Bow down to the Quiz Wiz
I was an obsessive fact reader as a kid and loved games and quizzes so I really wanted a “Quiz Wiz”. I never did get one, but I got a nice set of Funk & Wagnall Encyclopedia that served me all the way through High School.
Released in 1979 by Coleco, the Quiz Wiz was a portable electronic quiz game that ran off a single 9V battery. The interface was simple. A numberic keypad, 4 letter keys, and an Answer and Clear button for inputting your answer, then a Yes or No indicator for if you got the answers correct or not.
Questions came from paired books and cartridges that you plugged into you Quiz Wiz. It came with one called “1001 Questions,” but Coleco released several more. The list of quizzes is pretty impressive. I can see several I would want, especially Monsters, Vampires, Witches, and Ghosts.
The World of Sports
Movies and TV
People and Places
Music and Books
The Book of Lists
Greatest Sports Legends
Disaster! When Nature Strikes Back
The Ocean – Mankind’s Last Frontier
Energy – The Fuel of Life
How Things Work- Aerosols to Zippers
Guiness Book of World – Volume 1
Guiness Book of World – Volume 2
Sherlock Holmes & Other Famous Mysteries
Greatest Sports Legends – Volume II
Monsters, Vampires, Witches and Ghosts
Words – Used, Misused and Confused
Super Trivia – Movies and TV
Rock N Roll – Doo Wop to Disco
The Bible – The Old and New Testaments
Soap Opera Digest
Ripley’s Believe it or Not
Fascinating Facts about Animals
The advertising campaign was memorable. Here is one of the original commercials for the game.
In the the nineties, Tiger Electronics revived the Quiz Wiz. The technology looked slightly updated, but overall it looked to be the same gaming system. Naturally since it was the nineties, the advertising, which featuring “The Wise Guy” was a just a little but more “extreme.”