Developer: Snap Finger Click
Publisher: Vision Games Publishing
Format(s): Playstation 4 (Reviewed), Xbox One, PC
I’ve always had a love for quizzes. It started off with Trivial Pursuit when I was younger, but eventually moved on to the ‘Who Wants to be a Millionaire’ video game on the original Playstation (which I never did win a million on…), and then Buzz! on the Playstation 2. Whatever format it has been though, there’s something undeniably satisfying about facing a series of questions and getting them right… well… sometimes.
Given my appreciation of the aforementioned Buzz!, I was pretty excited to see that some of the original developers behind it had formed a new team and were working on a new quizzing title called It’s Quiz Time. There’s no room for buzzers this time around though – instead, players can use their mobile phones as they take each other on to find out who is the brightest spark in the room.
I don’t really feel like a quiz game needs a huge introduction. I mean, everybody knows the score – you answer a myriad of questions across a range of different subjects, with the player who manages to achieve the most points deemed the winner. Simple.
It’s Quiz Time allows you to do this in both single player and multiplayer, with up to eight players able to take part in a game. Whilst the solo mode is a viable way to see how the game plays out whilst also testing your knowledge though, you’re going to get the most fun out of It’s Quiz Time when playing with a group of friends.
And believe me, it certainly is a lot of fun. I managed to get a group of six of us together to play and it was a blast from start to end. It certainly embraces the ‘party game’ side of quizzing perfectly, whilst the variety of round types ensure you’re always doing something different. It might be a case of answering questions as quickly as possible, putting answers in a specific order, or even talking about a subject whilst the other players tick off the keywords that you were supposed to mention. Then there’s the last round where you lose or gain points based upon how quick you are to answer – believe me, this can be a game changer and I had plenty of annoyed friends who quickly saw their score dwindle away in the end when they didn’t have the quickest finger.
There are a ton of different subjects on offer too, which means just about anyone can play and have a chance at winning. It might be about music, a TV show, general knowledge, history, or even video game companies – seriously, you’re guaranteed to come across a subject that you will be hot on, and it makes the game a lot more accessible for more players. You can even put together customised playlists to ensure you have a quiz that suits you.
Whilst It’s Quiz Time is undoubtedly entertaining though, there are a few things that it doesn’t quite nail.
The variety of questions could be a little too simple at times. Whilst there are an absolute ton on offer across a wide variety of subjects, you’ll see the same sort of questions pop up such as ‘what year was X released’ or ‘which show featured the character X’. Some of the answers were incredibly obvious too, even when it was regarding a subject that I wasn’t exactly clued up on.
In fairness though, the lack of question variety doesn’t really matter when you’re playing with friends; it was when I was playing around in the game’s solo mode that I really noticed the repetitive nature of them. Still, amongst all of the obvious and easy answers are plenty of tricky ones, whilst you can also guarantee that a subject will come up that can throw you off completely – just don’t be surprised if plenty of repetitive and obvious questions are littered in-between them all.
Remember how Buzz! had a great host who actually felt like he belonged on a TV quiz show? It’s Quiz Time doesn’t take that approach, with it instead giving you an AI named Salli who’s… well… weird. She reads all of the questions and answers out in a robotic style, whilst she can also read player’s names too (this obviously led to plenty of rude and childish moments). However, her robotic tone and strange gestures simply lacked any real personality and left her feeling a bit boring. It’s a clever premise and you can see that the developers tried to make her interesting by adding in a few jokes here and there, but I just got bored of her presence after a few hours with the game. When games like Buzz! and even The Jackbox Party Pack managed to nail hosting duties, it’s disappointing to see that it’s so lacking here.
Of course, if you’re not a big fan of Salli you can just host your own quizzes instead. It’s Quiz Time totally embraces the streaming culture that’s prominent these days by allowing you to get a camera on and host your own quiz to thousands of players around the world. I’ve not really had the chance to sink my teeth into this mode yet, but after seeing demonstrations of it online it’s certainly got the potential to be something special – if the players you’re hosting don’t cheat their way to victory, of course. It’s hard to keep track of what other players are doing when they’re thousands of miles away over the internet, you know. Still, the idea itself is certainly a great one.
You’ve got to download an App onto your phone if you want to play It’s Quiz Time with friends, which could actually be pretty annoying. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not the end of the world having to head to your App Store and download it, but it’s a lot less convenient than telling someone a room code and a website address à la The Jackbox Party Pack. Still – nearly everyone I know has a smart phone and I only have two Playstation 4 controllers, so it did allow a good group of us to play without having to take it in turns. Just make sure that everyone has your Wi-Fi password and plenty of battery beforehand!
It’s Quiz Time is by no means the best trivia game I’ve ever played, but it is certainly one of the largest and definitely one of the most entertaining I’ve shared with friends.
Trivia fanatics are hardly going to be blown away by the somewhat repetitive questions, whilst some of them are so easy with their selection of answers that you’ll feel like the game is insulting your intellect at times. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of great questions to be found and with over 20,000 on offer you won’t run out of them fast, but their quality can actually be a bit of a mixed bag.
Still, with the variety of game modes on offer and the competitive feel of the quizzing you’ll have a blast playing It’s Quiz Time with friends. It’s easy to lose hours with the game, and whilst I don’t think it quite manages to reach the heights of its forbearer Buzz!, it doesn’t stop it being a lot of fun to play.