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You?ve all seen the programme and most of you have played the game, a lot of people love it and a lot hate it, I myself don?t mind it and it is the biggest game show anywhere in the world. So what am I talking about? Yes, ?Who wants to be a Millionaire? of course? Anyway, after the success of the first offering from Eidos software, they have now brought a second version of the game to the stores and that?s exactly what I am about to review, ?Who wants to be a Millionaire, 2nd Edition?. The game is currently on sale for £19.99 and is widely available in the shops. For those of you that have not seen the show or played the game (I can?t believe there is anyone), here?s a very brief introduction of the game. WWTBAM (as it will be known from now on) is basically a quiz show that has took off in a big way, spreading its wings across the world; the show originated in Great Britain and is hosted by the slightly irritating Chris Tarrant. The idea of the game is to answer 15 questions, each having a progressive reward from £100 up until the mighty £1,000,000. These questions are multiple choice, with they?re being 4 choices of answer for each question and start off from simple (The £100 question) to very hard (The £1,000,000). You are give 3 lifelines, ask the audience, where you ask the audience to enter their answers and the results being shown in a percentage format, 50/50 where you take away two of the possible answers, leaving the correct answer and one wrong answer or phone a friend, where you get the chance to phone a friend of choice for a bit of help. That?s basically it, you attempt to answer these 15 questions and reach the £1,000,000, should you answer incorrectly you lose the total you are on, although there is two safety positions at £1,000 and £32,000, meaning if you reach either of these, you are guaranteed this sum of money. Now on to the PC game, in the original PC version of the game
, there was a couple of noticeable things missing, the main one being, there was not anyone asking the questions, it was just a matter of the questions being shown on the screen and you having to read it yourself, the second thing missing, but not as important was actually having your name on the cheque which was shown after the game finished, it used to just have player 1, etc. These have now been corrected, yes you now getting Chris Tarrant actually asking you the questions, giving it a more realistic feel about it, but at the same time giving you more reason to get thoroughly sick of his voice, he even does he usually teasing, you know the ?Are you sure that?s your final answer? type of thing, this has improved the game immensely. The game has several options available, giving you the choice of four different ways to play the game, these are as follows: Fastest Finger: Just like on the pre-qualifying questions on the TV show, you are given a question and four answers, it?s your task to arrange them in the correct order, you can play this against up to three other contestants. Team game: This just basically means that two of you play on the same side, giving you the chance to answer alternative questions, should you answer incorrectly, you are also letting your team-mate down. Head-to-Head: Just a basic head-to-head challenge, meaning you play the game against up to three opponents, this is the most fun and in my view the best way to play the game. Is the game any good? Well, yes and no, you see it has pluses and minuses, the pluses being, it?s a good way to enjoy yourself and tax your brain and is especially good when four of you play the head-to-head version of the game, the inclusion of Tarrants voice-over actually asking the questions makes the game a lot more realistic and the graphics (i.e. the crowd, etc) have been slightly improved. The game also seems a bit smoother running than it predecessor. It also has bad points, well one main one really, you see upon looking at the actually CD, you?ll notice that it is actually only half full, yet the game only has about 1,000 questions in total and after playing for a while, you start to get regular repeated questions, which can be annoying, especially when your opponents in the head-to-head keep getting them. So why when the disk is only half full, can they not include at least another 1,000 questions? Yeah, money I suppose, they actually want you to get sick of the game, so you?ll buy the next version, makes sense really, doesn?t it? I know the game (and the programme for that matter) is not everyone?s cup of tea, but I don?t mind it and playing the game is fun, but it can quickly wear off and that is WWTBAM?s main downfall, it doesn?t have much in the longevity stakes, but I suppose it?s ok for a few days. I do however think that £19.99 is a bit steep for a game that will not last too long and I think they could enable the game to be updated via the Internet or something, thus meaning you never run out of questions, but alas, this will not happen, as next year they?ll probably be a 3rd edition. System requirements: Windows 95/98 or above DirectX 7.0a or above 150 MB of hard drive space P166 or above 16MB Ram 2MB SVGA Card Recommended System: 500 MB of Hard Drive Space P266 or greater processor 32MB RAM 4MB SVGA card fully DirectX 7 compatible
It's true I tell you, with the new on-line version of the ITV cult TV quiz show, I won the big prize of a cool million quid! Unfortunately the biggest cash prize you can win on this version is only a thousand pounds and to do that you have to be the quickest person to the million and I wasn't even in the top three, so no retirement plans here yet! Fellow dooyoosers will no doubt have similarly addictive personalities such as I so a word of caution here, before reading the rest of this rant, this is a fairly addictive new site I have uncovered. I'll tell you a bit about the TV show which this on-line game is base on, as if you didn't already know about it! The programme has been put together by a company called Celador and it is hosted by Chris Tarrant, he of Tiswas fame, if you are old like me you'll remember that Saturday morning mad childrens show. Unfortunately this childrens show (WWTBAM) does not have Lenny Henry with his condensed milk sandwiches or the phatom flan flinger or even Bob Carolgees with Spit the dog (or that rather nice young lady who name escapes me). What it does have is great and atmospheric lighting and music with a simple but intrigueing format where contestants have to answer ever harder questions to get to a million pounds. The questions are multiple choice and there are 15 correct answers needed to win the top prize. Along the way the contestants have three "lifelines" they can use to help with tricky questions, 50/50 will remove two wrong answers form the choices given, ask the audience will let those watching in the studio take a guess at the answer and finally the "phone a friend" which lets the contestant ring up an aquaintence who can try to aid them in their hour of need. The website itself is slick and replicates the feel of the TV show in looks and sounds with flashy graphics galore, but I suspect you need a plug-in
or two to appreciate this in full (Macromedia Flash I expect). There are all kinds of options on the site, a forum, news section and downloads even a shop, but I will concentrate on how to win the cash! In order to play for the cash prize, you will need to pay, unfortunately! It is between 50p and a pound to play per game, depending on how you choose to part with your cash! My advice is to pay by telephoning the number given as this is the cheapest method and quickest in my case. You pay 50p for the 30 second or so call, you can pay by sending a text message or with a credit card on-line but this is around £1 a time. You need to register which is easy and then buy credits to play with. After that you just log on and you are away answering questions and using lifelines exactly as you would in the show. Only real difference is it is against the clock. I don't remember Mr Tarrant ever saying "hurry up" to the contestants as I suppose the longer they take the less money ITV has to pay out, but on this version you get 30 seconds to answer to begin with and 60 seconds for the tougher questions. So far I have paid to play 3 times and won 2 free games, if you are quick enough to the £1,000 pound mark you get these perks and I find that goal quite easy. After that things get tougher, I did cheat by using Google to get to the million mark (I prefer to say used my initiative) and my Wife does have a bad cough at the moment too! Seriously though to get to the million quickly enough to win the cash prize you will need to answer all the questions quickly, not enough time to type in "peninsular largest" into google, even the fast typers can't risk that. Maybe better to get a gang of intelligent friends around for a laugh. I don't think having a quick PC or connection is much help either, the way the game is designed seems to make things equal for all levels of PC used.
As long as it doesn't crash on the last question, that would be a bit tedious! One major difference for the cash competition is you don't have the "is that your final answer?" option which means if you have played the computer version you may regret clicking on the answer too quickly! I just found out that you can play a free version of the game, no prizes on offer but you can choose various historic games to play. For example play the game that "Carol Vorderman" played on as well as other celebrities and the million pound winners. As I said addictive people look out!