If you are a history buff or looking for a new web game to play, Wikitrivia may be worth your time. The game’s creator, Tom Watson, describes it on its site under the title “Wikidata as a trivia card game”, and the tweet that brought it to our attention called it an “online clone of the Timeline card game”.
Playing it is simple: it gives you a card that represents something that has a date, that is taken from Wikidata; some examples I’ve seen have asked me to specify when the Bastille was built, when the Foo Fighters were formed, and when the October Revolution ended (unfortunately it was looking for a year, not a month). You then need to place the map in the correct place in the timeline. You are allowed three errors, which are represented by hearts, and you will lose one if you put a card in the wrong place. Losing all of your hearts will end your streak and force you to start over with a new timeline.
Wikitrivia is not without flaws. While the action of moving cards on the timeline actually works almost flawlessly on my phone, I wouldn’t say the game is very fun to play on mobile; the concept really benefits from having as wide a screen as possible, in my opinion. Also, as some players have noticed, some titles can serve as freebies – while I was playing I got at least one that was a year old in the title, which makes it pretty easy to place. I also have this card:
There is also the possibility that the data is wrong. I haven’t noticed any instances where this was the case (but bear in mind that I’m not a history buff; you could tell me that the Roman Empire ended in the 1900s and I would probably think “eh, that could be on the right”), but Watson has a thread started on Github where people can report incorrect maps or data.
The page also prompts users to make any necessary corrections to Wikipedia or Wikidata itself, which could end up making answers on the web more accurate – for example, Google sometimes pulls data from Wikipedia for its knowledge panels, so errors may end up being reflected. there unless they are fixed.
For those who like to say “wow, I never realized this was so recent/so long ago” (or anyone looking for something to do after finishing Wordle puzzle of today), Wikitrivia can be a great way to pass some time.
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