Trivia Crack comeback

As I aimlessly scroll through Netflix, a familiar color-coordinated pinwheel stares back at me. Flashbacks of 2013 middle school years fill my mind, desperately willing the school wifi on my iPod touch to survive long enough for my turn to play Trivia Crack. It’s 8 a.m. — way too early for a 13-year-old to become an addict, wagering school lunches on the winnings from an internet sensation game.

And yet here it is again, a new and improved version that embraces the wonders of interactive streaming — “Trivia Quest.” Don’t worry if you start late, you can play each episode at any time on normal or difficult levels within the trivia format.

If you weren’t a part of this fad and have no idea what I’m talking about, Trivia Crack is a trivia-based virtual game where you compete with friends and strangers to answer the most questions correctly. There are six topics on the spinning wheel: history, science, arts, world, sports and entertainment.

Each genre gives fifth grade and higher level questions ranging from, “What’s 4×12?” to “How many holy symbols are there in the Catholic Church?” (There are 10, by the way). Each failed question gives a flashback to the disappointment on your parents’ faces after failing third-grade math, but the victory is like nothing else.

After playing a couple of days of the Netflix series “Trivia Quest,” I felt nostalgic for the phone game itself and decided to redownload for research purposes and here is what I have to say about the difference between the two. The Netflix series gives more of a backstory than the app, which makes sense as it’s on a streaming service and is introduced as a “kids’ interactive animated show.” The show follows Willy (the pinwheel) on his adventures to save his friends of trivia land from the conqueror Evil Rocky.

Each episode is a new day of 24 multiple-choice trivia questions (12 standard and 12 optional hard ones.) You have the option to replay, but you can only rescue one of the characters if you get every answer right and gain enough points. When you finally gain the right amount of points, you can advance to help Willy save his friends from Rocky’s dungeon.

As opposed to the Netflix series, the original Trivia Crack app lets you compete with friends and provides no backstory. Dueling your intelligence against your friends (soon to be foes) definitely feels different. Failing on your own watching the TV screen flash red when you click Howdy, the Good Outdoor Manners Raccoon, instead of Smokey the Bear for “What mascot does the U.S. government use to preserve forests?” truly makes you question your public school education.

No matter the platform, these games offer a fun test to your intellect while still distracting you from your important daily tasks. Very few times have we seen a short-lived viral game from the early 2010s come back into popularity, but Trivia Crack beats the odds once again.