clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Weapons Drawn brings a murder mystery to Jackbox

A whodunnit where you’ve all done it

The Jackbox Party Packs have contained some excellent drawing games and mischievous hidden-role games, but Weapons Drawn is the first to combine these two genres. It’s one of five new games releasing this fall in The Jackbox Party Pack 8, but we got a sneak peek at this murder-mystery simulator on the latest episode of Overboard.

Weapons Drawn is set at a fancy dinner party where the players are cast in the role of both murderers and detectives. The game starts with players drawing their murder weapons. Just like a typical Jackbox drawing game, players receive and draw their secret prompts on their phones, but this time, they’ll also need to include a “calling card.” This is a letter from the players name that’s randomly chosen by the game. Players can rotate and resize this letter, which may look like fancy cursive, or handwriting, or simply sans serif type. The key is that they integrate it into their drawing in the most unassuming way possible.

Once the first two drawings are done, players get to name their party guest, aka their “accomplice.” The idea here is to come up with a fun name but not one that’s too obvious. That’s because in the next part of the game, players will attempt to murder another player’s accomplice by guessing who brought them to the party. Better yet, when other players incorrectly guess your accomplice, you’ll earn a point! Once all the murdering is done, then the deduction can begin.

In this part of the game, one of the drawings players made at the beginning of the game is revealed, so that everyone has a little bit of evidence to go off of. (Remember, there’s a calling card hidden in everyone’s drawing!) Then the game selects two drawings from players who managed to murder another player’s accomplice. These drawings are the weapons left at the scene of the crime, and it’s up to the players to figure out who’s weapons they are.

Eight crude drawings, including shark attacks, sinking boats, and tridents are shown on a screen from the Jackbox game Weapons Drawn.
Every drawing in the game contains a player’s “calling card,” which is a letter from their name.
Image: Jackbox Games

A round of voting and discussion begins, with players arguing for which of the two cases would be easier to solve. Once the case is selected, then it’s time for the accusations to fly. Players rely on the drawings and the calling cards hidden within to suss out the murderer. Keep in mind that whichever player’s drawing is being analyzed will be trying misdirect the rest of the players by trying to frame another player for their crime. Without a plurality vote, the round will end in a hung jury.

After another round of drawing and guessing, players wrap up any unsolved cold cases in a rapid fire round, then the winner is revealed. Players receive points for creating hard-to-guess accomplices, correctly identifying other player’s drawings, and, of course, committing murder.

Weapons Drawn is a fun change of pace from your typical drawing game or hidden role game. Since every player is also a murderer, it’s nowhere near as stressful as many hidden-role games, and the “calling cards” can lead to some truly inspired drawings. We also can’t say enough about the art; the murder mystery vibe is spot on. Keep in mind that while this version is near final, it is still pre-release. You’ll be able to play the game this fall when it releases as part of The Jackbox Party Pack 8.

If you enjoyed this video, be sure to watch the rest of our Overboard series, where we play both traditional board games and Jackbox. You can find all of our past episodes, along with a bunch of other neat videos, over on our YouTube channel.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon