A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this a quiz game for older players that has a significant online component. Players not only go up against other people online, but also download original quizzes written by other players. These quizzes are automatically scrubbed of profanity then vetted by players, who can report or recommend each one after they try it. Still, there is no guarantee you won't run across some offensive content. Most of the female contestants in the game are highly sexualized via accentuated bosoms and provocative costumes.
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What's it about?
BUZZ! QUIZ TV, which comes bundled with four wireless Buzzer controllers, brings Sony's popular game show-style trivia series to the PlayStation 3 for the first time. Much of the next-generation experience will feel familiar to the franchise's fans; the series' muppet-faced, smart mouthed host still has MC duties as he leads us through a variety of recognizable trivia challenges. However, there are also plenty of new features, including some surprisingly robust online functionality and support for the PlayStation Eye camera (it's used to take pictures of you and your friends as you play). And with 5,000 new questions scattered over five broad categories, there's enough new content to keep even die-hard trivia buffs playing for months.
Is it any good?
The most exciting new feature in Quiz TV is the ability to make and share your own quizzes with the rest of the world. Players compose questions on their PCs using a form found at mybuzzquiz.com, then anyone playing the game on their PlayStation 3 can access it from the game menu. There is some chaff -- poorly written quizzes with occasional factual errors -- but the overall quality of user generated content is quite impressive and spans a wide range of topics, from European football to the Star Wars films to famous advertising slogans. Of course, user content always comes with the potential for abuse, but we have yet to find purposefully offensive material. Plus, players have the ability to report anything they deem inappropriate.
The other big innovation is online play. The Buzz! games are always most entertaining when played against other people, but sometimes there's just no one else in the house with whom a person can play. That's where Quiz TV's simple "sofa vs. sofa" mode comes in. It leads four networked players through several fast paced rounds of questions, and can be a real hoot. Everything else is pretty similar to what players have seen before in Buzz! games for the PlayStation 2, just with the spiffier presentation and cleaner graphics you'd expect of a PlayStation 3 title. But that's still enough to make Buzz! Quiz TV one of the best, most well-rounded quiz games around.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the appeal of writing your own quiz. Everyone is familiar with taking tests, but not many of us have written quizzes for others. What goes into creating a good trivia question? How do you know if it is too difficult or too easy? Do you think you have specialized knowledge of a particular subject that would let you write a quiz others might find interesting?
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