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Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds and Joker Questions

Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds and Joker Questions

“How to effectively use Joker Rounds or Joker Questions your quiz – Tips hints and ideas on how to carry this out”



Welcome back to the blog! It has been a busy weekend over there at the DigiGames blog with plenty of new updates to give you tips, hints and advice on the world of trivia hosting and I do hope you have found a great deal of use out of some of the content we have put forward. As always we are open to suggestions and comments so rather than wait for your favorite subject to appear, let us know and we can get working on it.


Today’s subject is some more practical advice on hosting the trivia quiz itself and some ideas on the use of Joker Rounds. I briefly covered these in a previous blog post on Joker Rounds when I was looking at the need to try and balance out the teams and make the scores a little closer throughout the contests. I am going to take a further look in detail at these posts now and hopefully this will help.


Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds – What are they?

Let us first get into describing what I meant by a Joker Round. It’s a round consisting of 1-2 questions, or indeed the round as a whole, counts for double points. So for example…your quiz may be 5 rounds of 10 questions with pictures and music (for example the rounds may be Sport, Music, History, General Knowledge and Art). Each week one of those rounds is worth double points to try and make the scores a little tighter for teams who maybe excel in one area or have a weaker knowledge of others. So for example, a team who does well at a sports topic will rise in the rankings if “Sports” is the Joker round that week. But a team who may struggle with say “Art” will drop down the rankings if they are missing out on all those double points.


Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds – Why Do it?

Not only does the addition of a joker round result in a variation to your quiz, and we have already discussed how variation is key to your quizzing experiences, but as mentioned above it makes things a lot fairer and it increases the chances of different teams winning or teams coming higher in the top 5.


Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds – The Big Question…..       

Okay, let us for a moment assume that you have decided to insert a joker round into your quiz and you are going with the idea that one of your rounds is going to be worth double points. The question you are then faced with is… do you decide which round it is?


One very popular way to do this is to have each team decide which round they want to play their joker in. If you have 10 teams then have 10 topics.  Each team has to pick a topic that hasn’t been already picked by another team.  Start with your losing team and have them pick first and work your way up to the winning team who gets the only topic remaining.  It makes it a little harder for you to adjust the scores but it is easy to do and the players will like the power. It won’t drastically change the rankings but teams will score a lot more points. In one quiz I run a team who are great on sports always net 10/10 and usually get no more than 17 points throughout the rest of the quiz… their score looks a lot healthier on paper with the bonus round.


The way I prefer is that I choose the round. This then brings into play two questions….


  1. Do you choose it yourself and make a conscious choice of which round is the joker round? The one major advantage of this decision is that you can make sure the quiz is closer. If you know the team that wins every week is weaker on a certain subject you make that the joker round topic. If one team has been last every single week but are great on History, make History the joker. You see what I mean? The negative affect this can have is that the teams may feel you are deliberately sabotaging their chances of victory so may take offence and you working consciously to hamper their chances.
  2. A random drawing….this works better and statistically it means that the teams will be closer in the long run. Yes, the smart players’ favorite subject may come up once or twice, but in the long run its going to benefit every team. It also avoids the situation of you being accused of deliberately working against one team.


Making Proper and Full Use of Bonus Questions – Joker Rounds – 3 x Joker Questions

I intend to take no credit for this idea as it was done by a fellow trivia host in a game I played and I loved it so much I just have to tell you about it…


He does a 50 question quiz, every question worth one point. When you enter the quiz you are asked to draw three balls out of a hat. Whatever number is on those balls are your joker questions and they are worth triple points. So if you draw question 7, 14 and 33 then the questions that correspond with those numbers are worth 3 points each. Get them right and you are in with a good chance of winning, get them wrong and you will be loosing your battle for the top. However the random element really works well and it adds to the excitement.  This format is easily managed with DigiGames QuizMaster software tool which will track and display the names and scores of all the players.


Thanks for reading and I hope this has been a good topic for you and you have gained some ideas on this subject to make things a lot simpler when it comes to the joker round. As with everything try it out on a few of your trivia nights, ask for feedback and see if it works. If it works, then fantastic…..its another string to your bow. If it doesn’t, then just consider what will work for your audience and try something else!

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