New Badges: Auld Lang Syne, Page Turner, and Picturebox Schmicturebox

Should old acquaintance be forgot, and never played on Sporcle…

HappyNewYear_1Auld Lang Syne: Share a toast for the favorite quizzes you’ve played over this year, then look forward to new quizzes and a new year by earning this badge. To do so, you’ll need to get 50% or better on New Year’s Eve MoviesUS Cities by Fireworks, and Quiz For Hangovers. This is a holiday badge, so you must play the quizzes on New Year’s Eve!

PageTurner_3Page Turner:  This badge is just as exciting as any paperback beach read. To get it, be prepared to burn the midnight oil – play 25 Literature games in one day to earn this badge. It’s kind of like the Sporcle equivalent of reading that exciting book all night.

PictureboxSchimcturebox_1Picturebox Schmicturebox: You’re in this one for the long haul! To earn this badge, you’ll need to play 1000 Picture Box games. All you’ll need is some dedication and a love for image quizzes.

As always, check the badge page for the latest updates.

Greetings from Kyrgyzstan (Part III)

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A common sight in Bishkek.

Sometimes it’s still strange to find myself in Kyrgyzstan. After all, like any good Sporcler I earned my ‘Bishkek or Bust’ badge back in the day and while I knew where Kyrgyzstan was, I never thought I would live here.

As far as my study abroad time goes, I can only describe it as ‘adventurous’. Bishkek is not for the faint of heart; it’s a city that is still developing, so things don’t always run smoothly. For example, due to a plumbing mishap, I had cold water in my shower and hot water in my toilet for a couple of weeks. Uncomfortable? A bit. Livable? Quite. A good sense of humor helps too.

Ride the Marshrutkas, They Said

Traffic is crazy. Most people get around on the local vans called Marshrutkas, which are relatively cheap. Though they only have 8-10 seats, these vans usually hold around 20-25 people, so you get nice and chummy with the locals. I’ve been amazed at some of the encounters I’ve had in Marshrutkas; I’ve gotten to experience up close and personal more than a few armpits, ridden down the street with my butt pressed up against the windshield and on more than one occasion I’ve have had people fall right into my lap. Picture the Knight Bus from Harry Potter, and you’ll get a good idea of the of the driving style of Marshrutka drivers.

How Did the American Cross the Road?

Nothing builds courage faster than learning how to cross the street in Bishkek. If you wait for the traffic to stop, you’ll spend the entire day standing on side of the road. It was a moment of growth for me when I finally walked into oncoming traffic for the first time. However, I actually have a stronger faith in Kyrgyz drivers than I do of those in Seattle. Here drivers are always prepared for traffic laws to be disobeyed and plan accordingly. Two lanes? Psh! We can fit six cars side by side! Red light? Nah, bro – I got places to be! You cut me off? I hope you like the sound of my horn for the next two minutes. Another interesting fact: Cars come with steering wheels on both sides. This is a never-ending source of amusement to me. Almost as much as the scented and colored toilet paper sold in the supermarkets here (to make up for the fact that I can’t flush it). Green apple is my current ‘favorite’.

Kyrgyz Hospitality

Kyrgyz aren’t really very big into people whipping out camera’s all the time, so it would have been really rude of me to take a photo of my dining experience. But this photo is from Wikipedia:

Kyrgyz aren’t really very big into people whipping out camera’s all the time, so it would have been really rude of me to take a photo of my dining experience. But this photo is from Wikipedia:

Recently I was invited to dinner at a local Kyrgyz/Kazakh family. After my time here, I believe ardently that Central Asians (in my experience) are the most hospitable people I’ve ever met. Your every need will be met as the guest. Just, don’t be picky or stingy with tea. There is no such thing as one cup of tea. This particular evening I got to enjoy the traditional Central Asian meal called Beshbarmak, which translates into “Five Fingers”. Just like its name implies, no utensils necessary cause you eat it with your hands! Our host asked who the oldest of us students were (hint: it was me) – but being a woman I could not sit at the head of the table (the place of honor). Just as well, cause I’m a bit squeamish when it comes to being served a fully cooked sheep’s head. However, this is a delicacy here and is only served to people of high importance, so we were quite honored.

As is customary, my friend was asked to cut off a piece of the head and eat it. He then cut up the rest and we all put some on our plates and ate it with noodles. I can now check off “Eaten sheep’s ear” off of my bucket list (Note: This was not originally on the list). Also, to follow a particular Kazakh tradition, we washed it all down with Camel’s milk, which is the BOMB. I liked it so much I had three cups! And of course, being good hosts – they served us vodka and cognac shots along with an amazing apple custard pie.

Sporcle Wrap-Up 2014: Miscellaneous

2014 has been awesome at Sporcle. If you missed out on any quizzes from one of our favorite categories, look no further! Here are 10 of the most popular Miscellaneous games from 2014.

Top Miscellaneous Quizzes

10. 30 Things You Should Know That Start With ‘E’To start off, quizzes like this are one of the reasons we love the Miscellaneous category. If you’re truly looking to test your trivia, no matter the subject, this E quiz is a fantastic place to start. And even better, it’s part of a series by user QuizzleMyShizzle, so you can test your knowledge through every letter of the alphabet.

9. Any Food but VeganSo many answers, so little time. You’ll be trying so hard to figure out whether or not Marmite and Nutella are vegan within the time limit that you’ll panic and accidentally blow up on something obvious like “Limes” or “Iceberg Lettuce,” probably leading you to curse vegetables forever.

cake8. Classic American FoodNo such thing as American cuisine, you say? Think again! Match the two parts of these classic dishes and tell us American cuisine doesn’t exist.

7. Restaurant LogosAnd if you’re still hungry after the two previous games, try this one next. We’re going to hazard a guess and say that Sporcle users enjoy playing quizzes about food.

6. Almost Useless Trivia VIII: ”But why should I play this quiz?” you ask. “The trivia is useless!” To that, we only have two things to say. First, that’s why that “almost” is there. Second, if you think that  trivia is useless, then you clearly haven’t been playing Sporcle long enough.


5. Alphabet Booby Trap Bonanza: After playing this quiz, you’ll see the alphabet in a whole new light. You’ll never look at letters the same ever again.

bill-nye4. Guess Who in 3 Words: Tired of guessing people from pictures? Try these bare minimum descriptions instead. The amount of information you can glean from just three words is surprising!

3. Quick! Click the Only Two!: This is the perfect definition of a blitz quiz. You have to move fast, and one wrong move and that perfect score is ruined. Our hearts were racing by the end, and finishing brought a sense of relief, but that 100% just feels so good.

2. Food, Drink, and Poison Sorting Blitz: This minefield is deadly in more ways than one! Hopefully, after playing this quiz, you will never again confuse exotic alcohol for poison. And you might even discover some new favorite foods.  Just make sure you correctly sorted everything before ordering something new.

1. Planets, Lakes, and Princesses: We’re not quite sure what it is about this wacky combination that makes this game so fun, but somehow it works, because Planets, Lakes, and Princesses was the most-played Miscellaneous game published in 2014. Sharpen your terrestrial and extraterrestrial geography skills, watch a few Disney movies, and get to work!

Meet the Staff: Eric Hill

EricName: Eric Hill (walrusboy)

Position: UI/UX Designer – a.k.a Head of all things design for Sporcle & Sporcle Live

Originally from: Dallas, Texas

Worked at Sporcle since: May 2011

About: Eric describes himself as a goofy guy who likes to laugh. He likes spending time with his kids and their new family dog. Other places he’s lived include Singapore and southern California. He’s known around the office as the resident Star Trek fan and the voice of Slackbot.

Interests: Eric has a wide variety of hobbies and interests. He spends a lot of time with old computer hardware, collecting retro games to play and share with his kids. He has a 1986 VW Wesfalia Camper van which he’s steadily restoring to pristine condition. And he keeps up on trends in the music industry, with electronic music being his current genre of choice.

For a long time, Eric’s go-to Sporcle quiz was 3 Letter Body Parts. As he tells it, it’s a quiz that covers basic knowledge, but if you’ve been away from it for a few months, it can be a challenge to remember every last answer.

Strange Fact: Most people wouldn’t know that Eric used to be in the military.

Here at Sporcle: Eric is the guy we go to for all design-related questions (he also has good restaurant recommendations.)  Eric loves designing for mobile–one of his first projects at Sporcle involved redesigning the main Sporcle mobile app. On the web, some of his favorite pages to design are the games pages. Eric has an exceptional eye for detail, and he works to make our products appear polished and eye-catching.

Favorite thing about working at Sporcle: Eric likes Sporcle for the “fantastic” team vibe. As he puts it, “Egos are left at the door…everyone is focused on producing a great product.” Though there’s a lot of work to be done, he says, there’s an attitude that we’re here to have fun. And it’s pretty awesome to get paid for that.

Sporcle Wrap-Up 2014: History

2014 has been awesome at Sporcle. If you missed out on any quizzes from one of our favorite categories, look no further! Here are 10 of the most popular History games from 2014.

Top History Quizzes

10. What’s the Nickname?: This game seems simple enough until you realize that some of these nicknames could apply to any one of the answers. You have to go a little deeper: you might know who these people are, but do you know their nicknames? Or, for those who are better known by their nicknames, do you know their real names?

9. Birth Country MatchWatch out! Sometimes people weren’t born in the countries with which you tend to associate them, and linguistic clues only help so much when there are four countries that speak English.

8. 1940s Match-UpWe’ll give you a hint: as much as you might want it to be, Frank Frank is never going to be correct. The match-up element in this quiz makes you realize just how different a familiar term can look when it’s split in half – there will undoubtedly be a few moments in this quiz where you unthinkingly select the wrong answer and then groan as the right one becomes immediately apparent as you read on through the list.

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7. Was I Assassinated?Clearly, this quiz is asking the important questions. You’ll be surprised at how many of the decoys seem really, really plausible… until you click them and immediately regret it.

6. The 22 Countries Britain Has Never Invaded: This quiz really manages to convey the size and power of Britain throughout history. 22/197 modern countries is practically nothing!

5. Missing ‘D’ Quotes: Just one quiz in a great series by Sporcle user citkeane! You’ll be cursing the letter ‘D’ by the time you’re done with this quiz… especially since “delusion” seems to fit in every single quote.

4. Three Images: Guess the Historical Figure: History quizzes with pictures are all too rare, and this is one that’ll have you saying each image out loud in attempt to interpret them. You might want to play this one   alone… or at least somewhere where nobody will judge you.

3. Not American History: This quiz’s title is a little misleading. Don’t go forgetting all your American history knowledge yet – it will certainly serve you well in eliminating the other options in this multiple choice quiz.

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2. British Monarchs MinefieldYou’ve probably mastered the US presidents quiz by now. Perhaps this should be your next feat? Remember, all the numbered monarchs will go in backwards order, but that doesn’t guarantee that there won’t be other names in between! Be prepared to curse at least one Richard, Henry, and Edward before conquering this quiz once and for all.  

1. Anyone but US PresidentsAny quiz with Shakira, Pacman, Mr Monopoly, and Jabba the Hutt as correct answers gets our vote. This quiz was quick, fun, hilarious, and the most played history quiz published in 2014. Sounds like it’s a keeper!

 

Featured Game of the Week (12/3/2014)

We think all our featured quizzes are great, but once a week we find a quiz published within the last 7 days that went the extra mile. Here’s the quiz of the week!

evolution of species

Evolution of Species

by Buckler

Featured December 4, 2014

 

 

About the Quizmaker

Buckler made this week’s featured quiz, Evolution of Species, and it’s his 10th quiz to be published. He’s been on Sporcle since August 2011 and is a curator for the How I Met Your Mother, Minefield, and Logic subcategories. Since joining Sporcle in 2011, he’s played over 2600 games and has 48 badges.

What’s the Quiz About?

To get 100% on Evolution of Species, you must click the order in which different types of life forms evolved on Earth. You’re given how many years it’s been since the organism evolved, and it’s up to you to figure out what the order is. The life forms in question range from amphibians to land plants to multicellular life. With terms like this, which most people are familiar with, this quiz seems like it should be a lot easier than it is. It’s a minefield, so getting an answer wrong ends the game. Additionally, you cannot skip questions in this quiz, so even if you think you know a different answer, you can’t skip to another question. The first organism to evolve should be a given, so make sure you read all the choices before choosing one.

Evolution of Species was played 113,619(!) times while it was featured, and ended up with a rating of 3.5. Thanks for making a great quiz, Buckler.

Sporcle Wrap-Up 2014: Geography

2014 has been awesome at Sporcle. If you missed out on any quizzes from one of our favorite categories, look no further! Here are 10 of the most popular Geography games from 2014.

Top Geography Quizzes

10. Tricky State Capital ClickAh, decoys, how we love and detest thee. If you’re like most Geography nuts, you probably have spent some quality time memorizing this familiar list. But, how do you fare under pressure? Let’s just say, we don’t call it ‘Tricky’ for nothin’…

9. ‘A’ Countries on a MapMap quizzes make us happy, and this one is no exception. All you need to do is answer the 11 countries that start with ‘A’ based on their location on the map. To all your friends who think that you spend too much time on Sporcle, challenge them to this and watch them fail miserably.

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8. Countries & Capitals Sorting BlitzDon’t play this with friends in the room, you will embarrass yourself. You’ll start talking out loud, clicking frantically, and probably groan at the screen more than once. But at the end, you’ll be so satisfied with yourself that it will all be worth it.

7. Avoid the ‘A’ CountriesPesky ‘A’! After this quiz it will soon become your most-hated letter.



forest

6. Continents by Forest Area: Now, forest area might not be something that had tickled your fancy before this quiz, but you’ll be DAMNED if you don’t figure it out!

5. 13 US States that Border Canada: O, Canada! This quiz is what Sporcle is all about. These 13 states were just waiting to be made into a quiz, and we were more than happy to oblige.

4. US States (Redux): This is a quiz that makes you go, huh, shouldn’t we have already published that?  And on November 17, that all changed. This glorious game hit the homepage, and left users either laughing all the way home, or crying because something willed them to click ‘Massachoosetts’.

3. Geography Bunker V: Bunkers are to Sporcle as ice cream is to cake. You don’t get them together very often, but when you do, it’s a magical experience. In 2014, not only did we get Geography Bunker V, but we also got Geography Bunker VI. Can you say spoiled?

2. Most Populous US Cities Minefield: If you want something that’s evil, you’ve come to the right place. This quiz is for the ultimate geography buff. As MTwhiz put it, ‘This was a fun (and really frustrating) quiz for geography nerds. I still can’t figure the final 3 answers after 11 tries.’ If that’s not success, we don’t know what is.

1. Largest to Smallest: Most Populous Countries: Who doesn’t love sorting? That’s probably why the most-played 2014 geography game was ‘Largest to Smallest: Most Populous Countries’. Published on April 9th, it’s a quiz that infuriates you all the way to the end. At only 12 answers, it is a short little quiz that packs a punch. And we loved it.

Top Tweets (12/9/14)

toptweetsv65oai7fxn47qv9nectxWhen you see something you really like, sometimes retweeting and favoriting isn’t enough – that’s why @Sporcle has this weekly blog post. Congrats to the tweeters who made the cut this week!

Remember, you can always reach us on Facebook or Twitter with any questions or comments you have.

New Badges: Sweater Weather, A Festivus for the Rest of Us, and Pixar Perfect

There should be a holiday party every time new badges get released.

SweaterWeather_4Sweater Weather: If you’re like us, then you like snazzy sweaters and knits. Celebrate your love for cold-weather fashion by playing Coldest Countries, Coldest StatesSnow Globes of World Cities and Landmarks, and Frosty Famous Folks. If you get at least 50% on each, you’ll earn this badge.

FestivusForUs_1A Festivus for the Rest of Us: This is a badge about absolutely nothing. To earn it, get 50% on Angry TV Characters, Holiday by Dumb Description, Festivus Facts, and Feats of Strength on December 23rd. Just don’t air any grievances in the comments!

PixarPerfect_3Pixar Perfect: Oh Pixar. You know how to make us laugh, cry, and gasp with wonder at beautiful animation. Now you can use your Pixar knowledge to earn Sporcle badges! Play 25 Pixar quizzes and cash in on your knowledge about cars, bugs, and friendly monsters.

As always, check the badge page for the latest updates.

Top Comments of the Week (12/5)

Check out our favorite witty commenters below:


1. From: Movies: Click Before the Colon

PlatypusInPlaid: It is a universal constant that putting “Herbie” in front of any of these is hilarious. Herbie: First Blood Part II. Herbie: Vampire Hunter. Herbie: Impossible.


2. From: Anything but Europe

JoeFdSpent too long laughing at some of the wrong answers instead of clicking the right ones


3. From: Movie Title Sorting Challenge

EastlygodI rather embarrassingly clicked on Beverly Hills for critter – I am ashamed to say I remembered Chihuahua before Cop. And didn’t look at the year…


4. From: -Stan Country Borders

declan88Tempted to call this your STANdard quiz, but inSTANtly found it outSTANding. I underSTANd that these puns are not STANdup worthy, so I’ll go stand over in the diSTANce now.


5. From: Anything but Europe

mimsy137The world would be a better place if there were a country named Bananarama.