Washington Apple Pi

A Community of Apple iPad, iPhone and Mac Users

Head Rush: A Review

by Brian Mason

Washington Apple Pi Journal, January/February 2001, pp. 33-34, reprint information

OK, maybe you have a couple of friends over, or maybe you don't, and there's nothing on TV, and you've killed all the monsters in the last game you bought, and you've got this game you got for Christmas or you birthday, and you wonder if it's really worth installing on your Mac and playing or if you should just skip it and head for the mall.

The box says Head Rush is "Hilarious Twisted trivia Action from the makers of You Don't Know Jack." I've never played You Don't Know Jack, but my guess is that this game would be quite similar, but aimed more at teens. The box also has this warning: "This product contains immature content, loud body noises, a smattering of mildly saucy language and references to music, tv shows and movies that will definitely not be suitable for most geezers. Besides, they won't get it anyway." This certainly applies in this reviewer's case. There was one question that came up while I was playing the game about the female actresses in Scream and Scream 2, and I didn't have a clue.

The CD contains 3 audio tracks: "Lose Your Mind" performed by Motorbaby, "Don't Shake My World" performed by Swirl 360, and "The Whammy" by 2 Skinnee J's. These tracks are not accessible from within the program, but can be played on any audio CD player including the Apple CD Player on your Mac. That takes up about 10 minutes while you are deciding whether to go to the mall or not. The music's OK, about what you'd expect for something targeted to today's younger generation.

Installation is a snap. Just double click on the "Double&emdash;Click Me!" icon. You can select where you want the program to be installed. It uses between 27MB and 28MB on disk. The advertised requirements are for a 68040 or better (PowerPC recommended), 16MB of free RAM, at least a 2X CD&emdash;ROM, 30MB of hard disk space, and video capable of 640 x 480 @256 colors. And of course, sound. It would be rather difficult to play without sound since the instructions and the questions are all spoken in addition to appearing on the screen. You need Sound Manager 2.5 (or better), Sound Control Panel 8.0.5 (or better) and Apple CD&emdash;ROM (or similar).

Just like in a game show, there is your moderator and host, Bob, who gives you your instructions and provides you with your questions. You are first asked to indicate the number of players, 1, 2, or 3. Then each player is asked to pick one of six characters to stand in for them on the screen. If one player is playing, they will buzz in when required using the letter B on the keyboard. If two players are playing, they will buzz in using the letters P or Q. If three are playing, all three keys are used.

You are playing for thousands and thousands of dollars. (Dream on, dream on.) Each round consists of 11 questions. They could be multiple choice, "DisorDat™", fill in the blank, HeadButt, Trash Talkin' with Milan, Old Man's Moldy Memories, and HeadRush. I'm going to assume everyone knows what multiple choice and fill in the blank questions are like. DisorDat™ questions ask you to say whether a list of seven items are one thing or another or both. The first DisorDat™ question I got had to do with a list of items that were either a video game, a movie, or both. HeadButt questions are timed, so the quicker you get it, the more money you acquire. HeadButt is a word equation, where you put two words together to make another or a phrase. For example, color of pickles + entry way. Put together, the answers are Green Door. You get one clue for each part of the puzzle and one clue for the solution before time runs out.

Trash Talkin' with Milan simply are questions dealing with English grammar. Old Man's Moldy Memories provides a series of clues. As soon as you can figure out what the Old Man is trying to remember, you buzz in and provide your answer.

The final question is always a Head Rush question. Here you are presented with words and phrases that come and go across the screen. As soon as you see two that match as a pair, you buzz in. If you get it right, you get $5,000. If you are wrong, $5,000 is subtracted from your winnings.

Most of the questions are of the multiple choice variety.

Typical "Head Rush" screen.

If you are stuck for the answer to a question, once each round you can force your opponent to try to answer the question. It's called, "Bite Your Neighbor™". If they get it wrong, they lose money and you are given a shot at the question. But if they get it right, they get the money and you lose the same amount.

So do you go to the mall or play the game? I found the questions to be pretty simple until it came to questions dealing with the tv and movie culture of the 90's. Today's teens probably wouldn't have a problem with them. Bob always gives an explanation of why an answer is correct or incorrect, so it is somewhat of an education as you go through the game. (Parents might like that aspect.) The pace of the game is frantic enough and there are enough stupid jokes and wisecracking that it is entertaining. Out of a whole pie of eight slices, I'd probably give it six.

Though copyrighted in 1998, the program is no longer carried in the Sierra On&emdash;Line catalog. However, using Sherlock, I was able to find it for sale at various locations on the World Wide Web.

Head Rush
Min. System Requirements:
Macintosh 68040 (PowerPC recommended)
2X CD&emdash;ROM
30MB disk space
640 x 480 @256 colors
Sound Manager 2.5 (or better)
Sound Control Panel 8.0.5 (or better)
Apple CD&emdash;ROM (or similar)

Sierra On&emdash;Line, Inc.
3060 139th Ave., SE, Suite 500
Bellevue, WA 98005
Phone: 1-800-757-7707
or 425-649-9800