome: Fling yourself at bloodthirsty aliens to win millions of Zubabucks
The Jackback party Pack 6: $20.99 (normally $29.99)
- Trivia Murder Party 2: Match wits with a trivia-obsessed killer
- Role Models: Offbeat personality test
- Joke Boat: Compete by crafting one-liners for a cruise ship talent show
- Dictionarium: Create the funniest definition
- Push the Button: Hidden identity game