Everything You Wanted to Know about The Question Block (but Were Afraid to Ask)

The Question Block is a standard multi-media Pub Quiz, featuring teams of up to 6 competing for prizes!  The game lasts approximately 2 hours with a 15 minute half-time break.  There are 5 Regular Rounds, 1 Half-Time Round, and a Final Round.  On this page I’ve included some FAQs and some details about the format of each game.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the most common questions I get as part of the Question Block gig.

Q. Who does all of this?

The Question Block Video Game Pub Quiz was created in 2011 by Nathan Martin in a fit of unemployment and boredom (Spoiler: I am Nathan).  I created a VG Trivia Night because I wanted to live in a world that had a video game pub quiz, and I knew that if such a beast were to exit, it would have to be in the Pacific Northwest, home of Xbox, Nintendo, Steam, and a vibrant indie gaming scene!

I also have the pleasure of hosting every game!

Q. Where do you get your questions?

Rounds and questions are almost always created by me entirely!  I’ve had several people help out with rounds and round ideas, and I’ve had guest rounds (We’ve even had guest hosts!).  Questions come from the news that month, various video game news outlets, and of course, Wikipedia!  For a mostly complete list of where I get my inspiration, check out the “Instruction Manual” sidebar on the main page of this site.

Q. Can I suggest a category?

You absolutely can!  I know that I have knowledge gaps, and I’m always looking to provide a wide range of trivia for everyone to enjoy!  Use the Contact Us page with the subject line “Trivia Category Suggestion” to submit your idea!  Be sure to include your name and email address!  If I use your category, I will send you a prize!

Q. Do you host for private parties or events?

I do!  We have hosted games at PAX, Emerald City Comic Con, Sakura-Con, and more!  Please use the Contact Us page with the subject line “Event Request” to get in touch!

Q. How do you pick the prizes?

Prizes (in addition to the cash prize and free drinks from the bar) come from a combination of my personal swag collection (one tends to collect a lot of swag after attending E3 for over 15 years!) and donations from friends and partners.  I love to support local game stores and developers, so if you’d like to donate prizes, please Contact Us page with the subject line “Prizes!”

Q. I want to help out!

I would love to have helpers!  If you show up early or stick around after each game, I usually need a hand carrying stuff to and from my car 🙂  If you’d like to write a round, or help promote the trivia night, please see me at the next game, and we’ll figure out some time to chat.

Q. What’s up with the “Seasons?”

Seasons are part of the League structure we offer!  Every year, our league season ends with a championship game at the Seattle Retro Gaming Expo!  If you want to know more, check out the section below about the structure and format of the game.

Q. Are you part of the Seattle Retro Gaming Expo?

Good question!  While the Question Block is wholly owned and run by me, I also happen to be on the board of Seattle Retro Gaming, the group that puts on SRGE.  The SRGE board and staff have graciously allowed me to host our championship at their shows, and in return I offer promotional time (If you’ve been to one of our live games, you will have seen the ads mentions of SRGE).  I put together this trivia in part due to the generosity of SRGE, and if you like our trivia, I encourage you to support the expo!

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The Format of The Question Block Trivia

Summary

The Question Block is a standard multi-media pub quiz, featuring teams of up to 6 players.  The game lasts approximately 2 hours with a 15 minute half-time break.  There are 5 Regular Rounds, 1 Half-Time Round, and a Final Round.

Teams

Before the game, teams elect a ‘captain’ and choose a team name.  The captain brings the team’s entry fee (usually $10) up to the Game Master.  The captain tells the Game Master their team’s name, and the first names of each member of the team.

If your team is part of the current league, be sure to include your league name.  You DO NOT need to be part of the league to participate.  If you are part of the league, your team name can change from game to game, but your league name must be the same in order to track your scores from game to game.

100% of the entry fees go towards prize pools.

Rounds

The first 3 rounds, and rounds 4 and 5 are all “Regular Rounds,” meaning all questions are worth 1 game point unless otherwise noted (occasionally some questions will be worth more points or have multiple answers).  Wrong answers in regular rounds DO NOT count against a team’s score.

Half-Time Bonus Round

The Half-Time Bonus Round is an opportunity for individuals to shine by participating in a lightning round for prizes! Regardless of how your team is doing, the half-time is your chance to win! Half-time questions DO NOT count towards the main game score.

The Final Round

The Final Round features 5 increasingly difficult questions, each worth more points than the last, and wrong answers WILL count against your score!  Point values increase from 1 point for question 1 to 5 points for question 5. Any incorrect answers will count against your final score, so teams have an opportunity to win or lose 15 points.

After the Final Round, we will recap each team’s scores.  The winning team will receive a cash prize!

The League

Leagues will track your progress over the season.  League finalists will receive special benefits, and only League teams are allowed into the season championship games.  For a 1 time League fee of $10, your team’s scores will be tracked across the entire season (approx. 10 games).

Leagues end at the Seattle Retro Gaming Expo for that year, and they begin again at the first game following SRGE (typically in the summer).

The top 4 League teams (scored by placement in games through the year) are invited to the SRGE championships; entry to SRGE is included for up to 6 members of the team (up to a $200 value) if they qualify for the championship!

In addition, all teams are eligible to earn trophies at the end of each season!

For a more detailed explanation of the League structure, including rules governing missing a month, team requirements, and how points are calculated, visit our League Structure page