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Party Game Review: Pub Trivia

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University Games, known for brain-building games, puzzles, and toys, provides a classic night of entertainment right at home. UG is famous for its philosophy, “Our games make learning fun,” noting that “Parents want educational activities for their kids.” There is also plenty of room for adults to get in on the educational fun. Among UG’s collection of smart party games for adults, Pub Trivia is a chance to prove knowledge and definitely learn something new with all the fun and thrill of a trivia contest at a favorite watering hole.

Pub trivia is a classic Tuesday-night event at bars and clubs all over the world. Rather than individual contests of obscure knowledge as seen in Trivial Pursuit-style games, Pub Trivia is a team contest. At organized events, prizes are regularly offered, and people spend weeks studying and combing their acquaintances to fill potential gaps in their teams’ knowledge-base. At home, Pub Trivia is a chance to step away from the single-winner trivia games while still holding onto the intense competition for which trivia is famous.

A key feature of pub trivia in general and especially in Pub Trivia is the wide range of topics and questions. Each game consists of five rounds, all featuring a different topic: Science, Nature, Tech, Sport, Recreation, Entertainment, History, Geography, and “Anything Goes.” Every player has his or her own set of skills, and the scope of topics levels the playing field. Some folks might be experts in academics, others in street smarts, others as an arm-chair quarterback, and still others in media or who-knows-what. Half the fun of pub trivia is seeing how seemingly useless daily knowledge can prove quite useful indeed.

The other half of the fun comes in the creative ways questions are posed. For each round, there are ten questions read by the Host. The first five are simple short answers: “In computing, what is a CPU?” Next is a a list: “What are the four events in professional tennis’ Grand Slam?” Then comes a quote: “Who said ‘Youth is a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children’?” The eighth and ninth questions are numerical asking for a decade or specific number “In mythology, how many labors were imposed on Hercules?” And finally, the teams are asked to draw an image, such as the emoticon for crying or the Toyota logo. The first team to finish gains a bonus point, upping the level of intensity as teams race not just the clock, but each other.

The score sheets are collected by the Host and tabulated. With five rounds building toward a cumulative score, it is easy to create a leader board and increase the thrill of competition when teams have their own strong suits. Pub Trivia is a game for four or more players, ages twelve and up. It can be played in under an hour, but best to set aside time for breaks and general merriment. Pub Trivia makes a great excuse to get a party together.

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About Jeff Provine

Jeff Provine is a Composition professor, novelist, cartoonist, and traveler of three continents. His latest book is a collection of local ghost legends, Campus Ghosts of Norman, Oklahoma.