Jackbox Games has been putting out some quality party games for some time now. I would eve go as far as to say that they revolutionized the party video game genre with the release of the original Fibbage. After several new entries, there’s always the chance that they could be running out of ideas. Not every pack of games has been lived up to the high highs of the series as a whole, but I am pleased to report that The Jackbox Party Pack 5 has some fresh new games that keep me convinced that Jackbox Games still has the magic touch in creating awesome party games. Let’s go through each of the entries in The Jackbox Party Pack 5 individually to discuss what makes each of them great.
Canada always seems to be the goal of post-apocalyptic travelers seeking respite from the assault of the undead. I suppose the reasoning is that it’s cold-enough up there that the zombie hordes won’t be able to cope, but Death Road to Canada offers a much more silly and awesome explanation for this. I won’t discuss this here, you’ll have to make it to the border yourself to find out. Instead, let’s talk about the goofy journey that Death Road to Canada puts you through in this pixel-based brawler.
Video games always seem to involve characters resolving their problems with their fists or guns. Sometimes, is it a smarter choice to use your words? This is the hypothesis that Oh… Sir!! The Insult Simulator and Oh… Sir! The Hollywood Roast seek to answer. Taking a brand new spin on fighting games, these games pit two characters against one another in a battle of words that can only end with one victor.
Starting up the final episode of season 3 for The Walking Dead, I had a hard time imagining the endgame Telltale had in mind. The main antagonist of the season had already been dealt with and the fate of Richmond seemed pretty set in stone. There were certainly a few surprises in there, I’ll get to that in a bit, but after finishing up Javier’s story, I felt like they didn’t quite make good on what made this season unique: The flashback sequences and your relationship with David. Despite this, the thrills are still there and some difficult decisions still had to be made in Episode 5: From the Gallows, which make this a reasonably good season of Telltale’s breakout adventure series.
Mindlessly blasting baddies is always a good way to wind down when you’re not in the mood for something a little heavier. Demon’s Crystals is a twin stick shooter that’s not looking to break any new ground, but the mechanics are just good enough that it’s suitable for some short bursts of fun. Boasting a simple main campaign and six multiplayer types, Demon’s Crystals doesn’t have a lot of depth, but for the five dollar price tag, you’ll get enough silly fun to last you and your friends a few nights.
One of the best things about Telltale’s take on The Walking Dead has always been making difficult decisions. I’ll often find myself struggling with deciding what might be the best choice in these games, even with this third season. Episode 4, titled Thicker Than Water, definitely asks you to make some decisions, but very few of them hold the same weight as earlier ones. The main plot is definitely building to an epic conclusion, but there wasn’t a whole lot of narrative progress across this fourth episode.
It’s been a hot second since the last time we checked in on Javi and the gang in season 3 of Telltale’s The Walking Dead series. The second episode left us with quite a cliff hanger having found Javi’s brother, David, as one of the leaders of the New Frontier group. This third episode picks this thread back up and spends a large portion testing where your loyalties lay and tasking you with making yet some more difficult decisions. While episode 3, Above the Law, seems a bit more business as usual, there are still some intense moments that make it a decent episode of the current season.
Back when Nintendo announced they were going to start developing some games for mobile platforms, my mind instantly went to the Fire Emblem series. The turn-based strategy series seemed perfect to pull out of your pocket and play for a few minutes. Nintendo, even on their mobile outings, polishes all of their games to a high sheen and Fire Emblem Heroes is no different. The main question to be answered here is if t has been able to overcome the free-to-play traps that generally make me bounce off of similar smart phone titles.
Atmosphere, in my humble opinion, is one of the most important things a game can create. Back in 2010, Playdead introduced us all to a puzzle platformer than oozed atmosphere and created a surprisingly tense 2-D experience with Limbo. Since then many developers have tried to recapture the magic of this game by mimicking its aesthetics or gameplay. Coming from this standpoint, Lukáš Navrátil created Toby: The Secret Mine as a solo project. While it doesn’t quite recapture the tense feeling of the game it was inspired by, there are some good moments to latch onto here.