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.
- 1001 Questions
- The World of Sports
- Movies and TV
- People and Places
- Music and Books
- Math Mania
- The Book of Lists
- Greatest Sports Legends
- Super Heroes
- Disaster! When Nature Strikes Back
- The Ocean – Mankind’s Last Frontier
- Energy – The Fuel of Life
- How Things Work- Aerosols to Zippers
- NBA Teams
- 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
- Celebrity Trivia
- 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.”