It is the time of year when you start to see a lot of annual reviews / recaps.
Never one to rest on its laurels, Google has scoffed at the traditional ‘year in review’ and launched a 25 years of search review. In their own words:
This year, we’re celebrating the most searched figures and moments in 25 years of Google Search. From some of the world’s most iconic performances, to history-making breakthroughs, see the moments that have changed the world and inspired the next generation to come.
To bring this to life, the review has been created as an interactive game which will probably drive you mad. If you fly into a rage playing Where’s Wally, this may well tip you over the edge:
The game is pretty simple. There are 25 objects that you need to locate in the *crazy* picture. I guess you could just start clicking wildly on the picture and get lucky, but I would suggest looking at the list of objects that you need to find in the left hand side of the screen. To make it (very slightly) easier, you can see a clue for each object. To be honest, I am not really sure how much the clues really help, as the main picture is ridiculously busy.
There is actually a Taylor Swift game that is fairly hidden within the main game. I haven’t had the mental strength to attempt the mini game and appear to be one of the very few people on this planet that is not remotely interested in Taylor Swift, but you can apparently collect 10 clues that have something to do with her songs. Solving each challenge gives you a letter and a hint for a “missing key” that you need to unlock a hidden website that I have no desire to see… I am sure you would love it if you are a Taylor Swift fan, but head over here if you value your life too much to waste time on solving the puzzle.
Alternatively, head over to the Reddit thread if you want to see an insight into the Taylor Swift fan mindset. My personal favourite is, “I am slightly embarrassed by how hard those little bursts of dopamine hit each time I found something.”
It probably won’t just be the incredibly irritating music that will drive you mad. It is a visual overload and infuriatingly hard to see the wood from the trees.
I don’t want to spoil your fun, but the one hint that I will give you for free is that you need to zoom out. I admit that I spent a few minutes pulling what little remains of my hair out before realising that there is more than immediately meets the eye. You need to zoom out to reveal the full misery of it all and actually be able to find the needles in the haystack:
To be fair, it is pretty well executed if you want to wile away some minutes (hours?) of your life that you will never get back.
It is also curiously addictive and it reminded me that I think I have a masochistic tendendancy to drive myself mad at times, as I did not let up until I had found all five of the music objects. What joy it was to see the search insights that were revealed once the music section was complete.
Don’t say it didn’t warn you, but head over to https://searchplayground.google/ if you want to join the fun :-)