Quiz Climber’s pricing model makes you feel like a customer first and a player second, if you even feel like a player at all. Shallowly adopting some of the hottest trends in game development, it ends up looking more like an exercise in social gaming and microtransactions than a proper game.
Quiz Climber’s title readily gives its premise away. You answer trivia questions, and the more you answer in a row, the higher you climb up a tree. Your progress is then compared against the best streaks among your Facebook friends. If you get a question wrong, you can use a lifeline to continue your progress.
You’ll earn a free lifeline after answering around a hundred questions, but what the developers want you to do is buy lifelines with real money. In-app purchases can be pretty unsavory in general, and that’s no exception in Quiz Climber. By using extra lifelines (one per game), you can buy an advantage over your friends, and the only reward is bragging rights.
We might still enjoy this design if the trivia in Quiz Climber was any good. The questions are uninteresting and all over the place, both in subject and difficulty. A trivia quiz is supposed to be broad, but the breadth of the questions in Quiz Climber isn’t challenging– it’s just unclear who the audience is supposed to be.
The questions can jump from 17th Century English history to 1960s American music to ‘What is fifty divided by two?” Some of the questions are written in such a way that you might think this is a game for 8-year-old kids, but most 8-year-olds don’t have a Facebook account and they probably don’t know much about the English Civil War, either.
The questions don’t progress along a sensible difficulty curve, so many of them are only hard for someone who can’t even read them. Some of the questions can literally be reduced to, ‘Which of these answers is not a pun?’ It’s not just the very earliest questions that are painfully easy, either. It also took less than 20 minutes of playing the game before we ran into a repeat question.
Quiz Climber feels like a hollow demonstration from the developers that they were able to integrate in-app purchases and Facebook into a game. If this game was made for a programming course, they would get full marks. However, as a game to sell to people, it’s not worth your time or money.
Editor’s note: The original version of this review stated that multiple lifelines could be used in a single game. Only one lifeline can be used per game. Slide To Play regrets the error.