HQ Trivia held the "contest" this week when they presented their first live game in person with a prize of $ 10,000. Presenter Scott Rogowsky flew to Austin, Texas, to present the show (dressed in a full HQ suit) on Comcast NBCUniversal's SXSW pop-up. Before the start, HQ projected a unique link to the show live on a screen, which audience members had to load in order to compete. I thought that they would take the participants to the stage to be more of a live experience; instead, everyone played on their phones while Rogowsky read the questions from an iPad.
Naturally, people took photos of the stage (and the screen with the link) before the show started and shared those images on social networks. This meant that players who were not in Austin or the home of Comcast NBCUniversal could join the game. (They only needed the access link). About 3,000 virtual players were present at the beginning of the show, despite the fact that the house seemed to house hundreds of people, not thousands. Rogowsky acknowledged this, but apparently could not do anything about it.
However, it was fun to see people gathered around the players in the audience that lasted until the final questions. It felt more like a community experience, as if the CG comment section entered the real world.
Only two real members of the audience won, or at least made themselves known. The rest of the approximately 70 winners were not at the Comcast NBCUniversal home. Ultimately, each winner took home a prize of just over $ 100, and the two live participants joined Rogowsky on stage to talk about how they planned to use the money. One man said he would cover his gasoline to return to Dallas; the other took the opportunity to shout about Chicago and his pizza.
HQ is not ruling out more live events. In a statement to The Verge a spokesman said the company "will continue to explore opportunities for our players to enjoy HQ, either by phone or in person."
If HQ plans to continue exploring In live events, it must find a way to prevent external players from joining the game. If there were rules that only members of the audience could win at SXSW, those two players would have taken $ 5,000 each, which would have been much more enjoyable for everyone. Maybe HQ could geofence the location or verify the winners in person. After all, if I'm watching a live show, I want the excitement of reality.