Saturday Dec 15, 1979 to Present
CanadaTrivial Pursuit is a board game from Canada in which winning is determined by a player's ability to answer general knowledge and popular culture questions. Players move their pieces around a board, the squares they land on determining the subject of a question they are asked from a card (from six categories including "history" and "science and nature"). Each correct answer earns a plastic wedge which is slotted into the answerer's playing piece.
The rights to the game were initially licensed to Selchow and Righter in 1982, then to Parker Brothers (now part of Hasbro) in 1988, after initially being turned down by the Virgin Group; in 2008 Hasbro bought the full rights, for US$80 million.
In October 1984, Fred L. Worth, author of The Trivia Encyclopedia, Super Trivia, and Super Trivia II, filed a $300 million lawsuit against the distributors of Trivial Pursuit. He claimed that more than a quarter of the questions in the game's Genus Edition had been taken from his books, even to the point of reproducing typographical errors and deliberately placed misinformation. One of the questions in Trivial Pursuit was "What was Columbo's first name?" with the answer "Philip". That information had been fabricated to catch anyone who might try to violate his copyright.
In 1988, a made-for-television movie entitled Breaking all the Rules: The Creation of Trivial Pursuit aired. Treated largely as a comedy, the movie featured the music of Jimmy Buffett and portrayed the creators of the game as three beer-loving Canadians.
The Soviet Union in 1989 bought the rights to produce its own version of the board game, and also started an official championship for family teams, finals of which were broadcast on Soviet Central Television as the game show «Lucky case». After the agreement ended in 1991, the show changed their rules, dropping «Trivial Pursuit» elements, and continued broadcasting until 2000.
In 1994, David Wall of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, launched a lawsuit against the game's creators. He claimed that in the fall of 1979, he and a friend were hitchhiking near Sydney, Nova Scotia, when they were picked up by Chris Haney. Wall claimed that he told Haney about his idea for the game in detail, including the shape of the markers. Wall's mother testified she found drawings of his that looked like plans for a Trivial Pursuit-like game, but the drawings had since been destroyed. Wall's friend, who was allegedly hitchhiking with him that day, never testified. Haney said he never met Wall.
In 1999, Sony Online Entertainment licensed Trivial Pursuit from Hasbro Interactive to release a downloadable online game on The Station@Sony (home to Everquest at the time), where up to three auto-matched players could chat with each other live while they played. A correct answer on any space earned a wedge on the category answered, the wedge spaces gave the player their choice of category, and the first person to earn four wedges was the winner. It was hosted on The Station until 2001.