Our Early Memories of YOU DON’T KNOW JACK

The YOU DON’T KNOW JACK team in San Francisco for a release party.

“I was a part of the original YOU DON’T KNOW JACK design team and after finishing the game, we all flew to San Francisco for the release party. We were quite the rag-tag team and felt a little “Beverly Hillbillies” when Berkeley Systems put us up at the Ritz. I think the highlight of the trip was when Tom Gottlieb played the spoons while we were waiting in line for a boat ride at Fisherman’s Wharf (see photo). I don’t remember why he had the spoons with him but I think he ended up making a few bucks in change. Good times.” – Andy Poland, VP of Audio and Editorial

Tom Gottlieb playing the spoons.

“My first YOU DON’T KNOW JACK experience was buying the Movies, TV, and Sports triple pack around 1999. I instantly fell in love and played it every chance I could. I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of and quickly researched the company that made it. Timing is everything, and I soon discovered that they were hiring artists in Chicago! The requirements for the position was exactly my skillset in animation, 3D graphics, and software (at the time, Macromedia Director, if you can believe it). They flew me in for an interview and it was sincerely the most thrilling time in my life. Everyone was super friendly and welcoming and I just knew I had found my new home. I took photos all day, and this one was from lunch that day with the art team. It’s almost 20 years later and I’m so proud to be Art Directing the latest incarnation of this game for The Jackbox Party Pack 5.” – Dave Innis, Art Director

“My first experience with YOU DON’T KNOW JACK was in March of 1995. It might have been in black and white and running on something called HyperCard, but it was unmistakably JACK. The voice, the timing, the sfx and music were all there. The guy demoing it for us at Berkeley Systems was Harry Gottlieb, founder of (then) Learn Television (later Jellyvision, then Jackbox Games). Back then he looked a lot like Serpico; pretty scruffy and kind of intense (but in a friendly way). After the demo, my boss back then at BSI, Igor Gasowski asked me what a good treatment might be to translate this into a game, design-wise. Should we do video? With a video host? Whether it was insight, laziness or my disdain for those cheesy multimedia CD-ROMs with tiny little video windows at that time, I said no to a video host, absolutely not. I felt the game was mostly there. A better font, some TV-style motion graphics, those would be the icing on an already awesome trivia-show cake. I guess that answer helped to get me assigned to art direct the sucker. I’m super excited to see the game back on its feet with a fresh new look and the same bad-ass attitude.” – Allard Laban, Chief Creative Officer

L to R: Greg Bolsinga, Brian Chard, Andy Poland, Lisa Helfer, Marta Segal. On our way (as Smushes) to a You Don’t Know Jack release party thrown by Berkeley Systems.

“I was a writer for the first YOU DON’T KNOW JACK in 1995. We wrote our silly little questions and our little jokes thinking it was a fun way to spend the summer. When the game was about to be released, Berkeley Systems, our publisher, flew us all out to San Francisco for a big celebration. It was a costume party and we each decided to go dressed as what would later be known as a Smush, which was a TV show we’d make a few years later. (I went as Dances with Wolf Blitzer.) People were playing the game at the party, and it was the first inkling many of us had that this game could do well and we might have made something special. Twenty-three years later I’m glad to say I still don’t know Jack.” – Brian Chard, Writer/Sound Designer

Andy Poland and Michele Lindzy. Michele is dressed as Annette FuniJelloMold. (Andy, always one to buck trends, is dressed not as a Smush, but as Chocky the Chipmunk, a recurring character in our early fake commercials.)

I played YOU DON’T KNOW JACK for the first time on a demo kiosk in a CompUSA. I was twelve and terrible with money, but it was the first time I ever saved up to buy something. That first game taught me so much about humor, timing, and crafting personalized interactivity. Years later, I moved to Chicago to take a job at Jellyvision Lab, directing marketing and education projects, while watching the small Jellyvision Games crew work on ideas for a new YDKJ across the room. The companies split and rebranded and I was eventually lucky enough to move over to Jackbox Games. I seriously can’t describe the pride I take in directing the latest iteration of Jack. It’s a true bucket list moment for me that still hasn’t quite sunk in.” – Ryan DiGiorgi, Game Director & Editor

Ryan DiGiorgi receiving YOU DON’T KNOW JACK Vol. 4 The Ride for his birthday.

“When I was a kid, there were two things that made first stop and think, “Hey, it’s someone’s job to do that. Someone goes to work and makes those jokes.” Those things were Mystery Science Theater 3,000 and YOU DON’T KNOW JACK. I played the hell out of those early You Don’t Know Jack games, especially The Ride, hunched over my keyboard, trying to smash the buzz-in key faster than my sisters or my Mom. I took it to Christmas parties and forced my cousins to play with me. I owned the You Don’t Hear Jack CD of funny commercials from the games, and when I made mix tapes for friends, I would often put some of the shorter commercials in between songs. I was… very cool. 

And it has been my great honor to work on the last several iterations of You Don’t Know Jack, writing questions and jokes, constructing new weird surprises for the game. I just hope people enjoy YOU DON’T KNOW JACK: Full Stream half as much as I enjoyed playing The Ride. Actually, no… more than half. 70%? 80%? I hope people enjoy the new game 99% as much as I enjoyed playing The Ride. And I will accept nothing less.” – Arnie Niekamp, Director/Head Writer and Studio Editorial Director

How to Play Jackbox Games Without Being Near Any Gross Breathing Humans

How to Play Jackbox Games Without Being Near Any Gross Breathing Humans

Want to stay in your Eeyore pajama pants all Saturday without judgement?  Are you and your friends about to move to different cities? Want to replace your weekly calls home to Mom & Dad with a wholesome family game of Trivia Murder Party?

If your answer is “maybe yes” to any of the above, then you have found the right blog post! Jackbox Games don’t use online matchmaking, but there are several ways you can play with others in remote locations. Here are a few options to consider when you’re looking to play Fibbage from afar:

Option #1: Play with Your Friends

If you feel pretty confident about you and your fellow players’ internet connection, just hop on a video chat service like Discord, Skype, or Google Hangouts. Each of these tools has screen sharing features that will let you show other players the game screen. When playing this way, we recommend wired internet connections when possible!

Option #2: Play with Anyone

If you want to open your game up to the public, using a streaming service like Twitch or YouTube is your best bet. These services allow you to broadcast your screen and easily share a link with remote players to watch, join, and play along. We stream our games every Thursday at 3:30CT. You can watch an example of how this works here.

In order to do this, you will need broadcasting software. Open Broadcasting Software Studio is free and integrates easily with YouTube and Twitch.

Additional Instructions: How to start streaming on Twitch

Additional Instructions: How to start streaming on YouTube

With either of these services, we recommend using low latency settings. This will ensure that everyone is experiencing the game as close to “real time” as possible. We wrote a blog about how to set this up that can be found here.

Many of our games have extended timer options that can be selected in the game’s settings to give remote players more time to answer. You can still play with friends this way too, we just recommend hiding the game lobby screen and sending the room code that players will use to join (on their phones at Jackbox.tv) via private message.

Never again will you have to wait for game night or family get-togethers to share a few laughs!

The Jackbox Party Bundle is on sale now! Stock up on party games to play with friend in-person or remotely at an insanely low price.  Unlock multiple games for your PC/Mac now.

Announcing the Final Game in The Jackbox Party Pack 5: “Zeeple Dome”

Announcing the Final Game in The Jackbox Party Pack 5: “Zeeple Dome”

Ky Dolo, Humans! Welcome to the ZEEPLE DOME.

Sector 492b1 invites Earth to journey beyond the stars and become contestants on the newest game show in the Crab Nebula! Get ready to unnecessarily risk life and limb for a chance to win money and fabulous prizes! You and your space crew will be armed with our physics-flinging Goopal Technology and will need to frantically work together to crush wave after wave of bloodthirsty alien monstrosities before they rip you to shreds!

Wait… You’ve never heard of Goopal Technology?! Oh Earth…  such a bunch of glurbs! Goopal Technology serves two very important functions when fighting alien gladiators. It allows you to:

1) Fling yourself through the air at bone-shattering speeds

2) Explode in a ball of fiery carnage

“But wait!? Won’t that hurt?”

Of course! This is the Zeeple Dome! We have over 600 words for “pain” on our planet and zero for mercy.

Hosted by the infamous space celeb, Glargon O’ Toe, Zeeple Dome is coming this fall to major digital platforms in The Jackbox Party Pack 5. Fly solo or play with up to 6 players in this slingshot-physics action game. Keep winning to unlock new weapons, enemies, and challenges. See if you have what it takes to survive the final gauntlet!

Zeeple Dome joins the other announced games in The Jackbox Party Pack 5 including YOU DON’T KNOW JACK: Full Stream, Split the Room, Mad Verse City, and Patently Stupid.  Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for all of the latest updates on The Jackbox Party Pack 5.

Can’t wait until the fall to play awesome Jackbox Games? You’re in luck! You can unlock multiple party games for an insanely low price now in The Humble Jackbox Party Bundle! Check it out now

How to Make Friends: A Back-to-School Guide from Jackbox Games

How to Make Friends: A Back-to-School Guide from Jackbox Games

If there’s anything game developers know, it’s how to get stuffed into a locker  make friends. Let us share some of our infinite wisdom with you before you embark on your new, studious journey.

Become party royalty in 3 budget-friendly steps:

  1. Have Several Fun Facts in Your Back Pocket.

People like LEARNING! That’s what you’re all at school for anyway, isn’t it? You have a small window of time to establish yourself as Lord of the Facts within the first week of school. Awkward silences?  Drop these bombshells from Fibbage, in The Jackbox Party Pack, on them:

“Did you know that Anatidaephobia is the fear that somewhere in the world a duck is watching you?”

“In 2009, Eminem tweeted that he was really good at Donkey Kong. Imagine that!”

“There’s a small village in England called No Place. More like No THANKS!”

  1. Wear Intriguing T-Shirts.

Nothing is more eye-catching than a vivid and somewhat confusing t-shirt. If you’re struggling to approach others and make conversation, sometimes the right outfit can do all of the work for you.

We recommend our Drawful 2 Sexy Bikini Owl t-shirt. We know from experience that wearing this out in public will evoke a variety of emotions and reactions (mostly confused stares). It’s the t-shirt equivalent of having an invisible neon arrow above your head!

  1. Become an Internet Personality.

Who needs real friends when you can be friends with people on the Internet? Use a streaming service like Twitch or Youtube to stream yourself playing Jackbox Games with friends around the globe. Take advantage of our special streamer features to make sure they are only Internet friends of the highest caliber. (Ok, there will still be that one weird guy, but what are you gonna do?)

Making new friends doesn’t have to be hard when you have games like Fibbage, Quiplash, and Drawful. Our games are designed to help you engage with the people you’re with, learn new things about each other, and laugh about goofy stuff – no small talk needed. Download our games on your PC or console and play this video for your group to get a game started. No fuss friendship!

Oh? What do you know – several of our games are on sale now for PC/Mac through Humble! Pick up The Jackbox Party Pack 3 for only $12.00 or fan-favorite Quiplash for only $1.00 today!

The Humble Jackbox Party Bundle is on Sale Now!

The Humble Jackbox Party Bundle is on Sale Now!

Through August 28th, unlock multiple Jackbox Games for your PC/Mac at a discounted price through Humble Bundle! Purchased games will be available to download through Steam.

We are proud to be partnering with Humble so that a portion of proceeds from your purchase will go toward supporting Humble Bundle’s featured charity of the month. Or, you can choose from thousands of charitable organizations in the Humble database. Name your price and increase your contribution to unlock more games.

A contribution of $1 or more unlocks Quiplash, Fibbage XL, YOU DON’T KNOW JACK Vol. 1 XL and YOU DON’T KNOW JACK Vol. 2.

A contribution of more than $6 unlocks The Jackbox Party Pack, The Jackbox Party Pack 2, YOU DON’T KNOW JACK Vol. 3 and YOU DON’T KNOW JACK Vol. 4 The Ride.

And, you can pay $12 or more to unlock Drawful 2 and The Jackbox Party Pack 3.

Get these games in your party rotation ahead of school starting, Labor Day BBQs, and The Jackbox Party Pack 5 launch later this fall!