The Glitch Wikipedia game: Our lowdown on the handy time-wasting tool

If you’re suffering from the post-bank holiday blues at work this week and are looking for something to help you while away those pesky pre-pub minutes, we could have the answer. I present to you the Glitch Wikipedia Game.

The concept is simple. You’re presented with the names of two entirely unrelated (most likely – it’s randomly generated after all) entries from the world’s largest online encyclopedia, and misinformation minefield, Wikipedia. Your task is to move from one page to the other, using embedded hyperlinks from each of the articles you click on.

The difference between The Glitch Wikipedia Game and its compatriots, such as The Wiki Game, is that articles given to you are selected from this list of the most viewed pages since December 2007. This means you should have an increased chance of success, instead of getting lost in a Wiki hole.

The real challenge here is to use as few clicks as possible in the process. Sounds easy, right? Let’s give it a whirl.

From Switzerland to ancient Israel

The first two articles presented to me are “Switzerland” and “History of ancient Israel and Judah” – already I can tell this is going to be fun.

My instincts are telling me that geography-based pages are the best route, so I immediately start searching for other (preferably European) countries referenced on Switzerland’s page. And, wouldn’t you just know it, “Israel” turns out to be one of the 1,399 links on there – this could be easier than first thought.

At this point I’m forced to occupy myself with something else for a little while, not because my boss is looking over my shoulder suspiciously, but because of the game’s unspeakably long load times. Thankfully, this seems to only apply to articles containing a high number of hyperlinks, but it’s still not ideal.

Once loaded, I only need to scroll a meagre 20 lines down on Israel’s Wikipedia page to find “History of ancient Israel and Judah”. My first ever attempt at the Glitch Wikipedia Game ends after just two clicks – and one long page load time. Surely I’m ranked among the greatest ever debut performances on the platform. I consider an early retirement at this stage, living out the rest of my days as a minor internet celebrity. However, I elect to play another few games in the interest of unbiased journalism.

From Michael Jordan to Spartacus and beyond

“Michael Jordan” to “Spartacus”, “Metallica” to “Richard I of England” and “Sachin Tendulkar” to “Eminem” all end up providing a much stiffer challenge – I wasn’t even able to complete the final one during work hours, instead seeping into my precious personal time.

All things considered, the Glitch Wikipedia Game is a potentially invaluable tool for the 9 to 5 worker. It’s a non-threatening, stress-free way to pass the time on those seemingly never-ending office afternoons and, because its interface looks a little like a spreadsheet, you’re potentially saved from any lurking bosses.

If the threat of formal disciplinary action being taken against you isn’t exciting enough, then you might want to try the similarly-named Wiki Game. This is essentially the same concept, but with a competitive edge. The randomly generated article titles are pre-determined, and remain on screen for 200 seconds. This allows users around the world to play against each other, and a sidebar keeps track of the scores.

You are allowed to choose your own username, which ends up with me being pitted against the likes of “communism” and “Niall Horan” on my first go – truly a battle for the ages.
The Wiki Game’s interface replicates the layout of Wikipedia pages, and the loading times are much shorter, making it a more refined all round experience than its rival.

If you’re serious about procrastination, the Glitch Wikipedia Game is perfect for training in your own time, before heading to the Wiki Game when you’re ready for the the world stage.

Happy procrastinating, everybody!

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