The packaging for Quiz Wiz says that it is a game of "cyber trivia" and that it is a "really cool way to widen your wisdom." Quiz Wiz is indeed a trivia contest, but you'll hardly gain wisdom by answering questions about Family Ties, NBA basketball and Cindy Crawford. The game does have questions about science, history and other substantive subjects, but you won't need the wisdom of King Solomon to be good at answering the questions, just a well-rounded knowledge of popular culture, both past and present.
Company hyperbole aside, Quiz Wiz is little more than a trivia book in disguise. Unlike video game versions of Jeopardy, which wrap the trivialities and tidbits of interesting information inside a fun and engrossing game show format, Quiz Wiz is simply a series of questions and answers. Up to three players can compete, but there are no bonus rounds, no prize packages and no nifty game boards. In other words, Quiz Wiz can be as boring as school.
Cutting edge graphics aren't exactly the first thing you look for in a trivia game, but the host of Quiz Wiz is recognizable as the Gen-Xer wannabe on the box. On the other hand, the animations that transpire as the result of an answered (right or wrong) question are choppy and redundant, and the questions and answers are presented in simple text.
The voice effects are clear, but they're as redundant as the animations. The introductory music, which features jamming electric guitars, is designed to give the game an air of coolness, just like the box. Perhaps it's hard to get teenagers, the primary players of video games, to think a trivia contest is cool.
Some of the questions in this game are way too easy. For example, when the game presents the question of how many keys are on a piano, its multiple choice answers are 2, 5, 88, and 1,899. Obviously, the answer is 88. Why not throw in 99, 101 or another reasonable number as one of the answers, just to make the question challenging? The trivia itself, though, isn't the real problem with Quiz Wiz as there are plenty of questions that ride the fine line of the esoteric and the familiar. The real problem with this game lies in its format: there is no real game here, just a bunch of questions and answers.
There is one use for Quiz Wiz not yet mentioned. No, it can't be used as a doorstop as it is much too small. The game is actually ideal for long trips, especially since the whole family can get involved. You'll find questions involving subjects ranging from professional boxing to soap operas to rap music to The Roy Rogers Show to the Solar System. You can pass the game all around the car, letting each player have a turn; it beats the heck out of singing 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall.
Graphics: The graphics are limited and flat, but what do you expect from a trivia contest?
Sound: The voice effects are clear but annoying.
Enjoyment: Answering trivia questions isn't inherently lame, but Quiz Wiz needs a legitimate game to go along with the questions and answers.
Replay Value: The instructions boast that there are more than 1,500 questions; surely the game could handle at least twice that many.
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