Microsoft recently launched on Xbox Live a beta version of a massively multiplayer online game, “1 vs 100,” based on the TV game show of the same name. It's a bold new move for video-gaming, offering a live game show played on the console that engages the entire family.
Selected players receive entries to win prizes like a 52-inch plasma TV, $3,000 cash and Microsoft Zune music players.
Each episode is a two-hour game show that features real-time play between players. A host conducts the action. There's a featured player called The One who tries to win the game outright by eliminating all 100 members of The Mob by answering questions correctly.
When you sign in to play, you are assigned to The Mob, or to be The One. (Your Xbox Live avatar appears on screen when you're selected, which is cool.) If you're picked as neither, you can play as The Crowd.
The game tracks your answers, and the more correct ones you get, the better your chances of being selected to “come on down!” – to coin a different game-show's phrase. But if you get a question wrong, you're no longer a member of the Mob (or The One), and are sent into The Crowd. Don't worry, though, you can still play – and win stuff – from there.
Live games are going on each day; you can check www.xbox.com for the schedule.
I think Microsoft has a big hit on its hands with this, and I can't wait to see what other types of live community-based games might be coming next.