Wednesday evening, TBS will launch a new live mobile game from the team at the comedy show “Full Frontal With Samantha Bee.”
The game, called “This Is Not A Game, The Game,” will look familiar to fans of HQ Trivia, the app that popularized the interactive mobile game show format. Each day there will be 10 questions -- some easy, some hard, some just silly -- and at the end of the game, everyone who answered all of them correctly will split a cash prize.
Of course, coming from a comedy show, it also needs to be funny and fun.
“The humor is really similar to what you would get on the show. The tone is similar, but the execution is totally different, and that was a really interesting learning curve for us,” Bee says, speaking to reporters at an app preview at the Helen Mills Theater.
But while it is a game, the idea came from a field piece that aired on the show last year. In the segment, the show tried to help a fledgling local newspaper by “gamifying” the subscription, offering scratch-off tickets to people who subscribed. It was a joke, but it stuck with the "Full Frontal" team.
“After the field piece it occurred to us, could we gamify the midterms?” Bee says. “Could we apply those principles, and incentivize people to do things they didn’t want to do, like voting? Is it possible? Is it legal? Could it be fun?”
As a result, “This Is Not A Game, The Game” seeks to do just that, awarding extra live incentives for registering to vote, or finding your polling place. Bee says the game won’t be making any endorsements or try to push viewers to any particular party or candidate, but rather will generally attempt to get people informed about the elections.
The game will also adapt to current events and news, with new challenges or questions being added to keep people engaged. On Thursdays, for example, it might call back to Wednesday evening’s show, while Friday may be a current events day. They are already planning something for National Voter Registration Day on September 25.
Bee says: “Obviously, we will terrorize people with the game on Halloween.”
Ultimately, if the game is deemed a success, Bee suggests that it could continue in some capacity beyond the midterms, but for now the focus remains on making people laugh, and keeping people engaged.
“If you accidentally learn something, and we accidentally cause people to engage with something that is your technical civic duty, then good for us,” she quips.