The makers of the You Don't Know Jack series and Fibbage have a newly crowdfunded party game out called Quiplash. Unlike many other games, Quiplash doesn't require superfluous things like rules or right answers. The only thing that you absolutely need are people, and the more the better.
How Sharp is Your Quip?
Quiplash is the kind of game where the fun is completely dependent on the number of players and how creative they are. You need a minimum of three players, and the game supports a maximum of eight people for local competitive play. The more players you can get involved, the more fun the game gets. Others can look on and impact the game as audience members, but more on that in a bit.
The game is incredibly straightforward, and plays similarly to the card games Cards Against Humanity and Apples to Apples. Contestants enter into the game by using their mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, or computers to log into a website using a uniquely generated game code (no personal information or registration required). Each game consists of three rounds, where the players are given a term like, "Best way to treat acne." Players input their answers into their devices, and it can be as absurd (leeches) or straightforward (facial cleanser) as they want. Each player then votes for the answer they like best, but they can't vote for themselves. Players don't know who they're voting for when they vote on an answer, but personalities can probably be deduced. Votes are translated into points, and the one with the most points wins the round.
Audience members (up to 10,000 of them) can log into to both observe and vote for the answers they like best. So, it's not a matter of making a right or wrong answer. It's about writing something that is witty, funny, raunchy, or otherwise appealing enough to earn you votes from fellow players or audience members. You're not so much playing a game, as you are trying to play toward other players' tastes and sensibilities.
On the third and final round, all players are given the same statement to write an answer to and three votes to distribute as they please. Points for each vote are tripled, but again, players can't vote for themselves. Audience members are given one vote each. This is the part where the game could potentially turn around in a big way for some players. Then the votes are tallied, scores are given, and a winner is has bragging rights. Then it's on to new match.
As Fun As You Make it
Unlike You Don't Know Jack, the Quiplash commentator isn't humorous or sarcastic. Even Fibbage features trivia questions with crazy answers to them, but none of that is found in Quiplash. That makes it about as minimalistic as a party game gets. Any potential humor is entirely based on the participants, and less creative players may not get as much out of the game. The three rounds go by very quickly, and depending on how fast your players are at coming up with answers, entire matches can be completed in less than fifteen minutes.
My main gripe is that, unlike games like Fibbage, the input timer doesn't automatically zero out once all the votes are cast. Everyone is kept needlessly waiting for the timer to run out before the big reveal and the next round. Additionally, there were occasions when players (including myself) experienced a hiccup with the website connection and were essentially booted from the game, Quiplash doesn't recognize player drops, and proceeds as if they were still there but not answering.
A Quick Lashing
Although Quiplash doesn't have the same sort of appeal as trivia games like You Don't Know Jack or Fibbage, there is also no danger of one player memorizing all the answers. The game also comes off as a bit too straightforward unless you can get four or more players involved or a few audience members. Unless you have a very good group of friends playing, it can be a game that's very easy to put down and step away from. Despite some these potential issues, Quiplash ends up being a fun little game that has the potential to liven up get-togethers and parties, but its enjoyment depends entirely on the players involved.
This review is based on a PC code provided by the publisher. Quiplash is available in digital stores for $9.99..
- Straightforward and quick gameplay.
- Uses mobile devices as controllers.
- Supports a big audience, who can all participate.
- Enjoyment is entirely dependent on players.
- Mobile devices can lose connection with game.
- Countdown timer doesn't end when all votes are cast.