Bang Your Head Against This Impossible Quiz!


Image: inXile Entertainment

From the same people who brought you Fantastic Contraption 2 comes The Impossible Quiz, a crazy, tricky, fun app for the iPad or iPod Touch/iPhone. Very similar, though not identical, to the website by the same name, The Impossible Quiz is a difficult though not impossible quiz, despite the name. It is full of questions that really make you think. They need logic, skill, or guessing to get through, and you really have to venture outside your usual box to get the answer to many of them. Expand your expectations, and you’ll do fine. Still, my logic-genius seven-year-old son helped me with a few. Each question is a puzzle to solve, not really a question to answer.

To start off, you get three lives. For each question you get wrong, you lose a life. But the quiz doesn’t move on to the next question. It stays on the same one, with all the multiple choice answers still showing and not blocked out, until you get it right. So you could easily lose all three lives on one question. As you go through the game, though, you can earn “skips” that allow you to skip questions if you choose, though there are some questions that you are not allowed to skip. There are seven skips you can earn all together. Also, every 20 questions or so gets you to a Moron Mark where you can start again if you lose all your lives. This is really helpful, so you don’t have to keep remembering all of the answers forever. But if you use your Moron Marks, the game teases and taunts you on the screen. And each time you use it, it adds another screen. So if you start over at a Moron Mark many times, you may have a dozen or more teasing screens to dismiss before moving on. This is frustrating, but I found it especially funny because one of the screens says “your” when it should say “you’re.” I’m not sure if this was intentional or not.


Image: inXile Entertainment

At the start of the game, questions aren’t timed. But as you go on, more and more questions have time limits. For those, you get anywhere from one second to ten seconds to answer the question. I’m guessing the one second question was designed to make you fail the first time since your brain will take at least that long to take in what is on the page and come up with an answer. For any of the timed questions, if you don’t get the right answer by the time the time bomb goes off, the game is over.

I made it up to level 62 or so before having to use the iPad for something else. I’ll have to play it again while the questions are still fresh in my mind, because once you quit the program, the next time you play you have to start at the beginning again. There are over 100 questions total, which is hard to do in one sitting, even if you already know most of the answers. So a save feature would be nice.

Since the game is designed to expect that you’ll fail some questions, at least the first time, The Impossible Quiz is also a memory game. Some questions are easy to remember the answers to, others are more difficult. But some are even designed to make fail before you succeed. For some of these, you will kick yourself when you finally figure out the answer.

Using the iPad or an iPod Touch/iPhone versions instead of the website brings in the element of being able to tap and drag on the screen itself. This works much better, in my opinion, since you can tap faster than you can work the mouse.

You will fail. You will play it dozens of times. It will test your patience and your memory. But if you figure out the answers yourself, you will feel very clever, and you will laugh often. I highly recommend The Impossible Quiz to thinking adults and very clever children everywhere.

I played the iPad version of The Impossible Quiz, which costs $1.99 in the iTunes store. The iPod Touch/iPhone version is also available for $0.99 and seems to have the same questions. There is also The Impossible Quiz 2, for $1.99, which I have not played.

Note: I received a free copy of the iPad version of The Impossible Quiz for this review.

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Jenny Bristol is an Editor at GeekDad and a founding Director at GeekMom. She is a lifelong geek who spends her time learning, writing, homeschooling her two wickedly smart kids, losing herself in history, and mastering the art of traveling on a shoestring.