“Have you heard of HQ Trivia?”
It was the fall of 2017 and my former coworker was selling me on the virtues of this hot new mobile game he’d discovered. “You can play for free and you have the opportunity to win real cash!”
A few days later, during the middle of the workday, we stepped aside to play a few minutes of HQ Trivia. Those first few minutes would form the start of a ritual that carried on for quite some time.
My crippling addiction to Dr. Mario World has reignited my internal debate about the merits of free-to-play games. While I grew up in a world where you either dropped quarters into an arcade machine or bought a cartridge to play the full game, I understand now that games have always been driven by the business models behind them. Free-to-play is just another permutation of that, and it’s up to me how much I want to engage with that. With Google Stadia and 5G looming, streaming may add yet another approach to monetizing games.
Though I generally prefer to buy my games outright, there have been a few free-to-play games that really sunk their teeth into me. Here are a few of my free-to-play faves!
For the past few months, I have been an avid HQ-tie. Whether I’m playing with coworkers during the 3PM show or playing the 9PM show with my wife, I’m usually on my phone, answering these trivia questions until I inevitably get one wrong and am eliminated from the game. It seems like answering 12 multiple choice questions would be simple enough, but as my 100+ losses have proven, this is certainly not the case.
However, April 3, 2018 was not such a day. Somehow, some way, I ascended to the top of the mountain and won a game of HQ Trivia.