Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz

Review

posted 6/3/2008 by Cyril Lachel
other articles by Cyril Lachel
One Page Platforms: PS2
I love game shows. Don't get me wrong, I don't love all game shows, but more times than not I find myself drawn into the fake studio world full of cash prizes and trips to exotic locales. I don't care if it's The Match Game, Family Feud, Jeopardy!, Wheel of Fortune or Who Wants to Be A Millionaire, if there's a host and they're giving away prizes you better believe that I'm going to be on the edge of my seat.

Perhaps it's this predilection that makes me vulnerable to a game like Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz. Not only am I a huge fan of game shows, but I'm also a huge movie buff. Add these two things together into one video game and I'm in heaven. At least, that was my anticipation going into this brand new PlayStation 2 game from Sony.

Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz is yet another installment in the ever-growing library of Buzz games. In case you're not hip to the scene, Buzz is a line of popular party games for the PlayStation 2, each of which comes with a four-player control that resembles a game show buzzer. Although we're just now starting to see these Buzz games in the U.S., Europe has been answering series' trivia questions for several years now.

If you've played Buzz! The Mega Quiz then you'll feel right at home with this Hollywood version. A standard match of Buzz is split up into several different mini-games, each of which tests your knowledge of new and old Hollywood movies. For example, in one part of the game you'll be trying to answer questions as quickly as possible, while in another section you'll be answering tricky true or false questions. In all there are eight different events, all of which are easy to learn and fun to play.

Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz is hosted by a cute little Muppet-like character named, conveniently enough, Buzz. Like any good host, Buzz's job is to keep the show moving and add funny quips here and there. The problem is that the actual quip writing is extremely poor. Nearly all of his movie jokes fall flat on their face and he'll induce more groans than anything. What's worse, you'll quickly realize that he tends to repeat the same bad jokes over and over again ... and there's not even a way of skipping past him. Buzz does have his moments from time to time, but even those grow stale after you've played the game two or three times.

Thankfully the actual trivia is a lot of fun. As you would expect from a movie-based trivia game there are a lot of questions about actors, directors, writers and everything else relating to the magic of motion pictures. This version of Buzz features more than 5,000 different questions, which should be more than enough to keep you and your entire party interested for a long time to come. Best of all, by creating an account on your memory card the game will keep track of which questions you've been asked, minimizing the amount of time you will see any one question.

An impressive amount of questions come with short clips of movies or captions. It won't take more than a couple of games before you realize that these clips and pictures are being recycled, only with a different question each time. It's interesting to see how many different ways the question writers have come up with using a particular section of a movie or some iconic still image. The clips all seem to come from well known Hollywood blockbusters, so you should expect to see King Kong, Alien, Happy Gilmore, Psycho, The French Connection and many more. Perhaps even more impressive are some of the surprise additions, such as the inclusion of Serenity, Phone Booth, Airplane!, and many other cult classics.

Although you can play Buzz! The Hollywood Quiz by yourself, the real fun is playing it with three other friends. While most PlayStation 2 games support only one or two players at the same time, Buzz is at its best when you have a room full of people competing against each other. The game can still be a lot of fun two players, but not every one of the events seem designed for a one or two-player mode.
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