‘Jeopardy!’ Icon Ken Jennings Explains the Origin of His New Board Game

by Samantha Whidden

On Sunday (November 28th), Jeopardy! icon Ken Jennings took to Twitter to reveal details about the origin of his new board game, Half Truth.

The Jeopardy! champion revealed that he teamed up with Magic: The Gathering creator Richard Garfield on the game. Jennings shared that when Garfield brought him the idea, the Magic creator said he wanted to ask for a trivia game that would be as “light and fun” as any party game.

“Everyone plays every round, and everyone feels smarter, not dumb,” the Jeopardy! star declared. “So Half Truth is recommended for hardcore trivia nerds and causals alike!”

The game’s full description on Amazon reads, “Half Truth is a trivia game that will challenge you in categories you know and some you don’t. Our game doesn’t rely on binary knowledge about a topic. Instead, Half Truth offers clues that allow each player to play even without forward knowledge about a particular topic or category.”

It was also noted that after each game, Half Truth participants will walk away learning something new. The game has 500 question cards with six possible multiple-choice answers. Half Truth is now available on Amazon for $19.99 (originally listed as $34.99).  It has 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon, so it is already a pretty popular game. It is also a game that is described as being perfect for ages 12 and up.

‘Jeopardy!’ Star Ken Jennings Sought to Create a Trivia Game to Help Players Feel Smarter

During a May 2020 interview with Rolling Stone, Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings revealed why he wanted to team up with Richard Garfield on the Half Truth project. “I love trivia games,” Jennings declared. “Nobody played more Trivial Pursuit than me in 1984. It’s very formative for 10-year-old me.”

Although he loves trivia games (obviously), the Jeopardy! Star acknowledges that not everyone has as much of a keen interest in those types of games like he does. “A lot of people don’t have the same love of trivia party games that I do because those games often emphasize for the play just how many things you don’t know.”

Jennings then said that he and Garfield wanted to design a game that would make players actually feel smarter. The duo then launched a Kickstarter campaign in August 2019 and received full funding for the project in three hours. The crowdfunding campaign closed with $327,621 in funding from 8,885 Kickstarter backers.

Despite the global health crisis, Half Truth became a popular game concept due to everyone staying home and being in quarantine. Garfield spoke about the crowdfunding campaign’s success by stating, “I’m always surprised by people responding to games. It’s really nice to see a community rise up around a game concept. It was fun and gratifying.”