Quizmaster Buzz is back in the studio with five thousand new questions, new games and even some prizes, all designed to challenge and reward those with nimble fingers and even more nimble minds. However, it's still the same game, the same natural successor to those ever present, ever popular TV shows and the same game the whole family can enjoy, whether competing at home or online.
By now we know what to expect. So what’s new?
For a start the graphics have had a bit of a polish. This is the first Buzz game to feel like a PS3 game and not a PS2 port. While the game will never be a star in regards to its graphics, Buzz and his cast of contestants still manage to raise the odd smile. There are new characters, or rather caricatures, willingly throwing around their intellectual weight along with plenty of taunts and pies.
Yes, the pie throwing round is back and the standard game structure is pretty much the same as well. Beginning with simple right or wrong rounds, moving through timed contests where the quicker you answer the more points you get, and ending with the final countdown. In the end the last one standing is the winner, and with Quiz World the winner now receives a prize from Buzz. The prize may be anything from a miniature tree (an incredibly miniature tree) to a full size gold statue of Buzz. Although, you may have to decide the actual value of seeing a cut scene of Buzz kissing his own golden feet for yourself.
Added to the mix is the new names and nicknames feature. Here you can choose from a pre-set list and Buzz will refer to you by name. So if you’re playing the new Over The Edge round, where losers end up getting tossed into a pool of green slime, Buzz will let you know by name how close you are to landing headfirst in the sludge.
Quiz World also provides a greater range of game types to choose from. You can play a rounds select game, a 15 minute game or your purchased quiz pack. You can choose to play crazy rounds or serious rounds, design your own custom game - all for two to eight players - or opt for single player challenges.
Online is back too - and it proves again how competition against strangers is that much more intense and exciting than competing against friends or machines. Unfortunately, it can take a while to find a match and quitting while searching's not possible, so you either have to wait indefinitely or reboot the game. Another problem is choosing your region. You can choose either UK, Australia or International. No New Zealand means playing on the net will always throw up those questions your opponents know instantly, like the name of some German train, or half built stadium, or the year the Brisbane Lions first won the AFL, without much hope of a New Zealand specific question to even it out.
However, online still offers plenty of its own rewards. The couch vs couch contests bring in some nice little team tactics. For example that anonymous team, down the other end of the internet, will often try to keep a team member in last place so they can select categories to help their partner stay in front. Or that’s how we play it at home. Then there’s always that balance between choosing categories based on your own strengths ('80s movies) as opposed to trying to exploit an opponent’s weakness (art and literature - everyone's weakness) or just choosing the most impossible category and trusting to luck (the future ??!).
With Buzz! Quiz World however, the future is pretty much set. It now fits nicely, and willingly, in with the other continual release titles. You know the ones. The same music based games with another new song list, or the same sports game with another team roster. Over the next few years expect the same Buzz game, with a couple of small additions, and a list of new questions. But, if you have an earlier Buzz for your PS3 you can either buy and download question packs or make them yourself and share them free. So buying this one may not be the highest priority.
So settle into the couch and get set for an evening of pies, intense competition, questions about the future, and the prospect of getting tossed into green gloop. Just another typical Friday night.