It’s Quiz Time is a new party based quiz game which is similar to the recent PlayLink releases in that you play along with your phone. The main difference here is that It’s Quiz Time allows up to eight players, CPU or a mixture of the two and even allows your audience, via a streaming platform, to join in (which I’ll come to later on). The game is developed by SnapFingerClick which is a new studio most people probably wouldn’t recognise; however, the studio is made up of the team behind Buzz! which was the go-to party quiz game of the PS2 era. With the influx of party games and Mobile phone integration entertainment, will this surpass the quality and enjoyment of the PlayLink family? Come on down, and let’s find out.
The first thing I need to mention here is the vast selection of questions. True, I’ll probably get about 90% of them wrong and/or have no idea what they are on about but you do have over 4,400 categories with over 29,000 questions. I honestly don’t think you will see the same questions repeat for quite a while! You are asked for your speciality subject within a few of the rounds, this won’t centre the questions around your chosen subject but it will give you extra points if you answer questions in your category correctly (and deduct more points if you answer them incorrectly). I thought this was a little strange at first; however, it does make sense as everyone has chosen their own speciality subject. So instead of people getting all their chosen questions right, it will throw in a lot of questions from categories nobody picked in order to keep it fair.
In regards to the questions, there is a lot of variety within the various game modes. You have your standard multiple choice questions where you can pick between four possible answers, a round where one player has to describe a person or a thing and the others players play a kind-of bingo game as they tick off what was mentioned, and even a round where one player guesses the answer and the other players have to pick if they think the player chose the correct answer. I found these thoroughly entertaining and you can even create your own ‘set lists’ which play the various sections in whatever order you wish.
I’ll touch on the online aspect a bit further down but I initially had issues with playing the ‘play with friends’ online as it was giving me modes which really require you to be with your opponent in the same room. One quick tweet to the dev and I got an almost instant reply advising me to use the ‘custom playlist’ and ‘online game’ set they had saved. This is perfect as it strips out all the modes that aren’t good over a delayed stream and replaced them with modes which were perfect. It comes with 5 pre-defined playlists; Crazy, Online, Serious, Upside Down and Tense Quizzes and the option to save up to five of your own custom playlists.
One other thing I wanted to mention about the actual gameplay, It’s Quiz Time does something which a few others rarely do – it rewards fast, correct answers yet deducts the same amount of points if you get it wrong. So technically you could just guess if you don’t know the answer, but it may be worth guessing after a few seconds to save being wrong and losing a load of points. This can really screw you over in the last few rounds and take you from being first to last just because you decided to guess swiftly and get the answers wrong.
I think it’s time to mention and talk about the elephant in the room – our lovely host, Salli. She appears to be like the digital embodiment of Marmite according to various forums and reviews online! Some people seriously hate the animations, the voice, the attitude and the overall presence and others think she is great – Personally, I’m #TeamSalli !! If you could grab Rayman, Elsa (from Frozen) and a massive bag of ‘sassiness’ and squash them all together then I’m sure Salli would be the final creation of this Frankenstein concoction!
Salli is our host and she is very talkative, to put it lightly. From as soon as you put in your name she will try and say it out loud – if it is incorrect then you can phonetically spell it out with other words (So if she couldn’t say ‘Deidre’, you could tell her to say ‘dear dree’ and that should sound more correct). This is a great feature and a great laugh as you can tell her to call you literally anything you want and you don’t have to put up with a sub-par pronunciation of your name. Plus, it remembers you, so if you play once and set it all up and then load it back up again and connect with your phone/tablet, she will have remembered who you are and how to say your name.
The main issue people seem to have with Salli is the main reason I love her, her attitude is terrible! Not terrible as in bad, but she loves to troll the losers and rub it in if you are being beaten by a bot. The voice sounds like Microsoft Sam (but the female version) but I’m not sure if it’s a human who has recorded lines or just an artificial voice. Either way, it adapts and reads out everything almost perfectly with only a few errors. She does get a little creepy though when she hovers at the side as she begins to tap her fingers together and stares into your soul – but then she will bounce back and start telling you how rubbish you’re doing and how everyone is much better, which is mean but at least it isn’t creepy anymore!
I’m separating this aspect out this time, which is something I don’t usually do in my reviews, as its a big aspect of the game and it has its own ups and downs which I hope they adjust or look into. First of all, I’ll start with the negative aspect – there is no online multiplayer. Now, before you jump into the comment section below and correct me (although a comment or two would be nice), I mean in the typical, ‘I own the game and you own the game so we can now play online together‘ there is none of that. There are two ways you can play online with your friends which are:
This mode is great. I never hosted it but I played with someone online who also had the game. You associate the game with your Twitch or Youtube account and stream directly from your console. The game will then constantly swap between full-screen gameplay or a custom overlay with you, via the PS Camera, the questions and the scores. This mode is really fun as it’s a player vs the audience mode. The host plays the game as normal, on their phone/tablet, but the audience types in the letter of their guess into the chat messages. This is then picked up by the game and the majority vote on the audience’ side is their choice.
I’ve played a few Twitch integrated games before such as Tomb Raider and Akiba’s Trip but It’s Quiz Time worked perfectly for us while streaming via the PS4 directly. The only thing I wanted here was the ability to stream via Mixer and do the same thing – which I know won’t be possible unless Sony adds Mixer support I guess, but Mixer does only have a 2-5 second delay whereas Twitch and Youtube can be up to 30 seconds sometimes. However, SnapFingerClick has also thought of this as they have added a 45-second timer on all questions in this mode to allow everyone to answer within the time frame.
Play with Friends:
Okay, so this mode is for both playing with people locally and also over the internet. In this mode, everyone downloads the free app onto their phone or tablets and signs in with the room code provided. This is the one I chose to do, as I don’t use my PS Camera much, and it worked great with myself and my friend who was playing from her house near London. The only issue we had was the delay as some questions you got more points for if you answered quicker – but as I mentioned above, the dev advised to play the ‘online’ playlist as those unfair questions aren’t included. After switching to that mode, the game was perfect and we had such a great time playing it. The only issue is, the questions don’t appear on the phone – so to play that mode your friend has to also be able to see the stream of your game which makes sense I guess but having the questions appear on the phone, as well as the TV, would allow us to play the speed rounds as well.
One thing I forgot to mention is the game does have a solo play option where you pick a speciality subject and answer 30 questions. The quicker you answer, the more points you get and you get an extra 150 points if it’s on your chosen subject. Similarly, if you get a question wrong then you lose more points the faster you answer with an extra 150 taken off if it was in your subject. This modes premise is to see how many points you can get within a ~ 5-minute game.
As with my PlayLink reviews, I thought I would have a section for how the app works with the game as well. The first time you load up the app you are asked for a name, age (so it knows what questions to use), how to pronounce your name, avatar/photo and even whether you are referred to as him/her/them. This allows the game to fully customise how it interacts with you – in my game I was older than my friend so Salli kept telling me how I was being beaten by a young girl and how I must be too old to concentrate!
One of the other cool things is the post-game info. I’ve just booted up the app and you can see how many games you have played, your accuracy, what your highest scores are and even your type (mine says ‘smarty pants’). This is pretty cool and something I honestly didn’t expect as it’s probably the most customisable app I’ve seen for these games so far.
Once you start playing the game though, it becomes a virtual answer board. If a question has four answers then there will be four buttons on the device labelled A, B, C and D – meaning you have to look at the screen/stream to see what the question and answers actually are. If you are playing the game where you have to describe something then everyone but the one describing will have a list of words to tick off as the describer mentions them. It works perfectly as intended, even when I played with my friend over wifi – something the PlayLink titles don’t do as those require you all to be on the same internal network.
It’s Quiz Time is a great party game. I’ve had lots of fun with it locally, online and on my own. Salli is a ‘love or hate’ part of the game and she is there throughout the whole thing so maybe watch a few videos first so you know what you will be experiencing. The question and playlist variety keep the game entertaining and non-repetitive with lots of options for customisation and tweaking to your pleasure. This is by far the best party based Quiz game I’ve played this generation so far.
It's Quiz Time£15.99
- Thousands of questions and categories
- Lots of customisation in the profiles including how to phonetically say your name
- Every game feels different
- Really cheap for the amount of content
- Can be played locally or online via Youtube or Twitch streaming
- Answers and questions are on-screen only and not on the app
- Salli is the 'Marmite' of the game!
- No option to play the 'live' mode without a Camera/option to disable the Camera
- When playing locally, everyone has to have a smart phone/tablet to play