Mr. Jack Board Game Review: Hyper-engaging game of cat and mouse

Mr. Jack just broke into my top three 2-player games of all time. Yes, it is that good. While the price is up there for a 2-player game, it is well worth it. The game is very high-quality in every way (more to come), but as good as the quality is, the gameplay and strategy steal the show. Play as Mr. Jack or the Detective. Move in and out of light and darkness according to whichever is most advantageous at the moment. Take special care to utilize the character skills wisely or you may get burned (as I have many times!) by your opponent.

The artwork immediately caught my eye. The board is incredibly detailed with a fun, cartoonish, yet realistic feel. The character and alibi “cards” can barely be called cards because of how thick and sturdy they are. The characters aren’t just faceless tokens, there is character depth and storyline (bolstered by great background descriptions of each). The map itself is perfect to facilitate a balance of strategy and player advantage (with strength spots and weakness spots for each character which must be accounted for on both sides).

The gameplay is very simple in construct, but there are innumerable tactical plans which may change at a moment’s notice. The entire game revolves around the witness card. If Jack is “seen” (i.e., in the light), the witness card must indicate as such which then eliminates the chance that Jack is one of the “unseen” characters, and vice versa. These characters are then tagged as innocent. This goes until either Jack escapes the city, remains hidden through the eighth round, or until the Detective makes an accurate accusation. Sound simple? Not so fast. With each player “playing” the part of two of four randomly selected characters each round, a strategy of illuminating as many characters as you can that round may be quickly thwarted by your opponents moves. Then you add the character abilities on top of that. For example, John Smith moves a streetlight (and thus the illumination it provides). Sir William Gull can switch spots with another player (got me several times last game!). Or Sherlock Holmes can eliminate an option by drawing an alibi card. I won’t even get into the manholes, police cordons, or the failing streetlights. You’ve got to experience it for yourself!

Overall, this is one of the best 2-player games out there. It’s quick (20-30 minutes), there’s some luck but mostly strategy, replay value is very high, and it’s a blast! I highly recommend this one and give it a solid 8.5.

Disclaimer: I received this game for free in exchange for my review, but believe me, I post authentic reviews every time and will be brazenly blunt if needs be.”

Link to Asmodee and Image Source

2 thoughts on “Mr. Jack Board Game Review: Hyper-engaging game of cat and mouse

  1. I’d love to try this one but I’m curious about what it actually looks like. It sounds like fun

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