Also On: Xbox 360, Wii
Medium: Blu-ray Disc, Digital
Game show games have come and gone since the 8-bit NES, and like Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy! has been around even longer. While there have been versions of the popular quiz show recreated over the years, none have come to even be as close to as faithful as what you can get this year.
Jeopardy, for the 3 of you who are unfamiliar, is a quiz game show where you have a board that has 6 categories that range from pop culture to history and science. Each category has 5 clues that increase in value and difficulty and double in value in the 2nd round (more on that later). Each clue is actually the answer to a question you need to ask, for example, “He is a hall of famer for the St Louis Cardinals that makes fans do ‘back flips’.” The answer being “Who is Ozzie Smith.” In the first round each clue goes from $100 to $500 and in the second round they double from $200 to $1000. If you get the clue correct, you earn the money and select again. If your opponents guess right they take the money and control of the board. What’s more you if you guess incorrectly, you lose the value from your banked total, and yes you can go into the negative. The objective is to weed through the clues in round one and two and get to the final round with as much money as possible as you can wager on one final question as little or as much as you like. The end result of course being claimed winner with the highest total.
Visually the game replicates the show perfectly with of course your host Alex Trebek leading the way and asking the questions. While there is nothing terribly flashy about the presentation, as the game is one of the more serious game shows, the lighted board, animated clues, and even Alex himself more than do the job to keep the game riveting. Recently the show has incorporated the Clue Crew and their likenesses are faithfully ported into the game as well.
Audio is also done remarkably well, from the opening theme song, to the now infamous Jeopardy countdown song, the game sounds as alive as can be. Toss in the fact the entire game is voiced by Alex himself, who not only welcomes you to the show, explains the rounds and rules, but reads each and every question and answer without a hitch. Heck, even Johnny Gilbert makes his voice talents noticed in this game rounding off the sounds that will please any Jeopardy fan’s ear drums.
Game play is simple, even if some of the questions and answers are not. It also must be noted that the game will shoot out the clues and categories to you without notice of age group playing. For those of you who completely suck at Jeopardy, there is a multiple choice option on easy when guessing your answer. For the faithful, that means you must type it out, but fear not grammar and spelling impaired, the game is pretty lenient on spelling.
Besides the 3 rounds of play per show, you are treated to slick new multiplayer mini games that help break things up and act as commercial breaks. If you get tired of playing the CPU or you family and friends at home, there is an online option where you can put your noggin to the test and check your leaderboard scores for those brainiacs who are brave and smart enough to take on the world. If the game holds up and the game sells well, you can even expect downloadable content including more questions and answers to keep the fun going for a long time.
Jeopardy! is definitely the egghead’s game show, but there is a reason it’s been around longer than me. It’s not only fun, but you just might learn something. Just like Wheel of Fortune by the same dynamic duo released at the same time, Jeopardy is easily the most faithful and accurate recreation of the popular game show over to don a console. If you are a fan of game shows and especially Jeopardy, this game’s under $30 price tag is as simple as “What is a Steal?”