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Play Star Trek 20Q Online June 17, 2008

by John Tenuto , Filed under: Games,Toys,Trek Franchise , trackback

As reported from the Licensing Expo last week, Radica Games (a division of Mattel) is working on a Star Trek version of their popular hand-held “mind reading” game 20Q. But you don’t have to wait until the game is in stores. You can play a version of the game online at a new website launched today, and you will help make the programed AI for the hand held version even smarter.

A Different Kind of Star Trek Q…20Q
The object of the game is for the player to think of a sentient being, place, or thing from Star Trek. Then, 20Q starts asking questions to which the player responds with “Yes” “No” “Maybe” “Irrelevant” “Don’t Know” and other answers. 20Q wins if it guesses your selection at 20 questions or less. The player wins after 20 questions, although the game tries to keep guessing after that.

It is adapting Captain
To help design the game, and to teach the Artificial Intelligence engine that runs the device more about Star Trek, 20Q is inviting fans to visit and play the online version of the game at By playing, you are helping teach the AI about Star Trek which will eventually make the hand held game better. The folks at Radica/Mattel tell TrekMovie that they want to get 1 million games played online before they feel the AI has learned enough to be ready for the hand held version. So, like the Borg, M-5 and V’Ger, it is evolving, adapting and getting smarter. The online AI is actually pretty smart already. When my family and I played, 20Q was able to guess our answer and win 80% of the games played. It is amazing how good the game is already at guessing even the most obscure references. However, it does have some learning to do and that is where you come in.

20Q takes 16 questions to get to Captain Kirk
and 19 questions to get to bio-neural gel packs (a pretty obscure item)

Trek joins the 20Q Phenomenon
Started as a website game in the early 2000 and then becoming a hand held device in 2004, 20Q is now a genuine phenomena, selling nearly 15 million hand held versions during 2004 and 2006, and nearly 64 million online games played. 20Q has won the 2006 Toy Industry Association Electronic Entertainment Toy of the Year and many other awards. The licensed 20Q games include The Simpsons, Harry Potter, Disney, and now Star Trek. They hand held versions retail for $14.99. 20Q games are available at nearly every large retailer in America and Canada, and their Star Trek game is another example of how the next year is going to be the year of Star Trek.

Harry Potter and Simpsons 20Q games

Play Star Trek 20Q NOW:
at Trek and try to stump the newest version of the all-powerful neural-net of 20Q™



1. Enterprisingguy - June 17, 2008


2. Skippy2k - June 17, 2008

Thats cool, I don’t have one of these but have played around with them at work…will have to get this one! I played a couple of times just now and it did offer the answer I was looking for but not first, I guess I answered a few differently than others… I picked “Exocomps” and a “Horga’hn”. Will have to try some others later, still kinda cool!

3. Eric Cheung - June 17, 2008

In the online version I’ll have to be less obscure than Jouret IV I guess (though maybe not anymore as it let me submit it).

4. Will - June 17, 2008

I beat it. It didn’t have an entry for the Denebian Slime Devil.

5. Trekdude - June 17, 2008

i beat it. The Guardian

6. The Underpants Monster - June 17, 2008

It gave up on Roga Danar.

7. Trekkie16 - June 17, 2008

It won on Naomi Wilder, Miri and Lt Barclay and Planet Riza. It lost on Leeta the Dabo Girl from DS9. Fun little game.

8. Quatlo - June 17, 2008

Bartender on TROUBLE WITH TRIBBLES beat it.

9. Paul - June 17, 2008

It’s broken. I thought a planet, and it asked me whether it is cunning and whether it does fit in a cargo bay… :-/

Otherwise a bit of fun, though. :-)

10. The Weary Professor - June 17, 2008

It failed to guess Comm Badges, the U.S.S. Reliant and Kirk’s command locker combination. Okay, I’m kidding about the last one–But if I had tried it I bet it wouldn’t get it.

11. GraniteTrek - June 17, 2008

I beat it twice, and I have to wonder about the others who played and the answers they gave. For example, for Rura Penthe, it said that others said “no” to knows many complex languages, and “no” to being one of a kind. Really? There’s more than one planet known as the Alien’s Graveyard throughout the quadrant? And with all of those aliens, wouldn’t there be many languages? And a lot of the answers given by others must be from fanon or their imaginations – it said the USS Potemkin contributed many great things to exploration, when all we really know about it is that it got killed by M-5 – how do we know it didn’t just get launched the week before?

Okay, I’m being a geek, but still, garbage in and garbage out, I guess…

12. Denise de Arman - June 17, 2008

It has no clue when it comes to the Mirror Universe – I gave up on the game before it gave up on me.

13. Eric Cheung - June 17, 2008

11. Well I guess it’s all subjective and open to semantic debate anyway. I tried with U.S.S. Grissom and it asked if it had been in a standoff. I decided no because it was really a lopsided battle that happened with no warning and no attempt on the part of Esteban at all to retaliate. I could see how most might interpret standoff to mean any battle, but I think a standoff would more accurately be described as the battle the Enterprise has with Kruge later in the film. There the two sides are waiting, watching each other for the next move each captain with their finger on the trigger. There’s tension and suspense felt by both crews. Grissom’s crew didn’t even know Kruge was there until it was too late.

14. Nathan - June 17, 2008

I beat it with both Cheron and Bele…it didn’t even have Bele in its database yet. Sad.

Also, I did Christine Chapel, and for the question “Is it human?” apparently others thought that the answer was “Doubtful.” Hmmm…. do they know something I don’t? :)

15. Lowdarz - June 17, 2008

I beat it thinking of a hyper spanner.

Still pretty cool though.

16. Scott - June 17, 2008

I stumped it with Capt. John Christopher (It didn’t have him listed) and with Lt. Leslie, though it tried to tell me I was the doofus who didn’t know much about Leslie, my favorite all-around utility player on the Enterprise!

The 20 Q handheld was all the rage in our household a couple of Christmases ago. It’s amazing how well it did with general questions.

I guess the Trek universe is just too deep and complex to be parsed in 20 questions! No wonder people get aggravated with “canon!” There’s too dang much of it! :-)

Scott B. out.

17. Scott Xavier - June 17, 2008

I beat it 3 times. One time with type 1 phaser. It had 2 and 3 but not 1. Also phasic cloak.

18. Relentless - June 17, 2008

I beat it with the Calamarain!! Whoo hoo

19. Sean - June 17, 2008

:( The 20 questions page crashed my computer. This old comp just can’t handle anything anymore.

20. Thomas - June 17, 2008

I tried the 20Q game, and it’s a lot of fun trying to stump the game, which I managed to do only once out of five games.

21. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

Be assimilated so someone else can get rich? Count me in.

22. Stanky McFibberich - June 17, 2008

seems to need a lot more training

23. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

I beat the sucker. I don’t think I lied to it, but you decide:

You are Ben Finney.
1. Does it have an interesting name? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Probably.
2. Is it cooperative? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Probably.
3. Is it always getting into trouble? You said Sometimes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No

24. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

I wonder what it would do with Mr. Kyle versus (Shatner’s preferred) Kowl?

25. Viking - June 17, 2008

Damn. It got me on Trelane after 14 questions. Once more unto the breach……TALLY HO!

26. Irishtrekkie - June 17, 2008

did not get the Columbia NX-02 , lol

27. Viking - June 17, 2008

Ha. Opened up a can o’ whoop-ass with ‘Joachim’ from ‘Space Seed’ and ST:II.

28. drlondon - June 17, 2008

Stumped it with Tongo Radd.

29. Viking - June 17, 2008

Don’t try the Doomsday Machine. I got spanked. Don’t even go there. *SIGH*

30. Paul-Fitz - June 17, 2008

It did not know of the trill homeworld. Captain Rachel Garrett, or The steamrunner class.

Weirdly, it guessed hard ones like Warp coils, Nacelles and Deflector.

31. drlondon - June 17, 2008

Also stumped it with the “Mirror Universe”

32. Viking - June 17, 2008

Damn…..damn….damn! I had it by it’s nose all the way down the garden path, and it sussed out Hugh in the last three questions. LOL

33. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

It missed on Archer IV.

Was Archer IV in a war in either timeline? I don’t think so, but I could be wrong. Seems like it needs some ability to deal with idiots like me.

34. Ron Mosher - June 17, 2008

I played a few rounds and stumped it every time!

35. Prologic9 - June 17, 2008

It couldn’t even get “Klingon Battlecruiser,” which I thought would be easy.

The questions aren’t very good, “Does it stand out in a crowd?” WTF is that going to tell you? And is the crowd Klingon or Vulcan?

And the last time I played 20 questions it was a Yes or No game.

36. James Heaney - Wowbagger - June 17, 2008

#33: Archer IV was in a war in the Yesterday’s Enterprise universe–the Enterprise-D had just come from winning the Battle of Archer IV. Which is why the use of the planet in “Strange New World” was so bloody brilliant.

The database is still missing a -lot- of the lesser bits (IKS Amar, the Mirror Universe), but I found it fairly solid on the Sentient Beings category. The problem is that its success is only as perfect as the user’s knowledge of canon! :)

I loved the use of Starcraft sound effects, btw. :P

37. Spockanella - June 17, 2008

I stumped it with Ruk the android…when it started guessing the Horta I gave up, weeping with laughter.

38. Prologic9 - June 17, 2008

I tried “Pavel Chekov” and it couldn’t do it, but I figured out why;

“4. Is it always getting into trouble? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.”

You people are teaching it wrong! Chekov was always getting his ass into trouble! He gets the shit kicked out of him in at least half the movies. He’s like the redshirt who won’t die.

39. Michelle - June 17, 2008

I’ve done the online version of other 20 Questions games. It really DOES get better at figuring it out as more and more people play and input things. So if it’s not very good now, it’s probably just because it’s new.

40. sebimeyer - June 17, 2008

Also tried The Guardian, which it didn’t guess.

Had no problem with Spock. Although the question ‘did it ever spend an evening with James T. Kirk?’ did seem a bit odd, I did have to say yes.

41. garen - June 17, 2008

wow. they mustve JUST revamped the overall look of the game. I’ve been playing it since last week and even played it earlier today…it didnt look this cool until just now!

I’m glad someone put this into a story….i’d been trying to rally some troops around here to go play to help teach the A.I. a thing or two. i dont where in the world it was getting some of the bad answers it had.

42. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

This thing is definitely in the info gathering stage. It missed sehlat, and I know I answered it’s queries correctly.

43. Harry Seldom - June 17, 2008

It never heard of Shawn Jeffrey Christopher. So I submitted it, and it’s been “Thinking” now for several minutes.

And #16 (Scott), I did that before I read your comment. I guess if it doesn’t know dad…

44. garen - June 17, 2008

it thinks that picard is NOT mechanically inclined…

45. Harry Seldom - June 17, 2008

It took almost 30 guess to get General Martok. It had problems with:

1. Is it always getting into trouble? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Yes.
2. Does it have lightening-fast reflexes? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Yes.
3. Is it known for its physical strength? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Yes.
4. Would it feel out of place on Earth? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Yes.

It didn’t give me a chance to disagree, but
1. Martok had some challenges, but I wouldn’t classify it as “always getting into trouble.” I’ll allow room for disagreement here.
2. “Lightning fast” makes me think of Data. Martok is getting up there in age.
3. A great warrior, but I would not consider him especially strong for a Klingon.
4. Just because he’s not from Earth doesn’t mean he’d feel out-of-place. I think he’d be amused (and slightly offended) at the suggestion.

We fans know too much. The AI should stick to questions with unambiguous answers.

46. Darkthunder - June 17, 2008

You are Q.
1. Has it ever used the Holodeck? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.

While Q never started a holodeck program, he did participate in one on Voyager when he was pursuing Captain Janeway. The computers memory banks needs a look over I think :P

47. Illogical - June 17, 2008

It got me, The Guardian of Forever.

48. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

It’s dumb as a Pakled — oops, sorry, didn’t mean to be racist here.

49. stoptheclocks - June 17, 2008

I beat it with Koloth, because appparently he’s not in it’s database. It needs a little work but it’s still pretty fun to play.

50. Darkthunder - June 17, 2008

You are the U.S.S. Enterprise-D.

3. Did it ever compromise a crew’s safety? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.
4. Has it ever used the Holodeck? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.

Wtf? Never heard of the episode “Emergence”, where the Enterprise computer tries to build a new lifeform, which could’ve potentially been dangerous to the crew.

51. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

It’ll beat all our butts eventually, but maybe it’ll take more then one-million plays. It has over 40 years of minutia to catch up with. Even Memory Alpha musta taken time to compile.

Maybe a hottie in go go boots could hook 20Q Star Trek into Spock’s brain.

52. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

Wonder if 20Q worries about canon. I’m off to try Robert April…

53. Kirk's Revenge - June 17, 2008

I beat it with something quite simple = Spacedock.
It was in several of the movies, yet 20Q had never heard of it.

54. Kirk's Revenge - June 17, 2008

I also beat it with the U.S.S. Reliant (something Khan could never do!)
20Q took something like to 26 tries to finally get it.

55. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

You are Robert T. April.
1. Is it involved in a romance with a crewmate? You said No, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is Yes.
2. Does it have an interesting name? 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.

Hmm. I guess they did bump uglies before they were married. ??

56. shat hands - June 17, 2008

beat it with livingstone the fish in picards ready room

all too easy

bloody good fun though

57. CmdrR - June 17, 2008

So, I’ve definitely beat it 4 times; 2 times I may have messed up an answer, so I guess that means it beat me.

58. Duane - June 17, 2008

I was Helen Noel. I gave up before the system did.

59. Boba Fett - June 17, 2008

It didn’t know that I was thinking of Lando Calrissian or Thermians. Seems a little dull to me.

60. Arnaldo - June 17, 2008


I tried General Martok as well. Didn’t get it until 30 too. However, I tried it again and it got it in 20.

1. Has it ever been caught lying? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.
2. Is it in the United Federation of Planets? You said Yes, 20Q was taught by other players that the answer is No.

I thought that was weird.

61. barrydancer - June 17, 2008

I couldn’t figure out Ambassador Class Starship, but I eventually let it off with guessing Enterprise-C. Close enough, I guess. :)

62. barrydancer - June 17, 2008

Er, I mean “it” couldn’t figure it out. Obviously I knew. :P

63. Krik Semaj - June 17, 2008

Beat it with Kirks headstone from Where No Man Has Gone Before.

64. TerPor - June 17, 2008

“You are a warp field coil.” :)

65. starfall42 - June 17, 2008

I beat it with George Samuel Kirk and the I.S.S. Enterprise. Some of the data provided is indeed odd. There were a lot of questions on GSK I answered unknown, because we don’t really know anything about him, but it showed as positive “yes” and “no”. Maybe he did always get in trouble!

It took 22 questions to get Edith Keeler, after first guessing Mirimanne and Amanda Grayson. Hey, Kirk thought she was cute even if the 20Q users didn’t.

66. Chris M - June 17, 2008

I beat it with the Doctor from Voyager. Had no idea!

67. emotionally logical - June 17, 2008

i don’t think this thing works right.. I chose the doctor from Voyager. I said that it does not have hair, can be upgraded, and does emit light (he’s made of photons after all), and sometimes gets into trouble… It disgareeded with me on all of them… oh well, fun time anyways.

68. Michelle - June 17, 2008

It’s not that the program disagrees with you, but that the OTHER people who played before you chose different answers. If more people play it and choose YOUR answers, it will gradually learn which answers are more likely right.

69. jason - June 17, 2008

Beat it. Memory Alpha.

70. Javier Lorenz Jr. - June 17, 2008

I just gotta say that this bit is great fun!!!!:) It’s one hell of an entertaining time-waster and whilst I beat it several times…though it got me a few times…I must give uber-kudos to the guy or gal who created this!:D I’ll be sharing this site with all my Trekker friends for sure.:)

71. The Vulcanista - June 17, 2008

Beat it. T’Pol.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

72. THX-1138 The Fandom Menace - June 17, 2008

Beat it twice with Species 8472 and the probe ship from The Voyage Home.

73. Tango - June 17, 2008

The first question is sentient being thing place or unkown. What if it is not a sentient being? Like a Targ or Tribble. What do you put down?

74. EHH - June 17, 2008

It was better than I had expected. I got to 19 questions when it got to Garak.

75. The Angry Klingon - June 17, 2008

The problem with this game is it is only as smart as teh people playing it. Every time i beat it it said that info I gave it was contradicted by info it had received from previous players. When It gave me examples I was a little dumbfounded at the info it had received from other players. Feed this game bad info and you can crash it like ‘Norman’.

76. Tango - June 17, 2008

Tango was in its database but it couldn’t get to the answer easily. It said that Tango was not in the UFP, but he was on earth (or wil be) which means that he is in the UFP

77. JSanders - June 17, 2008

I had beat it once (on a Klingon Painstik), but I actually came across something that wasn’t in it… Rene Picard. I couldn’t believe it! A speaking role in a film, even!

78. haissemguy - June 18, 2008

it didn’t get EPS conduit.

Fraking usless thing :-)

79. SFDrummer - June 18, 2008

No Luck for Leah Brahms or the Freighter Bratriss

80. CPRoark - June 18, 2008

It got Sisko’s baseball in 20!

81. mooseday - June 18, 2008

Hmm, does my planet have lightning fast reflexes. Possibly. Its fun an’ all but the questions don’t really seem to fit the universe and seem a little to much open to various interpretations. Is a bird of prey in the UFP? Well, depends on which series your watching .. Is my phaser always getting into trouble? Possibly.

I think also they would be better off splitting into TNG 20Q and TOS 20Q .. anyho, back wondering if my Tribble Shines ( at math? Spelling? )

82. British Naval Dude - June 18, 2008


I hacked inta’ it and re-programmed it so it’ll never guess “Kobiyashi Maru”


83. Klingon Opera Lover - June 18, 2008

It guessed self-sealing stembolt on the fifteenth question. “Does it have an interesting name?” was a dead giveaway, I’m afraid.

84. 'Beach - June 18, 2008

I beat it with ‘Vance Madison’. He was one of the physicists at Regula One in ST II, though featured more in the novelization htan in the actual movie…

85. Warf lover - June 18, 2008

Did you know that if you play it right on the site, you can add questions? Same game, less graphics.

86. DFG333 - June 18, 2008

I bet it twice and it one once.

87. Dierna - June 18, 2008

I beat it! It thought I was thinking of Spot or Porthos but I was thinking of a Tribble. *lol*

88. HunterRex - June 18, 2008

I either beat it or it doesn’t know what I’m talking about. Maybe it will get better over time, but right now it sucks.

One time, I wanted it to guess Earth. So I choose that it was a Place. At one point it asked if it was a planet. “Yes.” It then asked me if it was tasty. Tasty? A Planet? It then asked me if it would make a good captain.

The last one I did was Sarek. It asked me if it has funny ears. I answered “yes.” It guessed Amanda Grayson. I guess I never noticed her funny lobes. :)

89. b. - June 18, 2008

it did neither think of tricobalt devices nor of retinax V …

90. THX-1138 The Fandom Menace - June 18, 2008

I have learned, now that I have played it about 25 times, that there are a lot of people who play that game that don’t know anything about Star Trek. It kept telling me my information was contradictory. I was thinking of McCoy and it said according to it’s database, he had never endangered the crew. To which I would counter with City on the Edge of Forever. I would say that going through the Guardian of Forever and altering time so that the Enterprise and the UFP didn’t exist, thusly stranding the landing party, would count as “endangering”.

91. demon barber of starfleet - June 18, 2008

It’s strangely addictive.

92. why so serious? - June 18, 2008

I must agree with #90. There are apparently quite a few people playing it who don’t know anything at all about Trek. It keeps telling me my information about McCoy is contradictory when I know full well that I’m correct and whoever has been feeding it this stuff is not.

For instance, “Is it ranked higher than Lieutenant?” Of course we all know he’s a Lieutenant Commander in TOS, and yet it says “Other users say “Doubtful”. These people must not watch the show or something.

93. garen - June 19, 2008

i think that the game has a DEFAULT system when it hasnt recieved many responses to one particular question.

i think most of the default “answers” that it thinks are true are set to “doubtful”

so things are “doubtful” “maybe” or “probably” until WE teach it differently.

94. The Captain - June 19, 2008

Interesting. I’ve stumped it two out of two times, so far. Fun!

95. The Captain - June 19, 2008

Three times now…

96. The Captain - June 19, 2008


97. The Captain - June 19, 2008

I should be getting paid for this…

98. The Captain - June 19, 2008

Five times in a row now…

Me: 5 for 5
It: 0 for 5

99. ngl;sdb;ga - June 19, 2008

how can self sealing stem bolt work well with a team?

its a thing!

100. Play 20Q Star Trek Online | Science Fiction Buzz Blog - July 30, 2008

[…] If you’d like more information about 20Q Star Trek, read this article here. […]

101. tomas - August 15, 2009

no lo quiero comprar lo quiero jugar

102. Helene Geiger - August 20, 2010

Star Trek 20q not working in the last two days ? :o(
August 20, 2010 Any reason why?

103. nike air jordan jumpman pro - October 7, 2010

Cryptic as nothing but used toilet paper in the gaming world, and they need flushing away.

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