HQ: Trivia was a pretty singular game. Allow me a moment to set the mood and explain. I swear that it will end up making sense.
2017 was a pretty wild year. It seemed like there was always some new and fascinating thing happening which united people and made everybody focus on a single shared experience for a brief moment in time. The year was full of many a terrible thing not worth suffering through here. But then, on August 26th, there was finally something positive. For the first time since 1918, a total solar eclipse would be visible in some form across the entire contiguous United States of America.
You couldn’t get away from it. There were Eclipse Glasses available at every gas station and hotels booked for the day all across America. Everyone was united in staring skyward for just a few brief moments that day, and you could really feel a certain sense of solidarity in the air that didn’t seem to come around all that often. Only a few days later and people had already started to whisper about the next new, hip event that everybody needed to check out.
The fire started on Apple devices, and as Android users kept getting told that they needed to switch entire phone ecosystems to experience what could possibly be the future of both game shows and television, the word continued to spread. By the time that HQ (aka HQ: Trivia) finally debuted on Android phones on December 31st, it was already making headlines in the mainstream news. People couldn’t stay away from the live app that offered money for properly answered trivia questions in a competition against potentially thousands of other competitors each and every day. As of yesterday, HQ was pronounced dead.
While the end of HQ was surprisingly sudden, the thought that it wouldn’t last was most certainly not. Almost immediately after the app launched, things began to get a little weird. The shows lovable host, Scott Rogowsky, was threatened with termination by the companies CEO for stating that he enjoyed salad in a seemingly innocuous interview. This seeming peek into the behind the scenes turmoil at HQ headquarters proved to be very indicative of things to come.
After one of the two co-founders died of a drug overdose, the remaining CEO, the man angry over the salad, faced a full-blown coup from the remaining employees who stated that he was the reason behind the companies beginning decline. After this, Scott began to show up less and less, and with none of the guest hosts resonating with fans, in the same way, many were horrified when Scott was finally fired. And with the departure of the fan-favorite Quiz Daddy, HQ’s fate was sealed.
HQ kept losing popularity as controversies about armies of trivia bots and winners not being paid continued to pile on top of each other. The company kept losing money, employees, and investors until, at long last, the final push notification dropped on the phones of anyone who still had the app installed, signaling the real end of HQ: Trivia;
HQ was a fascinating game that united people in a way, not many could. By offering cash and the opportunity to participate in a real game show from the comfort of your own phone so long as you could be there at the same time as everyone else, HQ was a unique experience that many tried to copy, but no one ever could. Rest In Peace, HQ. You were fun while you lasted. You gave me and everyone else who messed with you a memorable couple of weeks. And months. And years.