Sinclair User3rd March 1989
Published in Sinclair User #87
Mike Read's Computer Pop Quiz
Not arf! Oh, that's the wrong DJ. What does Mike Read say? Well, what does Mike Read say? I'll be blowed if I can remember. Perhaps this is the problem with Elite's conversion of the board game of the TV series of Mike Read's radio show. Mike Read himself isn't especially interesting.
So, the bonus factors which most licence game rack up by being associated with fab movies or coin-ops or TV shows are largely absent. Instead, it's more down to the fact that the questions are bloody tough that makes Pop Quiz a smashing game.
Just as playing those Trivial Pursuit machines in pubs is far more exciting when you're with a roomful of lager frenzied dribbling idiots. Pop Quiz certainly comes into its own once you've reached hilarity level.
First up is the Jukebox round. Each member of each team in turn is asked to select an icon indicating which musical style they want to answer questions on. Now the fun really begins. Uncle Mike's scrolling speech bubble presents the brain tinglingly tricky question. Usually something like "Who could be found in the Imperial Bedroom in 1983?" You're then shown four possible candidates, one of whom it's certain even your parents will never have heard of. Using all your skill and judgement (hem) you've got to "plump" in best TV quiz style for an answer. A correct answer incurs points. An incorrect means it's passed over to the opposing team. Ooh.
And so the game goes on. While there are different rounds, the principles remain the same. Each round has a slightly new twist; allowing you to choose hard or easy questions and gambling for bigger bonuses. There's a race-against-the-clock round too, which is actually bloody exciting, though maybe for the panic involved in trying to highlight the correct answer than the interest in the question itself.
Pop Quiz is presented completely satisfactorily. There are semi-digitised pics of Mike Read (phurgh!) as well as members of the teams. Alas you can't digitise yourself and you have to suffer the insane grins of the Elite team. The questions seem to be alternately easy as pie and totally impossible, while some were simply so remarkably dull they weren't worth answering.
It's pretty fab. Of course, if you're not into "pop" or "quizzes" you'll think it's hopeless. Me? I reckon it's the best game Elite has done in ages.
Label: Elite Author: In-house Price: £8.99 Memory: 48K/128K Joystick: various Reviewer: Jim Douglas
Fab TV/Board-game conv. Fingers on your buzzers!