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Buzz! Quiz TV
Platform: PlayStation 3
While it hasn't had the same level of media attention as the Wii or Brain Training, Buzz! has been one of the big casual gaming success stories of the last few years. If you've ever played, you'll know why. Everybody understands the TV quiz show format and it doesn't take any nous to work out that pressing the green button on the special buzz controller will select the green answer from the multiple choice selection. Most of all, Buzz! took something that most of us enjoy - showing off your superior knowledge and being incredibly smug about it until family members/friends start making death threats - and made it even more fun with a great cast of characters and some well-designed rounds. It's great post-pub entertainment, great Sunday night family entertainment, and even good for the kids with the right question packs.
For Buzz!'s PS3 debut, Relentless Software wisely hasn't tried to reinvent the Buzz! wheel. In fact, it's interesting to note that, while Microsoft's 'Buzz! inspired' Scene It! Lights, Camera Action took the quiz game into the HD era by throwing in loads of HD movie footage, music and image content, Buzz! Quiz TV has been a lot more restrained. Sure, the cartoon characters that make up the contestants look crisper and have smarter textures and reflection effects for their costumes. True, the studio lighting has been improved and there's a little more flash stuff going on in the background, but generally speaking Buzz! Quiz TV sticks to a tried and tested formula: primarily text-based questions and multiple choice answers.
In case you haven't played, up to four contestants work their way through several rounds, usually presented with some kind of twist. In some rounds you score higher for answering sooner. In others you have to make a bet on whether you'll answer correctly, winning the staked points if you do but losing them if you fail. In Pass the Bomb you're answering questions correctly so you can pass a bomb down the line while it runs out of fuse. In another round, getting the right answer first means you can throw a custard pie at your chosen target, draining them of points. Throughout, your compere is Buzz, the ever-eager Australian host, again voiced by Jason Donovan. He's still a little irritating and repetitive, though the recorded dialogue is the best here that it's ever been, but he certainly adds to the character of the proceedings. Scene It! seems dishwater dull by comparison.