I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – why aren’t we able to bring back Buzz! quiz games? Well Papa’s Quiz is the latest attempt to try and fill the void that so far only It’s Quiz Time has adequately filled in the last decade. It is a tall order and whilst Papa’s Quiz has some nice ideas, it is a few balance patches away from being something I’d completely recommend.
First things first. Those graphics are meme worthy! In a stylistic choice throughout that eases the budget but gives character, Papa’s Quiz has some of the weirdest graphics I’ve seen for a quiz game. You put your weird sausage character onto the living room sofa and give it a name from various options. You do this using a web browser on your mobile, desktop or tablet device and enter a room code. Think Jackbox and you’ve got it. From there your phone turns into four buzzer colours and you’ll need to press the right buzzer to choose your answer.
Each quiz lasts five rounds. The first four build points that convert to time for the fifth and final round where quick fingers and correct answers stop a sliding pillar with your character on falling through the floor. Last one left wins. It is a nice innovation that keeps everyone in the game at least briefly until the finale. The other rounds swap between pure questions and using pictures to either guess something as its revealed (catchphrase) or buzzing on the correct picture when it appears. I would have liked more variations of rounds but the good thing is that a game can be over in 15 minutes so boredom doesn’t set in.
Whilst the mobile functionality is nice and allows up to 8 players at once (and I had no connection issues either which was lovely) the innovation stops after the category select screen. Here you all mash the buzzers to move your cursor into the category you want to choose. It is silly and fun at first but gets old when no one decides as a group which topic to play on. There is usually a junior category too for easier questions on a simple topic. The issue with that is that the junior questions repeat very quickly. I know nothing of Minecraft but it was offered to me every second round.
This issue of questions and topics repeating plagued my two hours of playtime before review. Topics repeat and the same question is often asked in different ways. You’ll get asked what the colours of a flag are then later you’ll see the flag and guess the Country. Then you might get ‘the colours of X are red, blue and…’ It feels a little cheap as one of the games main selling points is that there are thousands of questions. It would be less of an issue if the game was better balanced to avoid repeating topics for say 3 or 4 games. As it sometimes does the same categories in the same game, it is far more noticeable.
Outside of that, Papa’s Quiz embraces its jank and strangely that is endearing. The automated voice overs of the two hosts have a stiff upper lip British voice and a mocking Indian voice. Their interplay is so stilted it was funny but I’m not sure it was intentional! Between rounds the best player can perform a dance on the living room dancefloor but there are only a few to choose from so after an hour we were all skipping them.
Papa’s Quiz has some good ideas but ultimately feels quite light and unbalanced with its content. A patch or two could fix most of my issues with the game and if a few round variations and question bumper packs joined in, Papa’s Quiz could be a decent quiz game in the future. At launch though, you’ll need to actively choose different categories to avoid question repetition so quickly.
A good base for expansion and improvement but It's Quiz Time is a better bet on current systems.
Online connectivity works perfectly on launch.
Thousands of questions...
... that repeat themselves too quickly due to being unbalanced.
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