looking for trivia game mechanics

11 replies [Last post]
Anonymous

Well, here goes. I have been buring many oz. of midnight oil, scouring the forums, gathering info to create a trivia game. Basically, I mean that although I have spent the last year+ researching my questions, I have left the creation of the game's mechanics until now. And this is where I hope you guys chime right in :lol:

At this point, I have 400 questions spread over 4 categories. The game is supposed to educational (and fun) and the material is presented on poker-sized cards, w/o a board. The players are teen-agers and adults The questions are on one side, while the answers are on the other.

I have toyed with the various ideas:

*Players ask each other the questions randomly from each category trying to amass X points from each of the four categories until threat of having 60 seconds to do so.

*Having a time limit for each game and the players take turns asking the questions and the player with the most points wins.

My problem is that neither of these mechanics are terribly exciting for me. Can anyone suggest anything to jazz up the play? --to keep the rules relatively simple, but to create an element of challenge between the players? Any suggestion is greatly appreciated. (I read one post by Oracle, Feb 16, 2004 and thought it was a grand suggestion.) I am looking for a few others (like 3?) to playtest.

BTW, you guys are a great bunch and I have been given so much to think about and to digest in the short time I have been lurking at night. It is nice to know that I am really not the only one up late at night, early in the morning, thinking about 'just one more rule that I need to work out'.

You guys rock!

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

One thing that comes to mind is perhaps sing the scoring mechanic of E&T. Players get points in the 4 categories separately. When the game is over, the player with the highest points in their lowest category wins. For example, if you end up with 7, 10, 4, 9 then your final score is 4. This system requires you to do well in all 4 categories to win.

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

ppgames wrote:
The game is supposed to educational (and fun)...

Oh no! The kiss of death on a game box, "educational"!! ; )

ekted wrote:
This system requires you to do well in all 4 categories to win.

I like that idea, keeps the game more spread out. Maybe have each question on the card be worth a point. The player can start with any category and bank that point if they get it right. They can then continue to bank more points (and possibly lose their turn without gaining any points if they get a question wrong) or they can end their own turn and take the points in the bank.

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

Oh yeah, if they answer all the questions on the card they get a bonus point or two.

It may be good to let the next player then go. The one thing I hate about "other" trivia games is that one good player can run the whole game, leaving other (less trivial) players with nothing to do for long periods of time).

My \$.02

Chip
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Joined: 12/31/1969
looking for trivia game mechanics

SiskNY wrote:

The player can start with any category and bank that point if they get it right. They can then continue to bank more points (and possibly lose their turn without gaining any points if they get a question wrong) or they can end their own turn and take the points in the bank.

I like the idea of risking your points for the possibility of getting more. But if you allow people to essentially answer as many questions as they like, you're likely to run out of questions real fast. People might only be able to play the game a few times before questions start coming up again, especially if a certain category is popular.

Chip

Oracle
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Joined: 06/22/2010
looking for trivia game mechanics

How about the college bowl format for trivia like I described here http://www.bgdf.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=856

sedjtroll
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Joined: 07/21/2008
looking for trivia game mechanics

To put together what some others have said with my own thoughts I'm thinking the following:

One option: play it like Family Fued. Teams sit in rows, and on your teams turn your player 1 is read a question of the category of their choice by the opponent. If the question is answered correctly then Player 2 gets asked the next question (choose category, can't be one that's alerady done). If answered incorrectly the team gets a Strike, 3 Strikes and you're out- no points and the opponents get a chance to Steal by answering that question correctly and taking all points earned by the other team that turn.

Another option... to apply the time pressure, have a timer (best would be one that doesn't let you know how much time is left. Either play individually or sit with an opponent on each side of each player. Ask a question of the player to your left (they choose color). If they get it WRONG, they take the card and ask a question of the player to THEIR left, they choose category, can't be a question already asked. If they answer RIGHT, they choose another category and get another question. The goal is to be the player answering a question when the blind timer goes off. Therefore you want to answer questions correctly because that earns you more time during which the timer might go off. There might have to be a second timer to time the responces, where a long response time equals an incorrect response. the blind timer might have to have a minimum and maximum time with a random interval within that range.

And finally, another option... read a player all 4 questions on a card, if they answer 3 of them correctly then they score the card. Winner is the player with the most cards scored at the end of a set amount of time (rounds, timer, whatever).

For what it's worth I really liked the idea of banking the points... each question answered correctly is a point you could get, if you stop there... or you could press your luck. And if you get all 4 on a card right, you get a bonus 2 points and then it's the next player's turn. There could be a 1 minute timer or something for the turns.

- Seth

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

How about something that involves the cards as a secondary mechanic?

I have, let's say, 3 questions in my hand at any time. Each turn I have to ask another player a question, and I can pick any of the 3.

If she gets it right, then she gets to keep the card, and it scores for her. If she gets it wrong, then I get to keep the card, and it scores for me.

That would seem to solve a lot of the issues that are being brought up here since players are actively attempting to stump each other.

Oh, and btw, hi everyone! This looks like a great forum.

Anonymous
trivia game mechanics

Wow, that is why you guys are such a resource! I think that you have all given many good suggestions. Which leads me to questions about playtesting...

When playtesting, would you suggest/have you found success with testing more than one mechanic in a session? I have read a few in this thread that i would like to try out. And how do I know if one or two or three are better than the others? Most persons are simply impressed with the questions of the game and I am not sure if mechanics is really important to them (at least not the first time). It is to me and I am even thinking of supplying a few variations of the game in the rule sheet.

Any thoughts?

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

Ooop! sorry I saw the play testing forum after I posted, please excuse the ring!

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

Something else that came to mind:

When it is your turn, you can either choose a category and answer a question for a point, or challenge an opponent in a category of your choice. If they get it wrong, you get a point in that category. :)

Anonymous
looking for trivia game mechanics

At work, the "fun" committee is using Family Feud for a floor event. It gives me a chance to see the old mechanics work again, and, I have to say that I like the thought of the play/pass/steal mechanic. I like sedjtroll's idea:

Quote:
opponents get a chance to Steal by answering that question correctly and taking all points earned by the other team that turn.

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