Review: Fibbage: The Hilarious Bluffing Party Game (PS4)

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Title: Fibbage: The Hilarious Bluffing Party Game
Format: PlayStation Network Download (375 MB)
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Publisher: Jackbox Games
Developer: Jackbox Games
Original MSRP: $6.99 *This is a Cross-Buy title
ESRB Rating: T
Fibbage is also available on PlayStation 3, Xbox One and Amazon FireTV. It is a Cross-Buy title.
The PlayStation 4 version was used for this review.
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
PS Nation Review Policy.

Gameplay:
In Fibbage you try to guess the correct answer to a question while avoiding the minefield of your opponents’ fibs. Unlike other trivia games where you just need to know the answer to the question, Fibbage also allows players to muddy the water by submitting their own “answers” that the other players have the option of selecting. The game supports 2-8 players but the more the better.

The game starts out by having everybody log in to a website on either their phones/tablets/computers and enter a room code and their player name. Once everybody is ready you start the game. That’s right other than using the controller to start up the game everything else is controlled with these alternate controllers. The whole process is really easy to do and takes just a few moments. The longest part of the process was getting everybody connected to my WiFi network, not that you need to be on the same network as the PS4, I just didn’t want my friends to have to use their data plans.

Once the game starts a player is given a choice of several types of questions and has to select one of them. Then you are asked an actual question and everybody submits a fib that they think other people will believe is the answer. When we played, some people tried to make some really outlandish fibs, but there were times when the fibs were almost identical to the correct answer which made things really hard. If you can’t think of a fib then you do have an option of having the game create one for you but you only get half the points for it.

Fibbage 1

Once everybody has entered their fibs in within the time limit, the game asks the same question but displays all the fibs submitted as well as the correct answer. If you select the correct answer you get points, if you select somebody’s fib they get points, and if you guess the game’s fibs you lose points. Finally after you select your answer you are given a short amount of time to “like” the other answers. When a player submits a fib that is actually the correct answer, the game will let them know that and have them enter a new fib.

Fibbage 2

As you go through this process the game is continuously making smart aleck comments, which are hilarious. Since this is from the people who made You Don’t Know Jack, that same brand of humor is present in this game. Each game consists of three rounds of questions and each round goes up in value. At the end the game the winner is announced and whoever got the most likes gets a thumbs up trophy. It’s kind of like a cross between Trivial Pursuit and Cards Against Humanity and definitely something that’s fun to play with people you know.

Fibbage 4Fibbage 3

Fibbage is a great party game and it allows groups of people to play video games without really playing a video game. Also, unlike the Buzz! series of games, Fibbage doesn’t devolve into who the smartest is at the party. In some of the games we played the person who won got the fewest number of correct answers, but they did a great job of getting others to pick their fibs.

This casual slant to the game is also one of its biggest drawbacks, it’s in the pacing of the game. It seemed a little fast, which normally isn’t a bad thing but “had the game been slower or you could manually advance to the next question it would have made this game a lot better”. Games like this where you are trying to bluff lend themselves to “trash talking and joking around”, but since there is little time between each question you can’t really do that. It takes away a little bit of the fun if you can’t joke with your friend about him guessing that Harrison Ford is the current president of the United States.

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Two other things I wish they included in Fibbage were the ability for every player to pick the question once a game. While this may lead to longer games, based on the fun we were having I don’t think that would be an issue. There were times when people would go entire games without picking a question. In fact, one person never picked a question in the two hours the six of us played. Then there were other times where one person would pick the question two to three times in a row.

Secondly I wish there were more game modes than just everybody for themselves. One mode that would have been fun is a team mode, where it was still the same basic gameplay but if you picked your teammate(s) fibs you lose points and if you guess the other team’s fibs they get points. You still would answer individually and not know what your teammates selected. I don’t want to criticize a game for not being what I expect it to be, but in this case it is another way for a group of people to have fun and interact. They could even do a random teammate mode to increase the party atmosphere.

One thing to note is that in the hours I have played this I haven’t come across any duplicate questions but there is a possibility that you might run into this issue if you play the game a lot. Expansions could alleviate some of this as well as introduce themed questions which would be another game extender.

Visuals:
The visuals for Fibbage are average at best and don’t really add anything spectacular to the game but at the same time there is not a lot that you can do visually with games like this. Buzz! had its host as well as characters that stood on stage but Fibbage doesn’t have any of those aspects. Though in the 2 hours we played is as a group, not one of us complained about the graphics or wanted to stop playing because of them. The announcer’s voice is witty and sarcastic and everything you want for a game like this.

Fibbage 5

Audio:
Where the visuals were lacking the audio is the shining star. Fibbage sounds like You Don’t Know Jack and that is a great thing. Unlike sport game announcers, the one in Fibbage never seemed to repeat itself or offer commentary that didn’t match up with what was happening in the game. On one question my fib was the only one that wasn’t picked and the announcer made sure to let us know that fact.

Besides the great announcer, Fibbage also does an excellent job with the sound effects. Each player has a randomly assigned sound that plays every time they submit a fib or answer a question. These goofy sounds add an additional level of fun to the game as you try to discover which sound belongs to who. This doesn’t give you any points but it does let you know who you can rib about taking their time submitting a fib or answering a question.

Online/Multiplayer:
While this game requires people to use their phones/tablets/computers to play it is only a local game experience. You can play between 2 and 8 people and is best when you play with bigger groups.

An online component could be a great addition to the game for those who don’t have a lot of friends to come over and play. The ability to use more than just your smartphone is a welcome solution for the gameplay because it doesn’t limit the people that play. Thankfully we had an extra iPad and Laptop that we could use for people to play on.

There is an additional feature that I didn’t try out for online play. From the developer’s press release:

“While Fibbage is primarily a live, couch-play game, it is also easily streamable and playable via Twitch. All you need is a device with an internet connection; find a Fibbage Twitch stream, enter the host-provided code on fibbage.com or scan the QR code on the page and you’re in!”

This would be an interesting way to play with other people that are not in the same room as you.

Fibbage 9

Conclusion:
I have a group of friends that get together to have game night once a month or so and while we normally play board games we do occasionally play video games as well. Fibbage will be a great addition to our gaming rotation. We had six people of various gaming backgrounds come together and play this for two hours without getting tired of it. Everybody had a great time and enjoyed themselves which is the key to any great party game, the quotes in the review are from the feedback I received from my friends who played it.

While the visuals won’t impress anybody, the audio will which is exactly what this type of game needs. And while we had fun with the game it needs a way to include more people in the question selection process. A few more modes or themed sets of questions would also go a long way with Fibbage.

I also want to thank my friends who came over and had a marathon play-testing session with me: Anthony, Chris, Jessica, Vickie and, Vince.

Score:
7.5

* All screenshots used in this review were provided by the publisher.

Written by Damon Bullis

Damon Bullis

I’m a gamer from back in the days of Telstar Arcade, Atari 2600, and Intellivision. I currently have a PS4, PS3x2, Vita, PSP, Xbox One, 360, Wii U, Wii, and a N64.

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